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      How Your Online Business Can Nail Customer Service During the Holiday Rush

      The holiday season is upon us once more, and that means many things for your business. On the one hand, you’re about to enter the most lucrative period of the year. However, you’ll also be considerably busier than usual, and will likely need to deal with a much higher number of customer support queries.

      To make sure your support can cope with the holiday rush, you’ll want to plan ahead. Strengthening and preparing your support team is key to helping them provide assistance for a huge influx of stressed customers. If you do that, you’ll be able to reap the benefits of the season more effectively.

      In this article, we’ll discuss why it’s particularly important to provide quality customer service throughout the holidays. We’ll also offer some tips for how you can prepare your business and support team in advance. Let’s get started!

      Why Customer Service Matters Most During the Holidays

      If you’re anything like us, you’re getting busier by the day preparing for the holiday season. However, this isn’t just a time for buying gifts and eating good food. It’s also the most critical period for businesses, as many companies make the bulk of their yearly sales during the last few weeks of the year.

      However, to make sure your business takes full advantage of this period, you’ll need to plan ahead carefully. There are plenty of ways to ensure that you’re ready for the holiday rush, and one of the most crucial is making sure your customer service will function flawlessly.

      Of course, providing high-quality customer support is always necessary. During the holiday rush, however, you will most likely be inundated with even more support queries, questions, and confused customers than at any other time of the year. And because of high stress levels, you’re also more likely to end up dealing with some frustrated and potentially antagonistic customers.

      This might sound intimidating. By preparing in advance and making a solid plan, however, you can ensure that your customer service will remain top-notch even under less-than-ideal circumstances. Not only will this help your customers, but it will be a huge benefit to you and your customer service agents as well.

      10 Ways to Prepare Your Customer Service for the Holiday Rush

      If you’re wondering: “When should I start to prepare for the holidays?”, our answer is right now! It’s never too early to start planning for the year’s final month, but having a plan in place at least before the beginning of December is highly recommended.

      With that in mind, we’re going to guide you through some of the most important steps you’ll want to take. Here are 10 things you can do prepare your customer service before Santa arrives!

      1. Analyze Last Year’s Data

      A perfect place to start your planning is to look back at the previous year. This will involve examining the volume of calls and messages you received, finding out what the most common pain points were, and trying to understand where your service may have been lacking.

      Having this data at hand will be a huge help when formulating a plan for the upcoming rush. You’ll be able to improve in areas where you’ve struggled previously, and you can also preemptively provide information for the most common customer questions. In turn, this will cut down on the number of queries your team has to field.

      How you go about doing this analysis will naturally depend on your toolset. If you’re using software like Zendesk or Awesome Support, you can just view the statistics and queries from previous years. You should also liaise with your support and marketing teams, as they’ll be best equipped to tell you where you need to focus your attention.

      Here are some vital questions you’ll want to be able to answer:

      • How much larger is the volume of support queries you receive during the holiday shopping period, compared with the rest of the year?
      • What are the most common questions customers have?
      • How are most people choosing to contact you — via email, phone, chat, or some other medium?

      Of course, this is by no means an exhaustive list. However, these answers will help you immensely throughout the rest of your preparations.

      2. Decide Which Support Channels to Focus On

      It’s essential that you know where to focus your attention during the holiday season. At first glance, it might seem like the best route to use every conceivable method of contact, but this can lead to spreading yourself too thin.

      Imagine that you have to simultaneously juggle phone lines, live chat, emails, and social media, in addition to updating your content and dealing with orders and shipping. In this scenario, you’ll likely see most — if not all — of those channels suffer in quality. This is especially true if you only have a small support team.

      To avoid this problem, you’ll need to consider which channels of communication to focus on. The best way to start is by looking at which channels are most commonly used by your customers. As we mentioned in the previous section, looking at earlier years’ support queries will give you a good baseline to work from. However, you’ll also want to consider which channels are most popular during the rest of the year.

      For example, if you find that your customers are primarily calling in or using your contact form throughout the year, it’s fair to assume that these will be the busiest channels during the holidays as well. Knowing this will let you assign more people to handle those channels, and avoid keeping customers waiting.

      3. Prepare for Quick Scaling

      The truth is that no matter how well you plan, the holidays are never completely predictable. This means you’ll need to have a contingency plan, in case you need to scale up or down with little notice.

      For example, what if you face twice as many support requests as you anticipated? You’ll need to be able to assign more time and manpower to deal with them, while also keeping the rest of your operations afloat. In this scenario, you might consider hiring remote seasonal workers to help out.

      This is something many companies do to handle the increased volume of work during the holidays. Hiring temporary workers gives you the freedom to change the size of your team at almost a moment’s notice. For example, you could use a service like PartnerHero to outsource some or all of your customer support work during this period.

      Naturally, you’ll need to ensure that these seasonal workers have all the assets and information they need, which is something we’ll discuss later on. With the right preparations in place, they should be able to slot into your normal operations with little friction and help you deal with almost any unexpected situation.

      4. Keep Your Customers Informed

      Arguably the most significant way to avoid customer frustration is to manage their expectations. If your support is changing during the holidays, you need to make that clear as early as possible. They’ll need to be aware of when and how they will be able to contact you.

      It’s also smart to let customers know how your other operations are likely to alter. For example, will returns take longer to process, and will they need to wait a bit for responses to their emails? By letting them know what to expect, you can keep them informed and minimize the risk of frustration or hostility.

      One strategy you can use to your advantage is sometimes referred to as “underpromise and overdeliver.” The idea is that you prepare customers for potential issues that may arise, but then work to avoid those problems anyway. This lets you exceed their expectations.

      Overall, our recommendation is to be honest about what customers can expect and to make any changes clear through as many channels as possible. That includes on your website, social media, and even your email list. This will ensure that the bulk of your customers know what to expect.

      5. Use Automation to Your Advantage

      When the season gets going and you find yourself swamped in tasks, every second will count. To make sure you can use your available time most efficiently, you’ll want to consider automating tasks whenever it’s possible to do so.

      For instance, you can create an automated workflow using software like Help Scout. This can be set up to redirect customer queries to the person or team best suited to deal with them. Not only will this save time on your end, but it will also keep waiting times down for your stressed customers.

      Workflows also let you handle plenty of other tasks automatically, such as tracking products to let you know right away when stocks are low. You can then deal with the potential issue before it becomes a full-blown problem.

      There are plenty of other ways you can use automation during the holidays. One of the best strategies is to set up an AI-driven chatbot that can help you deal with the most common questions. This can dramatically cut down on the amount of time the human members of your team need to spend on customer support requests.

      6. Implement a Triage System for Support Queries

      In addition to automating parts of your support system, you can also optimize it by introducing a triage process. This involves sorting tasks and support queries into categories depending on their urgency. You can then prioritize more urgent matters first, while non-emergency tasks can be dealt with later.

      Implementing triage into your customer service will let you focus your attention on what matters most at any given time. The most pressing and time-sensitive tasks can be dealt with right away, minimizing the risk of making your customers feel frustrated and hostile.

      An easy way to do this is to simply categorize each customer query according to priority. If an issue needs to be dealt with immediately, you might label it as “critical,” while if it needs to be looked at within 1-2 hours it could be labeled “urgent.” Issues that can wait a day or two, on the other hand, can be noted as “low priority.”

      However, you need to remember that you’ll still have to actually deal with all requests. If you find that you’re never getting around to handling low-priority tasks, you may need to consider scaling your team up temporarily by assigning additional personnel.

      7. Update Your Content and Knowledge Base

      Earlier, we discussed the importance of keeping your customers informed. However, this extends beyond just letting them know about changes to your schedule. By making sure that all of your content and assets are up-to-date, you can save both customers and yourself a lot of time and hassle.

      For example, if you provide a knowledge base with information about your products and services, you can use it to answer most of the most commonly asked questions during the holiday period. In many cases, your support team can simply refer customers to relevant knowledge base articles, answering their queries quickly.

      For this to work, you’ll obviously need to ensure that you provide as much documentation and information as possible. It also needs to be thoroughly updated, to ensure that you don’t cause additional confusion among your customers.

      If you need to set up a knowledge base, you can use a plugin such as Heroic Knowledge Base. If you already have one, on the other hand, you should perform a content audit well before the holiday rush kicks in. This can also involve reviewing similar resources, such as your FAQ page.

      8. Learn How to Help Stressed Customers

      The holidays are intended to offer relaxation and fun, but we all know that it can also be a thoroughly stressful period. As such, you’re likely to deal with a few customers who are particularly difficult, frustrated, or even outright antagonistic.

      Naturally, you’ll need to prepare in order to help them out and avoid angering them further. Dealing with difficult customers is a delicate task. The most valuable advice we can offer is to train your support team to stay calm and professional at all times, no matter what a customer might say.

      In addition, here are some ways you can approach particularly challenging customers:

      • Listen. If the customer feels like they’re being deflected or ignored, they’re only going to get angrier and less responsive.
      • Be quick. Naturally, your goal is to be as a fast as possible with all support queries. However, it can be worth prioritizing more stressed customers, to avoid further incident.
      • Treat them like people. We discussed the value of automation earlier, but in tough cases, it’s better to take a personal approach. Make it clear to the customer that you’re handling their issue and care about their frustration, so they don’t feel like they’re being treated as a nuisance.

      In short, by listening to the customer and being prepared to meet them halfway, you can usually solve even the most heated of issues.

      9. Prepare to Provide Compensation to Customers

      In some situations, you may need to compensate customers. Especially in the most volatile or challenging cases, a simple gift can help to smooth things over immensely. Some customers might even demand this kind of treatment.

      Providing compensation can help to soften even the most upset customers. It can also win back some goodwill. Your goal is to ensure that the customer considers using your business again in the future, despite their current grievances.

      Naturally, you’ll want to be very careful about how and when you compensate customers. In some cases, such as when they’ve received a faulty product, you may be legally obligated to provide a new item or a refund.

      However, you can also provide compensation if a customer has had a particularly difficult experience, either with your business or your customer service. This could be in the form of a small gift, a coupon, a discount, or anything else that’s convenient but useful to the customer.

      10. Take Care of Your Support Team

      Finally, while it’s obviously necessary to take care of your customers, you shouldn’t ignore the people on your own front lines. Beginning on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the holiday rush is a stressful experience for everyone, especially those who have to field questions and requests from wound-up customers.

      Depending on the size of your business, you can take care of your support team in several ways. Naturally, you should make sure they have everything they’ll need to do their jobs without incident.

      However, it’s also nice to reward your support team further, to show your appreciation for all their hard work. Even something as simple as the occasional gift, like seasonally appropriate sweets and drinks, can do a lot to raise morale during this hectic season.

      Holiday Shopping Made Easy

      The holidays are meant to be a time of joy, but it can be hard to feel merry if your customer service is strained. By preparing well in advance, you can put a plan into place, train your team, and inform your customers — providing effective and efficient support as a result.

      Do you have any questions about how to handle customer support during the holiday rush? Find us on social and let’s start the conversation!

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      Get an SSL for a safer online business

      Secure Sockets Layer (or SSL), is the most widely spread security Protocol today. It is an industry standard, used by many owners of online businesses to protect the private information of their customers. What the SSL does is to create a secure channel between the browser and the server, encrypting the sensitive data which has been exchanged during a transaction. Each action has to go through an encryption test before it gets completed. If something goes wrong during the test (for example due to a malicious attempt), the encrypted information will not be exposed. That way, the SSL ensures that all data transferred remains safe.


      What is an SSL?

      Data privacy and integrity are the primary aspects to consider when running a business online. If you have a look at some of the popular online shops, you will most certainly see the SSL Certificate badge on them. The SSL Certificate badge on your website shows your visitors that their private information is secured and helps to build confidence and trust. It protects your visitors’ credit card numbers, login details and passwords along with other private user information that might be exposed to hackers or scammers. A website that has an SSL is easily identifiable. First, it contains a green “Lock” icon on the left side of the address bar. Second, the URL of the website starts with https, instead of http.

      There is another benefit. The Search Engine Optimization (SEO) of your website will be positively influenced from the SSL Certificate. Since 2014, Google is considering website security as one of the criteria for displaying results in its search engine, meaning that all websites, secured with SSL, will be ranked higher.

      The SSL encrypts not only transactional website activates but also page and form submissions. In order to create SSL connection to your website, you first have to obtain an SSL Certificate and install it on your web server.



      What is an SSL?

      There are two options to get an SSL certificate with TMDHosting:

      • How to get an S
      • How to get an S
      • How to get an S

      You can purchase it from your cPanel.
      You can get it for FREE with our Professional web hosting plans.
      In both cases, a representative from our sales team will talk to you and advise you on which SSL Certificate is most suitable for your business. Afterwards, a member of our customer support team will perform the installation process for you.


      What is an SSL?

      1. How to get an S
      2. How to get an S
      3. How to get an S

      There are two different types of easy to manage SSL certificates to fit your needs:

      – Standard SSL – provides website encryption, identification and authentication for one domain. For example: and .

      – Wildcart SSL – helps to enable the SSL encryption on several sub domains, such as,,, etc.

      If you already know which certificate you need, you can just order it through your cPanel. Not sure? Consult with our sales agents.
      If you have already purchased an SSL certificate from a third party and do not have the technical knowledge to install it on your website, you could always ask our support team for help.

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      The 70 Best Online Resources to Learn How to Code (Updated 2018)

      If you look back at tech movies of the past, some of them were really ahead of their time. Think back to 1995’s The Net, a film about computer analyst Angela Bennett (played by a young Sandra Bullock) who happens upon a government conspiracy — and dangerous hackers — while debugging a computer program. Not only did the film hit the nail on the head with how prevalent the internet is in our lives, but it also highlighted the power and pervasiveness of programming.

      Call it prophetic, but “hacking” skills — the good kind — are the common currency of the future. With an increasing interest in computer programming and the growth of tech-sector jobs, the time is now to learn a thing or two about 0s and 1s. It’s time to learn to code (no, not morse code).

      Maybe it was tech-of-the-future movies that got you interested in coding as a kid, or perhaps you’re developing a passion for learning mid-career. Whatever the reason, it’s time to go back to school — and with the right resources, you can learn a host of new language skills (no verb conjugating required).

      So what is coding? (If you’ve got some time, start here). Simply put, code is the set of instructions given to computers to perform specific functions. With lines of code, programmers develop the software that powers the devices you encounter every day — from your smartphone to your microwave. Yep, it does a lot.

      Programming is not just a way to build things; coding helps solve problems, aids people in need, and, as Steve Jobs admonished, it teaches you how to think. It’s a skill lauded by presidents, mayors, billionaires, even high fashion supermodels. There’s even a designated Computer Science Education Week. Mark your calendars!

      The good news is you don’t have to live in Silicon Valley or have expensive, high-tech gadgets to learn how to code. Self-taught programming is on the rise, and you can join the masses that are taking to the web to learn the next universal language.

      With the click of a mouse, you can develop a whole new repertoire of programming skills. And we’ve got all the resources to help you learn to code as you start the digital school year.

      Brrrrring! (Code) School is back in session.

      But First, Meet a Self-Taught Programmer

      Before I inundate you with stellar programming resources, allow me to introduce you to a real-life, self-taught coding graduate. Meet Ryan Hanna.

      Ryan Hanna

      Why him? Well, in 2015, more than half of mobile phone users had downloaded a health-related mobile app. And know who created one of the most successful ones? That’s right.

      Hanna began teaching himself to code in January of 2012 using Codeacademy, out of a desire to start creating his own projects.

      “I was tired of just consuming things that other people were building and wanted to try building something of my own,” he says.

      Utilizing lessons from Codeacademy, PhoneGap, and tutorials he found on blogs, he picked up programming skills and began working on his own creation — a new workout app called Sworkit.

      “I transitioned from an IT specialist to a full-time junior developer in the same company I worked for after one year of learning and had started building my own project in my free time,” Hanna says. “This project ended up replacing most of my resume and helped me get my first non-junior developer role where I worked for two years.

      “Along the way, I had met Benjamin Young of Nexercise at a conference, and we ended up deciding to work together on Sworkit full time. His and Greg Coleman’s company Nexercise bought Sworkit and hired me to continue working on it. We’ve since grown to an amazing team of seven and have one of the top workout apps on the market.”

      The growth of Sworkit proved to Hanna — and it should prove to you — that building something amazing is only a few steps away.

      “You can build anything you want,” Hanna says. “Starting with any idea or any design, you can just start building it without any limitations. That feels amazing to go from nothing to something.”

      And learning to code doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Start with baby steps, Hanna says.

      “Learn a broad spectrum of languages and topics at the start, but then pick something small to work on with what you have learned,” he says. “It will help you start something from scratch and get that feeling of adding one little piece at a time. You start to focus on figuring out how to complete each step in sequence and then you have something to show for it at the end as well.”

      A computer science degree isn’t required to get started with a shiny new set of coding skills. Many others have learned, and so can you.

      Here is a hefty list of 70 free or low-cost ways (and more) to get started.

      Self-Guided Tour: Our Complete List of 70 Coding Resources

      1. Games

      We know gaming isn’t time-wasting — rather, it’s an engaging way to learn and practice new concepts as you learn to code. Use these online activities to sharpen your skills.


      Explore programming in your preferred coding language and on your own time. Whether you’ve got five minutes or five hours, Code Fights allows you to practice for job interviews, play arcade-style coding games, and compete in screen-to-screen challenges

      Cost: Free


      A collection of beginner-to-advanced practice problems that allow you to earn certificates and hone your skills. Consider it a type of fun homework.

      Cost: Free


      Choose a coding language and solve challenges; accompanying solutions and tutorials help you cement crucial programming skills with step-by-step instructions

      Cost: Free


      Enter virtual duels by building your own robot using Javascript and challenging other users — programming video games, anyone?

      Cost: Free

      Reddit: Daily Programmer

      Utilize Reddit’s user-based forums to try challenges in a range of different levels and applications — everything from Scrabble-like tests to mazes.

      Cost: Free


      Play virtual coding games (think: destroying enemy ships with code) that can teach you essential skills and can get you noticed by companies.

      Cost: Free


      See how you stack up against other coders with a large library of dynamic coding challenges while building a profile and attracting the attention of programmer-seeking companies.

      Cost: Free


      Coding activities with purpose. Help solve real-world problems for businesses with innovative programming solutions while joining a community of coders and utilizing practice problems.

      Cost: Free


      Unearth your inner coding competitor and solve challenges while interacting on a leading recruitment site for companies (meaning, it’s a resume builder!)

      Cost: Free

      Sphere Online Judge

      Become the Obi-Wan of programming by testing out problems and offering your own solutions, while participating in a unique coding community.

      Cost: Free

      Microsoft Imagine

      Enhance your development skills by taking Microsoft’s fun and creative coding projects for a spin.

      Cost: Free


      A great resource to train yourself, collaborate with others, and create in a variety of programming languages.

      Cost: Free


      Practice problems (consider them mini-quests) for newbies and experts, tailored to your interests, whether you want to learn to code, increase fluency in your chosen language, or develop clean code. Just submit your solutions and get helpful feedback. Works through GitHub.

      Cost: Free

      2. Books

      No dull, dusty textbooks here — these programming tomes can provide you useful reading material.

      The Self-Taught Programmer

      The perfect manual for self-studiers, written by one of coding’s own amateur-turned-professional graduate.

      Cost: $4.99 Kindle Book

      Github Free E-Books

      A countless collection of ebooks on every possible programming topic, like how to learn Python or PHP.

      Cost: Many free — prices vary

      Reddit Free Programming Books

      Another exhaustive collection of online resources to help you increase your coding knowledge.

      Cost: Many free — prices vary

      3. Mentors/Meetups

      Want to meet with like-minded individuals? Find a mentor or coding event in your area.

      Reddit Programming Buddies

      Virtual classified ads for programmers; identify programming comrades that match your unique skills and interests and collaborate on personalized projects.

      Cost: Free


      A matching platform that connects users in a myriad of different fields; outfit a profile with what you offer and what you want to learn and begin sharing knowledge with other groups.

      Cost: Free

      Pair With Me

      Utilize the site’s Pair With Me button to encourage collaboration from your own website or contact form. Also, check out the provided collection of resources and guides for programmer pairing.

      Cost: Free

      CodeNewbies Twitter

      This social media handle hosts a live, weekly chat every Wednesday where users can ask questions and converse with other programmers — beginners and experts alike.

      Cost: Free


      A general connection platform that allows you to tailor specific meetup requests in your area. A good place to start? Tech Meetups.

      Cost: Prices vary


      Not unlike a hip, adult slumber party; these all-night coding parties allow you to gather with like-minded learners and develop new skills as you tackle team programming projects.

      Cost: Prices vary

      Local Computer Science Classes

      For those looking to feel like a student again. Another resource that allows you to find computer science courses local to your area.

      Cost: Prices vary

      Girl Develop It

      A female-focused nonprofit that provides resources for computer science-interested women. Find your local chapter and attend programming events.

      Cost: Prices vary

      Did You Know? DreamHost has partnered with Girl Develop It to sponsor WordPress courses nationwide.

      Coder Match

      Link your GitHub account to find coding buddies that share similar programming goals and projects.

      Cost: Free

      Code Buddies

      A large community of programmers who connect via Slack and organized study (screen-sharing) hangouts. Make your hangouts as unique as your project.

      Cost: Free

      4. Videos

      Hunker down: it’s movie night. Time to break out the popcorn and watch as YouTubers — and others — share their knowledge. (Bonus: No Redbox fees).


      A Google employee shares weekly video lessons that address topics of web design and development.


      The YouTube channel of a matching site that addresses much more than just CSS.

      Derek Banas

      Your wish is Derek Banas command; the YouTuber makes video tutorials based on the requests and questions from viewers, so ask away! His tailored videos also include multi-weekly live streams. Along with an extensive collection of programming tutorials, he’s also got in-depth guides on how to create video games. Score!

      Coder’s Guide

      Helpful step-by-step web development tutorials covering everything from responsive web design to splash screens.

      The New Boston

      Covering all things computers, The New Boston offers detailed videos for every step of your programming journey — even for beginners.

      Programming Knowledge

      A great starting point for beginners; these easy-to-digest video help learners manage the ins-and-outs of different programming languages.

      Ted Talks

      A playlist of seven top-tier talks from Ted Talks’ best speakers, covering topics like teaching kids to code and improving government through programming.

      Command Line Power User

      A handy video series for web developers learning how to interact with computer programs.

      My Code School

      This educational channel has more than 330,000 subscribers for a reason: the folks behind it know their stuff. With tons of videos on a host of programming languages and live content, you can get a crash course on any programming subject you want to learn about.

      Looking for additional coding movie makers? Here are a few more you can check out.

      5. eCourses

      Choose from a handful of virtual courses or coding boot camps to learn new skills — at free or budget-friendly costs.


      A coder-must platform that helps programmers collaborate with each other as they save code online, view changes, and discuss issues.

      Cost: Paid (from $7 per month) and free plans available


      Another resource that makes coding a team effort; works in conjunction with Git to help programmers work jointly on projects.

      Cost: Paid (from $10 per month) and free plans available

      Open Culture

      A full list of all kinds of online computer courses from distinguished universities — available in various formats for easy accessibility.

      Cost: Free

      Code Avengers

      Whether you want to learn how to build websites, apps, or games, this resource has helpful lessons, quizzes, and project-based learning tools for creating and real-life problem solving, tailored to your own individual programming path. They even provide an educational environment for junior coders.

      Cost: $29 per month; $150 for six months

      Moana, Star Wars, and Minecraft — all subjects incorporated into one-hour tutorials provided by nonprofit These easy-to-digest courses are accessible for learners of all levels and ages, and provide useful hands-on experience for future programming gurus

      Cost: Free


      Not just a programmer’s favorite; this Reddit page has a collective list of interactive coding tutorials gathered from around the web on various topics, from mobile iOs or Android development to info on different programming languages. (Plus, you can even watch people code!)

      Cost: Free

      GitHub Curated Programming Resources

      Another exhaustive list of coding resources, plus, a helpful introduction that guides beginners on where to start.

      Cost: Free


      Ryan Hanna’s alma mater is helping educate the world in programming; choose from a catalog of courses that meet your learning needs and get coding.

      Cost: Free

      David Walsh

      Web developer Walsh shares a host of programming tutorials in addition to sharing demos and info about coding conferences.

      Cost: Free

      Open Culture

      A collection of computer science courses and resources available right from your screen and in multiple formats.

      Cost: Free


      A course-focused site that offers resources for learning, practicing, and earning badges that boost your skills. Students can earn anything from app-building to website-creation.

      Cost: Free 7-day trial, $25 (Basic Plan) or $49 (Pro Plan) a month after


      Take courses straight from actual universities in a variety of specializations. This site partners with top schools to offer education in programming, data science, business, and more.

      Cost: Prices vary


      Students choose from an extensive collection of self-paced computer science courses fueled by university curriculum — it was founded by Harvard and MIT in 2012.

      Cost: Free, professional certificates at a cost

      Free Code Camp

      Complete challenges and building projects that can help you build skills, even acquire developer jobs. Plus, Free Code Camp tasks have practical applications, like aiding nonprofits with open source projects.

      Cost: Per its name, free

      General Assembly Dash

      Learn coding basics from your browser — the step-by-step guided fundamentals can aid you in building your next super-site.

      Cost: Free


      Earn a nanodegree — an online certification with provided course materials and instructor guidance — in one of seventeen available tech tracks. Learn in-demand job skills at your own pace.

      Cost: Prices vary (but plan for a cost of at least a few hundred every month).

      Solo Learn

      Learn to code on the go with online courses or a travel-friendly app. Topics feature tons of courses and quizzes, plus social learning components; there’s even a “Code Playground” for experimental development.

      Cost: Free


      Choose from more than 45,000 courses tailored to your own personal programming syllabus rated and reviewed by peers.

      Cost: Prices vary


      A learning platform filled with engaging courses taught by industry gurus.

      Cost: Free 30-day trial, prices vary after

      Self Taught Coders

      Email courses designed to help you launch a career in web development and propel your ideas into real-life web applications.

      Cost: Prices vary, some free


      An HTML and CSS tutorial that starts at the web’s bare bones and gets gradually more detailed as the course progresses — an easy-to-understand intro for beginners.

      Cost: Free

      Reddit: Learn Programming

      A smart guide with an abundance of helpful resources for every step of your self-taught programming journey.

      Cost: Free

      Haven’t found your perfect fit? Try this: a few more places to code for free.

      6. Podcasts

      Load up your device with audio coding lessons and listen on your commute or during your workout.

      Coding Blocks

      Shop talk about development best practices relevant to a number of different programming languages.

      Cost: Free

      Dev Radio

      A by developers, for developers podcast that shares up-and-coming programming news. Cost: Free

      Software Engineering Daily

      Featured interviews with experts that touch on tech topics like mobile app development and developer testing.

      Cost: Free

      Developer Tea

      A snackable-size podcast designed for busy schedules. Listen to quick bites on all kinds of developer-designed details.

      Cost: Free

      Programming Throwdown

      A perfect podcast if you want a little taste of everything; each show covers a different programming language so you can expand your coding knowledge with each episode.

      Cost: Free

      Coding Newbie

      This weekly podcast features stories and useful lessons from other individuals who are on their self-taught programming path.

      Cost: Free

      Learn to Code With Me

      Laurence Bradford’s weekly podcast helps self-taught coders transition to the tech field with useful real-world examples and tips on developing marketable skills and enhancing your resume.

      Cost: Free

      Need more earworms? Try additional podcasts here, including language- and task-specific channels.

      7. For Children

      Turns out, it’s never too soon to start introducing your tots to their first bytes.

      Computer Science for Babies

      A book series designed to help your little ones make connections to computer science principles during early development.

      Cost: Prices vary

      HTML for Babies

      A three-volume collection of board books that introduce your infants to computer science fundamentals. In conjunction with site Code Babies.

      Cost: Amazon, $1.73 each

      Treehouse: When Should Kids Learn to Code?

      Tips for helping kids to get a start in programming.

      Cost: Free Student

      A youthful resource for finding online courses or local classes. Includes games and activities.

      Cost: Free


      A record-setting event for Code Club where kids ages 7-18 around the world join together to tackle projects — MoonHack’s or your own (moon-themed, of course). 2017’s MoonHack event brought together more than 28,000 youth.

      Cost: Free

      Code Your Own Games!

      Entice youth early to get involved in coding with this easy-to-follow (and super fun) visual guide that helps them learn to program their own games. Gaming + learning = win-win.

      Cost: Amazon, $16.16

      Got Questions?

      Our collection of resources provides a comprehensive list of places to initiate your self-taught programming journey, from beginning fundamentals to jump-starting your coding career. But along the way, you might hit a few roadblocks. Well, we’re here for you.

      Maybe you don’t know what programming language to start learning. Easy. Try an interactive quiz or infographic that guides your journey based on your individual goals and interests (like, creating a game, or developing an iOS or Android app).

      Struggling with framework questions, or need to fix a bug or in your code? Try utilizing Stack Overflow, a coder’s knowledge-sharing community. Want to automate tedious tasks while using Microsoft devices? Do it with Windows PowerShell. Trying to learn how to master an object-oriented programming language? Visualize with the Understand tool.

      Or perhaps you’re looking for useful apps or a development environment to practice in? We’ve got you covered. Try some note-taking apps that help while you code and useful coding playgrounds like Code Pen, JSFiddle, or Limnor Studio (visual programming) to get your feet wet.

      Any more questions? Let us know.

      Take Notes

      Ready for your homework? Time to get coding.

      Pick a course, a video, a podcast, or a coding game. Start there and start small. With our complete guide to coding resources, you have everything you need to start building your own projects and becoming fluent in your new language.

      Fill Us In

      Are you a self-taught programmer? How did you learn to code? What advice would you give to other wannabe coders? Share your story — and your advice — with us in the DreamHost Community!

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