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12 Documentation Examples Every Developer Tool Can Learn From

After days and months of toiling, you finally finish creating your game-changing product that will shake the developer world. You invest a large amount of resources in marketing and find some customers. But surprisingly, instead of seeing your product getting praise from critics all around, you notice that developers are leaving poor reviews and expressing frustrations. They say that your product is “too complicated” and “difficult to understand.”

This is a very common story and is one of the big reasons you should invest in writing good documentation for your product. The documentation is the relationship manager between your product and the developers. Good documentation makes the life of developers easy by explaining the features of your product, whereas bad documentation can frustrate and drive away the developers, even if your product is superb and does a fantastic job! Good documentation also lifts the burden from your support team because if developers can get answers to their questions from the documentation, they won’t need to bother the support team with their issues. Believe me, no developer likes filling out a form and waiting multiple days for an answer from the support team when they can get their answers from the documentation.

The other article explained what makes documentation good. In this article, you’ll see some real-life examples of good documentation. You can take inspiration from these amazing documentation examples and apply the learnings the next time you create documentation.

12 Best Documentation Examples

Before you jump into the list, let’s take a moment to understand the parameters these entries have been judged on:

  • Depth of documentation: Documentation must be in-depth. This means it must cover all features and all the different ways to use the tool, including installation, setup, configuration, and advanced usage. Bonus points if a quick-start guide is provided that helps developers get started with the product quickly.
  • Examples: The documentation must have enough examples, and the examples should cover as many use cases as possible. The examples should be complete and understandable to someone who has never used the tool before. Bonus points if the examples are interactive and can be run directly from the docs.
  • UI/UX: Having detailed documentation is not enough if the UI/UX is bad. The UI should be clean and easy to use. It doesn’t have to be super flashy, but it needs to strike a balance between looks and materials. The UX should also be aimed at making the lives of developers easy. For example, in some documentation, if an API uses an API key and you’re logged in, it automatically populates the API key by taking it from your account.
  • Search and navigation: It doesn’t matter how detailed the docs are if finding things becomes as hard as finding a needle in a haystack. A search feature is a must in any documentation, and the search experience should be good. Features such as autocomplete, autosuggestion, and fuzzy searching are always appreciated. Navigating the docs is also another closely related issue. Navigating the docs must be easy, with enough internal and external links, and the docs should be structured in a way that makes sense.

Now, without further ado, let’s get to the list.

Note: This is not an exhaustive list by any means. This list is purely opinion-based, and you might find a tool that you feel has better documentation than any tool in this list. Remember that the goal of this article is to inspire you, not to judge tools based on their documentation.


Stripe is revered by developers as having one of the best documentation. The documentation home page is designed neatly with tabs at the top that link to the documentation for each product, such as Payments, Developer tools, and No-code. The home page also shows some example snippets that give an idea of some of the important functions of the tool at a glance:

Stripe documentation home page

The documentation provides great starting points in the form of quick starts and clonable sample apps. The documentation covers a wide range of ways to use their products, including APIs and SDKs.

The documentation is accompanied by adequate examples. Each example is in-depth and complete. And the best part is that you can choose the language and framework of the examples. You can also mix and match frameworks; for example, Android SDK, Kotlin frontend, and PHP backend. If you’re logged in, the examples will fetch the API keys from your account and populate the appropriate fields in the examples, which makes it easy for you to copy-paste the examples as is:

The interactive example

The examples also have optional sections that provide more ways to customize your experience:

The optional sections

Stripe boasts a superior search functionality that can show results from all over the docs and example code snippets. It also supports fuzzy searching:

Stripe search widget

Finally, you have the option to contact support or sales from any page:

Contacting support

Overall, Stripe provides remarkable documentation, with its amazing UI/UX, interactive examples, and depth of documentation, which sets the bar high for any developer tool.


Kubernetes is one of the most popular container orchestration tools that is part and parcel of the DevOps world. Being this popular, it’s no surprise that Kubernetes boasts amazing documentation. The documentation home page is entirely made up of links to different sections, including a glossary and the process of how to contribute to Kubernetes. Each page of the documentation allows you to submit an edit to the documentation repository hosted on GitHub:

Kubernetes documentation home page

Kubernetes documentation is also one of the few documentation provided in multiple languages. You can choose over ten different languages to read the documentation in, which means language is no barrier, and developers from anywhere can make full use of the documentation:

Choosing a language

The documentation website has an easy-to-understand layout. The Getting started guide provides a nice starting point, and each concept has its own section. You can also find complete tutorials of different use cases and scenarios in the Tutorials section:

The topics covered

Each concept is supplemented by adequate examples of necessary YAML files and kubectl commands:

Code snippets

Each section also has a What’s Next? section to guide you in exploring related features. The search features support fuzzy searching, but it doesn’t support autocomplete or autosuggestions. However, the search is still powerful enough to find what you need in most cases.

Overall, Kubernetes delivers solid multilingual documentation with enough examples and resources to make sure that you’re not left empty-handed.


Docker is undoubtedly a household name for developers all around the world. And you don’t become as popular as Docker without having superb documentation. The documentation is well-thought-out and structured in an easy-to-navigate manner. It is subdivided into guides, manuals, references, samples, and FAQ. The home page links to the installation guide so that someone who doesn’t have Docker yet can get started immediately:

Docker documentation home page

You can also access different sections right from the home page:

The different sections

Docker also takes advantage of its huge open source community by linking to community resources such as the forum and Slack channel:

Docker resources

Docker incorporates Algolia as the search engine, which offers a powerful search feature along with fuzzy searching and a keyboard-navigable search widget. You can use CTRL + K to activate the search and arrow keys to navigate:

Docker search widget

When it comes to depth, it’s hard to beat the Docker documentation. A simple example is the installation guide for Docker Engine. Not only does Docker provide guides for different operating systems and platforms, but it also provides you with useful tips like post-installation steps and troubleshooting guides:

The installation guide

Docker provides thorough examples and explanations for all its features, including related environment variables, configuration files, and experimental features. The Reference documentation section is a goldmine for discovering every single property of the Docker CLI, Dockerfile, Compose file, and API. Finally, the FAQ section saves developers much time as it already answers common questions.

In conclusion, the Docker documentation is an example of an all-around solid documentation. A clean UI/UX, complete examples, and a nice FAQ section shine as its plus points.


Twilio is a popular service that provides communication tools for making and receiving phone calls, texts, emails, and much more. The Twilio documentation clearly shows the amount of effort put into the tool to make it accessible to every developer. The documentation boasts a clear and modern design, with the home page showcasing different products. The documentation is offered in three languages: English, German, and Spanish:

Twilio documentation home page

Just like Docker, Twilio also uses Algolia to implement the search functionality. So you can rest assured you will find what you are looking for!

Each product provides an overview to give you a bird’s-eye view of what you can expect. You can find detailed examples and explanations in the left sidebar:

The topics covered

The API references are all accompanied by sample code in multiple languages and frameworks, such as Node.js, Python, and Java, along with sample responses and a detailed description:

Code snippets

The Tutorials section provides complete guides on different scenarios and use cases of the Twilio API, with the option to choose your favorite language:

The tutorials

Overall, the Twilio documentation does a good job of hitting it out of the park with complete examples, multiple languages and frameworks, and solid search functionality.


Vue is a JavaScript library for creating reactive and highly performant frontend UIs. The Vue documentation boasts a variety of contents, such as guides, tutorials, examples, quick starts, glossaries, and many more:

Vue documentation home page

For the guides, you have the option to choose between the Options API or the Composition API:

Choosing Options vs. Composition API

The accompanying code samples are complete, and all of them are followed by links to the Vue Playground, where you can experiment with the code interactively:

The code snippets

If you choose to go the Tutorial route, you’ll be presented with a step-by-step interactive tutorial where you can learn the ins and outs of Vue interactively:

The interactive playground

The Vue documentation also uses Algolia to implement searching. Needless to say, it provides a solid site-wide searching experience with autosuggestions and fuzzy searching.

Overall, the Vue documentation does a good job of covering all the grounds and showing you the full power of Vue through an interactive playground.


Next.js is a React framework for building full-stack web applications. Next.js has seen a boom in popularity, and there’s no surprise that it boasts great documentation. The Next.js documentation has a sleek, modern UI that greets you with a nice introduction that sets the stage for what to expect:

Next.js documentation home page

The docs provide a thorough tour of the features of Next.js, including routing, rendering, caching, components, and functions. You can choose whether you want to use the Pages Router or App Router:

The topics covered

A fast and snappy search widget is provided, which can also be activated by pressing CTRL + K. You get a documentation-wide search with the option to switch between the Pages Router or the App Router:

Next.js search widget

The code examples are complete and in-depth, with the option to choose between JavaScript and TypeScript:

The code snippets

Finally, if you click on the Learn button at the top, you’ll get access to a Next.js course that’s designed to take you from beginner to expert. Next.js also has guides on the Vercel site that explores many different scenarios where Next.js can be used.

The Next.js documentation is a solid work of art that blends a modern design with thorough resources and helps any developer learn the tool quickly and easily.

Google Cloud

Let’s face it, Google Cloud is a behemoth. With a product of that size, you’d expect the documents to be complicated. But Google has done a commendable job of keeping it organized. The home page immediately points toward the quick-start guides, tutorials, and code samples for those who are just testing the waters with Google Cloud:

Google Cloud documentation home page

For seasoned veterans, scrolling down reveals the list of documentation of every single one of the hundreds of products available in Google Cloud:

The list of products

Each product showcases a collection of training materials and tutorials, use cases, code samples, and even videos:

A typical product page

The tutorials are clear, are in-depth, and link to appropriate pages in the console. With one press of a button, you are taken to where you need to be to follow along with the tutorial:

The tutorials

For codes and commands, you get the option to edit variables inline, which then replaces all occurrences of the variable in the rest of the tutorial, making it easy for you to copy-paste the code:

The code snippets

When it comes to search, it’s a no-brainer that Google dominates that field. This documentation is also no different. Google’s powerful search engine can fetch you hundreds of results in milliseconds:

Google Cloud search widget

However, Google takes its documentation one step further by incorporating role-based learning, a training hub, and certifications. This means that if you want to learn Google Cloud, their documentation is literally the best place for that.

The Google Cloud Services stand out from the rest by incorporating training programs and guides. It’s pretty hard to beat Google Cloud Services in terms of the resources provided.

Amazon Web Services

Just like Google Cloud, Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a giant in the cloud computing landscape. And just like Google Cloud, AWS also hosts hundreds of products, so you can expect the documentation to also be gigantic. Unfortunately, the AWS documentation is organized very confusingly, especially if someone has never used AWS before. If you go to the AWS home page and click on the Documentation tab, you’ll be taken to a page that seems daunting because it just has links to all the products and nothing else:

AWS documentation home page

If you click on any of the links, you’ll realize that it’s not the full documentation but rather just an overview of that product:

Overview of a product

That’s because the Documentation page is just a collection of overviews of different products. To find the actual documentation of a product, you need to find it from the Products menu and click on it to go to the product’s home page:

The product home page

From there, you can click on Resources and then on Documentation to find the documentation:

The product documentation

However, where AWS lacks in user experience, it makes up for in terms of depth and usefulness. After all the work you did to find the documentation for a product, you’ll be rewarded because it’ll be all you need. Each product page has easy-to-understand overviews with diagrams, getting-started guides, use cases, and often, introductory videos.

The documentation is thorough, covering all possible ground, starting from setup and prerequisites, all the way up to advanced features, best practices, tutorials, and code examples:

A typical guide

The code examples provide options to choose your favorite language or framework, and you also get a mega repository of all code examples used in the documentation:

The code snippets

As for search capabilities, AWS offers a super powerful search engine that returns results from the documentation across all their products, blogs, and resources, as long as you search from the Overview page:

The search widget

If you search from within an individual product’s documentation, by default, it’ll be scoped to that product only, but you can simply remove the filter to trigger a full documentation search:

Site-wide search

AWS offers the ability to download each product’s documentation as a PDF so that you can store an offline copy or read it from your own devices.

Overall, AWS loses a few points on the UI/UX front but scores solid points for the volume and depth of the guides.


Heroku is a cloud platform as a service that offers hosting applications written in a wide range of languages, such as Ruby, Node.js, Scala, and Go. The Heroku documentation home page starts with a prompt to select your programming language, along with links to some important language-agnostic features, such as the Heroku CLI, Heroku CI, and logging:

Heroku documentation home page

For each language, they offer a quick-start guide that starts from the setup and takes you to the full-fledged app deployment on Heroku:

The quick-start guide

Each quick-start guide has an accompanying sample application that you can clone from GitHub:

Sample application

You can log into Heroku and save your progress in the quick start. This means you don’t need to finish the quick start in one go, and you can learn at your own pace.

Apart from quick-start guides, Heroku has in-depth documentation on other features, such as the CLI tool, continuous integration, continuous delivery (CI/CD), database, monitoring, add-ons, and security and billing.

The search feature of the Heroku documentation is very good. It doesn’t have autocomplete or autosuggestion, but it can search through the documentation, marketplace, blog, and the whole of the Heroku website:

Heroku search widget

For non-English-speaking developers, Heroku docs are also available in Japanese.

The Heroku documentation shows how you can create good documentation with a minimal and clean UI while still delivering enough content. Although it doesn’t have an interactive playground like Vue, it is in no way less resourceful.


If you were impressed by the Next.js documentation, wait till you see the Vercel documentation. Since Vercel is the company behind Next.js, it’s no surprise their documentation feels very similar to the Next.js documentation in terms of UI and aesthetics. At first glance, they both use a similar design and UI elements, like cards, buttons, and a sidebar:

Vercel documentation home page

Vercel provides a Get started with Vercel guide that gives you an overview of the process that you need to follow to deploy your app on Vercel. Vercel provides framework-specific documentation, such as Next.js, SvelteKit, and Remix. You can deploy an app straight from the documentation by clicking on the Deploy buttons, or you can choose a template:

Vercel **Deploy** button

The code snippets show an option to switch between JavaScript and TypeScript. The code snippets also have line highlighting, which makes it easy to draw attention to particular lines of code. Each snippet is accompanied by a file name, line numbers, and a Copy button to make your life easier:

The code snippets

Each page also has a More Resources section so that you can follow up on what you learned by using it in a real-life scenario:

More resources

Finally, searching in the Vercel documentation is similar to Next.js, except you get an option to search within the Vercel docs, the Next.js docs, the Turborepo docs, or through everything:

Vercel search widget

The Vercel documentation, just like Next.js, has a great combination of good UI and content that delivers immense value to the developer.


While on the topic of cloud platform-as-a-service providers, don’t ignore Netlify. Netlify is used by big companies, such as Google, Twilio, and Peloton, to deploy their web infrastructure. The Netlify documentation greets you with a minimal and sleek modern design, with links to Netlify products and a sidebar menu:

Netlify documentation home page

The docs cover a wide range of topics, starting from a quick-start guide to advanced features, such as the Netlify CLI. The guides are accompanied by code snippets and video tutorials wherever possible:

The code snippets

The guides do a great job of explaining the topics in detail, and if you still feel like you’re stuck, you can send them feedback about the docs directly from the page:

The feedback form

The search widget of the Netlify documentation does a great job of finding the relevant information quickly and accurately. The search bar supports autosuggestion and fuzzy searching:

Netlify search widget

However, one area where Netlify excels is the Ask Netlify feature. It’s an integrated AI chatbot that you can ask questions, and it’ll find you the answers based on the product documentation, support forums, blogs, CLI documentation, and API documentation.

Netlify goes one step further by incorporating an AI chatbot into the documentation. With the advent of AI, incorporating it is a big step toward an excellent user experience. However, even without the AI chatbot, Netlify documentation holds great value for any developer with its tutorials, guides, and examples.


Tailscale is a VPN service that lets you access your devices and services from anywhere in the world. Tailscale boasts simple but thorough documentation. It doesn’t have the super modern design that some of the other entries in this list have, but it makes up for that with the content:

Tailscale documentation home page

The Tailscale documentation covers a wide range of topics and explains all its bells and whistles. The guides are super thorough, with lucid explanations, along with screenshots and internal links:

The topics covered

Where needed, code snippets are provided. The snippets lack line numbers, but they have syntax highlighting, and comments are used to explain different parts:

Code snippets

The search widget supports autosuggestion, and it can show you results quickly. However, it doesn’t support fuzzy searching:

Tailscale search widget

Tailscale does a fantastic job of packing a punch within a clean and minimal UI. The documentation is solid, explains all features, and goes into in-depth explanations.


Documentation can make or break your product. Good documentation is the key to retaining developers and onboarding new ones. In this article, you looked at twelve of the best documentation out there. You learned what makes them great and, hopefully, got some ideas for improving your existing documentation or creating new ones.

Aniket Bhattacharyea

By Aniket Bhattacharyea

Aniket is a Mathematics postgraduate who has a passion for computers and software. He likes to explore various areas related to coding and works as a web developer using Ruby on Rails and Vue.JS.