Best PHP frameworks for web development

If you’re starting a new web development project, you may want to consider using the a new PHP framework, such as those that are the most popular. PHP runs everything everywhere on the Internet, and it’s easy to get started.

You’ll find a wide variety of software written in PHP. In fact, we’ve put together a list of the best PHP frameworks to use in your next project! Let’s get started.

Why Choose PHP?

With PHP frameworks, you don’t have to start every project from scratch. That’s because the much of the software comes with libraries and components that are ready to use.

Another reason to choose PHP is that it does come in many “flavors,” so you can choose the framework that works best for your project. In addition, PHP is much faster than other frameworks, making it the first choice for many developers.

You’ll also find a wide community of users who can help you learn, if you get stuck and have questions, etc. They’re a friendly bunch who are happy to help not only one another but newcomers, too.

How Do You Choose the Right Framework?

Here are some questions that can help you choose the right framework for you and your project(s):

1). Is the framework regularly being updated and developed?

2). What components and functionalities are needed in the framework?

3). Is it difficult to learn?

4). Is there a helpful community with a specific framework?

Answer each of these questions and you’ll find the right framework; however, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask questions of experienced users in these communities.

Best PHP Frameworks & Their Specifications

Now you’re ready to learn about the best PHP frameworks out there! We’ll go through them one by one, looking at the pros and cons of each framework.


While a relative newcomer, Laravel is hands down the most popular PHP framework available. Its popularity rests on the ease of use and you won’t find it difficult to learn. While it may seem like a simple tool, it really is a work horse when it comes to creating fully fledged and powerful websites.

This free, opensource framework is fast and is full of features to help customize apps. It can deal with many databases and it’s lightweight. You’ll also find a great community comes with Laravel, so you’ll find help and advice when you need it.

Reasons to choose Laravel:

  • If you need a framework that’s fast and easy to learn
  • It’s highly popular and comes with an outstanding community
  • Laravel has great training materials to get you started
  • It’s also simple for testing purposes


Symfony is another very popular PHP framework for multiple reasons. You’ll find it offers a set of reusable components and code, which make it much easier to do various jobs such as routing authentication, object configuration and form creation, etc.

Be warned that Symfony does have a steep learning curve. This is because of the wide number of features it offers. However, you’ll find that Symfony’s community is large and happy to help you learn the framework.

Reasons to choose Symfony:

  • Regular, long-term updates and support releases
  • If you need a framework a with huge variety of features
  • It contains the largest number of bundles, compared to other frameworks
  • It has official training courses and certifications (a great way to prove you have the experience and the expertise need as a web developer)


One of the oldest PHP frameworks out there, Yii has no company behind it. Rather, there’s a team of international developers who provide support for the framework. Yii2 and Symfony 2 are competitors, but Yii2 is much easier to learn.

Yii makes it painless to manage repetitive tasks, while also speeding up development. Speed is one of the factors that makes this framework so popular. Another reason is that code is logical and well organized. The framework uses DRY (Don’t Repeat Yourself), which focuses on replacing repetitions with abstractions, in order to avoid any redundancy.

Reasons to choose Yii2:

  • Supports AJAX
  • If you need an efficient tool to manage errors
  • It comes with a developed community
  • The framework integrates well with third-party components


CakePHP has been around for about a decade; even so, it’s still one of the most popular PHP frameworks available. The most recent update, version 3.7, offers a simple and elegant toolkit. In fact, it’s the framework most popular with developers who want to create beautiful websites that are loaded with multiple features.

This framework is free to use for commercial or personal use. CakePHP is also easy to learn due to its CRUD (create, read, update and delete) framework.

Reasons to choose CakePHP:

  • Needs no configuration
  • Supports AJAX
  • Built-in validation
  • Offers a wide variety of extensions, components and plugins


While it’s one of the oldest frameworks, CodeIgniter offers simplicity combined with the power you need for larger, complex projects. It’s also the choice for those who need to quickly develop their projects.

CodeIgniter is a lightweight that’s easy and fast to install. It provides a simple setup process and comes with helpful documentation, making this a great choice for beginning web developers.

Reasons to choose CodeIgniter:

  • Comes with built-in security tools
  • Requires little coding
  • Offers great performance
  • Comes with several tools in one package

Zend Framework

Zend Framework comes with a wide range of features including cryptographic coding tools, a connected Database Wizard and more. You’ll find a huge community of developers with this framework, and it’s one of the most advanced frameworks available.

Zend is highly customizable and abides by PHP best practices.

Reasons to choose Zend Framework:

  • It’s great for complex, enterprise projects
  • Supports third-party components
  • Supports AJAX
  • It can integrate with external libraries, giving you more functionality and customization


You’ll find Phalcon is a little different compared to other PHP frameworks, as it’s coding is based on C and C++. It delivers advanced features to help you develop perfect web applications.

Phalcon is easy to use and comes with highly detailed documentation, so you’ll find it easier to understand the platform. You’ll also find excellent features including caching, universal autoloader, and more.

Reasons to choose Phalcon:

  • Comes with advanced security features
  • Written on C-extension
  • Is a framework that’s fast with low overheads
  • It’s easy to install

These are a few of the most popular PHP frameworks available. To choose the best one for your needs, be sure to read through the details of each one and reach out if you need help or guidance when choosing the right PHP framework for your needs. Each of these frameworks comes with a community that’s happy to help.

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