In the web development industry, NodeJS is considered one of the most reliable technologies there is. According to a survey by Statista, it is revealed that around 47.12% of developers prefer to use NodeJS making it the most used backend JS-based runtime environment in the last year.
Because it might be true that NodeJS is an amazing backend development technology but like every best tool, this one also has some limitations. For example, if there is a lot of computation work to do, then NodeJS is bound to slow down. Some of its APIs are unstable which forces you to make some changes in the code.
But you can easily resolve all these issues if you just pick up the most suitable NodeJS framework for your project. Therefore this article discusses some of the most popular and widely used NodeJS frameworks and what kind of features they have to offer.
Top NodeJS Frameworks To Use in 2023
Among all the NodeJS frameworks, ExpressJS has the most GitHub stars which determine how popular this framework is. Express isn’t just a fast and robust framework, it is also asynchronous and has an MVC-based approach to developing web apps in single-page, multi-page, and hybrid forms.
Express is viewed as the best of all API frameworks and it also consists of browser-specific APIs that you would see that aren’t normally supported by NodeJS. NodeJS also allows you to store your files directly in the browser by connecting the browser with your back-end code.
So if you have dynamic content then this would make Express an ideal pick. Because this aligns very well with the single-threaded nature of NodJS and the technology enables you to have faster client-server interaction.
- HTTP protocols and URLs make content navigation easy
- Rapid server-side development packages
- Easy integration with SQL and NoSQL databases
- The asynchronous execution of multiple processes enhances the performance
- Supports multiple template engines
- Exceptionally high test coverage
The extensive collection of libraries that come with this framework can help you develop multi-layered enterprise applications. And in terms of GitHub stars and popularity, NestJS holds second place after Express among the top NodeJS development frameworks.
- Easy-to-use external libraries
- Easily integrated with Express framework
- Smaller learning curve
- The larger community of developers
- Compatible with Angular for front-end development
Meteor is an open-source NodeJS framework that is largely used for rapid prototyping and creating cross-platform applications. It is also compatible with iOS and Android operating systems. This says that if you are looking for a framework that can help you build modern and efficient web apps then you should choose Meteor.
If you are new to Meteor, there is no need to panic because if you come across any development-related issue, you can get support from its huge developer community. The MeteorJS framework can automatically process changes in the front end without any need for human intervention. Meteor is also responsible for seamless data transfer between the client and the server. Such a NodeJS framework is extremely helpful in developing streaming and real-time applications.
- Isomorphic and Cross-platform framework
- Feature-rich and yet lightweight
- CLI for rapid prototyping
- Easily integrated with other frameworks
- Full-stack solution
The team that created Express also created the lighter version of that NodeJS framework and named it Koa. This framework comes with cascading middleware that helps developers build web apps.
Koa is also equipped with many of the plugins and libraries that come with Express. This enables you to use them with the low complexity of Koa and the high flexibility of Express. Armed with high customization, and error handling, the popularity of Koa is growing significantly nowadays.
- Can leverage the rich ecosystem of Express including its extensive libraries
- Its cascading middleware helps with personalization
- Increased code maintainability
SailsJS is an MVC-based framework that supports the modern approach to data-oriented development. It is mostly popular because of its compatibility with various types of databases. You can easily integrate SailsJS with a Node Package Manager. Developers use this NodeJS framework for creating complex and high-end web applications.
- Supports other frameworks like Angular, Socket.io, and Express
- The security policies of Sails are reusable
- Equipped with ORM
Feathers is built on top of Express and is a real-time NodeJS framework to design advanced web apps. Some other features of Feathers include the customization and rapid development of lightweight and robust apps. The flexibility of this popular backend framework is not limited to NodeJs but is also extended to React Native as well.
Developers use Feathers to simplify their web and mobile app development process. Because they don’t have to face the complexities of RESTful APIs. implementing and connecting features is now easy with Feathers and it also allows you to execute emails, SMS, and authentication messages.
- Automatic RESTful APIs
- Codebase is extremely lightweight
- Command-line interface
- Services and functions are reusable
A nodeJS framework that doesn’t compromise with any kind of functionality because it is focused on security, the creators of the Hapi framework kept the focus on code quality control and verification while creating this open-source NodeJS framework.
Developers can build rich desktop apps, REST APIs, and proxy servers using the Hapi framework. Whenever an NPM is installed, Hapi would check it thoroughly and clearly define immutable ownership. This helps the developers detect issues in their well-structured codebase. And just because you don’t have to use any third-party middleware, Hapi renders a large array of features.
- High scalability
- Supports secure defaults
- Minimal overhead
- Easy debugging
- Extensive libraries
Want flawless connectivity with various API services or other NodeJs frameworks? Then LoopBackJS is the perfect pick for you. Who wouldn’t want to use a framework with amazing compatibility that ranges over various operating systems, databases, browsers, and devices? LoopBack is also claimed to have reduced the development time.
To connect with different Android, iOS, and HTML5 APIs LoopBack uses inbuilt modules. And if you think transforming a web app into a mobile app is a tough job, well, LoopBack possesses the capabilities to do so easily. It can be accomplished because the framework has support from SQL and NoSQL databases.
- Full-stack development
- High extensibility
- Built-in client API explorer
- Rich built-in modules
- Support for multiple databases
- Well-structured codebase
MEAN is a combination of multiple open-source technologies. It consists of MongoDB, Express, Angular, and NodeJS as an end-to-end solution for developing web apps right from scratch. The apps created using MEAN are claimed to be dynamic, maintainable, robust, and more secure applications.
For single language development and enhancing extensibility, MEAN is empowered with a feature called isomorphic code generation
- Low memory overhead
- Lightweight and easy to use
- Large community support
- Wide range of libraries
Total is a NodeJS framework that can help developers with their IoT projects, eCommerce platforms, REST services, and real-time apps. Total is so versatile that it can operate as an eShop, HelpDesk as well as content management system, and more.
- Large and active community
- Real-time tracking
- Can easily integrate with front-end frameworks
- API testing is included
- Rapid development
- Low maintenance cost
- High compatibility for databases
The capabilities of NodeJS frameworks in creating web and mobile applications are very beneficial for developers. With the changing market demands and evolving technologies, it is necessary to analyze the project requirements and the availability of resources to pick the most suitable framework that can yield the best results.