Top Node.JS Frameworks for Developers in 2022

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11 Minutes to read

Table Of Content

Introduction

Any discussion of web development would be incomplete without including JavaScript. Also, these days, it’s nearly hard to have a discussion about JavaScript without also bringing up the topic of Node.js.

The quick rise of Node.js is due to its ability to bridge the gap between client-side scripting and server-side scripting. In response to the growing Node.js craze among developers, new Node.js frameworks are constantly being created.

Nowadays, there are so many frameworks to choose from for developers. This article will cover all of the Top Node.JS frameworks, their features, pros, cons, and use cases, as well as the reasons why you should opt to choose a Node.js development company to help you.

But before that, let’s understand what a NodeJS Framework is.

What are Node.JS Frameworks?

Ryan Dahl embedded Chrome’s V8 engine, which is one of the fastest JavaScript engines available, into C++, and named it Node. We are all aware that every browser has its own JavaScript engine available in them, which helps in translating the JavaScript into machine-readable code. Node.js is supported by the JavaScript runtime environment. This helps explain why JavaScript code performs differently between browsers.

Node.js and its frameworks are designed to make a specific development use case easier to implement.

MVC Framework

As we all know, MVC stands for Model View Controller. It provides library functions that can be included in JavaScript, allowing developers to focus on their core layer while having a range of options available. With the aid of MVC, developers may simply eliminate layers and build a structure for the codebase. As a result, maintaining and scaling the application is simple. Thanks to MVC’s capacity to separate development issues.

Full-Stack MVC Framework

This is where NodeJS shines the brightest, as it acquired popularity as a result of its ability to manage both the front-end and the back-end of a website or application. Full-stack MVC frameworks include scaffolding, template engines, WebSockets, and persistent libraries, enabling the development of real-time, scalable web applications.

A RESTful API (Representational State Transfer) Framework

In web service development, RESTful APIs are a prominent communication architecture style and method. REST technology is generally preferred over other comparable technologies. This is because REST uses less bandwidth, making it more suitable for internet efficiency. And because of that, you are able to create apps faster with the help of the ready-to-use RestAPI.

Best Node.JS Frameworks

Frameworks for Node.js allow software architects to develop applications with better efficiency and simplicity. Top Node.js frameworks include the following, which are the best in the business:

1. Express.JS

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Express.js is one of the best, as well as the most popular Node.js framework. Express is a Node.js web application framework that provides a plethora of functionality for developing web and mobile applications. It is used to develop online applications that are single-page, multi-page, or hybrid in nature.

It is a key component of the MEAN stack. It is ideal for developing simple applications that simultaneously process several requests. It provides developers with the freedom to experiment with their own strategies, as it is not built around predetermined components. There is an easy connection with third-party database technologies such as MongoDB, MySQL, Sentry, Datadog, etc. If you are still unsure about how to do it, hire a Node.JS developer.

Npm:- https://www.npmjs.com/package/express

Features:

  • It includes templating engines, which generate HTML templates on the server and use them to generate dynamic content for web pages.
  • With the help of this framework, you are easily able to locate the bug.
  • It may configure middleware, enabling developers to respond to HTTP requests.
  • We can create both single-page and multi-page web apps using Express.

Pros:

  • Easy learning curve.
  • Easy route handling.
  • Support multi-template engine.
  • Flexible and adjustable.

Cons:

  • The issue with callbacks.
  • Difficult to understand code. 

Companies that use Express.JS:

Example:

When to use Express.JS?

Express is a Node.js framework that is ideal for any enterprise-level or web-based application due to its sophisticated routing, configuration, security, and debugging techniques, among other features. Express.js only requires JavaScript, which makes it simple for programmers and developers to create online apps and APIs.

2. Socket.io

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Socket.io was founded in the year 2010. It was built in order to promote real-time communication through open connections, a rather wonderful idea at the time.

Socket.io enables the communication between a client and a server in both directions. When Socket.io is included in a client’s browser, and the Socket.io package is included in a server’s browser, bidirectional interactions are enabled. It is one of the best Node.JS frameworks and is very popular amongst developers because it provides accurate results and speeds up the process.

Npm:- https://www.npmjs.com/package/socket.io

Features:

  • It continues to monitor modifications and add features.
  • There are similar APIs for both client-side and server-side development.
  • The integration of the chat application proves to be the greatest obstacle, but with the help of this tool, developers may simply overcome it.
  • Fallback to polling if WebSockets are not supported.

Pros:

  • Real-time data analytics.
  • No internet dependency.
  • Acknowledgment callbacks per event.
  • Messages are encoded as named JSON and/or binary events.
  • Large community.
  • Event-based communication.

Cons:

  • Weird encodings.
  • Unnecessary binary overhead.
  • Callback centric nature of Socket.io is a real downside.

Companies that use Socket.io:

Example:

When to use Socket.io?

When designing real-time applications, such as group chat rooms, video conferencing, and multiplayer gaming, among other things. Additionally, you can do so if you want the server to push data to the client without calling the client. In addition, you can create applications that require WebSocket development.

3. Meteor.JS

Meteor

As a full-stack framework for developing web applications or mobile applications, Meteor is a great choice. It is one of the top Node.js frameworks because it supports cross-platform development; this framework can be used on iOS, Android, and the web. As a front-end framework and database system, MeteorJS is well-suited to being combined with other well-known technologies such as React, Vue, Angular, and MongoDB.

Meteor’s syntax is more similar to JavaScript compared to other Node.js frameworks, making it easier for JavaScript developers to grasp and learn. Using Meteor.js for back-end development is preferred by many developers since it enables developers to write a whole website in JavaScript, and this makes it one of the best Node.js frameworks.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/meteor

Features:

  • Meteor.js is a cross-platform framework that enables rapid prototyping via the CLI.
  • It includes numerous libraries a developer can utilize to create dynamic web apps.
  • Smart packages: you can connect many features with a single command.

Pros:

  • Convenience.
  • Reactive UI.
  • Simple deployment.
  • Extensibility.
  • Popularity.
  • High learning curve.

Cons:

  • No reactive joins.
  • Lack of control mechanism over the order of loading files.

Companies that uses Meteor.JS:

Example:

When to use Meteor.JS?

Meteor.JS is a framework for developing JavaScript applications that are comprehensive in their capabilities. If you enjoy building websites with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, you can put your skills to use by developing apps for your computer or mobile device. In addition, you can utilize Meteor to distribute live updates to installed applications without interfering with the user’s session.

4. Loopback.io

loopback

LookBack is an open-source RestAPI framework that can be used to develop dynamic and powerful REST APIs. It also has an easy-to-use command-line interface for integrating with other front-end technologies. MySQL, Oracle, MongoDB, and PostgreSQL are some of the relational and NoSQL database management systems that can be used with this. Using this tool, you can create REST APIs and connect them to a number of databases.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/loopback

Features:

  • It creates dynamic REST APIs from beginning to end with little or no coding.
  • Information can be accessed through relational databases, MongoDB, SOAP, and REST APIs, among other sources.
  • Incorporate model relationships and access controls into your APIs if they are complicated.
  • Components that are distinct for file storage, third-party authentication, and OAuth 2.0.

Pros:

  • Built-in models & features.
  • Code is modular & structured.
  • Quick scaffold & fast development.
  • Organization support.
  • Built-in API swagger.

Cons:

  • Monolithic architecture.
  • Steep learning curve.
  • Hard to use in huge and long-term projects.

Companies that uses Loopback.io:

Example:

When to use Loopback.io?

If your program can be deconstructed into model-like entities, I believe you should employ loopback. LoopBack is a scalable, open-source framework for establishing APIs with minimal or no code and connecting them to backend data sources. 

5. Nest.JS

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It is a Node.js framework that enables developers to design server-side web applications that are modular, highly scalable, and simple to maintain. Nest.JS is a Node.JS framework that was created to make it easier for developers to develop server-side web applications. It helps developers be more productive by streamlining their workflow. Developers use this Node.js framework to better organize and arrange their code, and it is available for free.

It adheres to the MVC (Model-View-Controller) design paradigm and has the ability to be extended. A unique aspect of Nest.JS is its TypeScript support, which allows you to take advantage of optional static type-checking, advanced tools for huge projects, and the most modern ECMAScript features, amongst other things.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/@nestjs/core

Features:

  • It leverages TypeScript as a tightly typed programming language that extends JavaScript.
  • It supports healthy front-end development using AngularJS.
  • Effective Command Line Interface (CLI) helps enhance productivity and development simplicity.

Pros:

  • Easy to use, learn, and master.
  • Great documentation.
  • Easy unit-testing applications.
  • Active codebase development and maintenance.

Cons:

  • Congested performance.
  • Debugging is sometimes painful.

Companies that uses Nest.JS:

Example:

When to use Nest.JS?

If you want to build a scalable and efficient server-side application with typescript, you can do it with the help of Nest.JS. It also has a clear architecture and a few simple components, making it the best choice when you are starting a new project. Furthermore, I would even like to add that if you are an Angular developer, then you will feel at home looking at a similar code pattern.

6. Koa.JS

Koa

Koa is a new web framework made by the Express team. It promises to give online apps and APIs a more compact, expressive, and stable base. By using generators, Koa lets you get rid of callbacks and greatly improves how it handles errors. Koa’s core doesn’t include any middleware, but it does have a nice set of server-writing tools. 

A Koa application is an object that holds a stack of middleware functions that are run when a request comes in. Koa is similar to many existing middleware systems, like Ruby’s Rack, Connect, etc. Koa.js contains fewer libraries and components than Express, but it also includes a slew of additional functionality not seen in Express. The error handling capabilities of Koa are vastly superior to those of the Express framework.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/koa

Features:

  • ES6 generators are used in Koa.js to make synchronous programming easier and the flow of controls more efficient.
  • Because of the small footprint of Koa.js, the developers are able to write thinner middleware.
  • Koa.js includes an error catchall that helps prevent website crashes.

Pros:

  • Cleaner, more readable async code.
  • Extremely lightweight.
  • Generated-based control flow.
  • Has a very good user experience.

Cons:

  • The community is relatively small.
  • Not compatible with express style middleware.

Companies that uses Koa.JS:

Example:

When to use Koa.JS?

For critical and large web applications you need Koa.Js because with the help of this framework you are able to create it easily.

7. Sails.JS

sails

In the event that you have previous familiarity with Express.js, Sails.js could be the next logical step. Sails.js has recently gotten a lot of attention because of its ability to allow developers to create RESTful APIs without having to write any code themselves. The code is generated automatically, and developers can add as little or as much code as they wish to make it more customized. 

Sails.js, on the other hand, has a steep learning curve, which is a big barrier to adoption. What can be accomplished after hiring Node.js web developers, on the other hand, has no bounds. Sails is a backend platform that is completely independent of the frontend. This framework makes use of the Express HTTP query language and the Socket.io WebSocket language.

Additionally, you can share the same API with another web service or development team, allowing you to save both time and money on development.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/sails

Features:

  • Any HTTP request can be handled by Sails.js.
  • Their ORM feature enables Web frameworks to be integrated with any database management system.
  • It is remarkably compatible with websites that construct frontend platforms.

Pros:

  • Good documentation.
  • Supports multiple data stores.
  • Real-time support with WebSockets.
  • Simple project templates.
  • Powerful code generation.

Cons:

  • No support for SQL transactions. 
  • Development is very slow.

Companies that uses Sails.JS:

Example:

When to use Sail.Js?

Sails.js is a web framework for creating enterprise-grade Node.js applications with minimal effort. It resembles the MVC architecture of frameworks like Ruby on Rails, but with enhanced support for the more data-driven approach to developing modern web applications. It is also ideal for developing real-time features such as live chat. Similarly, Sails.js is compatible with Backbone and Angular.

8. Feathers.JS

feathers

Feathers.JS is a well-known micro-service and real-time framework built on top of Node.js. It is outfitted with capabilities that make it easier to develop cutting-edge apps for the web and mobile devices. Feathers.JS gives developers the ability to exercise control over data by utilizing RESTful resources and sockets. 

In addition, the REST APIs that are made available by the JavaScript framework make it much simpler for developers to connect the web application with third-party apps and services and communicate with them. In addition, programmers are able to combine Feathers.JS with well-known JavaScript frameworks and development tools.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/@feathersjs/feathers

Features:

  • FeathersJS is a micro-service framework for NodeJS that may also serve as a web application.
  • Both relational and non-relational databases can be utilized with this system.
  • Real-time application development is made easier with this feature.
  • It simplifies the process of developing service-oriented applications.
  • It generates REST APIs on a fully automated basis.

Pros:

  • Supports authentication.
  • Accelerates error handling.
  • Flexible plugins.

Cons:

  • Many add-ons are required.
  • Takes a long time to learn.

Companies that uses Feathers.JS:

Example:

When to use Feathers.JS?

Because it is a lightweight framework, you are able to create real-time web applications and also RestAPI with the help of TypeScript and JavaScript. With Feathers, you can connect to any backend technology, support more than a dozen databases, and use any frontend technology like React, Vue.js, Angular, React Native, Android, or iOS to build your app.

9. Hapi.JS

hapi

Hapi is a prominent open-source NodeJS framework that is used to develop effective web applications. Hapi.js gets its name from the HTTP-API. It is utilized in the production of API servers, HTTP proxy programs, and websites.

It is one of the best tools available for creating JSON APIs. The configuration determines the functionality of Hapi, and it does not rely on any external dependencies. A complete authentication and authorization API is supported by the integrated architecture system that the Node framework provides. Hapi is utilized in the operations of Main Stack, Beam, and other enterprises like Commerce Tools. A modular architecture based on plug-ins speeds up the entire process of application development.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/@hapi/hapi

Features:

  • Hapi.js offers a modular architecture based on plugins.
  • It caches the API answer, which significantly improves the app’s performance.
  • Hapi framework offers users dynamic content by rapidly running the JavaScript template engine.

Pros:

  • Highly scalable for development.
  • Quicker and simpler debugging.
  • Easy compatibility with other databases.
  • Enriched network.
  • Simple, secure, and reliable.
  • Code reusability, input validation.

Cons:

  • Refactoring in Hapi is manual.
  • Endpoints must be created and tested manually.

Companies that uses Hapijs:

Example:

When to use Hapi.JS?

It is well-known for its security features and dependability and is therefore commonly used to develop real-time social applications. Hapi can be used to create strong, scalable applications with minimal overhead and various functionality.

10. Total.JS

total-js

Total.js is a well-known open-source JavaScript platform that also operates as a stable and protected Node.js framework for use on the server-side. In addition to this, it includes a client-side library that contains a wide variety of UI components that may be included in high-quality web applications. It is one of the very few frameworks that provide CMS-like functionality. It is almost completely equipped with all of the abilities necessary in a Node.JS setting.

When adaptability and customization are necessities for a Node.js backend framework, Total is the one that comes highly recommended. It may be modified easily and comes in a variety of forms, such as CMS and eCommerce platforms, among others. It is an excellent choice for developing websites that are used for eCommerce. It enables the speedy development of online and mobile apps since it has a small number of dependencies, which makes them easier to use.

Npm: https://www.npmjs.com/package/total.js/v/1.7.2-1

Features:

  • Total uses NoSQL databases effectively to facilitate the creation of complicated applications.
  • The framework provides built-in SMTP mailing and image processing capabilities.
  • Includes Total Eshop, which is widely regarded as one of the most capable eCommerce systems based on Node.js.

Pros:

  • Superfast development.
  • Extremely low maintenance costs.
  • Rock-solid stability.
  • Incredible performance.
  • Easy scaling.

Cons:

  • No typescript support.
  • Not properly documented.

Companies that uses Total.JS:

Example:

When to use Total.JS?

Custom creation, Internet of Things (IoT) interfaces with visual programming, eCommerce web development with cloud services, and real-time collaboration are just a few of the many uses for the all-encompassing framework Total.JS.

A total is a viable option if you have a tight deadline and need to create applications quickly. Development can be sped up by using JavaScript, which saves money.

How to Choose Best Node.JS Frameworks?

The future of the Node.JS frameworks is difficult to make any prediction about because of the instability in this business. It’s been gradually replacing old and outdated frameworks with more modern alternatives, but it’s important never to be afraid to switch between different types of frameworks. New developers need to be aware that they may have to shift between different types of frameworks as time goes on.

As I mentioned earlier, choose a framework based on features and not on popularity. Choose the framework that seems to have the most potential for meeting project needs and that is well-suited for integration with other technologies you are already familiar with. We suggest choosing a Node.js framework that has an intuitive learning curve and is well-suited for integration with other well-known technologies.

Conclusion

Each framework outlined above has characteristics that differentiate it from others. Like Express.JS, It can be used for any enterprise application that requires cross-browser compatibility, and it supports both small and large-scale websites. Meteor.JS is good if you have a development team that is good with JavaScript. It has a smooth learning curve. Hapi can be used if you want the utmost security, and Koa should be used for developing complex, extensive apps with speed and efficiency.

If you are still unsure about which of these Node.JS frameworks would be the best fit for you, do not hesitate to get in touch with our Node.JS developers. As a leading Node.js development company, we have experience in working with various Node.JS frameworks to satisfy our customers’ needs. Don’t forget to check out our other blog on Top JavaScript Frameworks and Best Vue UI Component Libraries to choose from for JavaScript development.

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Jigar Shah
Shah
Jigar Shah is the Founder of WPWeb Infotech - a leading Web Development Company in India, USA. Being the founder of the company, he takes care of business development activities and handles the execution of the projects. He is Enthusiastic about producing quality content on challenging technical subjects.

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