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Top 10 Best Backend Frameworks for Web Development (2023)

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Over the past few years, businesses have encountered multiple obstacles and experienced significant transformations, and it appears that the trend will continue in 2023 as new patterns emerge. As a result of the global pandemic, organizations must address its aftermath.

During times like these, you might question the essential factor for keeping your business competitive. Many people may examine and prioritize accelerated digital transformation, inflation and supply chain security, sustainability, and immersive customer experience, among other things.

However, what is the primary element that enables a business to succeed and remain ahead?

It is widely accepted that a thriving web application is essential for a business’s success, and to achieve that, backend development is necessary. Backend development handles the business logic and guarantees seamless integration and delivery with the frontend development while considering the project’s goals and vision. Backend web frameworks are among the most critical programming tools available to developers.

If you are an application programmer seeking the top backend languages and frameworks for learning in 2023, you have arrived at the right spot. 

Previously, we have suggested the best mobile app development frameworks, and in this article, we will present the ten most excellent backend frameworks for developing robust web applications.

What is Backend Development?

Web development is usually categorized into two sections: frontend development and backend development. A backend developer constructs the server side of a web application.

While the frontend of a web application interacts with the user, the backend is responsible for its inner workings. A frontend may or may not function without a backend, but to create a fully operational web application, a properly connected backend, and frontend are essential.

The duties of a backend developer differ from those of a frontend developer. A frontend developer concentrates on the application’s visual aspects, while a backend developer focuses on servers, databases, and the interconnection and interaction of both ends.

Professional web design companies in Houston, such as ClickySoft, work on front and backend development to design visually pleasing and functional web applications. 

What is a Backend Development Framework?

What-is-a-Backend-Development-Framework

Do the names Java, Ruby on Rails, and PHP sound familiar? If so, you may already be acquainted with technologies since these are among the top backend frameworks. These technologies are the backbone of your website and web application. We’ll begin with backend frameworks if you want to learn more about these technologies.

The best backend framework is a system that accelerates and automates the stages of web development. It is a compilation of tools and models that assist developers in creating the framework for websites, web applications, mobile apps, or software. Although many people may confuse the backend with the frontend, it is important to recognize that there is a distinction.

Think of the best backend web framework as a blueprint for a web design. Without the framework, you must start from scratch, designing each element individually, choosing colors and placement, and ensuring compatibility. 

However, with a template or framework, you can complete the task in less time because you already have the structure and pre-built components that you can utilize simultaneously instead of creating them separately and then combining them.

Similarly, a backend web framework simplifies the developer’s job by allowing them to utilize an existing structure, tools, and modules instead of writing every line of code in a different programming language. As a result, the developer can create their application more efficiently.

Importance of Backend Development

Importance-of-Backend-Development

The primary goal of a framework is to streamline the administrative tasks associated with software development. The most commonly used backend frameworks offer benefits beyond simplifying and expediting programming tasks. In addition to being a time-saver that simplifies processes for both beginners and professionals of web development in Houston, the fastest backend framework also offers the following:

  • Scalability

Frameworks are highly adaptable for scalability. For instance, once you have selected the suitable backend framework for your project, you can employ it throughout the development of your web application, from the most straightforward to the most intricate aspects.

  • Security Features

The best backend framework provides security from various angles, safeguarding the application quality you are developing against external attacks, vulnerabilities, crashes, slow performance, and other negative factors.

  • Functional Integrations

Best backend frameworks make integrations easier since they furnish pre-built tools.

Listing Top Backend Frameworks with Advantages

A backend developer should possess various essential skills, including comprehension of backend frameworks. Numerous backend frameworks exist, and this article will cover the most popular backend frameworks for 2023.

1. Django

django

Django, a Python-based open-source backend framework, is a top contender. It utilizes the model view controller (MVC) design pattern and is ideal for creating complex websites with advanced features that are driven by databases.

Django is also recognized as one of the simplest backend frameworks and is considered one of the best options available for web development.

This backend framework supports maximum modularity, less coding, higher reusability, and quicker development. All operations in Django are carried out using Python, and it also includes an optional admin interface for creating, reading, updating, and deleting operations.

Django is utilized by many well-known websites, such as Mozilla and The Washington Times, and is renowned for its simplicity and ease of use.

Advantages

  • Django’s code-reusability feature enables developers to handle the increasing traffic on a website more easily, making it a scalable backend framework.
  • The Django framework strongly focuses on search engine optimization (SEO) and allows websites built on it to be easily optimized for SEO. The framework’s popularity has led to the development of a strong community ready to assist tool users.
  • One can say that while Django is not strictly a No Code framework, it has No Code-oriented features and capabilities. Developers can take advantage of various pre-built packages and tools to perform certain tasks without writing any code.

Limitation

  • Not suitable for small projects as it requires heavy bandwidth and process time
  • Lacks conventions and slow development
  • Less control of the workflow

 

One of the most widely used backend frameworks is Django, which is ideal for building database-driven websites.

2. ExpressJS

ExpressJS

ExpressJS, also recognized as Express, is an open-source web application framework built on top of Node.js, which can be used to create APIs and web applications. It is licensed under MIT and widely accepted as the standard Node.js server framework.

Express is a significant part of the MEAN stack, which includes the AngularJS frontend framework and NoSQL databases. It is known to be one of the top web application development frameworks.

Advantages

  • It is considered one of the most straightforward programming languages to learn. With Node.js, developers can use a backend JavaScript framework runtime environment to build both frontend and backend web applications, making it one of the most sought-after backend frameworks.
  • This framework leverages the full-stack JavaScript capabilities, eliminating the need for separate frontend and backend developers. By utilizing this framework, not only can time be saved, but a significant amount of money as well.
  • Offers the best performance

Limitation

  • Body Parsers are unavailable
  • Does not have very reliable security
  • Not good for larger projects

ExpressJS could be a good choice for those comfortable with JavaScript for backend development but lacking confidence in other programming languages.

3. Laravel

Laravel

Laravel is a PHP-based open-source web framework that follows the model-view-controller (MVC) architecture for developing Symfony-based web applications. It has a modular packaging system with a dedicated Laravel web application development dependency manager. Many consider Laravel one of the top backend web frameworks, and some experts believe it to be the best backend PHP development framework available today. 

Laravel offers various access options for relational databases, including application maintenance and deployment tools. It has an MIT license, and its source code is available on GitHub. Due to its high security and complexity, any Laravel development company that utilizes it has to 

Advantages

  • Multiple security features are provided by it, including strong password creation using algorithms, contributing to a high level of security.
  • Laravel provides widgets such as CSS and JS code in addition to PHP.
  • One of the key features of Laravel is its simple API that can be easily integrated with the SwiftMailer Library.

Limitations

  • Very limited support
  • Slow speed for development
  • Risky updates for developers who do not practice precautions

The advantages might have captured your interest, and you may want to hire a PHP developer for your web application. However, there are certain things to consider. Check out our article on tips for hiring developers for startups and making the best decision for your business.

Laravel may not be the most suitable option for managing small or simple projects and could be considered complex for beginner Laravel developers. It is better suited for experienced developers who work with complex projects.

4. Ruby on Rails

Ruby on Rails

Rails, also known as Ruby on Rails, is a web application framework based on the Ruby programming language, licensed under MIT. It follows an MVC architecture and provides default structures for web services and web pages. Many developers consider Ruby on Rails one of the top-performing web frameworks for development.

Ruby on Rails encourages utilizing web standards such as XML or JSON for data transfers and CSS, JavaScript, and HTML for interfaces. This framework prioritizes software engineering patterns such as active record patterns, convention over configuration (CoC), and don’t repeat yourself (DRY).

Despite not being a widely used programming language, this backend framework is quite popular among developers due to its ease of use, automated testing capabilities, and extensive libraries that aid in the programming process.

Advantages

  • Ruby on Rails receives updates and synchronized data in real-time
  • The framework is highly versatile and flexible as it provides developers with complete control over their projects, empowering them to decide the functioning of the application database.

Limitations

  • Does not offer good documentation
  • Very slow speed on runtime
  • Not Flexible

Ruby on Rails is easy to use and hence best suited for beginners.

5. CakePHP

CakePHP

CakePHP is an open-source web framework that follows the MVC architecture and is written in PHP. It is based on the Ruby on Rails concepts and is available under the MIT license. 

CakePHP utilizes well-known software engineering and design concepts such as front controller, active record, model-view-controller, convention over configuration, and data mapping. It is a widely used framework in the development of web applications.

Advantages

  • CakePHP offers a model view and front controllers, data mapping, active records, and conventions
  • Highly scalable
  • Appropriate for beginning and complex projects

Limitations

  • Very unsupportive documentation
  • Highly complex migrations
  • Offers one-way routing feature only

 

CakePHP can provide a standard architecture for building web applications at any level, making it a secure backend framework, especially for those with experience using PHP as a backend framework.

6. Flask

Flask

Flask is another best microweb backend framework based on Python and does not require specific libraries or tools. It does not come with form validation, a database abstraction layer, or components that require external functions. However, Flask allows extensions that add features and appear as part of Flask itself.

Advantages

  • Flask comes with a built-in web development server that makes debugging easier and allows developers to use Python code in the browser for troubleshooting purposes when requests fail
  • Easy web server setting using Flask
  • It enables easy development of Python applications, which is advantageous since Python is known for requiring less code than other languages for web development

Limitation

  • Not suitable for larger projects
  • Limited support
  • Lacks admin and authentication

 

Flask is a backend web framework that is suitable for developers who are already familiar with Python-based frameworks. It is ideal for those who want to focus on server-side web development.

7. ASP .NET Core

ASP .net

ASP.NET Core is an open-source and free backend framework that is the successor to the widely-used ASP.NET, developed in partnership with the .NET Foundation. It is a modular framework that can be utilized across the entire .NET Framework on Windows and .NET Core.

ASP.NET Core is a minimal version of the Microsoft server stack that allows you to create and run applications on different platforms and environments. It can be utilized for constructing web applications and API servers using various programming languages, such as C#, F#, Visual Basic, NodeJS, and JavaScript.

Advantages

  • Requires less coding
  • ASP .NET Core uses JavaScript backend framework, which is a popular programming language
  • ASP.NET Core is highly regarded as the ideal backend framework for development due to its significant performance enhancements.

Limitation

  • Very expensive
  • Lacks security
  • Does not carry modifications and changes

If you’re developing applications for Windows users, ASP.NET Core is an ideal backend architecture and framework for mobile and web applications.

8. Spring Boot

Spring boot

The Spring Framework is an application framework and inversion of a control container for the Java platform that is available as open-source. Java-based applications can use its fundamental features and offer various extensions to create web applications based on the Java EE platform.

Advantages

  • A key advantage of Spring is its scalability due to the accompanying side projects, which makes it an excellent choice for developing backend applications
  • Spring Framework has associated projects that can enhance its performance, making it a suitable framework for backend development
  • Spring is a popular and well-supported framework due to its foundation in the widely used Java programming language

Limitations

  • Very limited control
  • Not good for monolithic programming
  • Not suitable for beginners

 

If you have experience in backend development, then Spring Boot can prove useful due to its JavaScript foundations.

9. KOA

Koa

Koa is a web development framework created by the team behind Express to provide a stronger and more expressive foundation for APIs and web applications. It achieves this by using async functions instead of callbacks, improving error-handling capabilities.

Unlike other frameworks, Koa has no core Middleware but offers fast server writing methods.

Advantages

  • Personalization options
  • Flexible and able to scale
  • Offers a swift app development process
  • Facilitates templates and rendering with browser-centric capabilities

Limitations

  • Very low community support
  • Lacks compatibility
  • Built-in routing unavailable

If you have hands-on experience with NodeJS, then KOA benefits you. 

10. Phoenix

Phoenix

Phoenix is a framework for software development written in the Elixir programming language. It follows an MVC architecture and relies on the Cowboy Erlang framework and Plugs library.

Phoenix was created to make it easier to build scalable and high-performance applications. It includes features like request/response functionality from the Cowboy server, real-time external client communication via Websockets, and agnostic channels.

Advantages

  • Highly reliable backend framework for web application development
  • Able to run multiple processes and keep them independent
  • Phoenix provides flexibility by eliminating the need for users to work with complex messaging systems or third-party tools for managing cache layers

Limitations

  • Very small community 
  • Limited libraries and resources
  • Hard for developers who do not possess skills in Elixir
FrameworkLanguageBest FeaturesFamous for
DjangoPythonOpen sourceInstagram
Own web serverPinterest
Simple Syntax
ExpressJSNodeJSFast programmingMySpace
Routing and DebuggingStorify
LaravelPHPBuilt-in templatesMyRank
Architecture supportDeltanet Travel
Eloquent Object Relational Mapping
High security
Ruby on RailsRubySupport for MVC architectureZendesk
Simple testingShopify
Active recordGitHub
CakePHPPHPDatabase interactionsEducation Unlimited
Multiple PHP versionsMapme
Built-in validation
Localization and caching
Generates code
FlaskPythonDebugging functionsReddit
UnicodeRed Hat
Google friendly
Unite testing integrated
Functional extensions
ASP .NETC#Cross-platform supportGoDaddy
SynchronizedMicrosoft
High performance
Spring BootJavaCustomized bannersIntuit
Builder APITrivago
State of liveness
KOSNodeJSLeaves minimal footprintN/A
Modern framework
Generators
PhoenixElixirVersatile and best for productionFOX 10
Contains model view controllerABC 15
Real-time supportFinancial Times

Deploying and Hosting Backend Frameworks

After building your backend with the framework of your choice, it is necessary to deploy and run it on a hosting provider. Multiple hosting providers are available to assist with hosting your backend.

If you prefer to handle the infrastructure yourself, you can choose from several cloud environments like DigitalOcean, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). These cloud providers have various tools and services that can help manage and scale your backend infrastructure. However, it’s important to note that setting up and managing the infrastructure on your own can be challenging and may take up a significant amount of time.

Alternatively, suppose you prefer a simpler approach to hosting and don’t want to deal with infrastructure. You can opt for a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) provider such as Back4app Containers or Heroku. These providers offer a pre-configured platform where you can deploy your code, and they handle the infrastructure and scaling for you. This lets you concentrate on developing your backend instead of worrying about managing infrastructure.

Final Word

The information presented above can assist you in making an informed decision among the top ten backend frameworks currently available. The article covered popular backend frameworks such as Django, Laravel, and Ruby on Rails.

These are some of the best backend frameworks of 2023 that work for beginners and experienced developers. Most of these frameworks are developed in commonly used programming languages like Python, Java, and JavaScript.

If you’re new to backend development, you may begin with beginner-friendly frameworks like Flask or lightweight frameworks like Ruby on Rails. Conversely, if you’re interested in studying the most popular frameworks, you can opt for Django, Express, or Spring Boot.

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