Why Node.js is the Coolest Kid on the Backend Development Block

Selecting the right stack for the back-end can become a daunting activity. There is an immense number of programming languages and frameworks that you can easily get lost in. Above all, companies must be confident that the tools they choose align well with their business priorities, goals, and specifics. That’s why many of them prefer the most popular and experience-proven frameworks and tools.

Node.js is one of the time-tested back-end frameworks that has proved its efficiency in many projects. It was released in 2009 and such market leaders as Walmart, PayPal, Uber, eBay, NASA, Microsoft, LinkedIn, and others actively search for Node.js development companies to build their apps.

Although back-end development with Node.js is a popular decision, yet you need to define if this solution works well for building your app. In this article, we look into the specifics of using Node.js for back-end development and explore the best Node.js back-end practices.

What is Node.js?

Node.js is a JavaScript runtime built on V8 JavaScript engine by Chrome. Node.js differs from most JavaScript frameworks. While the majority of them are used for front-end development, Node.js fits well with building front and back-end layers. 

Node.js incorporates unique features that allow creating powerful and stable back-end architecture. These features involve APIs that support HTTP requests, file systems, database integration, real-time logistics, npm package manager, and others.

The Node.js Features and Advantages

Node.js has a unique set of beneficial features that turn back-end development into a consistent and pleasant activity:

An I/O non-blocking and asynchronous model 

This model is used for effective server/client communication with multiple simultaneous requests. Node.js libraries don’t wait for data return from one API, instead, they move to the next one, making data processing faster. This way, Node.js-based apps can handle a growing number of app users and load peaks.

JavaScript full-stack development

Although JavaScript is considered to be a front-end development solution, Node.js uses JavaScript as a back-end programming language. This way, businesses can hire full-stack developers who use one programming language to build both front and back-ends. This results in better code efficiency, its sharing and reuse, faster performance, easier knowledge exchange within a team.

V8 JavaScript Engine speeds up code execution 

V8 translates JavaScript code into a machine code rather than using an interpreter, making execution speeds much faster.

Event-based model

This model is determined by events or user actions such as user clicks or password entrance, and others. The event-based model allows building real-time applications, including online games, chats, video conferences, and others. 

NPM – a package manager for Node

With an NPM software engineers can simply manage code dependencies and packages in their development projects. This allows them to better structure their codes, easily specify project versions, as well as share and collaborate on one project with others.

Open-source technology

Node.js is an open-source framework free for use.

What Types of Software Projects is Node.Js Suitable for?

Node.js offers an extensive set of tools for building various digital solutions. However, there are still some projects for which Node.js works better based on the specifics of the technology and its accompanying stack. Here is a list of projects Node.js would suit best. 

The Internet of Things

Due to its non-blocking I/O, event-driven model, Node.js is extensively used in the Internet of Things (IoT) development. With Node.js software developers can build device and server architecture, and its ability to create C++ models significantly facilitates and accelerates IoT development.

Another strong Node.js feature for IoT is that it runs on the V8 Chrome engine. The engine enhances overall system performance and memory consumption. As a result, software engineers can connect a vast number of devices to a single server. 

Also, Node.js supports multiple libraries, like Johnny-Five created especially for building applications for IoT hardware, including sensors, displays, motors, and others. 

Streaming Services and Collaboration Tools

Node.js’s ability to establish an immense number of simultaneous connections and distribute messages across channels allows building various real-time communication and collaboration software. 

By using a popular ws WebSocket library for Node.js software engineers can build a WebSockets server or implement the library to establish communication between a server and a client or several back-end servers. 

WebSockets considerably improve communication between a server and a client. They can:

  • send messages to their clients without their explicit requests;
  • establish simultaneous communication;
  • minimize the amount of data needed to exchange messages, and much more. 

Therefore, WebSockets work great for real-time and long-lived communications and they can be easily built with Node.js.

Also, Node.js is easily compatible with Web Real-Time Communications (WebRTC). Node.js contains a set of WebRTC APIs that allow audio and video communication from a browser in real-time. This way, software developers can build from basic to advanced video-calling and screen-sharing web apps with WebRTC and Node.js tools.

Serverless Architecture

With Node.js software engineers can develop serverless apps. Serverless systems exclude the necessity to manage servers and establish in-depth DevOps practices. Therefore, software engineers have to care only about writing an app’s business logic code.

Node.js supports serverless frameworks for AWS Lambda by Amazon. AWS Lambda is an event-driven serverless platform that automatically scales depending on the app needs, allows fast app deployment, and provides pay-per execution pricing, meaning that you pay only for the used services.

Microservice Architecture

A lightweight and fast Node.js framework is a great choice for building microservice architecture. This architectural style involves splitting an app business logic into small modules created separately and connected into one system. Thanks to the modular design, microservice architectures are extremely flexible, easy to scale, and faster to develop. 

Many software developers prefer building microservice architectures with Node.js. It has a rich database of JavaScript modules, a wide range of JSON APIs, and NPM modules. It simply integrates with message brokers such as RabbitMQ and Kafka, Docker containers, Kubernetes components.

All these tools allow building stable, fast, and feature-rich microservices architectures with basic infrastructure requirements, like CPU and Memory, fewer code lines, and in a much shorter time.

What to Consider When Building Your Software Project?

Before choosing the development tools for your future app, you have to consider your software development project aspects. They determine which frameworks and programming languages fit best for building your digital solution.

1. App architecture 

While Node.js suits well for projects of any size, your app architecture is what really matters. Use Node.js for microservices architecture and choose other solutions for monolithic apps.

2. Development speed

If time-to-market is one of the essential aspects of your app development, then building your app with Node.js is the right choice. Node.js combines will with JavaScript front-end frameworks, therefore, full-stack development with one language can reduce the development time.

3. Market niche

Software developers prefer using Node.js for building real-time apps such as video-streaming services, games, social networking sites, IoT solutions, and others. 

However, they may run into some development issues when building heavy monolithic apps due to lack of modularity or apps with precise calculations due to Node.js specifics of work with the floating decimal point. 


Node.js is a popular JavaScript framework among various back-end development services. It offers software developers a wide range of tools, libraries, and development patterns that facilitate and accelerate app creation. 

However, before opting for Node.js, companies need to define the architecture pattern of the built apps, the market niche where they want to launch their product, and other aspects to make sure that it’s the best solution for their projects.

Over 15 years of experience in the IT industry, obsessed with all tech-related things, providing insights on the latest IT industry trends and help companies grow their business through technology.