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What Web Apps Can I Build With ReactJS?

You’ve probably heard of tech giants that have built — and continue to build — their web applications with React.

There’s Facebook, Instagram, and Spotify, to name a few. And we don’t even think twice about using them. Why should we? It’s so easy to navigate these platforms. It’s so easy, in fact, that sometimes, we realize only belatedly we’ve spent hours browsing the thing. 

Isn’t that every business’ dream? To have a platform or web application as enticing and effortless to use as Facebook, Instagram, or Spotify? If you’re curious about how these web applications manage to build a seamless, uninterrupted digital experience for its end-users, then you should look into React. 

React has helped big tech companies achieve and even surpass their business goals, attracting droves of users to their websites and getting these users to actively engage with what their site offers. So if you want in on its benefits, read on to know what you can create with this technology, too.

But before we go into the types of web applications you can build with React, let’s get you acquainted with it first.

What Is React? 

React is a JavaScript library meant to optimize web applications’ front-end development. According to software engineers and Learning React authors Eve Porcello and Alex Banks, “[It] is a popular library used to create user interfaces[,] built at Facebook to address some of the challenges associated with large-scale, data-driven websites.” 

These large-scale, data driven websites are typically SPAs, which are “continuously updating [applications] accommodating data in a matter of seconds.” So think of a Facebook timeline and how you never really see an end by the time you scroll down to the bottom of your screen. This is what React can generally build. However, this technology’s capacity does not stop at SPAs. Web app development and React generally go hand in hand.

Image credits to Canva

Why Build Web Applications with React? 

React is one of the most flexible tools for building robust front-end elements of web applications. Earlier, we said React’s strengths are apparent in SPA development, but it’s important to note this library can build the user interface (UI) of any part of an interactive web application.

This is because React is essentially a “view library,” software engineer Robin Wieruch says. Its main focus is the view aspect — or UI — of any type of web application. But why choose React over older libraries or frameworks?

Wieruch says, “In React you can keep the focus on your view layer before you introduce more aspects to your application.” This is something other UI and SPA development technologies, such as Angular, are not able to do, Wieruch notes. The question then becomes, why would you want to focus on the view layer of your SPA or web application? 

To answer this, we look into another software engineer’s words. Cory Gackenheimer says React sets out to solve a singular problem — “[l]arge-scale user interfaces with data that changes over time.”

While older approaches can accommodate this, Gackenheimer adds the problem can significantly transform once your code reaches the point of being unmaintainable.

The problem tends to be that user interfaces are “highly interconnected”. When one thing breaks, the other parts could get dragged down. And this is what React tries to counter, mainly with its independent, reusable components, which are essentially the parts of a web application’s UI.

What Can You Build with React?

The following web applications, whose front-end you can build with React, tend to have large-scale UIs and tons of data changing for every user. What React does is provide web applications enough flexibility to accommodate new features or data in an uncomplicated way, our React expert said. So keep this in mind as you go through the following web applications — some of which NarraSoft’s React developer recommended — you can build with React.

Social Media Applications

Social networking sites are one of the top — and oft-cited — web applications you can build using React. After all, it was initially built for one of the most popular social media apps — Facebook, which is an SPA. Many social media applications today are actually SPAs. And like Facebook, using these applications doesn’t require users to keep reloading a page to continue using the site. 

This is the ideal for users to experience social media web apps seamlessly. But SPAs have thousands of features. Facebook alone has about 50,000 components or UI pieces! So imagine having to fix, update, or add new features to your social media SPA regularly.

What would happen if these components were interconnected? That’s a disaster waiting to happen. But because React gives developers the means to upgrade, update, or debug UI components separately, your social media web applications can have as many UI components as it needs — and you won’t have to worry about your application crashing.

Plus, social media users constantly interact with the web app’s many components. These interactions must reflect as quickly as possible on the view layer, no matter how many times a user engages or makes a request.

Because React significantly improves a user’s experience by optimizing the DOM’s rendering process, this constant interaction doesn’t become a problem for users at all, giving them an effortless time engaging with your web app, which will then encourage them to keep using your social media site even more.

Image credits to Canva

Data Visualization Web Applications

Data visualization applications and React seem to be made for each other. React is a view-focused library, making it the perfect candidate for helping end-users visualize volumes of data.

If your company is in the business of big data, or if you simply want your website to present information relevant to what your company does, then React can help you achieve your web app plans. 

With React, your business can display compelling web pages with interactive data, inviting your website visitors to explore your site. So if your aim is to capture your audience’s attention with your data visualization site, build it with React.

This JavaScript library even has data visualization tools you can freely use. And just like in a social networking site, data is ever-changing, so you will need to update your UI’s components often and possibly add more features over time. This is another advantage of using React for data visualization applications — you get independent components you can reuse. 

eCommerce Sites

An advantage of using React is its ability to attract visitors and boost sales. How? By optimizing web applications for search engines. This feature especially comes in handy for eCommerce sites. According to NarraSoft’s React developer, React is SEO-friendly. He said search engines generally can’t read JavaScript applications, which will drastically affect a website’s performance. 

The reason behind this is JavaScript applications are rendered on the client-side, which means crawlers on search engines will not see the text of the page, a crucial factor in SEO. And because an eCommerce site’s profitability hinges on its ability to attract and convert, searchability is important.

The good news is, with React, a web page runs on a server, so it returns “a virtual DOM request to the browser and [provides] it as a webpage that can be crawled by search [engines],” our developer said.

News Sites

News sites have large amounts of data, and the way news is disseminated today is predominantly digital. In consequence, developers must consider ease-of-use on the readers’ end and take searchability into account, too. React is able to address these things, being a view library that runs in a server as we discussed earlier. 

React’s reusable components make it easy for news organizations to bind the data they need for their news articles. Just take a look at The New York Times. They use React to create pages fast and “render HTML properly to support the appropriate attributes to enable accessible viewing,” an article in softwareengineeringdaily.com notes.

Additionally, it says “development teams have been able to collaborate faster and with less duplications in code via reusable components on the front end.”  And React is able to do this for the popular news outlet, alongside GraphQL.

Booking Applications

Whether it’s hotel-booking, ride-booking, or even booking riders to deliver your food, React is a great front-end library to use. Booking applications are, however, often developed for mobile already.

But you can still benefit from the advantages of using React on mobile by building with React Native. They both use JSX and have independent and reusable components — although React Native uses native-looking UI components. 

eLearning Web Applications

eLearning web applications tend to be video-based. Video-based applications process a large amount of data and, depending on an eLearning site’s reach, can grow its number of courses.

The reason why React is a good library to use for eLearning websites’ front-end is simple. We go back to React’s independent and reusable components as well as its virtual DOM, allowing for high-performing web applications.

If you want your learners to stay focused on a subject, you need to be able to provide them the learning materials they need effortlessly. You can accomplish this by building your eLearning web application with React, which is what Khan Academy uses.

In Summary

React is a JavaScript library geared toward building a web application’s UI. One of its core strengths is its independent, reusable components, which have helped tech giants manage their web-based platforms smoothly.

With React, your business can optimally build the UI of different web applications, including:

  • Social media applications
  • Data visualization web applications
  • eCommerce sites
  • News sites
  • Booking applications
  • eLearning web applications

Want to experience all the advantages of React JS and web app development through outsourcing? NarraSoft can give you that and more! Our outsourcing services include software development in multiple languages and libraries, including React JS, Python, .NET, and C#

Send us a message on our chat box, contact form, or email at sales@narrasoft.com, and partner with us today! We can’t wait to work with you!

Sources: Learning React (2017) | The Road to Learn React (2018) | Introduction to React (2015) | React | madewithreactjs.com | freecodecamp.org | softwareengineeringdaily.com | Khan Academy