Choosing Between Gatsby vs Next.js in 2022
Gatsby and Next.js are widely used as React based static site generators. However, choosing one isn't easy since they both have some amazing features out of the box to build super-fast, lightweight web applications.
So, here is a quick comparison between there similarities and differences to help you choose the best one for your project.
Gatsby is an open-source, React-based framework used to build fast and flexible websites. At first, it was introduced as a static site generator for React. But now, it has its own ecosystem with plugins, themes, and starters like any other framework.
Gatsby combines the functionalities from popular technologies such as React, Webpack, and GraphQL into a single tool to build blazingly fast websites with better SEO scores. In addition, Gatsby provides impressive features like quick page loads, server-side rendering, code splitting, and image loading using its powerful pre-configuration.
The Benefits of Using Gatsby
- Gatsby takes care of compiling webpack configuration to build the site.
- It follows Google’s PRPL architectural pattern.
- Ensure data security.
- Minimal cost of hosting and updates.
- Fast and scalable.
Use Cases of Gatsby
As mentioned, Gatsby is optimized for static website generation. So, if you need to build a highly secured, static website, Gatsby is worth considering. Furthermore, it is optimized to be highly accessible across devices with different hardware and network configurations.
Gatsby is the perfect choice when building small to medium-scale blogs, documentation, and portfolios. If you properly configure the SEO settings and static architecture, Gatsby will improve your site’s search engine optimization and help to rank top in search engines.
Many companies started using Gatsby to develop their websites with increasing popularity. Here is a list of well-known websites that were built using Gatsby:
- Nike — Just Do It.
- PayPal Developer Documentation.
- Airbnb Engineering & Data Science.
Next.js is another open-source, React-based framework built on Node.js. First, it was introduced as a server-side rendering (SSR) tool. Then, with the version 9.3 update, static site generation was introduced, and it started the competition between Next.js and Gatsby.
In Next.js, the code is bundled using Webpack and transformed using Babel. Features like image optimization, Next.js analytics, fast refresh, code splitting, bundling, and typescript support have gained remarkable popularity in the developers’ community.
The Benefits of Using Next.js
- Supports bost server-side rendering (SSR) and static site generation (SSG).
- Built-in CSS support.
- Image, font, and Script optimization.
- Hot Module Replacement.
- Can quickly create minimal viable product with ready-to-use components.
Use Cases of Next.js
One of the most significant use cases of Next.js is its suitability to dynamic websites and hybrid websites. After the version 9.3 release, developers could choose between SR or SSG to prerender the web pages making it the perfect choice for hybrid websites.
Apart from that, Next.js is suitable for large-scale, multi-user websites and e-commerce websites. Companies worldwide started to use Next.js to build their websites because of their scalability and ease of use. Here is a list of well-known websites that were built using Next.js:
When it comes to choosing between Gatsby and Next.js, it is better to understand the similarities and the differences. So, following are some of the significant similarities and differences between these two frameworks.
Next.js vs Gatsby — What are the Similarities
- Both are React-based frameworks. So, if you already have experience in React, the learning curve of both frameworks is not very steep.
- Both frameworks have well-written and easy-to-understand documentation. Therefore, setting up, getting things running, and adding features is easy and quick in both.
- Both can build fast, high-performance websites that score high on SEO optimization.
- Offer a wide range of features, including pre-fetching, routing, code splitting, catching, and support hot reloading for a faster development experience as well.
Next.js vs Gatsby — What are the Differences?
- Gatsby is opinionated and can only use as a static site generator. Next.js is a server-side rendering tool, but after version 9.3, it also supports static side generation.
- Gatsby tells you how you should handle data in your application, while Next.js allows you to decide everything.
- Gatsby uses GraphQL for data handling, but in Next.js, it's all up to the developer. Next.js doesn't care how you get the data, whether synchronous, asynchronous, via REST APIs, fetch, GraphQL, or straightly from the database.
- Gatsby allows the usage of various themes, extensions, plugins to make the development easy. On the other hand, Next.js encourages custom building the extensions plugins to make the project more customized.
Next.js or Gatsby, What to Choose in 2022?
Both Gatsby and Next.js have been around now for quite some time, and each one of them has its own strengths and weaknesses. This article discussed the two frameworks, their unique use cases, similarities, and differences in detail.
Most developers choose when developing high-performance, static websites since its ecosystem makes the development process quicker and easier. But when it comes to dynamic web pages with many users, Next.js is a perfect choice.
Overall, neither Gatsby nor Next.js is an alternative to one another. Both these frameworks have their own set of unique features applicable to different application types and use cases.
So, the final decision of selecting between Gatsby and Next.js depends upon requirements and the application type.