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What is Next.js Used For? Benefits of using Next.js

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    Vishnupriya
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What is Next.js Used For? Benefits of using Next.js

High speed and enhanced performance have always been the two paramount goals of most developers and when React.js came along, it turned many heads for its feature range, and eventually, React.js almost became de facto for web development. Next.js is one of the most popular tools present in the React ecosystem and has managed to gather much popularity for its benefits. Lets try and understand what Next.js is and why it is a showstopper in the developer world.

What is Next.js?

Next.js is a frontend framework and is highly appreciated among React users. To simply put it, Next.js is a React framework that is basically used to develop single-page Javascript applications. There are ample benefits of the Next.js framework that make website development easy for developers. In recent times where people are living in a virtual world, their expectations from their apps and websites have scales too and hence is the need to create apps and websites that load within milliseconds. Apps and websites built on Next.js have proven to deliver better results in terms of scalability, speed, and performance.

Let’s now discuss some of the fundamental benefits of using Next.js that make it a unique tool for developers.

What is Next.js Used For – Benefits of using Next.js

1.Server-Side Rendering (SSR)

Most React.js components that are used to design the user-face of the website are all mostly server-side rendered. Server-side rendering means that once the HTML is delivered to the user’s browser, there’s no need for anything else for the user to be able to read the content available on the page. Eventually, this leads to much-reduced loading time and websites appear to be much faster.

Server-side rendering comes with a bag full of advantages such as the websites created are indexable and crawlable which are essential for Search engine Optimization(SEO). These qualities help in improving the website SEO as the client-side JavaScript isn’t required to be executed to be able to view the page content.

These single-page applications created using Next.js have proven to provide improved UX since they require no reloading from the user and also provide improved interactivity. Next.js is applauded for its uniqueness because unlike many server-side rendering frameworks present, Next.js allows developers to render the JavaScript code on the server and then send indexable and simple HTML to the user, this is something that Next.js launched and was impossible to do before the launch of Next.js.

Next.js also provides benefits like static site regeneration which is another SEO-friendly feature to build websites and apps with advanced SEO. Developers who use just Next.js can just concentrate on building components and not worry about the environment in which the component is being rendered.

2. Improved Search Engine Optimization

As discussed in the above point, Server-side rendering has a great role to play in improving SEO for your website or your application. Websites and applications created through Next.js improve your website visibility enormously in the search engines when compared with other client-rendered Javascript. Considering the competition in today’s virtual world, Next.js gives you a major edge over other websites and that is the reason for its widespread acknowledgment in the developers’ community.

3. Better performance of the designed website

Metrics like Time to first draw( TTFD) are properly taken care of when working with Next.js and this is because Next.js doesn’t need the browser to download and then execute a great amount of JavaScript code all at once. TTFD basically measures the time needed for any user to view the very first content on their screen and ideally it is supposed to be below 1 second. This is turn results is better client conversions and increase in  customer counts as nobody wants to sit and wait for a page to load and hence leads to increase in bounce rates. So, indirectly this feature also contributes to improved SEO of the website.

4. Hot Module Replacement(HMR)

This feature might not be as useful for end users that use the application but is a crucial feature for developers designing the app. Hot Module Replacement is a feature that allows developers to continually see the changes as they are in the  process of developing the application. Unlike the live reload methods followed traditionally, Hot Module Replacement will only reload the module that have actually been changed, hence reducing the time needed to see live changes in action. Talking about the perks this feature has for the clients using the application, Hot module replacement allows the development of apps in lesser time and with increased efficiencies.

5.Automatic code splitting in Next.js

Next.js is deemed to be one of the most clever platforms that only loads JavaScript and CSS which are needed for that very page that is being worked on, this makes the loading times of the page much faster and prevents the user’s browser from downloading JavaScript that it doesn’t require for the specific page to be viewed. This is what accounts for efficient performance and added user benefits as the page content loads quicker leading to a better user experience.

Summary

There’s no doubt in the fact that Next.js has great potential to make web applications with enhanced SEO and interactive user interface. Next.js has been one of the most integral part of React ecosystem and has plethora of benefits for both the developers and users.

Primary benefits of Next.js can be summarized as-

  1. It has improved the performance of apps and websites which is in return led to faster running and optimized applications and websites.
  2. Next.js provides an enhanced development process which means that clients dealing with developers can now save up on time as well as cost.
  3. Lastly, Next.js has reached new heights when itr comes to enhancing search engine optimization for its websites. This means that websites created using Next.js are more indexable and SEO friendly.
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