NEW: Find your perfect tool with our matching quiz

Take a quiz

Table of Content

The 5 Absolute Best Backend Web Frameworks

Software Development
Linas Kiguolis

Business web applications need to both be easy to build and maintain yet optimally functional. To that end, business owners continually have to use the best web frameworks for web development.

The 5 Absolute Best Backend Web Frameworks

But what is a web framework? And how does it help build scalable web apps easily for optimal consumer interaction?

What Is a Web Development Framework?

A web framework refers to a software tool intended to automate the overhead involved in the web development process. 

Hands using Backend Web Frameworks

Photo by Christina @ on Unsplash

What Are the Types of Web Frameworks?

A web framework may be either of two types:

  1. Client Side Web Framework

These types of web development frameworks are strictly concerned with the user interface. They have nothing to do with web app functionalities and business logic. Instead, it focuses on the section of web applications or web pages visible to users.

  1. Server Side Web Framework

The use of a server side framework is primarily for generating backend functionality. This involves data management, web server handling, database manipulation, among other activities.

You can classify web development frameworks based on architecture or programming language. Some server side programming languages include, Python, JavaScript, PHP, and.NET.

Most web frameworks fall under either Model View Controller (MVC architecture) or Model-View-ViewModel (MVVM architecture). It’s worth noting that frontend or backend frameworks may fall under any architecture. This is not the same when classifying by programming language. No backend framework is based off on a frontend programming language.

You can find details on client-side frameworks on top 10 frontend development frameworks. But for the sake of detail, we are only going to discuss server side frameworks.

A plan for Backend Web Frameworks

Photo by

Why Use Backend Web Frameworks?

The primary objective of a backend framework is to automate overheads correlating to web development. But some of the best backend frameworks may also help in the following ways:

  • Improve scalability and maintainability requirements
  • Enhance security and privacy encryptions
  • Integrate third party libraries and tools 
  • Create robustness and higher performance
  • Encourage rapid web development for time-saving
  • Most of the best backend web development frameworks are open source. This ultimately mitigates the typically high costs of traditional web development.

These are some of the more general features most backend frameworks possess. However, all backend frameworks are different. Some thrive on aspects where others plummet. So, choosing the best backend framework is honestly based on unique preference, circumstance and requirements.

What Can I Do if I Cannot Code at All?

If you’re someone who needs to build a backend for your web or mobile application but lacks coding skills, you’re likely feeling overwhelmed and unsure of where to start.

Luckily, there are No Code backend development platforms like Xano and Backendless that can help you build a backend without any coding knowledge. These are two of the most popular No Code backend frameworks.

There are many benefits of using Xano and Backendless for building a backend. These platforms are designed to simplify the backend development process, so you don’t have to worry about writing code from scratch.

Instead, you can use their visual interfaces to drag and drop components, configure APIs, and build complex logic flows without any coding knowledge. This means that you can focus on building your application and leave the technical details of the backend to these platforms.

Click here to jump to the section where we talk more about No Code backend.

What Is the Most Popular Backend Framework?

Eight of the popular backend development frameworks are:

  • Node.js: A JavaScript runtime built on Chrome’s V8 JavaScript engine that allows developers to build fast, scalable network applications.
  • Django: A high-level Python web framework that enables rapid development and clean, pragmatic design.
  • Ruby on Rails: A web application framework written in Ruby that follows the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architectural pattern.
  • Laravel: A PHP web framework used for building web applications following the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architectural pattern.
  • Spring Boot: An open-source Java-based framework used for creating standalone, production-grade applications.
  • Flask: A micro web framework written in Python that is easy to use and allows developers to quickly create web applications.
  • Express.js: A lightweight and flexible Node.js framework that provides a simple way to build web applications.
  • ASP.NET Core: An open-source, cross-platform framework used for building web applications using .NET.

These are the most popular backend frameworks in the market right now. If you want to learn more about each of them, read our detailed descriptions below.

Best Backend Frameworks

To help streamline your options, here is a comprehensive list of the overall best backend frameworks:

1. Django

Django is one of the best web framework

Django sits atop as the most sought-after python web frameworks[1] in the market. It is an open source web application framework that uses the Python programming language for all operations. It also functions using the model view controller architecture.

This backend framework requires little to no third-party plugins. And it is one of the most used web frameworks for database-driven complex web projects. This includes CMS (Content Management Systems), social networks, SaaS-solutions and even non-standard complex projects.

It functions well with XML, HTML and JSON format projects. And you’ll typically see it used in enterprise-level web application development. Some famous use cases of the Django framework include; NASA, Spotify, Pinterest, Bitbucket, Instagram and Mozilla. 

Key Features:

  •  Excellent scalability owed to caching and reusability tools and features  
  •  Provides optimal security from web attacks such as cross-site scripting, SQL injection. CSRF attacks and clickjacking to name a few
  •  Supports MVC core architecture, HTTP libraries and ORM (Object Relational Mapper) 
  •  Large and vibrant community with well-organized documentation
  • Inbuilt authentication tool

2. Ruby on Rails

Rails on Ruby is one of the most popular backend frameworks

Ruby on rails is one of the oldest and most popular backend frameworks[2] till today. It was written with the Ruby programming language. But it combines HTML, JavaScript and CSS in developing web applications.

Many experienced developers consider Ruby on rails as the best backend framework for e-commerce web services and the likes. In fact, over 6,500 web developers[3] have contributed to the Ruby on Rails program.

Some popular apps using Ruby on rails are; Airbnb, GitHub, Groupon and Hulu.

Key Features:

  • Encourages rapid development with ready-made modules and plugins. Backend developers using this framework effectively minimize build time typically required for building web applications.
  • MVC architecture support, the most commonly used web application architecture
  • With the help of automated testing, web developers enjoy excellent error handling and gradual quality development
  • Ruby on Rails uses Convention over Configuration
  • There’s no need for writing SQL code to develop queries. A web developer only needs to write code in Ruby syntax. The Active Record library used by Ruby on Rails translates it to SQL queries
  •  Unit testing with RSpec

3. Laravel

Laravel is the best choice for backend development using PHP scripting language. Many consider it the best software for backend web development. And was is one of the most popular backend frameworks as of March 2021. Other PHP frameworks like Symfony and Codelgniter are lesser alternatives.

It is an open source web framework distributed under the MIT license and written in PHP.

Lady trying to use Best Backend Web Frameworks

Photo by Nicole Wolf on Unsplash

Key Features:

  • Great API support that functions smoothly with the SwiftMailer library
  • The template engine of Laravel is comprehensive. It is usable for generating complex layouts and even sports widgets with functional JS and CSS code
  • Eloquent Object Relational Mapping
  • Laravel users enjoy excellent exception and error handling. In addition, it has monolog logging library integration while making provision for multiple log handlers
  • Ease of implementing authentication and authorization logic
  • Developers get several ways of accessing relational databases
  • Laracasts is a tutorial website for web developers in the Laravel/PHP ecosystem
  • Laravel provides users with a dedicated dependency manager under a modular packaging system

4. ExpressJS

The first JS framework on this list is one of the most popular backend frameworks by 23.82% according to a Stackoverflow Survey[4]. Many companies like Uber, MySpace, Myntra, IBM, and Accenture all use Express.JS for web app development.

It is a lightweight web application framework for Node.JS, distributed under the MIT License. The pioneering author, TJ Hilowaychuk best describes it as a Sinatra-inspired server. That illustration represents the minimalist feel it has which makes its operation easy and highly flexible.

Key Features:

  • Since JavaScript is one of the most commonly-used programming languages, using Express proffers a simple learning curve. The entire development process becomes straightforward with Express. Developers can handle both frontend and backend tasks in a JavaScript runtime environment
  • Supports sophisticated URL routing mechanism
  • Inbuilt debugging system
  • Excellent for creating REST APIs for web and mobile applications using Node.JS
  • It functions as the backend component of development stacks like MEAN and MEVN stack. It also works together with the MongoDB database software
  • Offers middleware and a range of HTTP utility methods

5. Flask

Flask is also a great backend web framework

Flask is a popular micro web framework written in Python. It’s a micro web framework because it does not require components that need functions from third-party libraries. This implies it has no database abstraction layer or form validation component.

Rather than run on the browser, it runs on the web server. Modern web applications from companies such as Netflix, LinkedIn, Lyft, Airbnb and the likes, all use the Flask framework.

Key Features:

  • Compared with Django, it is a relatively easy-to-learn Python framework.
  • With much less abstraction layers between user and database, performance is optimal
  • You can use the Werkzeug toolkit to create a WSGI-compliant web application
  • It makes use of extensions for various open authentication technologies or RESTful request dispatching
  • Built-in web server and debugger
  • Unicode support
  • Uses Jinja2 for functional template building

No Code Alternatives to Backend Frameworks

No Code tools are a viable alternative to traditional backend software development frameworks. If you haven’t heard about it before, we have a great article on what is No Code. Backendless and Xano are two popular No Code backend development platforms that make the process of setting up the backend of your application or website significantly faster and easier.

With Backendless, you can take full control of our backend with an easy-to-use interface and a wide range of features. With Xano, you can get started quickly and easily with a variety of templates and tools. If you’re looking for a faster, easier way to develop your backend, No Code is worth considering.

xano vs backendless no code backend frameworks

These platforms also offer extensive documentation and support resources, including video tutorials, help articles, and community forums. This means that even if you have no coding experience, you can still learn how to use these platforms and build a functional backend for your application.

In addition, Xano and Backendless are designed to be flexible and scalable, which means that they can grow with your application as it gains more users and data. They also offer a variety of integrations with other popular services, such as Stripe and Twilio, making it easy to add functionality to your application without writing any code.

Now, let’s talk about how easy it is to use these platforms. Both Xano and Backendless offer intuitive visual interfaces that make it easy to create and manage your backend components. For example, with Xano, you can create data models, define API endpoints, and set up integrations with other services using simple drag and drop tools.

Using our link to register for Xano gives you a 10% discount. Register now!

backendless UI, No Code backend tool
Backendless UI

Similarly, with Backendless, you can create database tables, set up user authentication, and build custom business logic using a visual block-based interface.

Finally, let’s discuss how Xano and Backendless can speed up backend development. Because these platforms eliminate the need to write code from scratch, you can build your backend much faster than you would be able to otherwise.

For example, instead of spending weeks writing custom code to set up user authentication, you can use Backendless’s pre-built authentication components to get up and running in minutes. Similarly, instead of writing custom code to handle database queries and data models, you can use Xano’s visual tools to create these components in a fraction of the time.

Idea Link, a No Code agency, uses both of these tools on a regular basis for the way they speed up backend development. Don’t hesitate and try them out yourself too.

Using our link to register for Backendless gives you a 15% discount. Try it now!

Notable Mentions


Which is on the top end of some of the most popular web development frameworks. It is an alternatively great JS framework to Express with exceptional scaling, monitoring, and deployment features. It can generate cross-platform code and supports instant prototyping.

Meteor can build Javascript apps

Spring/Spring boot:

Which is a Java-based open source software working as an inversion of control container. Some notable features include its built-in support for Undertow, Tomcat and Jetty. The fluent builder API and banner customization are also worth noting.


There is clearly a growing adaptation of web-based services in businesses. As a result, well-built web applications have grown to offer competitive functionalities for optimal customer experience. Business owners using older technologies that can’t compete with the capabilities provided by newer technologies suffer largely for it.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to be you. The efficacy of any web service is a result of efficient resources, practices and particular tools involved in its development process.Thankfully, integrating any of the popular backend frameworks listed above provides you access to those innovative resources and tools.

Of course, choosing the right backend framework should not be primarily based on popularity or general consensus. Your unique requirements determine what backend framework is best for you.

The primary aim of a web development framework is to reduce how much code you have to write. But if your requirement for lessened work rates is beyond the scope of any web framework then No Code or Low Code platforms is just the thing for you. 

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter to get regular updates on the No Code industry.


Linas Kiguolis

Need some help with No-code?

As a founder of a traditional software development agency Bright Projects and numerous blockchain projects such as Ertha and Spellfire, Linas is the most experienced member of our crew. He provides a critical perspective towards No Code tools and their capabilities, as there are still many fields where they still cannot replace good old coding.


Read more