What Should You Know About MERN Stack

The MERN stack (which stands for Mongo, ExpressJS, React, Node) offers a full-stack solution that provides a lot of features in a handful of packages.

Written by RamotionDec 20, 202213 min read

Last updated: Feb 25, 2024

If you are a full stack developer and especially if you are looking for the latest and hottest stack to use in your new projects then you are definitely going to want to read this article which covers MERN Stack - MongoDB, ExpressJS, React, Node that is definitely going to get your attention. MERN Stack is trending among developers and it has become one of the most used stacks in recent times.

What is a MERN Stack? Well, let's start at the beginning. If you're just getting started with web development and have heard the acronym MERN stack being thrown around, you might be a bit confused. So what exactly is the MERN stack and what makes it so popular among developers? Is it reliable? Who needs it? What are the advantages and disadvantages? Let's find out in this article.

Defining MERN Stack

The MERN stack is currently one of the most popular web application development frameworks. It's a full-stack JavaScript end-to-end framework that allows developers to create web applications using ReactJS, MongoDB, ExpressJS, and NodeJS.

It’s also a great choice for developers who are just starting out and want to create powerful apps with minimal effort. The MERN stack is one of the most popular web application stacks, especially among startups. It was created by Facebook in 2012 and has been adopted by many developers since then.

The goal of the MERN stack is to provide a quick way to get started with modern web development using JavaScript and its related technologies. It’s suitable for both beginners and experienced developers who want to build their own apps quickly without worrying about the underlying technology stack.

MERN Stack Components

The MERN stack consists of four main technologies:

1. MongoDB

MongoDB is a free and open-source cross-platform database management system (DBMS) developed by MongoDB, Inc. It is a non-relational database that stores data in JSON-like documents with dynamic schemas. The database does not have a fixed schema definition but allows the user to specify a schema as the database evolves.

It has been classified as a NoSQL database because it does not support joins, triggers, and stored procedures. The developers of MongoDB believe that these features are not necessary for most applications and that they complicate query optimization when used with large amounts of data.

MongoDB provides high availability with replica sets and shards. Replica sets ensure that data is replicated across multiple machines for greater reliability and availability in case of hardware failure; shards spread data across different servers in order to optimize query performance by distributing workloads across servers with different CPUs and disk speeds. It supports horizontal scaling by adding additional machines to the cluster. But the developers of MongoDB recommend that you use replica sets with sharding to maximize availability and performance.

2. ExpressJS

ExpressJS is a lightweight, open-source framework for Node.js, ExpressJS provides a robust set of features for building backend server and APIs. It supports MVC patterns and has built-in support for routing, view engines (such as Jade or EJS), and static file serving with the help of Nginx or Apache HTTP Server.

The framework was created by TJ Holowaychuk and was first released in 2010. It’s been around for a while now, with version 4 being the latest release. ExpressJS has over 60,000 stars on GitHub and is used by various companies including IBM, Microsoft, Mozilla, and PayPal.

The framework is easy to learn and highly configurable. It also has an active community, which makes it easier for developers to find answers when they run into problems. It’s easy to set up and can be used with any database backend. You can use ExpressJS in conjunction with MongoDB for building a scalable web application.

It has support for open-source libraries and is compatible with most of the popular front-end javascript frameworks like React or Angular. The framework also has an extensive ecosystem of third-party modules that can be used to add new features.

3. ReactJS

ReactJS is an open-source JavaScript library for building user interfaces. It was created by Facebook and released in 2013. The framework allows developers to create reusable UI components. React also makes it easier to build large applications with complex UIs. React is used by many companies such as Netflix, Airbnb, Discord, and Uber. The framework has a large community of developers who are constantly contributing to it.

ReactJS is all about data flow. It uses a virtual DOM which reduces the number of operations that are required to happen with the actual DOM. The virtual DOM helps ReactJS to render and update the UI at a fast rate. The framework uses unidirectional data flow and one-way reactive data binding with an event system (called props) to create components.

The data flows from parent components to child components in a unidirectional manner. The event system is used by ReactJS to handle user interactions, API calls, and other events. This makes it easier for developers to write reusable code across different applications.

ReactJS uses a component-based architecture to handle the UI. This allows developers to create reusable components that can be used across different projects. The framework is also very easy to learn and understand, which makes it a great choice for beginners.

4. NodeJS

NodeJS is a backend development framework that allows developers to build fast and scalable applications. The framework uses an event-driven, non-blocking I/O model that makes it easy for developers to build fast applications that can handle thousands of concurrent connections with ease. It is a great choice for beginners because it allows developers to write applications in JavaScript without having to learn any other programming language. The framework also comes with built-in libraries and tools that make it easy for developers to build applications.

Node.js was originally developed by Ryan Dahl in 2009 to make real-time web applications possible, but it has since grown into so much more. Today, Node.js is used by thousands of developers and companies around the world to build and deploy apps with ease. Because Node.js is based on the V8 JavaScript engine, it allows developers to write applications in JavaScript without having to learn any other programming language.

The most common way to get started with Node.js development is by using a web framework such as Express or Sails. These frameworks abstract away much of what it takes to build a web application with Node.js so that you can focus on writing code instead of worrying about configuration details like how to load static assets, how to set up database connections etc.

How Does the MERN Stack Work

The MERN stack uses MongoDB as its database layer, which is a document database rather than a traditional relational database. This makes it easier to scale up your application and gives you the ability to store data in a flexible way that fits your needs rather than being limited by the structure of a schema based on fixed tables and columns.

ReactJS provides some cool features for building user interfaces including declarative UIs (user interfaces), virtual DOM (DOM as rendered by the browser without affecting it directly), and one-way data flow (data flows down only).

ExpressJS is an application framework for NodeJS that provides routing capabilities so that you can create URLs for different pages or sections of your site/application.

And NodeJS allows you to run JavaScript code on the server. It’s built on top of the Google V8 engine, which makes it very fast and efficient.

So now that we have a basic understanding of what each technology is and how they work together, let’s look at the pros and cons of using this combination.

Advantages and Disadvantages of MERN Stack

Advantages of MERN stack

1. Free and Open Source: The MERN stack is completely free to use without any limitations or restrictions on its use. You can use it in both commercial as well as non-commercial projects without any extra licensing fees or charges. This makes it very attractive for start-ups who want to build their products without having to pay a lot of money upfront.

2. Reliable and Scalable: The Mern stack has been proven to be reliable and highly scalable since many websites have been built using these technologies including Twitter, Netflix, etc... so if you want your website to scale well then this is definitely something worth considering.

3. Single programming language: One of the biggest benefits of using the MERN stack is that it uses only one programming language (JavaScript), which means that you don’t have to learn another language to build your website. This can be very beneficial for beginners who want to start learning web development but don’t want to worry about learning multiple languages.

4. Easy to get started: The MERN stack is very easy to learn and implement because it only requires basic knowledge of HTML and JavaScript, which are the most common programming languages among web developers. This helps you to quickly jump into the development process and get your website up in no time.

5. Large community: The MERN stack is one of the most popular web development stacks out there and has a large community behind it. This means that there is plenty of support available if you run into problems or need assistance with your project.

6. Versatile: The MERN stack is very versatile and can be used to build almost any kind of website or web application. It’s not limited to a specific niche or vertical like other stacks, which makes it suitable for beginners as well as experienced developers.

7. Easy to learn: The MERN stack is easy to learn and it doesn’t require any special skills or background in order to get started with it. You can easily learn it by following some tutorials and reading up on the documentation available online. The MERN stack is a great choice if you are just starting out with web development because it allows you to build your own website from scratch without having to worry about additional technologies or frameworks that might confuse you.

8. Lot of free resources: The MERN stack has some great free resources available online that can help you get started with it. There are numerous tutorials and courses available on the internet that cover this stack, so all you need to do is search for them and follow the steps provided in order to learn how to use this technology stack.

Disadvantages of MERN stack

1. Dependency on NPM: The first disadvantage of using MERN is that it relies heavily on NPM (Node Package Manager). This means that if there’s an issue with any of your dependencies, then it can affect your project as well. In addition, it also means that any changes made to the modules will affect all projects using those modules as well.

2. Efficiency: Since ReactJS is a library, you have to use it in conjunction with other libraries. This means that you will end up using more code than what would be required if you were using a framework. This means that there will be an increase in the size of your project. This can also cause performance issues, especially if you are targeting mobile devices.

3. Large-scale applications: MERN is great for small-scale and single-page applications, but it can become very difficult to manage when you are building large-scale applications. This is because the codebase will not be as modularized as it should be. This can cause large-scale applications to become very unorganized and difficult to manage.

4. Performance issues: MERN is a great framework for building applications that are not resource-intensive, but it can become very problematic when you are trying to build large-scale applications. This is because the codebase will end up becoming bloated, which can cause performance issues. This can lead to a poor user experience and will prevent your application from being scalable.

Use Cases Of MERN Stack

If you are a developer who wants to learn how to use the MERN stack then here are some use cases where you can use it:

1. Building Single Page Applications (SPAs)

Single-page applications (SPAs) are web applications that load a single HTML page and use JavaScript to update only the part of it that changes. This means you don’t have to reload the entire page every time something updates; instead, only the portion that needs to change is updated. It makes for a much faster user experience.

Single-page web applications are especially useful for web apps that need to send real-time data and updates, such as chat apps. SPAs are becoming increasingly popular for web development and can be used for a variety of different things. You might want to create an application that shows users all the information about their profile, for example, or one that allows them to complete some kind of task. You could even build an app that uses real-time data from APIs (application programming interfaces) in order to show users new information every time they open it.

2. Building Mobile Applications Using React Native

React Native is a framework for building mobile applications using JavaScript. It allows you to build apps for Android, iOS, and Linux using the same codebase, which means less time spent on maintenance in the long run. React Native also makes it easy to customize your user interface so that it looks exactly how you want it to.

3. Building Back-End APIs With Node.js

Node.js is an open-source JavaScript runtime environment that allows you to build back-end APIs with ease. It also has built-in support for many useful features, such as routing, authentication, and more. Node.js is great for building APIs because it allows you to create scalable back-end services quickly and easily. This means that the time it takes to develop your app’s backend won’t slow down the rest of your development process.


Now you know everything about the MERN stack and its pros and cons. So as you can see, MERN Stack is actually great. So it's good to use in real-time projects. So, if you are a beginner and want to start your career as a developer or just want to create some small projects, then the MERN stack is the best choice for you.

MERN (MongoDB, ExpressJS, React, Node.js) is an acronym for four open-source applications that can be used to create web apps by developers; this technology stack has gained popularity over the years because it's fast and easy to learn but also highly scalable with great performance.

The MERN stack uses MongoDB for its database layer, providing users with a document-oriented approach as opposed to traditional relational databases. ReactJS provides some clever features for building user interfaces including declarative UIs and virtual DOM. ExpressJS is an application framework for NodeJS that provides routing capabilities so that you can create URLs for different pages or sections of your site/application.

The MERN stack is a great choice for developers who want to build dynamic web interfaces and applications quickly and easily. The fact that there are many popular frameworks included in the stack makes it very easy to learn and provides plenty of resources for further learning.