Why Most Startups Choose Ruby on Rails for the Backend

In this article, we’d like to share our advice on how Product Managers can onboard remote developers and set them to work as members of the team from the first day.

Are you a startup owner planning to roll out something new to the market? Wondering what technology is the best for the backend? There are plenty of technologies to choose from e.g. Ruby, .Net, Java, Python. All of them can implement the same functionality.

When choosing among them most startup owners want to find the one that not only implements the functionality but allows doing it in the most efficient way. You need to cut down costs to a minimum and reach out the potential clients as soon as possible before someone else does.

Why do we most often advise to consider RoR for developing your project? How does it help startups in going forward with their product? This post will dot the I’s and give you a quick overview of RoR advantages for launching the backend part.

A look at the backstage

Released in 2004, Ruby on Rails or RoR was originally conceived out of Basecamp (a project management tool) by David Heinemeier Hansson. Its heart lies in Model View Controller architecture that separates data from the logic i.e. presentation layer and thus helps in organizing the application program. Its blood and muscle is an extensive AJAX library, which RoR uses to generate AJAX code and process the required Javascript automatically.

Translating it into a business language, RoR framework is a mature product that has already deserved the credit of both development and business community. It advocates for simplicity, ease of deployment, and consistency.

Let’s take a close look how it helps startups or small business address their challenges across different aspects.

See also: Building a Mobile Startup That Makes Money

Quick launch and powerful enhancement

If you look at yesterday’s startups, which are today the leaders of the industry, e.g. Linkedin, Twitter, Zynga, and of course Facebook with Google, you’ll see that they rarely switch from the core technology. The more they grow, the more difficult it becomes to change the initially chosen path.

However, Ruby on Rails framework takes a separate place in the row of start-up technologies. It has not only a flexible toolkit for “quick and dirty” project launch but also excessive performance optimization capabilities. For this reason, many startups decide to go with Ruby on Rails for their products – launch quickly and enhance without a problem.

As examples of yesterday’s startups using Ruby and having achieved impressive success, we will cite Twitter, Groupon, RightScale, EngineYard, ShoeDazzle, Github.

Ruby on Rails advantages for startups

  • Speed. Like other open source languages, Ruby on Rails has a great number of ready-made libraries and modules. Developers don’t have to code everything from scratch which makes the programming process fast. From case to case, RoR applications are built up to 40% faster compared to other programming languages. And when it comes to launching a new solution, time to market is critical.

  • Consistency. Among the key advantages of Ruby on Rails, there is its high priority for the code consistency. When building your app, developers keep the code structured and readable following the generally accepted standards. Even if a developer leaves your project, a newcomer can take it up easily.

  • Reduce cost. Being an open source framework, the use of Ruby on Rails doesn’t require any license costs which mean you don’t have to pay for its use. Add the gems which you can freely download from GitHub and customize them per your needs and the cost of the outcome solution turns out a relatively low.  

  • Excellent quality. The development on Rails usually implies using the TDD-approach (test driven development), which aims at making the solutions more stable and focused on quality. The framework allows covering the app you are working on with automatic tests, which makes its use really reliable. You feel sure that every piece of your software is tested properly and works well. For business systems, this component is extremely important. The stability of the application often depends on the efficiency of the business.

  • Scalability. It’s a common thing for a small business to launch a project at an early stage and grow it further. Lots of startups start with MVP (minimum viable product) that features only essential functionality. With Ruby on Rails framework, you can launch the product at an early stage and then move wherever you want. Rails applications are well deployed and work in server clusters or in “clouds”.

  • Active community. Ruby and RoR are easy languages to learn. There are many blogs and books, meetups and conferences in the Rails world. It’s worth acknowledging that the Ruby community is not as big as Python, and even more so PHP. However, the professionalism of the community and the pace of its growth is impressive.

  • Security. Some security features are built into the framework and enabled by default. The framework has built-in modules to combat hacker attacks. In addition, the Rails community is always working on improving security by detecting and solving new vulnerabilities as they come along. The framework has comprehensive documentation, both official and unofficial.

Summing up

Ruby on Rails is favored among both startups, non-profit organizations and large businesses. However, it is primarily an infrastructure, so the environment is great for any type of web application, be it a collaboration platform, community support, e-commerce business, content management or statistics.

See also: What type of projects you can easily build on Ruby on Rails

For every startup speed matters. And Ruby on Rails is truly one of the most powerful frameworks for developing web applications quickly. The fact of superiority over any other framework in terms of speed can hardly be argued.

If you need to quickly roll out a quality product to the market, RoR is your best choice. If you need an experienced RoR team, get in touch. We know how to develop complex sites and web applications on Ruby on Rails.


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