Do All Websites Need a Database

Do all websites need a Database?

There are some websites that do not need a database and there are other websites whose very functionality depends on a database.

In today’s insight, we are going to look at what kind of websites need a database and how other websites work without a database.

A database is an organized collection of structured information, or data, typically stored electronically in a computer system.

There are many types of databases, relational databases are the most popular, they use a programming language called Structured Query Language (SQL).

Examples of relational databases include MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracle, MS SQL Server, IBM DB2, SQLite, FirebirdSQL, etc.

Another commonly used type of databases are NoSQL databases. NoSQL database technology stores information in JSON documents instead of columns and rows used by relational databases.

Examples of NoSQL databases include MongoDB, DynamoDB, Cassandra, CouchDB, Hbase, etc.

relational v nosql databases
Databases

WEBSITES THAT NEED A DATABASE

If a website will need authentication, file storage, posting, ratings, or any other activity that will require storage of information, then a database will be needed.

A website database is used to store user information, user-generated content, and files (images, documents, audio, videos, etc.). All websites that have the above features and functionality will need a database.

Information stored in a database can be accessed remotely using a computing device, as long as an active internet connection is available.

Examples of websites that need a database include E-commerce sites, Blogs, Social Media sites, News sites, sports team sites, and gaming sites just to mention a few. All these sites cannot function without access to a database.

WEBSITES THAT DO NOT NEED A DATABASE

All static websites do not need a database. Static sites can be written almost exclusively in HTML. Static websites will serve a fixed set of data that renders the same for every website visitor.

Static sites use server-side rendering to serve pre-built HTML, CSS, and JavaScript files to a web browser, this whole process works without a database.

Websites that show a set of rules, documentation, advertising, count down to an event, a personal portfolio, business showcase, etc. may not need a database. Such information can be conveyed using only HTML, CSS, and JS.

Statics websites are easy and inexpensive to build, they tend to be more secure and load quickly. However, there is not much functionality that a static website can offer.

Most useful websites today are dynamic and need a database to serve their users better and effectively.

WHICH DATABASE IS BEST FOR WEB DEVELOPMENT?

There are many databases that web developers use for data storage, here are some of them:

MYSQL: MySQL is an open-source relational database management system, according to a stack overflow survey of 2021, MySQL is the most popular database among professional developers.

The most popular application of MySQL is for web development solutions. According to StackShare, companies using MySQL include Airbnb, Shopify, Pinterest, Uber, Udemy, Slack, etc.

MySQL works seamlessly with most common server-side programming languages.

POSTGRESQL: PostgreSQL is a powerful, open source object-relational database system with over 30 years of active development that has earned it a strong reputation for reliability, feature robustness, and performance.

PostgreSQL is used by Instagram, Apple, Reddit, Twitch, Spotify, etc. PostgreSQL is the second most popular database according to a Stack Overflow survey.

MongoDB: MongoDB is an open-source NoSQL document database built on a horizontal scale-out architecture that uses a flexible schema for storing data. MongoDB is by far the most popular NoSQL database.

MongoDB’s document model is simple for developers to learn and use, while still providing all the capabilities needed to meet the most complex requirements at any scale. 

Some of the most popular Javascript stacks like the MERN and MEAN stacks include MongoDB.

This Database is used by many companies such as Cisco, Bosch, Toyota, Humanitix, Forbes, Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland, Verizon, Adobe, eBay, EA, AstraZeneca, etc.

FIREBASE: Firebase is a platform developed by Google for creating mobile and web applications, it uses collections and documents for data storage.

It is easy to set up and get started with, it has a free tier plan called Spark which provides all the resources you need to build a dynamic mobile or web application.

Firebase takes a different approach to traditional databases, it is a Backend-as-a-Service (BaaS) that provides hosted backend services such as a real-time database, cloud storage, authentication, crash reporting, machine learning, remote configuration, and hosting for your static files.

Companies using firebase include The New York Times, The Economist, Alibaba.com, Fabulous, Playbuzz, Onefootball, NPR, etc.

Other databases used by web developers include Cassandra, Oracle, Redis, DynamoDB, SQLite, MS SQL Server, Couchbase, etc.

popular databases
Stack Overflow survey

There are a variety of databases to use depending on your needs, but in some cases, a website can be built that does not need a database. Simply put, not all websites need a database.

If you are interested in Web development, you can read our article BECOME A SELF-TAUGHT WEB DEVELOPER (STEP BY STEP GUIDE).

Happy coding.