From MERN stack to Ruby on Rails (RoR), here are 11 answers to the questions, “What are your favorite tech stacks (startup/small business-friendly) and why? What are the benefits and drawbacks you see?”
What’s a Tech Stack?
A tech stack is the combination of technologies a company uses to build and run an application or project. Sometimes called a “solutions stack,” a tech stack typically consists of programming languages, frameworks, a database, front-end tools, back-end tools, and applications connected via APIs.
My favorite tech stack for startups is the MERN stack. It comprises MongoDB, Express.js, React.js, and Node.js, and it provides a comprehensive and efficient framework for web development.
It has fast development and deployment times, scalability, and flexibility, as well as the fact that it is open source and free to use. The MERN also allows for the development of robust and responsive web applications with a modern user interface. However, the drawbacks are that it can be difficult for a beginner to learn and use, and it can also be time-consuming.
Overall, however, the MERN stack is an excellent choice for those looking for a powerful and efficient tech stack that is friendly to startups and small businesses.
MEAN stands for MongoDB, Express.js, AngularJS, and Node.js. This tech stack is open-source and can be used by small businesses to build scalable and robust web applications.
The benefits are:
Flexibility: The MEAN stack is highly flexible and can build a variety of web applications, from simple to complex.
Scalability: The MEAN stack is highly scalable and can handle high levels of traffic and data.
The drawbacks include:
Limited resources: MEAN stack has a large community of developers, but it may have limited resources compared to other tech stacks like Ruby on Rails.
Debugging: Debugging can be more challenging in the MEAN stack due to its complexity and multiple components.
The PERN stack is one of the most popular tech stacks for startups and small businesses that comprises PostgreSQL, Express.js, React.js, and Node.js.
The PERN stack is well-suited for building scalable and high-performing web applications, making it a popular choice for startups and small businesses that are looking to boom. The open-source nature of the tools makes it a cost-effective option, and the large and active community means that startups can easily find resources and support when they need it.
Additionally, the stack is relatively easy to learn and use, which makes it a good option for startups that have limited technical expertise.
HubSpot, Sendible, and Screenflow
As the owner of a marketing agency with over 30 years of experience, my favorite tech stack includes HubSpot (CRM), Sendible, and Screenflow.
HubSpot CRM provides a comprehensive suite of tools for sales and customer service, while Sendible allows for efficient social media management across multiple platforms. Screenflow is an excellent tool for creating and editing videos for marketing.
One of the significant benefits of this tech stack is its integration capabilities, allowing for a seamless flow of data between different platforms. Additionally, these tools are user-friendly and cost-effective, making them ideal for startups and small businesses with limited resources.
However, what works for one business may not work for another. Evaluating your business’s specific needs and goals before selecting a tech stack is essential.
Laravel With Tailwind CSS
Laravel and Tailwind CSS are my go-to choices for efficient and rapid application development with responsive, intuitive user interfaces. Tailwind CSS’s utility-first strategy produces a professional and structured front-end design, while Laravel’s scalability and speed make development quick and efficient.
However, the stack’s steep learning curve, extensive library of components, and complex setup requirements may not be suitable for smaller projects. It is best suited for more complex and larger projects requiring scalability and speed.
Overall, the combination of Laravel and Tailwind CSS is beneficial for those who are familiar with the technologies, especially in complex projects.
Data management is our platform’s primary task, and a serverless stack is the most suitable. The Serverless Stack is arguably the most unconventional yet effective for start-up businesses like Altosight, which specializes in monitoring prices for e-commerce sites.
As a programming language built on third-party services, our web application can adapt to more serverless technologies, giving us more adaptability for our site’s functions. We also can choose applications that cost little money, prompting us to save more as we build the business from the ground up.
For a small business with relatively limited tech expertise, I would recommend perhaps the most commonly used tech stack in the world: LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP).
It’s the stack I used to build my online health and wellness business. The good thing about LAMP is that we can use it for both backend and front-end development. This stack can also help create some responsive and dynamic web applications. And since these are some of the most commonly used tech stacks, it’s much easier to find technical help if you need it.
Systeme.io and Lemon Squeezy
One of my favorite tech stacks for startups and small businesses is Systeme.io with Lemon Squeezy for payments. I use this tech stack in my own business to sell online courses.
Systeme.io offers many tools for building and managing your business, including email marketing, sales funnels, website building, and automations. It also is incredibly affordable for what you get and has an impressive “forever free” plan.
The only downside of using the tool is that you still have to manage sales tax payments, which is a massive headache if you sell via the internet. That’s where the merchant of record service Lemon Squeezy comes in.
By using Lemon Squeezy, you can avoid sales tax headaches and easily integrate payments without coding. The affordability and flexibility of Systeme.io, combined with the ability to sell worldwide with Lemon Squeezy, make it a powerful tech stack for small business owners.
The MEVN Stack (MongoDB, Express.js, Vue.js, Node.js) is one of my favorite tech stacks because it offers an all-encompassing solution for developing a full-stack web application that is reliable and secure.
The benefits of the MEVN Stack include its ease of installation and its compatibility with different operating systems and devices. The open-source nature of the MEVN Stack also allows developers to customize the technology stack to their own project needs.
The drawbacks are that the MEVN Stack does not have great support for legacy coding and there is still some work required to be done in order to make the web application compatible across all browsers. Despite this, the overall satisfaction I have experienced when working with the MEVN Stack has made it one of my preferred choices for approaching projects.
Ruby on Rails (RoR)
The Ruby language and the Rails framework, also known as Ruby on Rails (RoR), is one of the best web development stacks for startups. It is an object-oriented technology that helps businesses simplify programming projects, build high-performing servers, and process data more efficiently.
The RoR framework also offers a complete set of application development tools, making it less of a hassle for users to write code and debug. Since it is an open-source technology, you can use it for free and still create a decent website without compromising its overall quality and scalability.
One downside of the RoR framework is the fact that it is continuously evolving. This means that changes in its tools and libraries can occur from time to time, requiring developers to stay up-to-date with the new features for better website performance.
Brett Farmiloe is the founder of Terkel, a Q&A platform that connects brands with expert insights.”