Why You Should Consider Using React Over jQuery

Why You Should Consider Using React Over jQuery


The choice of frameworks and libraries can significantly impact the functionality, security, and maintainability of your applications. As we journey through 2024, a pivotal decision facing developers is whether to use React or jQuery for their projects. This may not be new projects, but existing and legacy projects that are still being maintained with jQuery as the primary framework. This blog post delves into the reasons why React, a robust and modern JavaScript library, often outshines jQuery, a tool that once reigned supreme in the world of web development. Its possible that it could be time to consider transitioning from jQuery to React.

Understanding the Basics: React vs. jQuery

To set the stage, let’s briefly outline what React and jQuery are. React, developed by Facebook, is a JavaScript library for building user interfaces, particularly known for its component-based architecture. It allows developers to create large web applications that can change data, without reloading the page. jQuery, on the other hand, is a fast, small, and feature-rich JavaScript library. It made a name for itself by simplifying HTML document traversal, event handling, animating, and Ajax interactions for rapid web development.

React Example:

import React from "react";

class Welcome extends React.Component {
  render() {
    return <h1>Hello, {this.props.name}</h1>;

export default Welcome;

jQuery Example:

$(document).ready(function () {
  $("button").click(function () {

The Shift from jQuery to React

Enhanced User Interface Capabilities

React’s component-based architecture offers a more organized way of building complex user interfaces. Each component in React has its own state and lifecycle, allowing for more dynamic and responsive UIs. React also introduces JSX, a syntax extension that makes it easier to write these components.

React’s Superior Performance

React’s virtual DOM is one of its most significant advantages over jQuery. React creates a virtual copy of the DOM and updates it, rather than directly manipulating the DOM as jQuery does. This approach results in more efficient updates and better performance, especially in complex applications.

Code Maintainability and Scalability

React’s modular nature makes it easier to maintain and scale applications. Components are reusable and can be nested, which simplifies the code and makes it more manageable as the project grows.

Security Considerations: A Critical Factor

Security is a paramount concern in web development, and this is where React particularly shines over jQuery.

React’s Built-in Protection Against XSS

React has built-in protection against cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks. It escapes values embedded in JSX before rendering them. This behavior is not automatic in jQuery, making React applications more secure out of the box.

The Risk of jQuery Plugins

jQuery’s ecosystem includes a vast number of plugins, but this can be a double-edged sword. Not all plugins are actively maintained or vetted for security, potentially introducing vulnerabilities into your application.

React’s Ecosystem and Community Support

React has a robust and active community, which is a crucial factor in its widespread adoption. The ecosystem around React, including tools like Redux for state management and Next.js for server-side rendering, adds to its appeal.

Transitioning from jQuery to React

Learning Curve

Admittedly, React has a steeper learning curve compared to jQuery. However, the investment in learning React pays off in the long run with more maintainable, performant, and secure web applications.

Refactoring Existing jQuery Code

For those with existing jQuery applications, transitioning to React can seem daunting. A gradual approach, where parts of the application are refactored into React components, can be effective.

Example of Refactoring

Consider a simple jQuery script that handles a button click:

$("#myButton").click(function () {
  alert("Button clicked!");

This can be refactored into a React component:

import React, { Component } from "react";

class MyButton extends Component {
  handleClick = () => {
    alert("Button clicked!");

  render() {
    return <button onClick={this.handleClick}>Click me</button>;

export default MyButton;


In conclusion, while jQuery played a vital role in the history of web development, the demands of modern web applications in 2024 lean heavily towards React. Its component-based architecture, efficient updates, and built-in security features make it a more suitable choice for developing complex, scalable, and secure web applications.

Transitioning to React might require an upfront investment in learning and refactoring, but the benefits it brings to your project’s maintainability, performance, and security are undeniable. The vibrant ecosystem and community support further cement React’s position as a leading choice for web developers in 2024.

To explore more about React and its capabilities, visit the official React documentation. For those transitioning from jQuery to React, resources like React’s official tutorial can be immensely helpful. Remember, the journey from jQuery to React is not just about using a new library, but embracing a more robust, efficient, and secure way of building web applications.

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February 20, 2024