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React

What is React Framework?

React, also known as React.js, is more than just another JavaScript framework. Developed by Facebook, React was designed to resolve many of the issues with other frameworks. Whilst Angular was once king of the JavaScript development world, it has since been overtaken by React. This is the hot new thing in front-end web development, so learning it will let you jump the queue for these roles.

So what exactly does it do? Well, first we need to talk about JavaScript. As you may know, JavaScript is the core language for web development. It is used to build web pages, web apps and even some mobile apps. You can’t get by in web development without knowing JavaScript, and it looks like it’s here to stay.

React is a solution to many JavaScript developers’ problems. Its primary purpose is to build user interfaces for JavaScript platforms. This has made it a revolutionary tool for building apps, but it’s also growing in popularity for websites. With React, you control how the user interacts with the product in a more logical way than simply using JavaScript on its own.

It also comes with a library of interfaces to make things a little bit easier for you. These can be used as templates to help you focus on the more important parts of the interface. Facebook also cared a lot about the SEO functionality of React, so many websites and apps designed using the framework perform much better on search engines than those built on others (including Angular).

Web development goes through a lot of trends, and React has certainly been making waves. But we’re certain this one is here to stay!

How is React used in development?

React is primarily used for front-end app development, both web and mobile. It’s also growing as a popular tool for website development thanks to the intuitive interfaces and SEO friendliness. JavaScript is a fantastic language for web development, but many programmers found themselves needing something more. React helps to fill in those gaps.

Speaking of SEO, this is a primary reason it is now the frontrunner for website development. Google’s algorithm is notoriously bad at trawling through JavaScript-heavy apps and websites, meaning SEO scores can be significantly reduced. Facebook recognised this problem with their own apps, so they aimed to fix it when designing React.

In terms of apps, React is now the leading framework for mobile and web apps. It is used by Netflix, UberEats and Twitter to name just a few. Basically, every Facebook app now runs using React, a real testament to how effective it is at building interfaces. As a digital nomad, you might be aware of Asana. Their web app runs entirely on React, and is now a leading platform for remote workers.

Essentially, anything you can do with JavaScript can be done better with React. It is one of the most dynamic frameworks going so developers constantly need to keep themselves up to date with new features. The framework is going from strength to strength, and it’s likely they’ll have added even more features within the next few months.

If you’re interested in web development, you can’t go wrong with updating your skills to include React.

How to become a React software developer?

You’ll need to get the basics under your belt first – HTML, CSS and JavaScript. These are core to web development and are the main languages used in React. These are the easiest languages to learn for most aspiring developers thanks to the endless resources online. Give yourself a couple of months to really get a good feel for them.

That being said, we’re assuming that if you know about React you probably already know the basics. Thankfully, React is often regarded as the most intuitive JavaScript framework and is super easy to learn. Facebook has built a fantastic help centre to get you started, and there’s a large online community to guide you every step of the way.

It can also be handy to learn how to use Node and Redux. These aren’t necessary to learning React, but they will compliment your work (and ultimately raise your earning potential). As with any other form of development, you’ll need a solid understanding of Git. JSX, a hybrid of HTML that works with JavaScript syntax, is also an important element of React, but you can learn this alongside the framework itself.

Once you’ve got the necessary skills, we recommend building a small portfolio. It’s an interface development app, so you’ll have plenty of scope to show off what you can do. It’s unlikely that you’ll find a job that only requires you to know React, so be prepared to bring your other skills into the mix. There are even a few non-development jobs that will require a decent knowledge of React.

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What jobs require knowing React?

First and foremost, web development is by far the most common career that requires knowledge of React. It might seem like the hot new thing, but given how effective it is, we believe it is here to stay. Your work will be ten times easier using React, and your company’s websites will perform to a high standard with very little effort.

Mobile and web app development is the main purpose of React, and it’s likely your first job will be in either of these spaces. Big companies like Netflix, Uber and Facebook are always looking for React developers to help them maintain their products. Start-ups are more likely to use it from the get-go, giving you some great opportunities to start a project from scratch.

Whilst it isn’t as common for website development, this is changing. If you’re a full stack developer, you should prepare yourself by growing your skills in React. The SEO feature has revolutionised JavaScript web development and is likely to make React the leading framework for creating pages of all sizes.

And what about those non-development jobs? As an interface development tool, it should come as no surprise that UI and UX designers are likely to encounter React. Your job will be more design than development-based, but understanding how to speak to the development team will do wonders for the project. Likewise, SEO professionals should be aware of the powerful functions that React provides. Even marketing and content teams would benefit from individuals that understand the framework.

Average React salary with different levels of experience?

React is one of the most lucrative development careers. The average salary with a mid-weight level of experience is $130k. This is also near the top end of earnings as it is a relatively new career, but you can expect this to exceed $180k as your experience grows. Even an entry level position could earn you just short of $100k, especially in the United States.

Within the US, the highest earnings are in Missouri, New York and New Jersey, with West Coast employers generally paying a little bit less. This is because there is a smaller demand in these regions as many developers tend to head west. The United States is the best paying country in the world for React developers, so even if you do opt to go down the digital nomad route, you should look for companies based there.

If you really need to get out of the US, you will also find reasonably well-paid roles in the Netherlands ($90k), Spain ($80K) and the United Kingdom ($85k). These will also rise exponentially if you have knowledge of Node and Angular to match. The most popular country in the world for React developers is actually Ukraine, but it’s also one of the lowest paid areas. In terms of cost of living, however, you’ll still earn far above the local population.

How common is using React amongst digital nomads?

At the moment, it’s not very common. Most React developers work in-house, especially for the big tech companies. It’s a sad fact that you most likely won’t get to work remotely for your first few years on the job. That being said, remote working is set to become the new normal for many of these big companies, and we expect there will be an influx of freelance roles available over the next few years. The average hourly rate for freelance React developers is around $80, so there’s plenty of opportunity to maximise your earnings while travelling.

One thing you do need to keep in mind is the competition from cheaper developers, most notably those in Ukraine. You’ll need to get really good at what you do for companies to want to keep you on, so we recommend spending a few years in-house to build your skills before heading off on a digital nomad adventure. You’ll end up with more money to explore the world in the long-run.

React is the hottest new tool for web developers and it is here to stay. It drastically enhances the performance of web interfaces, creating a better experience both for users and developers. Within the next few years, knowing how to use React will be a necessary skill for getting new web development jobs.

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