Integrating React Query Library with Next.js for Server-Side Rendering and Data Fetching

Anton Ioffe - March 5th 2024 - 9 minutes read

In the fast-evolving landscape of web development, the integration of cutting-edge libraries and frameworks can significantly propel the efficiency and robustness of applications. This article embarks on a deep dive into the seamless integration of React Query with Next.js, uncovering the symbiotic relationship between efficient data fetching, optimized server-side rendering, and state management. From setting up your React Query in a Next.js environment to mastering server-side and client-side data handling, including advanced techniques and best practices, we provide a comprehensive guide designed for senior-level developers aiming to elevate their web development prowess. Prepare to unlock new levels of performance and scalability in your Next.js projects, leveraging the full potential of React Query's capabilities in conjunction with Next.js's powerful rendering engine.

Understanding the Architecture of React Query and Next.js for Effective Data Fetching

React Query stands out as a powerful server state library tailored for React applications, including those built with Next.js. At its core, React Query simplifies data fetching, caching, and synchronization without the boilerplate code typically associated with managing server state in client-side applications. With React Query, developers can handle asynchronous data fetching and updates through a straightforward API, focusing more on building features than on the intricacies of data management. The library's approach to automatically caching and updating fetched data, based on unique keys for each query, significantly enhances application performance by reducing the need for repetitive server requests.

Next.js, on the other hand, shines in its ability to facilitate server-side rendering (SSR) and static site generation (SSG), making it a highly sought-after framework for React developers aiming for optimized performance and SEO-friendly web applications. By pre-rendering pages on the server, Next.js ensures that contents are immediately available to search engines and improves the load time for end-users. This capability, coupled with its efficient data fetching methods like getServerSideProps and getStaticProps, empowers developers to fetch data at build time or request time, further optimizing the user experience.

Integrating React Query with Next.js leverages the strengths of both libraries, providing a seamless architecture for fetching, caching, and serving data in React applications. React Query's efficient management of server-state complements Next.js's server-side rendering and static generation features. This combination not only enhances the scalability and maintainability of applications but also streamlines the development process by abstracting common data fetching and state management patterns.

Through React Query, developers can implement advanced data synchronization techniques such as background data fetching and automatic refetching on window focus, which are crucial for maintaining the freshness of server-side data in client-side applications. These mechanisms ensure that the user interface reflects the most current data without manual intervention, improving the application's responsiveness and user satisfaction.

Moreover, the integration facilitates a smooth development workflow, where Next.js handles the initial page rendering with pre-fetched data, followed by React Query taking over on the client side to manage subsequent data updates and caching strategies. This synergy not only boosts application performance through efficient data loading and rendering but also significantly improves the end-user experience by providing faster, more interactive web applications. The architecture combining React Query and Next.js ultimately lays the groundwork for developers to build scalable, high-performance web applications that are both user and SEO-friendly.

Setting Up React Query in a Next.js Project

To begin integrating React Query in a Next.js project, the first step involves the installation of the React Query library. This can be achieved by running the npm or yarn command in the terminal: for npm, use npm install react-query, and for yarn, input yarn add react-query. This process equips your Next.js application with the necessary React Query package, setting the stage for its implementation in data fetching and state management operations within your application.

After the successful installation of React Query, the creation of a React Query Client becomes the next pivotal step. The React Query Client serves as the backbone for managing the queries and the cache of your application. This can be accomplished by instantiating a new QueryClient. Typically, this is done inside the custom _app.tsx file to ensure global availability. The code snippet below illustrates this process:

import { QueryClient, QueryClientProvider } from 'react-query';

const queryClient = new QueryClient();

This snippet represents the initialization phase where a new QueryClient object is created, ready to be used throughout the application.

Following the creation of the QueryClient, it's essential to wrap your application's root component with the QueryClientProvider, passing the created QueryClient as a prop. This step is fundamental for making the QueryClient accessible in any component of your Next.js application. In your custom _app.tsx file, embed the component hierarchies within the QueryClientProvider as shown below:

function MyApp({ Component, pageProps }) {
  return (
    <QueryClientProvider client={queryClient}>
      <Component {...pageProps} />

This ensures that React Query’s features are ubiquitously available, allowing for seamless data fetching and caching capabilities across your application.

With React Query now firmly incorporated into the foundation of your Next.js project, implementing the ReactQueryDevtools is a recommendable next step during the development phase. Installing the devtools provides an insightful interface for tracking, managing, and debugging your queries efficiently. The inclusion is usually environment-dependent, ensuring that ReactQueryDevtools are only loaded during development:

import { ReactQueryDevtools } from 'react-query/devtools';

<QueryClientProvider client={queryClient}>
  <Component {...pageProps} />
  <ReactQueryDevtools initialIsOpen={false} />

The initialIsOpen property dictates whether the devtools panel is open or closed by default.

Finally, ensuring each instance of QueryClient is unique to each server-side render is crucial for preventing data leakages between requests in a Next.js application. This can be managed by initializing the QueryClient inside a useState hook or using a useRef hook to maintain a consistent instance throughout the component lifecycle. This practice helps maintain isolation of data between different users and requests, safeguarding your application’s integrity and user data privacy. By following these steps, developers can smoothly integrate React Query into their Next.js projects, elevating their application’s data management and fetching capabilities to new heights.

Fetching Data on the Server with React Query and Next.js

In the world of modern web development, fetching data on the server side in a Next.js application has been greatly simplified through the utilization of React Query, particularly when combined with getServerSideProps and getStaticProps. This synergy allows developers to pre-fetch data on the server and seamlessly pass it as props to React components. For instance, using getStaticProps, data can be fetched at build time, thereby enabling the content to load instantly upon request. This method is incredibly useful for static sites requiring periodic updates from a server.

Conversely, getServerSideProps executes data fetching at request time, ensuring the data is always fresh. This is especially beneficial for applications requiring real-time data, but it has the tradeoff of longer load times since the data fetching occurs for each request. By combining these Next.js features with the React Query useQuery hook, it's possible to optimize data fetching strategies according to the specific needs of each page within an application.

React Query enhances this process by managing server-state data caching, updating, and synchronizing, leading to improved performance and user experience. By caching server-side data fetched during rendering, React Query minimizes the need to refetch data on the client-side, further enhancing the application's efficiency. This caching mechanism not only reduces the load on servers but also provides a smoother user experience by displaying data instantly without waiting for client-side fetching.

Implementing React Query in conjunction with Next.js’s data fetching methods requires careful consideration of data staleness and cache invalidation. React Query's tools for query invalidation and refetching become particularly handy in such scenarios. For example, when data is fetched server-side using getStaticProps, React Query can refetch this data on the client side when deemed stale, in accordance with the developer-defined parameters for cache time and staleness.

Finally, this combination promotes a pattern that optimizes data fetching efficiency without sacrificing the rich user experience of dynamic web applications. By strategically choosing between getStaticProps and getServerSideProps for initial data fetching and leveraging React Query for client-side data management, developers can create robust Next.js applications that are fast, responsive, and always up to date. The clear distinction between static generation and server-side rendering, coupled with effective state management and caching, lays the foundation for high-performance applications that handle server-state data gracefully.

Optimizing Client-Side Data Fetching and State Management

Effective client-side data fetching and state management in modern web applications are crucial for enhancing the user experience and optimizing performance. Using the useQuery and useMutation hooks provided by React Query, developers can fetch data and execute mutations more efficiently. These hooks abstract away the complexities related to asynchronous data fetching, allowing developers to focus on building feature-rich applications. For instance, a common application scenario might involve fetching a list of items from an API and updating one of these items based on user interaction. With React Query, this can be achieved with minimal and readable code.

// Using useQuery to fetch data
const { data, isLoading, error } = useQuery('items', fetchItems);

function fetchItems() {
    return fetch('/api/items').then(res => res.json());

// Using useMutation to update an item
const mutation = useMutation(updateItem, {
    onSuccess: () => {
        // Optionally invalidate and refetch

function updateItem(item) {
    return fetch('/api/items', {
        method: 'POST',
        body: JSON.stringify(item),

Leveraging React Query's caching mechanism significantly reduces the number of network requests, as data previously fetched is served from the cache on subsequent requests, given it hasn't become stale. Not only does this improve performance by reducing load times, but it also decreases the bandwidth usage, which is especially beneficial for users with limited data plans. Moreover, React Query's automatic data revalidation feature ensures that the cached data is fresh, thus improving the reliability of the displayed information without manual intervention.

Another advantage of using React Query for state management is its built-in support for background fetching and updating. This means that React Query can refetch data in the background when it detects changes, ensuring that the user always sees the most up-to-date information without having to refresh the page manually. This feature can be particularly useful in applications that deal with rapidly changing data, such as stock market prices or social media feeds.

React Query also offers a fine-grained control over the caching and fetching behaviors through its extensive list of options and configurations. Developers can specify how often the data should be refetched, whether to keep previous data displayed during refetches, and how to handle errors, among others. This level of control allows for tailoring the data fetching strategy to match the specific needs of each application, optimizing both the user experience and the application's performance.

In conclusion, integrating React Query for client-side data fetching and state management simplifies the developer's workload while providing a seamless and efficient user experience. Its caching, automatic revalidation, and background data updating features are instrumental in building responsive and high-performing web applications. Through concise and readable syntax, React Query encourages best practices in fetching, caching, and updating data, making it easier to maintain and scale complex applications.

Advanced Techniques and Best Practices

Leveraging the power of React Query in your Next.js application not only simplifies data fetching and caching but also offers a suite of powerful features that, when utilized effectively, can significantly improve your application's performance and user experience. One advanced technique is query prefetching. This can be particularly useful in scenarios where you anticipate user actions and fetch data in advance, thus reducing load times and enhancing user experience. For instance, prefetching data for the next page in a paginated list as the user approaches the end can make the transition seem instant.

Automatic background refetching is another potent feature. React Query can automatically refetch data in the background when the application regains focus or network connectivity is restored, ensuring that your application's data is always up to date without any manual intervention. This feature is invaluable for applications that require real-time data representation, like stock trading platforms or social media feeds.

Synchronizing query results between the server and client in a Next.js application can greatly improve performance and the user experience. React Query's Hydration feature allows you to serialize query results on the server and then dehydrate them on the client. This technique ensures that server-side and client-side states are synchronized without redundant fetch requests, leading to faster initial load times and a smoother user experience.

Furthermore, the use of conditional fetching based on query keys adds a layer of intelligence to data fetching operations. By efficiently structuring your query keys and leveraging React Query's powerful caching mechanism, you can prevent unnecessary data fetching and re-fetching. This not only conserves bandwidth but also reduces load on your servers.

Lastly, integrating analytics and monitoring tools with React Query can give you valuable insights into your application's data fetching patterns and performance bottlenecks. By analyzing query failures, load times, and cache hit rates, you can make informed decisions to optimize your data fetching strategies, leading to a more robust and efficient application.


Summary: The article explores the integration of React Query with Next.js for server-side rendering and data fetching in modern web development. It discusses the symbiotic relationship between efficient data fetching, optimized server-side rendering, and state management. The article provides a comprehensive guide for senior-level developers, covering topics such as setting up React Query in a Next.js project, fetching data on the server, optimizing client-side data fetching and state management, and advanced techniques and best practices. A challenging task for the reader could be to implement query prefetching in their Next.js application, anticipating user actions and fetching data in advance to reduce load times and enhance the user experience.

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