fetch API (get method) in React.js

Welcome readers, in this tutorial, we will implement a fetch api (get method) in a react application.

1. Introduction

React is a flexible javascript library responsible for building reusable UI components. It is an open-source component-based frontend library responsible only for the view part of an application and works in a virtual document object model. But before that let us take a look at the differences between angular and react –

Complete frameworkLibrary
Object oriented programmingExtension to javascript library and its internal architecture is based on jsx
Based on model view controller and real document object modelBased on virtual document object model

To understand a practical implementation of the react library let us go through some hands-on exercises.

1.1 Setting up Node.js

To set up Node.js on windows you will need to download the installer from this link. Click on the installer (also include the NPM package manager) for your platform and run the installer to start with the Node.js setup wizard. Follow the wizard steps and click on Finish when it is done. If everything goes well you can navigate to the command prompt to verify if the installation was successful as shown in Fig. 1.

Fig. 1: Verifying node and npm installation

1.1.1 Setting up reactjs project

Once the Nodejs setup is successful we will use the below command to install the react library and set up the project. Do note that the npx package is available with the npm 5.2 version and above.
Create project structure

npx create-react-app get-fetch-app

The above command will take some time to install the react library and create a new project named – get-fetch-app as shown below.

Fig. 2: Project structure

2. fetch API (get method) in react app

To set up the application, we will need to navigate to a path where our project will reside and I will be using Visual Studio Code as my preferred IDE.

2.1 Setting up backend project

To understand the fetch api call (get method) in react application I will be using a separate nodejs application that exposes the get endpoint to fetch the users from the postgresql database. Since the nodejs application is out of the scope of this tutorial hence I am skipping it for brevity. However, you can download the source code from the Downloads section.

2.2 Setting up the react code

2.2.1 Creating the implementation file

Add the below code to the app.js file responsible to handle the implementation. We will use the fetch(api) method to hit the backend application endpoint running on the nodejs server and get the data. Once the data is retrieved we will create an html table in the react application to show it to the user. Remove the existing changes from the app.js file and replace them with the ones below.


import "./App.css";
import React, { useEffect, useState } from "react";

function App() {
  // a separate nodejs application is running in backend
  // get all users endpoint
  const url = "http://localhost:9500/all";

  let [data, setData] = useState([]);
  // always call api inside useEffect as it is a functional component.
  useEffect(() => {
    fetch(url).then((result) => {
      result.json().then((response) => {
  }, []); // [] helps to run only 1 time.
  // console.log("api result", data);

  return (
    <div className="App">
      <h1>Get API call</h1>
      <table border="1">
          {, i) => (
            <tr key={i}>

export default App;

3. Run the setup

To run the application navigate to the project directory and enter the following command as shown below in the terminal.

Run command

$ npm run start

The application will be started on the default port. In case the application does not get started on the default port you can change the port number as per your requirement. I have changed the default port to 2000.

Fig. 3: Application run

4. Demo

The application will be started in the default browser as shown below and will hit the backend endpoint to get the user details and display the below.

Fig. 4: Application demo

If the table is empty check your backend application as it may not be running or the code to fetch the users from the database might have thrown some error. That is all for this tutorial and I hope the article served you with whatever you were looking for. Happy Learning and do not forget to share!

5. Summary

In this tutorial, we created a react application and understood the fetch api call to get the data from the backend application. You can download the source code from the Downloads section.

6. Download the Project

This was a tutorial to understand fetch api in a react application.

You can download the full source code of this example here: fetch API (get method) in React.js


An experience full-stack engineer well versed with Core Java, Spring/Springboot, MVC, Security, AOP, Frontend (Angular & React), and cloud technologies (such as AWS, GCP, Jenkins, Docker, K8).
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