Chief Marketing Officer of Ideamotive. Travel addict and remote work advocate.
At Ideamotive, we just love Ruby on Rails. This amazing framework allows us to deliver state-of-the-art web applications and help startups and businesses of different sectors scale up quickly and efficiently.
Rails is a web app framework written in the Ruby programming language that was first developed in 2004. As open-source software (i.e. code that is publicly available) Ruby on Rails has leveraged the knowledge, skills, and understanding of over 5,000 developers to achieve what it is today - version 7.0.0 (as of December 2021), went through thousands of changes, applications, and fixes to improve and improve the structure.
As of December 2021, 418,000 global websites have been created using Ruby on Rails on 201,500 unique domains. Sites built using this platform include WeTransfer.com, which has 112.1 million monthly visits. Let’s also not forget about Airbnb and Shopify, which highlight the tool's reliability and functionality when it comes to building everything from relatively simple sites to world-famous high traffic portals. Ruby is currently used by 5.9% of all websites whose server-side programming language we know.
We always love to see successful Ruby projects. That’s why we scanned the Web and created a carefully curated list of the largest, most prominent, and simply the best Ruby on Rails companies websites.
Read our blog post and learn what companies that use Ruby in their websites and web apps say about this framework!
And if you want to know even more about Ruby on Rails and how it can help your business, take a look at our free in-depth guide to Ruby on Rails development 👇
Ruby on Rails provides all kinds of integrations to suit the requirements of any project. This can be achieved with the huge library of gems available. It follows a flexible development process that dramatically speeds up the procedure and ensures that it meets all of the client's requirements.
The MVC Ruby on Rails pattern divides the task into 3 modules - model, view, controller, ensuring the smooth functioning of the entire project. With this structure, it separates the codes of various functions such as data layer, presentation layer, and preserves the resource layer, which allows RoR developers to work on different aspects at the same time.
Based on the Ruby programming language, Rails reformed the web development culture with a realistic approach.
One of our all-time favorites, both in terms of idea and UX/UI design. This California-based startup connects travelers looking for a place to stay with hosts, who can easily rent their rooms or apartments.
Established in 2007 by 3 postgraduates offering one apartment, the platform offers for their 150 million users more listings than the world’s top hotel chains combined.
Airbnb’s system is based on a variety of technologies, including Ruby on Rails. Developers who created the site used a bunch of libraries, such as React.js, Moment.js, or Raven.js.
Airbnb uses RoR for its payment stack. However, it employs skilled software developers to process payments accurately and securely, working on some of the web platform's major flaws.
“Ruby on Rails is well known for its quick iteration cycle and the plethora of magical tools that speed up development and simplify prototyping. Those benefits are focused on improving the development process, but in some cases make maintenance of the production system more difficult. In terms of the way payments work, some of its shortcomings mean trouble.”
Groupon is a worldwide e-commerce marketplace connecting customers with local businesses. It provides them with special offers and discounts on products or services. With its 50 million customers worldwide and over 1 billion groupons sold, Groupon is probably the biggest player in the sector.
As for the technology used, the original version of the platform was based fully on Ruby on Rails. A few years back, though, as Groupon was growing, they moved to Node.JS.
Day-to-day deals in restaurants, shops, and service providers across the entire US web interface have been powered by Rails from the get-go. The Chicago-based company has grown rapidly since then, with its latest third quarter expanding 10 percent to $1.34 billion.
Groupon decided to redesign the entire interface into small pieces that could be managed, extended, and independently of each other. Before replacing the entire front-end, Groupon's engineering team ran into some issues.
When Rails was introduced for the front-end of a company, Groupon was a small company with a small number of developers getting the site up and running. The advantage of Rails is that it is easy to add new functionality to it. The entire Rails application pointed to a single database cluster. The company later added additional front-end servers and database replicas and hosted everything behind a CDN, but the processing orders resulted in performance issues due to the number of database writes.
“The project management team decided to build a single platform to cater web and mobile users and build an API layer on top of each of backend software platforms with mobile clients connected to whichever API endpoint matched the user’s country.”
If you work in web and application development, you surely know GitHub. It is the most popular software hosting service with a huge open-source library.
The service is now used by 1.8 million businesses, start-ups, and software development companies. It is also supported by the amazing community of nearly 40 million software developers who have contributed to over 100 million repositories so far.
GitHub is one of those high traffic websites that was originally built using RoR. It still relies on RoR applications to process large numbers of requests quickly and efficiently.
From a technological standpoint, Ruby on Rails accounts for most of GitHub’s code. In August 2019, the Rails 6.0 version of GitHub has been launched.
Couchsurfing is based on the wonderful idea of creating a global community of travelers who can host each other while traveling the world. Thanks to the system of reviews and transparency, Couchsurfing proved itself to be usually a safe and really interesting way of finding accommodation.
Nowadays, Couchsurfing is a global community of around 15 million users participating in regular events in 200,000 cities around the world. Apart from accommodation opportunities, the platform provides an enormous amount of knowledge about traveling.
Shopify is an incredibly successful e-commerce software platform with over 600,000 online retailers. The company offers easily customizable e-com websites working within the same environment. Retailers simply pay monthly subscription of $29.99 — there is no commission applicable.
Shopify is probably one of the most successful Ruby on Rails-based tech companies worldwide. They have been scaling massively within the framework. Simon Eskildsen from Shopify boosted about being able to address 80,000 requests per second. They also utilize Liquid templating language for the front end and Turbograft, their hard fork of Turbolinks.
Tobias Lütke, the CEO of Shopify, once said,
“It’s crazy people are suggesting Shopify has been successful despite Rails. Shopify has been successful because of Rails.”
A widely used ecommerce solution uses RoR to accelerate the development of online stores. Shopify even allows developers to take advantage of a range of RoR-based libraries and services. For example, developers can use the Rails Engine and generators to build RoR applications with the Shopify API. Shopify even highlights various aspects of its POS app SDK by publishing an embedded POS app that uses RoR.
If you are over 25 years old, you may have never even heard about this social media platform. But it is extremely popular among millennials and Gen Z, accounting for nearly 220 million registered users. The idea is simple – you ask a specific person a question (be it a friend or a popular Ask.fm celebrity), they answer. Sounds rudimentary? Well, go back to your Quora.
Although we currently see the outflow of users from the website Ask.fm still remains one of the biggest Ruby-based platforms. During the peak moment of existence, the portal attracted 350 million visits per month.
As for the tech stack, apart from Ruby on Rails in the back-end, Ask.fm utilizes also jQuery and AJAX.
An amazing directory with graphic design projects by the community of over 500K of web designers from all over the world. Dribbble allows its users to showcase and discuss their work as well as look for career opportunities. In 2017, Dribbble’s users showed off over 640k shots of their work.
The platform was built with Ruby on Rails but also utilizes jQuery and HTML5 History API elements.
No introduction needed. Twitter is considered the most famous example of a Ruby on Rails-based product. It was initially created with RoR and jQuery which allowed the platform’s creators to develop a fully working product in a very short period of time.
Although a few years later Twitter was re-written using Scala, Ruby still remains a part of the back-end and reminds about the platform’s roots.
Twitter did this citing performance and scalability.
In 2010, Twitter shared that:
“In order to understand the performance gains, you must first understand the inefficiencies of our former Ruby-on-Rails front-end servers. The front ends ran a fixed number of single-threaded rails worker processes, each of which did the following: parsed queries queried index servers synchronously aggregated and rendered results.”
Etsy is an e-commerce platform built with the aim of connecting retailers of handmade and vintage products with potential suppliers and clients.Think of Etsy as a huge bazaar or flea market with almost 2 million merchants and over 50 million registered users.
This e-commerce system is one of the pioneers of modern-day startups. Choosing Ruby on Rails allowed Etsy to maintain a strong database, easily implement additional features and conduct a series of systems integrations.
Fab is a design-focused marketplace, dedicated to helping customers discover beautiful and unique wellness/fitness products. The platform offers thousands of items, from pieces of art to clothes and tech gadgets. They all have one thing in common – beautiful design, which makes Fab a perfect place for aesthetes and high-quality design lovers.
Fab uses Ruby on Rails as its main framework with Ruby being the main language. It also utilizes Backbone.js and New Relic.
SlideShare is a slide hosting website with over 70 millions visitors monthly, currently owned by Microsoft. It allows users to store and post their digital presentations (PowerPoint, Keynote, etc.), text documents and videos. SlideShare also makes it easy for users to browse, read and share the content they need and like.
In 2012, SlideShare was acquired by LinkedIn which was later bought by Microsoft.
Hulu is a video streaming platform currently available only in the United States. It is smaller than Netflix and HBO GO but growing fast and releasing new, great shows every month. Despite its availability in only one country, there are currently around 28 million active subscribers of Hulu.
Ruby on Rails was with Hulu since the very beginning and they love this framework there.
“The ideals of Rails – convention over configuration. Don’t Repeat Yourself (whenever possible, reuse as much code as possible rather than duplicating similar code in multiple places). Test first, and agile – are quickly becoming pervasive throughout software development.”
stated Matthew Butt, ex-Hulu development manager.
Although the platform was re-written, RoR is still used in their back-end with Backbone.JS used in the front-end.
In our opinion, this is one of the best Ruby on Rails companies' websites. This amazing platform allows you to seek funding for your project or support other people's ideas. Almost 150,000 projects were successfully funded via Kickstarter so far, including Oculus Rift or Wasteland 2.
We have also seen much weirder projects, e.g. combat kitchenware (a frying pan attached to a sword) or digging a hole without any reason whatsoever.
Kickstarter is one of our favorites RoR-based websites in terms of UX/UI design with a user-friendly interface and intuitive user path.
Service itself was built with Ruby on Rails framework and Perl language with the main libraries being jQuery, React, and History.js.
SoundCloud is a Berlin-based startup originally created to allow musicians to share music with each other. Since then though, it developed into a full-on publishing platform allowing emerging artists to showcase and promote their music. With nearly 80 million registered users and over 200 million tracks submitted, SoundCloud is a pretty amazing place to look for new tracks and musical inspirations.
SoundCloud attracts mostly alternative, non-commercial, and niche artists. If you’d like to find a set of this DJ who recently played in Berghain, you will not be looking on Youtube or Spotify. He will be on SoundCloud.
SoundCloud was born on Ruby on Rails. It allowed the platform to iterate fast and keep high-quality code. Due to the enormous growth, SoundCloud was latter re-written using JVM.
Urban dictionary is a fantastic place when you need to check the meaning of every slang word or create a new one (hoping that somebody will actually start using it). It’s also full of alternative definitions of well-known terms (e.g “programmer” – is a human, rock, or any other object capable of turning pizza and caffeine into code.)
The dictionary is based on the Ruby on Rails framework, along with special frameworks like Heroku Vegur Proxy and Foundation. As for JS frameworks, React was used.
There would not be any Basecamp without Ruby on Rails and probably no Ruby without Basecamp. Both our favorite framework and this popular project management online tool was created by the same man – David Heinemeier Hansson.
Ruby on Rails is proven to be extremely successful in Basecamp growth.Getting from 45 accounts in 2004 to over 2 million in 2016 required scaling up quickly and effectively. Ruby on Rails developers from Basecamp did a great job there.
CrunchBase is the leading destination for company insights from early-stage startups to the Fortune 1000. You can think of it as a “Wikipedia for global startup scene”. Powered by TechCrunch this platform provides potential investors and venture capitals with business opportunities. It also gives a great overview (along with reports) of the state of the global start-up scene.
As for the software-related side, the CrunchBase back-end is written in Ruby on Rails, with Varnish for page caching.
Zendesk is a cloud-based customer support software that allows shoppers to get in touch with customer service via computer, tablet, or smartphone. Among Zendesk clients you’ll find the companies such as Shopify, Airbnb, Tesco, or Uber.
Customer-oriented software provided by Zendesk helps businesses become scalable and reliable. It reduces costs and improves the efficiency of customer support.
Bloomberg is a media company focused on the economy and financial market. They also provide software solutions for the financial sector and for businesses such as big data analysis or market reports.
The website attracts over 100 million users per month making it one of the most popular Ruby on Rails based-platform worldwide. And one of the biggest as well – Bloomberg employees over 15,000 people!
Aside from Ruby on Rails, which is the main framework used by Bloomberg developers, the platform also utilities ASP.NET, PHP, and Express. There are over 12 libraries in Bloomberg’s tech stack, including jQuery, RESPOND, Backbone.js, and others.
Fiverr is an online marketplace for freelance services. The system is amazingly simple and allows you to sell or buy services quickly and effortlessly, starting from $5. Among the services provided, you can find digital marketing, graphic design, UX/UI design or web development, and mobile development.
Fiverr's technology stack is a combination of Ruby on Rails and other technologies, like React, Python, or jQuery.
Goodreads is the world’s biggest social media platform for book lovers. Users can browse through each other’s digital shelves and write reviews of their recent reads.
Goodreads currently has 90 million members who submitted over 90 million reviews. The platform’s book base has already reached 2.6 billion publications! Goodreads was acquired by Amazon in 2013 and has been constantly growing ever since.
The platform’s tech stack includes Ruby on Rails with the support of Amazon EC2, Bugsnag, Dyn DNS, GoDaddy Domain Registration, HTML5, MarkMonitor Domain Management, Modernizr, New Relic, OpenSearch, and Symantec SSL.
Indiegogo is a very popular crowdfunding service with over 800,000 projects launched so far and over 9 million backers.
It differentiates itself from Kickstarter on many levels. For example, on Indiegogo you don’t need to have a prototype ready – you can collect funds by presenting your idea in any way you want. The platform provides innovators the opportunity to test and validate their ideas before putting considerable resources in. It also gives the investors more flexibility in terms of raising money. A project on Indiegogo can be crowdfunded even if it fails to reach its goal.
Ruby on Rails is a backbone of the whole Indiegogo system and the company has been faithful to this technology from the very beginning.
Diaspora is a social media platform based on three key ideas: freedom, privacy, and decentralization. Unlike Facebook, Diaspora does not own the users’ data. It is not stored centrally but on the local servers of the user’s choice. Diaspora also provides its users with unlimited freedom of speech, as well as refuses to bring ads to the platform or sell the platform to any major corporation.
Sounds wonderful, right? The platform may not be the biggest one if compared to Facebook or Twitter, but Diaspora’s 1 million users create a really strong community.
It is also open source-based. You can get access to the whole code of the platform on GitHub and contribute to it as well.
Diaspora is written completely in Ruby on Rails and uses Backbone.JS in its front-end.
Jobster is a recruiting platform that focuses not only on posting job offers but also actively takes part in the recruiting process. It collects metadata and integrates social networking elements with vertical job searches. Based on this data it targets advertising technologies to connect users with people, information, and opportunities to further their careers.
Ruby on Rails is a foundation of Jobster as all of its back-end is created completely within this framework.
MyFitnessPal is a really cool mobile app and web application that helps you feel better and look better. It tracks diet and exercise to determine optimal caloric intake and nutrients for the users’ goals. It has been proven really effective by its users in the area of reducing weight. The Internet is full of great reviews and social proofs, and the app itself won several awards and app contests. The enormous number of users – 150 million – is also impressive.
Both MyFitnessPal website and web app are fully powered by Ruby on Rails.
If you are a gamer, Twitch is something that you are probably familiar with. It is a live video streaming platform and vibrant social media community for professionals and amateurs of online gaming.
All of the biggest gaming megastars, such as PewDiePie and Markiplier, started on Twitch.
Over 2.2 million people stream live videos monthly via the platform, reaching over 54 million users on average.
In short, Twitch uses Ruby on rails and GO with an Nginx web server for its backend. As far as the frontend is concerned, they are using Ember JS.
You can call Scribd “a Netflix for books”. It is an enormous collection of over 40 million books, audiobooks, and magazines available in a subscription model. Scribd currently has over 80 million users and grows constantly.
The platform also allows its users to upload and host their own content, including a variety of documents.
The technology stack of Scribd is mostly Ruby on Rails with the support of React and Backbone.js.
CrazyEgg is one of the most popular heatmap service providers. It gives its users deep insights into the performance of websites both web and mobile with features like session recording or A/B testing.
It’s a powerful tool providing website developers with all the important info on users’ behavior, along with optimization recommendations. This data can be utilized in order to improve the user experience and increase conversion rates.
500px is one of the world’s leading social networks for photographers to connect, share their best works, and receive precious feedback from the community. It also allows profiting from shared content with licensing through the network of 500px distribution partners. The website stands out from the crowd thanks to its great user experience and beautiful design.
500px is used by over 13 million photographers worldwide who uploaded over 100 million photos so far.
The platform was built on Rails and is supported by Node.js.
AngelList is a U.S. website for startups, angel investors, and job-seekers looking to work at startups. It helps entrepreneurs find funding, co-founders, and the best employees from all over the world. There are over 50,000 active investors on the platform who spend over $200 million monthly for startup investments.
AngelList is fully based on Ruby on Rails with the additional support of jQuery libraries.
Heroku is a cloud application platform that helps developers build, deliver, monitor, and scale web and mobile applications during the whole process of app development. It is perceived by the developers’ community as one of the easiest and most user-friendly app hosting platforms. Over 7 million apps have been created so far with the support of Heroku. The system answers over 23 billion requests per day.
Heroku pioneered Ruby on Rails on the PaaS (Platform as a Service) market and continues to support the Ruby community.
Square manufactures payment card readers for commerce and physical retailers. They can be easily set up with a smartphone or tablet and operated via apps. Square provides all the software needed in form of web and mobile applications.
The creator of Square is Jack Dorsey, co-founder, and CEO of Twitter. Since its launch in 2009, Square managed to gather 15 million users.
Like Twitter, Square was originally mostly written in Ruby on Rails. This framework gave the product the initial kick it needed. In 2015 developers started to re-write the system architecture, switching the backend to JVM.
Think of Xing as a LinkedIn for the German, Austrian and Swiss market. Although it has several languages versions it’s most widely used in German-speaking countries – over 50% of 14 million users.
Xing allows its users to create their professional profiles, look for employers or employees and, most importantly, engage in networking. By displaying how each member is connected to another one, it visualizes the small-world phenomenon.
Xing has quite a rich technology stack, but the back-end framework is mostly written in Ruby on Rails.
Yammer is a web application based on the principle of a social network for internal communication in organizations and enterprises. It facilitates collaboration and helps dispersed teams work more efficiently. The software is available as a web application, as well as an iOS and Android app.
Yammer’s back-end is all Ruby on Rails with the front in Java and Unicorn and Nginx as web servers.
We Heart It describes itself as “A home for your inspiration”. This photography and image based-social network is all about beautiful pictures or illustrations. You can search through various categories such as beauty, fashion, design, architecture, travel, and more. It attracts over 20 million beauty lovers every month.
We Heart It is fully based on the Ruby on Rails framework with the support of Mustache as a templating language.
Yellow Pages is one of the most popular local business listings in the world. Its name refers to the actuals books from the pre-internet times. They contained lists and contact numbers of all the enterprises and local businesses from your area. Yes, the book had yellow pages.
Today the modern version of yellow pages generates over 40 million queries inside the US alone. It is a primary source of knowledge about local businesses in this country.
Yellow Pages was initially set up on Java, but later on, it was re-written in Ruby on Rails.
Whitepages is an interesting example of another use of Ruby on Rails. It is the biggest public record of US citizens, covering over 90% of the population. With Whitepages you can access information such as addresses or telephone numbers.
Whitepages attracts almost 50 million unique views every month. They are also a developer of mobile apps and business services.
Whitepages full stack is written in Ruby on Rails with the addition of Handlebar.js.
Causes is a fundraising platform that helps running and support campaigns, fundraisers, and petitions around the issues that impact you and your community. They claim to have 168 million registered users and over a billion actions taken. Impressive!
As for the technology stack, it is a great example of a 100% pure Ruby on Rails product.
A platform offering unique, seasonal holiday trips – both for individuals and companies. As the names suggest, SnowShow is focused on trips during winter (snowboarding, skiing), while Chilling drives the summer market (yachts, kitesurfing, as well as simple beach drinking).
The company’s top event is SnowShow Music Fest, organised every year just right next to Mont Blanc.
The use of RoR in both projects helped Snowshow in scaling up and increase their sales by 70%.
GoGetty is a Danish startup that aims to make the job market more inclusive and fair, especially in terms of gender equality. They do so by measuring the percentage of women in top management positions at the respective organisation.
GoGetty helps both the companies and (potential) employees in understanding how diverse and inclusive the company is. Data transparency is one of the key principles of the startup.
A popular website for those who would like to learn more about the meaning of lyrics of their favorite songs. Each user can add their own annotations to each verse and the community can vote on its validity. Many artists themselves visit the site and share their own comments.
The platform has been launched at first as Rap Genius, but later started to include songs from other genres than hip hop. Hence the final renaming of the site to just Genius.
Planning to visit Japan soon and thinking about seeing something more than just Tokyo? Then visit JRPass.com before you hop on the plane!
The site offers passes for the Japanese railway that will surely make your trip easier and cheaper. They also offer other services, such as Meet & Greet at the airport or pocket WiFi rental.
Time is money, they say, and there is lots of truth if that. The more time you spend working in one field, the more experienced you get in it.
Clarity.fm provides access to those kinds of people with years-long experience in a variety of fields, be it marketing, coding or leadership. Want to have a chat with one of them to help you understand where next should you take a startup? Request a call and learn something new today!
Cookpad is one of the most popular recipe-sharing platforms around. It’s all about the huge cooking community from all over the globe.
Everything started many years ago in Japan, currently, the biggest market for Cookpad – over 60 million unique users from this country visit the site every month. Other markets are also growing though, partly due to the establishment of Cookpad’s global headquarters in Bristol, UK. Nowadays, the company has multiple offices around the world, including countries such as Indonesia, Russia, and Brazil.
It may be hard to believe, but it’s been more than a decade since the launch of Funny or Die. The popular comedy site went live back in 2007 and is still rolling.
Funny or Die both presents funny stuff on their site as well as creates their own comedy videos and even full shows. The list of the company’s collaborators includes Judd Apatow and James Franco, and a number of actors, such as Ryan Gosling or Selena Gomez, appeared in FoD’s vids.
This unusual marketplace connects top-quality draftsmen and architects with companies in need of floor plan visuals. 3D rendering, VR experiences – they can produce all of them.
Mediatask offers also other related services, such as creation of extensive documentation and reports. Their list of clients includes companies from all other the world, including Dubai and the Netherlands.
A very specialized social media platform that may be of real help to many people.
MedHelp is focused on providing online space for communities gathered around specific health or medical issue. There are separate forums for people with different types of diabetes, pregnant women, and those worried about having a heart attack.
A non-profit organization using Ruby on Rails for the good cause.
GivenGain offers charities an easy-to-use fundraising platform. Besides the charities themselves, the platform can also be used by individuals. With the help of GivenGain’s solution, anyone can raise funds for the cause they believe in, for example by adding a special widget to their blog or website.
Instacart is one of the biggest players in the grocery delivery industry. Using either a web or a mobile app, users can add products offered by around 300 retailers with which the company partners.
In the beginning, Instacart operated only in the United States, but since 2017 it also works on the Canadian market. Across the whole North America, the company delivers groceries in over 5,500 cities.
Besides Ruby on Rails, Instacart’s tech stack includes nginx, React, Firebase, Python (Pandas, NumPy), and more.
That was our list of best Ruby on Rails companies' websites & web applications! How do you like these examples? Do you know other great products built with Ruby?
Let us know and we’ll happily add them to our list!
Developed over 20 years ago, Ruby is still one of the most popular programming languages, and the addition of the Rails software library has made it a favorite tool for developers.
From the sample Ruby on Rails applications listed above, we can clearly see that, despite its age, RoR has not lost its popularity or usability. Many developers, along with some of the most viewed websites in the world like Kickstarter, Shopify, and Twitch, choose Ruby on Rails for its many benefits: quality, usability, extensive libraries, and active community.
If you want to create a robust and feature rich web application, you can contact our team. Recognized as a leading marketplace providing top tech talent matched with clients' industry, technology, and company culture Ideamotive is your best bet in this deal!
Michał is a digital marketing veteran with a growth hacking mindset and 10+ years of experience. His goal is building high-quality technological content, with particular emphasis on React and Ruby on Rails. Traveler, climber, remote work advocate.View all author posts
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