When Should You Adopt A Message Broker in Your System | Top Use Cases 

Modern applications are becoming more and more complex. Communication between multiple services, resources and time-eating operations, and huge data processing are only a few of the numerous problems developers face. Luckily, a few solutions can streamline some of these challenges – one being Memphis{dev}, the best message broker for developers.

What is a message broker?

A message broker is a software that helps applications and services flawlessly communicate with one another using messages. This message structure; is pre-defined and independent of the services which send them. 

Message brokers let applications share information with each other, even when written using different programming languages! 

Isn’t it cool? We think so too. 

How do message brokers work?

Before getting into the working mechanism of message brokers, let’s go through some of the basic concepts of a message broker: 


The producer is the application in charge of sending messages – it is linked to the message broker. For the publish/subscribe pattern – discussed later in the article – these are called publishers. 


Consume is the endpoint, which consumes messages in line with the message broker. For publish/subscribe, these are known as subscribers. 


This is a folder in the file system, and the message broker uses it for storing messages. 

What are common distribution patterns for the best message broker systems? 

There are two;

  1. Point-to-point messaging

For this pattern, there lies a one-to-one relation between the receiver and sender of the message. Every message is sent and consumed once only – this pattern can be used efficiently, for instance, when an action needs to be performed once only.  

We know what you are thinking; what is the difference between this and REST API? 

Message Broker vs API

The answer to this is pretty simple; the message broker guarantees that the message will not be lost – in case of failure from the consumer. These messages are safely stored in the message broker queue. We will discuss other advantages of the message broker vs API and more later in the article.

Message broker distribution; point-to-point messaging

For now, let’s move on to the second distribution pattern used by the best message broker software – the;

  1. Publish/Subscribe

The publish/Subscribe distribution pattern differs from the point-to-point messaging system. In this system, the sender of the messages does not know anything about the receivers. The message is sent to the topic, and after this, it gets distributed to all endpoints that are subscribed to that topic. 

For instance, it can be useful for implementing the notification mechanism or distributing independent tasks. This can also be used to implement an event-driven architecture system – in which the applications have fewer dependencies between one another. 

For this pattern, the components are loosely coupled and transmit events in between. Such events will be the messages sent to the message broker. 

Message broker distribution: publish/subscribe

It is vital to remember that there are other variations to these patterns – as you can have multiple consumers attached to one queue, or you can dictate the criteria to retrieve 

We will talk more about when should you adopt a message broker in your system and what are the top message broker use cases. But first, let’s get into the advantages of message brokers. 

Advantages of Message Broker

  • Best message broker software offers communication between services that might not be running at the same time. The producer can send messages regardless of the consumers’ active status and vice versa. 
  • Best message broker like Memphis{dev} boost system performance by introducing asynchronous processing. This way, the high-consuming tasks are distributed to separate processes with higher application speed and boosted user experience. 
  • Enhanced reliability via guaranteeing the message transmission as the message broker provides a redelivering mechanism. 

When should you adopt a message broker in your system?

1. Crucial API and Long-running tasks 

Let’s look at this objectively; if you need to improve the performance of the mechanism catering to data export, it might take too much time triggered by an HTTP request. Moreover, the user can’t use the application after triggering the action – as they have to wait for the export result. 

This is where the best message broker software comes to the rescue, as you can reduce the request logic by sending a message to the broker. This way, the data export is now the responsibility of the consumer, running asynchronously. The results turn satisfactory with the non-blocking request. The time required is also reduced to milliseconds.

To sum up, if any actions in your system are time and resource-consuming and do not need you to return results immediately, then the message broker is your best bet. 

2. Micro-Services 

Large systems are expected to consist of various separate services; thus, communication and coordination between them become challenging.  

Let’s talk about message broker vs API a bit; the integration using REST API can be a solution to enhance the communication; however, with the increasing number of services in the system, it will be hard to maintain or extend it. Furthermore, in a scenario that one of your applications goes down and becomes unavailable, the API will begin returning critical errors.  

The solution to this is the creation of an event-based communication while simultaneously using the message broker with publish/subscribe pattern. The broker will work as a central router, and every service can subscribe to the topic/types of messages they need. 

This way, you won’t have to extend the existing services if you want to add a new one. Also, when some services are unavailable/down, they can consume the message after reboot. 

Message broker vs microservices

3. Mobile Applications 

Mobile applications are a great case for the best message broker; how? Most mobile apps have push notifications. So, if you want to develop a news application, every phone connected to the network can easily subscribe to a specific message broker topic. This way, whenever a redactor posts related topic news, you will receive a notification – simple as that. 

4. Transactional Systems

This is somewhat similar to the microservices and long-running task scenarios; however sometimes, specific order task actions are also required. 

For instance, if you build a YouTube-like system and need a mechanism for publishing a new video/film. As you upload the video, and after it’s done, it needs to be validated, compressed, and a thumbnail is required, too – this process needs ordered actions that can be triggered after the previous one is completed.

For this, you can use a message broker. Consider separate services for compression, validation, etc. each service can get the role of a sender and receiver. After completing its task, it can generate a message to the broker that the job’s completed – this way, the next service can be triggered. 

Message broker vs transactional systems

5. Controlling Data Feeds

Controlling and limiting the number of entities in your system is useful. Consider a scenario where you want to set a limit of registered users. You can do this without using a message broker by locking tables on the database layer to prevent a race hazard. However, with a message broker, it gets much simpler as you only need to publish a message after every registration. The consumer will attend to the messages one by one, and when the system reaches the user limit – it can return an error message or send an email to the not registered user. 

Using the best message broker like Memphis{dev} is not that hard!

By now, it is evident how message brokers can be helpful when you want to develop, expand or improve your system architecture. Today we learned; 

  1. How message broker works
  2. What are its main advantages
  3. When should you adopt a message broker in your system

For more information on message broker vs API, stay tuned with Memphis{dev}