The Best DataTables Alternative? Try These Options

The Best DataTables Alternative? Try These Options

DataTables is often used for creating interactive table listings. This helps to improve the accessibility of HTML-tabulated data. The jQuery plugin is robust, intuitive, and easy to use. Without the need for extensive configuration, it can search, sort, and paginate. It has client-side and server-side processing capabilities.

Datatables is therefore a very handy tool. What alternatives are available for DataTables? One possibility is wpDataTables. This is a plugin for WordPress, which may render it unsuitable for some.

The following article presents twelve options for when DataTables is not the optimal choice.

DataTables Alternative Options


wpDataTables is a popular data management WordPress table plugin. This Datatables alternative handles tables and charts beautifully and is easy to use. This plugin is used for commercial, financial, scientific, and statistical data publication.

wpDataTables will help you get responsive WordPress tables, no matter what device you view them from.  A great advantage is the ability to manage it through the WordPress dashboard. It can process data in different formats and is compatible with Excel, CSV, JSON, and XML files, and MySQL queries.

wpDataTables can deal with large datasets. wpDataTables comes with a complete documentation that helps to get the most out of this plugin. Users can customize the tables to their liking, including fonts and colors.

Some of the features of wpDataTables are:

  • Adding and removing columns and rows
  • Adding media
  • Addition of star rating
  • Cell formatting
  • Custom HTML
  • Customizable links
  • Excel-like layout and functions
  • Merging cells
  • Resizing and reordering of columns and rows
  • Responsive
  • Undo and Redo function
  • Shortcode


ZingGrid is another DataTables alternative. It is designed for adding interactive data tables into web applications. This is a JavaScript Web component library. It is also compatible with other frameworks such as Angular, jQuery, React, and Vue.

Users can create a wide variety of tables with ZingGrid and many functions are packed in this tool. These include the option to set custom columns and to create a drill-down table. It also offers the following:

  • Aggregation
  • CRUD functionality
  • Easy integration
  • Performance
  • Remote and inline Data
  • Rich API
  • Server features
  • Server-side rendering
  • Static and dynamic data


According to the developer Jonny Strömberg, some of the core ideals for List.js were that it should be tiny, fast, flexible, and work independently. This Vanilla Javascript-based library is powerful and adds search and sort options. It also adds filters to plain HTML lists, tables, and any other data content.

Because it is so small, it is hardly noticeable, making its power all the more impressive. The format of the data hardly matters, but it is especially well suited to HTML elements.

Some highlights of List.js are:

  • Flexibility: it works on almost anything.
  • Adds search
  • Adds sort
  • Adds filters
  • A simple templating system
  • Adds the possibility to add, edit, remove items
  • Plugins for Chrome, Firefox, IE6+, and Safari


Tabulator is also a very versatile jQuery plugin. It creates interactive tables from JSON and HTML sources.

Tabulator has many interesting features and provides good documentation to help the user find their way around. The Tabulator website offers all the necessary information along with many examples.

The tables it produces are highly customizable. It can group multiple rows under one header, create tooltips, paginate, and much more.

These are some of the main features of Tabulator:

  • Adjusting column widths
  • Downloading data directly from the table
  • Filtering
  • Formatting
  • Freeze data
  • Sorting


jqGrid is an Ajax-enabled JavaScript tool for web publishing of tabulated data. Through Ajax, Gurrido provides a client-side solution, loading data through callbacks. It works with a variety of server-side technologies like ASP, ColdFusion, Java Servlets, JSP, Perl, and PHP. jqGrid works as a  plugin for jQuery.

jqGrid JS has the advantage of browser compatibility. It supports mobile browsers, Safari, and Internet Explorer version 8 and later. This flexibility is very important to the developers, and it is regularly tested on all the most important browsers on the market.

It was published under a Creative Commons Licence. This makes jqGrid available for any non-profit, school, and home application.

The main features are:

  • Cell editing
  • Form editing
  • Free for non-commercial purposes
  • Freezing columns
  • Grouping
  • Inline editing
  • jQuery user interface integration
  • Multiplatform
  • Open-source
  • Searching and filtering
  • Subgrids and master-detail
  • Virtual scrolling

jQuery Table Sorter

jQuery Table Sorter is also a DataTables alternative. It is likewise a plugin for jQuery. It produces tables in HTML format and adds THEAD and TBODY elements to it. This makes the tables sortable without the need for continuously refreshing the page.

This plugin is very flexible and can parse and sort many types of data. It is even able to process linked data in a cell. It can add multi-column and multi-body sorting to a table.

Also, this plugin shows great compatibility with different browsers. Among others, it works with Internet Explorer 6.0+, Firefox 2+, Opera 9.0+, and Safari 2.0+. It offers extensibility via a widget system.


A Bootstrap-based plugin for jQuery, with its responsiveness as a big plus.

To produce responsive interactive tables, FooTable does two unique things. First, it hides certain columns, depending on the resolution. These columns are based on breakpoints set in the CSS. The second thing it does is to add expandable rows which can show the hidden data.

FooTable is easy to set up and it doesn’t take long to produce your first tables. It uses Bootstrap and there is a version that has the same appearance as the current Bootstrap theme. FooTable also offers a standalone version that does not require the separate use of Bootstrap. The downloadable package contains the individual component and the standalone version.

Webix DataTable

DataTable, or DataGrid, by Webix, is a JS grid control. Built on an inventive HTML5 approach, it is very powerful and uses the latest web development trends. It can work with small simple tables, and large complex ones without any difficulties. It presents many features and settings that enable the user to make any kind of table they require. The built-in Deep optimization makes DataTable one of the fastest solutions available.

Some of its main features are:

  • Angular, Backbone, jQuery, React, and Vue.js integration
  • Compatibility with Ready for Touch Devices
  • Quick CSS styling
  • Samples of .NET, Node.js, and PHP integration
  • Section 508 compliance
  • Support of all common browsers


Handsontable is a minimalistic data grid editor. It has a familiar Excel-like appearance and works for HTML, JavaScript & jQuery web apps. Its use is very easy, intuitive, and provides optimal customizability. Despite its simple appearance, it can handle large volumes of data without any problems.

Currently, thousands of customers are using Handsontable and this number is growing fast.

Some highlighted features are:

  • Pure JavaScript-based
  • Usual Excel look and functions
  • Easy customization
  • Uses JSON format

Frappe DataTable

Frappe DataTable was built for ERPNext and has developed into a clean and interactive program. This DataTables library can work with large numbers of rows, without experiencing performance issues. It is a simple, modern, and interactive DataTable library for displaying tabular data. It features basic data grid functions, like inline editing and keyboard navigation.

It works independently from jQuery. This makes Frappe an exception among the selected DataTables alternatives.

Some of the additional features are:

  • Cell copying
  • Cell editor
  • Column reordering
  • Column resizing
  • Column sorting
  • Custom actions
  • Custom formatting
  • Flexible layout
  • Inline editing
  • Keyboard navigation
  • Mouse selection
  • Removal and hiding of columns

Bootstrap Table

The Bootstrap is a small table plugin. It is feature-rich and provides everything to publish tabular presentations. It is lightweight, but powerful in producing responsive interactive tables.

Bootstrap Table is maintained by a community of thousands of developers and users. This community is great because it provides support for all users around the world.

Some notable features of Bootstrap Table include:

  • AJAX powered
  • Compatible with JSON
  • Fully configurable
  • Powerful pagination
  • Responsive web design
  • Search
  • Scrollable tables with fixed headers
  • Simple column sorting

Sortable – jQuery Plugin

Sortable is the last Datatables alternative from this article. It is a well-known jQuery plugin that is becoming more and more popular. Its main function is to add sortability to any kind of table. This open-source plugin is JavaScript-based and uses CSS libraries.

It works very easily. Users only need to add the plugin to begin using it. It contains six attractive themes that allow the user to create any script and style.

Added advantages are that it is mobile-friendly and that it is compatible with different browsers. It can run on Internet Chrome, Explorer 8+, Firefox 4+, Opera, and Safari. The plugin itself is small and does not require additional software to run.

FAQ about DataTables alternatives

What are some top DataTables alternatives?

Well, there are quite a few DataTables alternatives out there. Some of the most popular ones include wpDataTables, Handsontable, Tabulator, ag-Grid, FancyGrid, DataTables.NET, Backgrid.js, SlickGrid, and React Table. Each of these libraries has its own unique features and capabilities, so you’ll want to consider your specific needs when choosing the right one for your project.

How do I choose the best alternative for my project?

To pick the best DataTables alternative for your project, you should consider a few factors. First, think about your project’s requirements – do you need a simple table or something more advanced? Next, look at the library’s features, performance, and ease of use.

You’ll also want to check out the documentation and support community. Lastly, consider the library’s compatibility with your existing tech stack and if it offers any additional benefits, such as built-in charting or localization.

Are there free alternatives to DataTables?

Absolutely! In fact, many of the DataTables alternatives I mentioned earlier are open-source and free to use, such as Tabulator, ag-Grid (Community Edition), Backgrid.js, SlickGrid, and React Table. Some may have paid versions with additional features, but the free versions typically offer enough functionality for most projects.

How do DataTables alternatives compare in terms of performance?

Performance is crucial when dealing with large datasets, and each DataTables alternative has its own strengths and weaknesses in this area. For example, Handsontable and Tabulator are known for their fast rendering times, while ag-Grid offers excellent performance for both small and large datasets. You’ll want to evaluate each library’s performance for your specific use case and consider factors like scrolling, filtering, and sorting.

What are the main differences between DataTables and its alternatives?

The primary differences between DataTables and its alternatives lie in their features, customization options, and overall approach to table rendering. DataTables is a widely-used and robust library, but some alternatives may offer additional or more advanced features, better performance, or improved ease of use. It’s essential to explore the unique selling points of each alternative and decide which one best fits your project’s needs.

How easy is it to switch from DataTables to an alternative?

Switching from DataTables to an alternative can be straightforward or more involved, depending on the specific library and the complexity of your current implementation.

Generally, it’s easiest to switch when you’re starting a new project or in the early stages of development.

However, it’s still possible to migrate an existing DataTables implementation to another library, but you’ll need to carefully consider the time and effort required to make the transition.

Can I use multiple DataTables alternatives in the same project?

Yes, you can use multiple DataTables alternatives in the same project if needed. However, I would recommend against it if you can avoid it.

Mixing different libraries can increase the complexity of your codebase, make maintenance more challenging, and potentially lead to conflicts. It’s usually better to pick one alternative that best suits your needs and stick with it throughout the project.

How do these alternatives handle large datasets?

Handling large datasets efficiently is essential for many applications. DataTables alternatives like Handsontable, Tabulator, and ag-Grid have built-in support for features like virtual rendering, pagination, and lazy-loading, which can significantly improve performance when dealing with large amounts of data. However, you’ll need to carefully test and optimize your implementation to ensure the best performance possible.

Are there DataTables alternatives specifically designed for mobile?

While most DataTables alternatives are designed to be responsive and work well on both desktop and mobile devices, some libraries may offer better mobile support than others.

For example, Tabulator and ag-Grid have built-in mobile-friendly features, such as touch support and adaptive layouts. Additionally, React Table is a popular choice for those working with React Native, as it can easily integrate into mobile applications.

When choosing a DataTables alternative, ensure it meets your mobile requirements and performs well on various devices and screen sizes.

Can I customize the look and feel of DataTables alternatives?

Yes, most DataTables alternatives allow for extensive customization of their appearance. Libraries like Handsontable, Tabulator, ag-Grid, and FancyGrid offer various built-in themes and options for modifying the table’s styling, such as colors, fonts, and borders. Additionally, you can use custom CSS or even extend the library’s functionality through plugins or extensions to achieve a truly unique look and feel that matches your project’s design requirements.

Ending thoughts on these DataTables alternatives

DataTables is a very popular tool for creating interactive tables for publishing online. Despite its popularity, it isn’t always the most convenient choice. Additional Datatables alternatives were presented in this article.

If you enjoyed reading this article on DataTables alternative options, you should check out this one about WordPress table generator plugins.

We also wrote about a few related subjects like JavaScript table library, how to create the Premier League table, WordPress table plugins, data table examples, statistical tables, how to create a table in WordPress without plugin, how to insert a table in WordPress and WordPress pricing table plugins.

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