Presentational and container components

By Anuradha Malalasena

Presentational and container components is a pattern introduced by Dan Abramov, React core team member, and co-author of both Redux and React-Redux libraries. This pattern is very useful when developing React applications. Components are much easier to reuse and reason if you divide them into two parts.

Presentational Component 

Presentational Component is a component that just renders HTML. The component’s only function is presentational markup. In a Redux powered app, a presentational component does not interact with the Redux store.

Presentational Component Characteristics

  1. Describe how things look

  2. Have no dependencies on the rest of the app. (with Flux actions or stores.)

  3. Receive only props (providing data and callbacks)

  4. Rarely have own state (when they do, it’s just UI state)

Container component

The container component specifies the data a presentational component should render. The container component also specifies behavior. If the presentational component has any actions, like a button click, it calls a prop-function given to it by the container component. The container component is the one to dispatch an action to the Redux store.

Container Component Characteristics

  1. Describe how things work

  2. Provide no DOM markup or styles

  3. Are often stateful, as they tend to serve as data sources.

  4. Call Flux actions

Benefits of This Approach

  1. Better separation of concerns. You understand your app and your UI better by writing components this way.

  2. Better reusability. You can use the same presentational component with completely different state sources.

  3. Presentational components are essentially your app’s “palette”. You can let the designer tweak all their variations without touching the app’s logic

Sample Codes

Presentational Component

import React, { Component } from 'react'
import NewsCardView from './NewsCardView'

class NewsGridView extends Component {

    componentWillMount() {
        this.props.getNews(this.props.sources, this.props.category);

    render() {
        return (            
            <div className="row">
                <div className="col s10">
                    {, index) => (
                        <div key={index}>
                            <NewsCardView article={article} />


export default NewsGridView

Container component

import React from 'react'
import { connect } from 'react-redux'
import NewsGridView from '../components/NewsGridView'

const mapStateToProps = (state, props) => {
  return {
    articles: state.articles

const mapDispatchToProps = dispatch => {
  return {
    getNews: (sources, category) => {
      dispatch(apiActions.getNews(sources, category))

const NewsGrid = connect(

export default NewsGrid