A Single-Page Application (SPA) is an interactive web page, where the middle section is always changeable based on the user input (the links you click on), without reloading the page. SPAs exist inside of a browser and dynamically upload the requested data from the webserver. Single-page apps promote faster and better website responses and ensure customer satisfaction. The most common examples of SPAs are Gmail, Google Maps, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and GitHub that we open up daily. According to Google Trends 2021, the highest search interest for SPAs was in China, South Korea, and Estonia.
The first to use the term SPA was a Cardiff University student. Back in 2002, Stuart Morris wrote slashdotslash.com – an autonomous website that functioned like a single-page app. Later, Lucas Birdeau and others have patented their SPA implementation description. Today, single-page applications are beyond popular and gain momentum in lightweight solution development, especially in eCommerce.
Is a Single-Page App good for your Business?
Like any other web app, SPA has its purpose and can become a decent solution for the ones, who’d like to build a dynamic website with speedy responses. Having a single-page application gives businesses the opportunity to
- Effortlessly enhance users’ experience. Pages that have to reload completely to render information from the web server easily become the source of user annoyance and dissatisfaction. The best solution users find in such situations is to abandon the time-consuming website. SPA gives faster responses and is a perfect solution to keep website visitors satisfied, turn into potential customers and help businesses grow and develop further.
- Assure cross-platform adaptability. Single-page apps can run on such OS as Windows, Mac OS, Linux with their common browsers due to perfect code and layout adaptability to any device.
- Carry out simple debugging processes. The bug-fixing stage is essential after production. And it is super-fast in SPAs: there are only a single page and its changeable content that you check for development issues.
- Ensure seamless deployment and updates. It is quite simple and fast to deploy a SPA and update it due to its cross-platform abilities, quick responses, and satisfactory output.
Single page application with React
To build a seamless SPA you’ll need to have specific tools, a dedicated team, and some time to do the work.
What concerns tools:
AJAX. It is a tool with the help of which we launch a single-page app. AJAX stands for asynchronous JS and XML. Due to this tool, when you request content on a SPA, the data between the website and server data reloads without visible notice.
Back-end. The server-side language should be selected based on the project requirements. Or, if there are no such, based on the one, engineers find the most appropriate to work with. However, you can always choose Node.js as it belongs to the JS family and, this way, it becomes convenient to deploy the app using the same JS tools on both front-end and back-end.
Database. This option is flexible and you can choose among the databases you have worked or are familiar with.
What concerns a dedicated team:
Based on these requirements, the expert team may consist of:
- frontend and backend engineers to produce quality code (here, back-end engineers write the server-side of the app)
- designers to create user-friendly UI/UX
- QAs to test the app and find bugs that engineers will fix later
- a PM to manage the development process
What concerns timeline:
The bigger is the scope of requirements and expectations to be implemented in the SPA, the more time it will take to deploy it. And such factors as the team size, the complexity of the app’s features, additional research (if applicable), changes, and updates will cover a bigger percentage of the time to receive the expected results. For instance, one single-page app can be developed for no less than 2 months or even longer than a year. What’s more, the after-production stage also requires bug fixing and additional updates that can alter the initially-defined timeline.
Thus, everything should be thoroughly evaluated to make sure the tools, the team, and the set timeline are chosen appropriately. To help with project assessment and receive a risk-free expert-team evaluation, you can always turn to the discovery phase service.
Understanding React’s contribution to SPA
The work of a SPA is defined by sending requests and receiving responses. If you send an initial request forward.com/index to the server, you receive a response – an indexed HTML file. And when this response reaches the browser, React takes over the app (as shown in the picture).
When you want to go to a new page forward/contact, React is going to intercept this request by not letting it go to the server again. Here, React understands that the contact component is being requested and loads it. This makes the SPA quicker, faster, and 100% better in usage. The core function of React is to show the requested components to the user as soon as possible. This is why React.js SPA wins a top place in user satisfaction.
How to build React.js Single-page App?
- Set up your development environment. Here, we need to install all the required libraries and packages. It can be done with the help of create-react-app. Follow the link to see how it’s done. If you like, you can upload the packages manually Yarn/npm, each at a time.
- Create an HTML-page, where the React app will be initialized.
- Install all the React components, which you’ll need in the process.
- With the help of webpack or any other bundler, fuse the components installed to get the web app.
However, if you still need guidance, the complete solution with the entire codebase can be found here.
To sum up, single-page apps are relatively easy to deploy, and React is the best library to power them. The biggest benefit of SPAs is that they load within seconds, which makes customers satisfied and adds valuable points to your business. So, if you are looking for an effortless enhancement of user experience, cross-platform adaptability, easy debugging processes, and seamless development with fast updates – a single-page app is all you need! Choose React as your SPA-building environment and achieve the fastest solution possible.