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The Omni-channel strategy of a corporation cannot function without the utilization of web apps. So, you should make sure that the web application you design is interesting to users and satisfies the requirements of your company.
Because technology is easy to use and people spend more time in front of screens, consumers now have high expectations. You have to live up to these standards as a web application development service provider. You won't go behind if you don't.
The concept of Web Application Development
What is web app development? It's common knowledge that a web app is an interactive program that runs in a user's browser and was developed with web development tools. The usual front-end and back-end web development tools are employed by online applications. Since web apps are, in theory, extensions of websites, and their development shares many features with website creation.
Distinguishing Features of Web Applications vs. Websites
A website's main goal is to share information, while a web app's goal is to make it easier for people to interact.
A website is a collection of online pages that share the same domain name and are linked to one another. Contrarily, a web application is a computer program or application that can be accessed online.
The user of a web application can not only view the text of the page but also make changes to the data that is restricted to them. A website, on the other hand, presents both visual and textual content for users to peruse and read without allowing them to influence the website's operational behavior.
Online applications require authentication because users have access to a much wider range of options than they do on websites. On websites only dedicated to providing information, authentication is not typically required. If the user wants to receive regular updates or access additional choices, they may be required to register.
A web app's advantages over mobile apps
- Designs that are responsive allow the flexibility to communicate with users on any device.
- Web applications are browser-based; therefore no download is required to use them. Web apps, therefore, can save valuable storage space on your device.
- When you use a shared codebase instead of making a native app, you save a lot of money.
- Time to market is reduced, and it is now possible to reach customers with both Android and iOS devices. There is still the issue of packaging and launching the apps individually, even if you are able to take advantage of cross-platform development. The use of a web app means you may focus on one single task.
- Once a web application becomes live, it can be accessed by anybody with an internet connection.
Types of Web Apps
Static web app
Before being sent to the user's browser, the content of these web apps is already made and stored in a cache. Some people don't think that static webpages are apps because they don't do anything. In marketing, a landing page is a common type of website.
Dynamic web app
Using server-side and client-side processing, the code for dynamic web apps is generated in real time, allowing the page presentation to update with each page refresh or new input. The blog is a typical example.
E-commerce web app
Web-based purchasing became easier with this dynamic software. A web-based application handles all of the financial and transactional details associated with selling things online. Big names in the industry like Amazon have mobile shopping apps in addition to their desktop versions.
Portal web app
Users of this website app can enter a password-protected area to get to other services, programs, and/or links that have nothing to do with this app. Google is a portal since it offers multiple functions in one place, such as search, email, and more.
Content management system web app
Users of content management systems (CMSs) don't need any specialized knowledge to produce content. Some common content management systems are WordPress.com, which is used for blogging, and Canva, which is used to make infographics.
Progressive web app
Websites that look and act like native mobile applications are known as progressive web applications (PWAs). To create a progressive web app, it's necessary to use methods from both mobile and web app development.
A 15-Step Simple Guide to Developing a Web App in 2023
It is the first step in NPD (new product development) to turn a concept into a real-world product. Maintaining a user-centric, focused, enthusiastic, and adaptable mindset throughout the ideation phase of the product delivery lifecycle is crucial for laying the groundwork for creating a successful final product. During the ideation phase, we'll work together to brainstorm, undertake preliminary research, and outline the essential features and benefits of your product.
1. Source an idea
At this stage, though, we aren't concerned with coming up with absolutely perfect, implementable concepts. Think of client problems as the top priority during brainstorming sessions, and focus on coming up with raw, unproven ideas that can be narrowed down later. The idea upon which the customer issue-solving method of brainstorming is based is that if you are experiencing a difficulty, then it is likely that others are as well. You can begin to think of ways to help consumers who are experiencing this difficulty if you can name and describe it.
2. Research your target market and competition
User research should be the first step in the development of any product. The team must have a precise understanding of the target audience, the issue they are facing, the scope of the issue (the number of people it will affect), and the available market solutions. Findings from market research on the target audience and the main competitors will guide the technical course of the web application's development.
3. Outline the most important parts of the web app's design
Developing the perfect product takes time, but it's crucial in today's fast-paced world. At this point, it's important to get down to basics and ask: what does this web app do? The MoSCoW technique can be used to create a prioritized list of all the features (major and minor) you want included in the web app:
Mo: must have features
S: should have features
Co: could have features
W: won’t need features
The subsequent stages of planning, including the feedback phase of wire framing and prototyping, as well as the minimum viable product (MVP), will take advantage of these characteristics. This minimum viable product (MVP) includes just the very minimum of features and functionality, but it will help get the product into the hands of early users.
Designing the UI/UX Stage
Understanding the relationship between the user interface (UI) and the user experience (UX), as well as how these two factors will influence design decisions, is the first order of business when creating a web application.
The User Interface (UI) of a web app considers aesthetic concerns such as color scheme, typeface, iconography, and layout. Ultimately, it is the designer's job to make the user happy with the final product.
By taking the user's wishes and needs into account, UX designers are able to control the customer's journey through the app. UX design is inherently exploratory, posing the questions of what the user could want, require, and feel at each stage, as well as how to make the user experience more pleasant and less frustrating. Elements of user experience design include the following: practicality, appeal, credibility, accessibility, discoverability, usability, and value.
4. Map out the user journey
Users' progression via the web app is depicted graphically in the user journey map. Understanding the goals, wants, and obstacles of users, as well as how better UX design can remove these roadblocks, is facilitated by creating a detailed map of the user's (or customer's) journey.
5. Wireframe the app
Digital wireframes are abstract pictures of the final product. They describe how the various parts of the product are organized and how they relate to one another. The wireframe represents the "draft" or plans for the app, outlining the user interface and underlying structure of the mobile app. Creating a visual representation of the database's workflow for use in development might be part of the wireframing process. Including test cases is another option for evaluating the code's functionality.
6. Build a clickable prototype
By adding more features to the wireframes that were made, the final prototype looks and works like the real web app. Early in the development process, feedback on functionality, design, and UX can be given by looking at and interacting with an interactive, UX-enhanced prototype.
7. Visual design
One of the most crucial parts of any user experience design project is the visual design, which is concerned with the overall look and feel of a product. As a way to showcase the final look of the app, UI designers construct mockups in which they select typefaces, color schemes, icons, shapes, buttons, screen element sizes and proportions, photos, and more. Motion design elements like animations and screen transitions will be included when appropriate.
The next step, development, entails actually creating the web app after more substantial technical decisions have been made about the underlying frameworks and technologies.
8. Choose your tech stack
The back end (the way it operates) and the front end are both components of what is known as a "tech stack." A "tech stack" is a combination of the different types of technology services, frameworks, and programming languages (how it looks).
There are common configurations of technologies that are optimal for making web applications. LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP/Perl/Python), MEAN (MongoDB, Express.js, Angular, Node.js), MERN (MongoDB, Express.js, React, Node.js), and Ruby on Rails are some of the most well-liked web app technology stacks (a "full stack" language encompassing the front and back ends with no defined stack).Among the most popular web app technology stacks are LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP/Perl/Python), MEAN (MongoDB, Express.js, Angular, Node.js), MERN (MongoDB, Express.js, React, Node.js), and Ruby on Rails (a "full stack" language encompassing the front and back ends with no defined stack).
9. Architect your database
Data from your website or mobile app will be stored in a database, which is a type of server. The database is also accountable for gathering data, putting it away, processing it, managing it, and giving authorized users access to it. Since MySQL has pretty much cornered the market on database systems, and MongoDB and PostgreSQL are its main competitors, this seems like an easy choice.
Following the selection of a database, the architecture is developed, usually using the model-view-controller (MVC) framework.
Model: How is the data stored in the database?
View: outputs or a graphical user interface (GUI) that shows off the model's data to the user
Controller: The central part of a system that is in charge of translating model results into the native format of the view.
10. Develop your front-end
11. Build back-end APIs
The application logic as well as the database (see above) and the server are all part of the backend (code). While various paths can be taken from here, the last step requires choosing one of two possibilities:
Multiple-page application: With a conventional web application, each time data is passed back and forth, a new page must be loaded from the server.
Single-page application (SPA): The most common type of web app right now is the single-page variety, which calls for a framework that exclusively uses application programming interface.
12. Integrate the front-end with the back-end
API integration facilitates communication between front- and back-end APIs for the sharing of information. As an illustration, consider how API integration is used in every aspect of the e-commerce consumer journey, from account creation to product management to payment handling.
13. Test your web app
Testing is an important part of the agile development method, and it's best to do it in small steps over time. The more thoroughly an app is tested, the more confidently its developers can say that it will function as intended (positive testing) and will remain functional under a wide range of negative testing.
The final step in the process is to launch the completed web app by selecting a hosting platform and exposing it to actual users.
14. Host your web app
People from all over the world can use a website by making it accessible through application hosting. Your choice of server could be based on the technologies you want to use, or it could just be a matter of personal taste. Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud are just a few of the most well-known cloud hosting companies.
15. Deploy your web app
The last thing to do is to upload the web application from source control to the aforementioned cloud hosting service. Even though releasing a product to the public is the end goal of any development project, Agile and DevOps principles suggest that deployment is actually the start of a process of feedback, refinement, and delivery that will continue indefinitely to make sure that new features and improvements are always available.
Advantages of web apps
Those who place a premium on interactive experiences online will discover that web apps provide a viable means of improving the UX of their web browsing.
Do you have a tablet computer? A web application exists for just such a purpose. Are you a smartphone owner? There is a web app for it. A portable computer? What's more, it's even great! Web apps, in general, can be used on any device. As long as a user has access to the internet, they can have a fun conversation with them on any platform (Android, iOS, PC, etc.).
Applications built for the web can be used without first installing a client. Alternatively, progressive web apps (PWAs) won't require storage space on your device after installation.
Modern smartphones have storage capacities that appear to be doubling every few years. But, some users still choose not to load their phones down with a large number of apps, or may simply not have enough room.
Having this fact at one's disposal also relieves consumers of the duty to consistently implement new upgrades. Even better, with progressive web apps in particular, you may enjoy many of the conveniences of mobile apps without the need to download and install them.
Again, most people who create apps and websites are different people. As a result, you'll always need twice as many programmers or twice as much skill if you want the best of both worlds, which is unfortunate. Also, if you want your mobile app to be included on both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store, you will need to create two separate apps if you choose to take the native route.
When it comes to the web, web app development is a unique subfield that falls between the expectations for a website and those for a mobile app. The software development method for a web app does not deviate too much from the norm for a website, and the front-end and back-end technologies used in their construction are the same as those used in traditional websites. There are a number of widely used web applications, and it's likely that you're already quite familiar with them.