How to Choose the Right Technology Stack for Web App Development
Are you planning to develop a web application? If yes, then one of the most important things you might come across is the tech stack.
Moreover, the success of any web application depends on the selection of the right technology stack and right development team. Why?
Because building a new web app is not only about good UI/UX but also about putting out a stable, secure, and maintainable web app.
Later, it should allow you to reach the target audience and help your business to expand to the next level.
And all these things can be achieved when your technology stack is correct.
Moreover, it is stated that a technology stack directly affects the quality, performance, and usability of the web app.
Hence, choosing the right technology stack for web app development is highly essential.
With many web technology stacks available in the market, various startups and SMEs are struggling to find the best technology stack for web application development.
To help with this regard, we will decipher all the things useful for selecting a web app tech stack. By following these things, you will be able to choose the most suitable technology stack for your next web application.
So, let’s get the ball rolling.
What is a Technology Stack for Web App Development?
Before we dive deep into choosing the best web app technology stack, it is essential to understand what a technology stack consists of.
A technology stack generally consists of programming languages, frameworks, databases, and tools.
The technology stack for a web application can be divided into two main components: Front-end (client-side) and Back-end (server-side) development.
[Image Credit: learn.g2]
Even though a different set of tools power both the components, they function together to make a web application.
Let’s have a brief about them.
Front-End Development (Client-Side Programming)
Front-end development or client-side programming ensures that your web application is visible on any web browser. It involves all the things that a user sees and interacts with the web application.
For instance, an eCommerce store viewed in a web browser is the client-side of a web solution.
Now, let’s quickly go through essential web technology stack components widely utilized by front-end developers.
HTML: It informs the browser how to showcase the content on a web page. It is the primary building block of any web application.
CSS: It stands for cascading style sheet and offers style to change the look & format of the HTML components in a browser. It is useful to set fonts, colors, size, etc., on a web page.
Besides these components, you can also use various front-end frameworks for building a client-side of your web app. It helps you create awesome interfaces and provide an uninterrupted user-experience.
Back-End Development (Server-Side Programming)
As the name suggests, back-end development or server-side programming isn’t visible to the users. It works behind the door and powers the front-end to carry out their task.
Back-end development is useful to define the logic of a web application and establish a communication between all of its components. Moreover, it is due to back-end development, all the components can respond to user requests efficiently.
Back-end development of a web application consists of three essential parts: programming languages, database, and server. Let’s look at all of them:
It is useful to create the logic of a web application. Currently, there are a lot of programming languages available in the market which are used by back-end developers.
Hence, it might be challenging for you to choose a suitable programming language to build a web application.
Besides this, there are many web application frameworks available for every programming language. They are useful to speed up the development process.
Let’s look at some of the most well-known programming languages along with their frameworks.
► Ruby on Rails
► Laravel, CakePHP, CodeIgniter, Symfony
► NodeJS, ReactJS, VueJS, MeteorJS
► Django, Flask, Pylons
Even though it is possible to build a web app without any need for a database, this kind of app will have limited functionality. The database is required if your web app asks for details from the user.
Currently, the majority of web applications ask for the primary contact details of all the users. Therefore, a database is necessary for a web technology stack.
Primarily, there are two types of databases widely used in web app development. This includes the relational and non-relational databases. Here is the list of databases for web app development:
A caching system decreases the server lag and frees the database from heavy network traffic by offering commonly accessed data.
A web application is not able to offer better performance without a caching system. As of now, the two leading caching systems in the market are Redis and Memcached.
A web server receives, processes, and acts upon all the requests obtained from the user through an HTML message.
This indicates that the server is useful to host the web application. Some leading open source servers for web apps like Nginx as well as Apache.
After going through the components of the web app, we will look at the process to choose the right web app tech stack.
How to Choose the Right Technology Stack for Web Application?
Here are some important aspects that you need to consider to choose the right technology stack for your web application.
1. Project Size & Complexity
First & foremost, you should define the project size & complexity as it will directly impact the choice of the technology stack.
Here, if you have a clear idea about what type of web application you want to develop, you can choose the right web app tech stack that assists you in the further stage of development.
Depending on the size and complexity, web applications are divided into three categories:
Simple: Landing pages with less interactivity, MVPs, and simple online stores (which offer limited services) fall under this category. You can create these types of web apps with out-of-the-box solutions such as CMS software.
However, if you want to provide better security, usability, and experience, you can combine both front-end and back-end technologies and create an appropriate tech stack.
Medium: Web apps with more features as compared to simple apps fall under this category. For example, big eCommerce stores and enterprises. You can develop these web apps with a combination of programming languages and various technologies for APIs.
Complex: Web apps with many custom features, third-party integrations, and built-in analytics fall under this category. For instance, social networks, global marketplaces, HR software, etc. You can develop complex web apps using multiple development technologies, programming languages, and custom solutions.
2. Time to Market (TTM)
Time to market is one of the essential factors you consider while selecting the right technology stack for web app development.
Here, the choice of a technology stack should be based on the disposal time you have for your web application.
If you have less time, then you have to choose a technology stack that offers code reusability. This significantly reduces the development time, which further leads to less development cost. In a nutshell, the TTM of a web application relies on the choice of your technology stack.
Here are some of the problems that you should keep in mind while selecting a web app technology stack:
Out of the box solutions
Verify whether the technology offers some unique solutions which you can use to integrate any functionality in the web app.
For instance, Ruby on Rails enables developers to utilize the open-source libraries that speed up the development process and decrease TTM.
Moreover, it is the go-to programming language of developers to create simple web apps and MVPs.
Documentation & Dev Community
When working on new technology, it might be challenging for a development team to produce great code.
Hence, they will spend the majority of their time finding solutions to errors; this will ultimately delay the deployment time.
Therefore, you should choose to work on technology that offers better documentation and has a vast community.
The technology stack you choose enables you to integrate third-party services from different providers. Hence, you can add functions to your web application efficiently.
Whenever you develop a new web application, you can come across a lot of bugs. To remove these bugs, you need to invest a lot of time.
To resolve this issue, go for technologies that are quick to test. Moreover, some of the technologies follow the test-driven development method, where testing happens first before coding.
The method enables you to produce quality code and also enhance the development speed.
Although you have chosen the correct technology stack, you still face a problem and, i.e., you need developers to carry out the entire task.
Here, you must verify if you can easily find the developers for your specific technology stack. Also, you will first need developers not only to create your web application but also for maintenance.
3. Web App Development & Maintenance Cost
To convert your web app idea into reality, you will require a specific amount of investment.
Here, you should note that the selection of your tech stack will hugely impact the development cost. Here, you need to take two things into consideration:
Developers are talented professionals whose salaries rely on the technologies they work on. Hence, your investment will be based on the tech stack. It would be best if you kept in mind that the more advanced the technology, the greater the salary of the developer.
Web App Maintenance Cost
Besides building a web application, you need to maintain it regularly to ensure that it works smoothly. The cost of maintaining a web app is mainly 10% of the overall web app development cost.
Cyberattacks and data breaches are the most common threats in the digital world.
Every year, various companies lost millions of dollars due to these attacks. Hence, the government is putting all efforts into providing next-level cybersecurity.
Here, it is not possible to get full security & protection from these attacks.
Therefore, you should choose technologies that offer better security. If your web app stores a massive amount of customer data, you should analyze the security of all languages used in the tech stack.
To cope up with this, you need first choose the best technologies for your web application. Secondly, you need to check that the developers you have hired work based on the security guidelines in languages to ensure no vulnerabilities in the entire code.
Scalability is another important aspect you should consider in the tech stack if you plan to scale up your app as per the demand of users in the future.
In other words, scalability is the capacity of a web app to handle huge traffic.
Here, you need to check two types of scalability:
Horizontal Scalability: Ability of a web application to integrate a new web server alongside the current one.
Vertical Scalability: Ability of a web application to integrate more resources (RAM, CPU, etc.) in the current web server.
It would be best if you chose a technology stack by keeping in mind your web app scalability. Initially, it might be difficult for you to choose the best components and frameworks because of different options.
Here, one better strategy to choose a technology by looking at its most recent trends.
Things to Avoid While Choosing a Web App Technology Stack
Here are some of the most common practices you should avoid in choosing a web app tech stack.
1. Competitor’s Tech Stack
Looking at the competitor’s tech stack is not a good strategy when choosing the tech stack.
Because your goals are different for your competitors.
Moreover, how can you be sure that the competitor’s tech stack will be applicable for your web app project?
In case you choose to go with a competitor’s tech stack, then there is a strong possibility that you will modify it to meet your goals.
2. Tech Trends
Keeping an eye on the latest web development technology trends which is essential to know about the latest changes happening in the web app development world. However, you should never choose your tech stack based on these trends.
New technologies might draw your attention; however, before you go with them, cross-check whether their functionality and performance align well with your application.
Why go with a technology that looks exciting but doesn’t allow you to achieve your business goals and target audience needs.
Therefore, you must carry out an in-depth search and then choose the most suitable technology stack for a web application.
3. Personal Preferences
It’s a human tendency to depend on personal preferences while selecting a web app technology stack. However, here is the catch: this method does wonder only for people with a robust background in web app development.
4. Online Research
The last but not the least thing to avoid is the online research. Why? The internet consists of many resources that suggest you go with a specific tech stack.
On the flip side, some resources suggest you not to choose the particular tech stack. What source should you trust?
Selecting a technology stack is a mere practical experience. Hence, you can choose the most suitable technologies if you have worked on them.
If you have limited knowledge, the possibility of selecting the right technology is minimum.
Therefore, one better strategy is to consult a professional web app development company. They have worked on various technologies and have enough experience; hence, they can help you choose the best tech stack as per your needs.
Choose the Tech Stack That Gives You Success
Here we conclude our guide on web app tech stack. From this, it’s clear that choosing the best technology stack for web applications is one of the most challenging tasks. For this, you need a thorough understanding of all the tools & technologies used in it.
It would be best if you didn’t rest upon any time-tested technologies, although the leading companies have utilized them. You shouldn’t fall for your personal preferences and consider all the pros and cons of choosing a tech stack. The reason being the selection of the wrong tech stack can cause you a lot in the future.
To reduce this risk, you should reach out to a web application development company. At GuruTechnoLabs, we have been working in the web development field for years; hence we know what works in the industry. Thus, we will help you choose the correct combination of web application technology stack for your project.