What is a Single Page Application (SPA)?
A single page application is the sort of new website that has the powered interface. It does not load a separate page for different services. Instead, it combines all of them and rewrites the original page. It is very advantageous for users as they find everything on one single page. It avoids distractions and disturbances that might occur during the transaction. It adversely affects the experience of the user.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Single Page Websites:
- It has one common page for everything. All the contents of the website can be found in one single place. The user gets satisfied because of this.
- The page also does not take too much time to load. Single page applications are considered to be very mobile friendly. People believe that they are better than a website having different pages.
- Single page applications are very responsive. It very well suits the smartphone. It works very fast. People can navigate easily because everything is found in one place.
Everything comes up with advantages and disadvantages. Same goes true with the single page applications. Though,
- The user cannot use Google Analytics to check the performance of the website. It becomes problematic for people. It is because Google analytics is applied to multiple websites. It cannot be used for single page applications.
- Even if the analytics are applied successfully, there is no guarantee that the result so occurred is true. The result may or may not be genuine.
- It usually most of the times, ends up hurting the user. They may lose their interest. So, it faces lower user engagement.
SEO for SPA Important Techniques:
There are a few techniques that can be applied to improve the SEO of Single page applications. It will also help in improving the search engine ranking of the website. Have a look at the few techniques:
1. Server-Side Rendering:
Server-side rendering or SSR is a process of improving the SEO of any SPA. It renders the service to the website as per the need of the server. It focuses solely on fulfilling the server request. It facilitates the visitors to go to the required page. It serves the website pages in the best possible way.
This is how the server-side rendering helps people in using single page applications easily. It is advantageous from the search engine point of view. The search engine ranking gets enhanced. It becomes easy for the search engine to rank the website properly.
It is advantageous because it makes the page friendly. Every crawler can use it with ease. It is possible only because of server-side rendering.
One needs to spend too much while implementing the SSR. It becomes complicated sometimes. You need to spend resources and hours.
It will take additional loading time. Be prepared for it. It may give a slow response sometimes.
The process of pre-rendering is almost the same as server-side rendering. The only difference happens when pre-deployment rendering takes place. In pre-rendering, the service is provided before the project deployment. On the contrary, in server-side rendering, the service is rendered when the server is live.
In order to perform pre-rendering, the user is required to run the single page application on any web browser. It is the initial step. The user is free to choose any browser of his choice. After performing this step, the user has to take the snapshot of the page output. It is used to substitute the HTML files according to the server request.
Experts suggest people use this technique. It is because while using Pre-Rendering, one need not bother about the production server. Even the surging load is not a big issue.
It is the best substitute for SSR. It can be applied anywhere. It solves the problems that SSR fails to solve.
It works without Node.js production server. It does not need it. It does not take excessive loading time. It also does not add any burden to the browser.
It cannot cope up with changing websites. Those websites that are dynamic in nature creates a problem for pre-rendering.
It cannot be applied to the pages that focus only on specific users. It is not a major challenge as the search engine will not index them.
It may be time-consuming sometimes. It is because pre-rendering happens individually.
It is fortunate to note that there are many techniques. If they are implemented, the desired outcome will be achieved soon.
The challenges in SEO for SPA:
The search engine crawlers are developed in such a way that rank the web pages through the process of “spidering” or “crawling”. They use the same process for indexing them. The popularly used search engine crawlers are Googlebot and Bingbot. They simply download the web page’s HTML file(s). So, it becomes quite easier for them to index and rank a normal webpage.
The search engines give ranking to pages, not websites. For the purpose of ranking, every single page of the website is studied. Every single page on the website is equally important. Each page should be effective enough to get a good ranking. This becomes impossible in Single page applications. It is because they combine all the pages into one application. So, the website and the pages cannot be separated.
It is satisfying to note that Google announced to take this step. It was in 2014 when Google said that its Googlebot will perform the required heavy steps. It is also challenging for Single page applications. It is because there is no guarantee for the result.
After performing heavy steps, the page can be indexed. It does not mean that the page will be ranked as well. The page is ranked on the basis of specific keywords. This is not possible on Single page applications. It will be more difficult.
In Single page applications, everything happens on one single page. Each and every interaction takes place at one common place. So, it becomes problematic to analyze the statistics of the SPA. It is also a major challenge.
All the above-mentioned challenges cannot stop Single page applications to succeed. If they can be overcome, the situation will become easy.
3. Safety measures:
Security is something that needs to be taken care of. It becomes important in Single page applications as well. In websites, the individual pages are secured. On the contrary, in Single page applications, the data endpoints are needed to be saved. Some of the security issues generally observed are given below. Have a look:
4. General API Security:
Single Page Applications cause companies to publish public APIs. Many companies are well acquainted with it. So, they take safety measures. Those companies which are unaware of suffer problems.
5. Authentication and Session Tracking:
Another major problem relates to authentication. The browsers that run in single page web applications interact with two completely different systems. The first system deals with HTML web pages and another one deals with APIs.
6. Cross Site Scripting (XSS) Attacks:
7. Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF):
It happens when any false or malicious website, email, blog, the message makes the user’s web browser to perform any false action. Such action misleads sometimes. CSRF occurs when any malicious site gets connected to the site you are using.
Given below are some suggestions. If they are taken into consideration, they will definitely help. In order to secure Single page applications, the following security measures will be of great help. Have a look:
It is a very simple step. The person is required to generate the password for every name. It is the best way for authentication.
Some experts believe in this step. The user should be required to send his username and password. After doing this, he should get a token. This token should be used to check the authenticity of the request.
11. Continuously check on the security issue:
It should happen continuously within regular intervals. It is very important. If applied with care, all the minor issues will be identified. The tip is to be alert. Whenever any issue occurs, the necessary steps will be taken as soon as possible.
How to Build Single Page Applications?
1. Pay attention to the browser:
2. It should work on mobile devices:
Everyone is dependent on smartphones now. The audience wants everything to work on their smartphone. You will be benefitted if you develop the application that works easily on mobile phones. You will end up satisfying your user.
To get good ranking by search engines, the SEO of the website should get enhanced. The content provided by you should be highly qualitative. When you improve the SEO, it gets properly indexed by various search engines.
Developing single page applications are a growing trend. You should know whether you actually need a single page application or not. You need to think which part of your webpage will be interactive. You should think before you do anything. Take all necessary safety measures.