Web Application Development

The growth of web applications nowadays is exceptional, and each day, thousands of more people gain access to the internet.

That said, web applications became so popular that sometimes we don't realize that we are using them all the time.

Starting from Microsoft Office applications like MS Word and PowerPoint and even popular software applications like Facebook,have web-based applications that allow you to have a unique, personalized, and great experience right from your browser.

When learning web app development, it is sometimes confusing where to start and find the right advice due to the countless pieces of information you can find. That is why, we created this article where it contains all the basic information you need in learning web app development.

So by the end of this topic, you will learn what web application development is, how it works, its benefits, and development cost.

Also, we will provide an overview of the best web application development frameworks and some web application examples. And as a bonus, we will introduce some of the best web application companies.

The main topics that we are going to discuss are the following:


What is Web Application Development?

Web application development is the process of creating an application using client-side and server-side programming that is accessible through a web browser such as Google Chrome, Safari, or Mozilla Firefox.

To put it simply, it is the process of creating a web application.

A web application is an interactive computer program that utilizes web technologies and web browsers that allow users to perform tasks over the internet. Whenever you do something online like online shopping, online banking, or web-mail, you are basically using a web application.

There are basically two divisions in developing a web application. The "front-end development" also refers to "client-side development" and "back-end development", which also refers to "server-side development".

Front-end development is responsible for creating what a user sees when they load a web application. This includes the design, content, and how the user interacts with it. This is possible through the use of web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

While back-end development is responsible for what goes behind the scenes of a web application. Back-end scripts can be written in many different languages and frameworks such as Ruby on Rails, Java, and PHP.

What is Web Application Development? - Ademar Tutor

Web page, Website, and Web application:
What's the difference?

Web page, Website, and Web application: What's the difference? - Ademar Tutor

At this point, you might still be confused about the difference between web pages, websites, and web apps. This is the first doubt that comes right into our minds, so let's discuss the three and find out their differences.

Web page, Website, and Web application: What's the difference? - Ademar Tutor

What is a Web page?

A web page is a single document display on the browser that is written using Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). A hypertext is a text that contains hyperlinks that takes the user to a different webpage when it is clicked. A hyperlink can be a word, sentence, icon, button, and even a picture.

A web page usually contains texts, graphics, hyperlinks, and other relevant resources. It can be accessed using a specific URL address (e.g., https://www.homepage.com) through a web browser like Mozilla Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.

What is a Web page? - Ademar Tutor

What is a Website?

A website is a collection of well-structured web pages that are grouped and linked together using hyperlinks. The web pages are linked together under a single domain in order to uniquely identify the website. Websites usually include web pages like homepage, contact, support, about, forum, etc.

Websites are usually divided into two categories; static websites and dynamic websites.

As the name suggests, static websites are literally static and are designed to give information without the involvement and interaction of the users. A static website contains a fixed number of static web pages and displays the exact same information to the users. In other words, every visitor of that page will be greeted with the same text, video, or multimedia design unless the developer changes that page's source code.

To put it simply, static websites are those websites with contents that cannot be changed unless the developer decides to do so and edit its source code.

Moreover, a static web page's URL must end with a document extension like ".html" (e.g., https://www.example.com/index.html).

On the other hand, dynamic websites are websites with web page contents capable of changing dynamically while the page is running on the user's browser. Dynamic websites use server-side programming languages like Ruby, Python, PHP, etc. for modifying the page contents on run-time.

That said, dynamic websites can produce different content for different users from the same source code file. Examples of dynamic websites are e-commerce sites, social networking sites, e-governance sites, news sites, etc.

What is a Web page? - Ademar Tutor

What is a web application?

A web app is a software program that exists on a server with specific functions which allow the user to perform certain activities through a web browser. A web app is developed through the use of programming language and web application frameworks, both front-end and back-end.

That said, a web app is solely designed to respond to user input and perform specific tasks that help the user to solve a problem. In other words, a web app allows the user to Create, Read, Update, and Delete (CRUD) within the application.

What is a Web page? - Ademar Tutor


All web apps are websites, but not all websites are web apps. So what's the difference?

The main difference between a website and a web app is how the user interacts with them. Usually, a typical website is designed to give information to the user with or without any interaction involved. In other words, a website provides visual and text content in which users can read and view but does not affect its functioning.

On the other hand, a web application is more user-specific and is designed to respond to user input and allow users to perform tasks to solve a specific problem. In short, all websites that have a client-side component that provides the user the ability to perform tasks can be called a web app.

Examples of Web Applications

Examples of Web Applications - Ademar Tutor
Examples of Web Applications - Ademar Tutor

1. Google Doc

Google Docs is one of the best web applications in the world. Google Docs allows the user to create, read, update, and delete documents. Google Docs is definitely the best definition of CRUD. One of the app's best features is it allows the user to work on the same document with colleagues.

Also, even if you currently have no internet connection, you can still use the application and work with it. And if your device gets connected to the internet, your work will be saved automatically in Google Drive which is very convenient.

Examples of Web Applications - Ademar Tutor

2. Pixlr.com

Pixlr is one of the best web applications when it comes to photo editing. It has all the tools for simple edits to advanced edits. Also, it has many themes and templates which you can use to create or edit images immediately.

With easy and advanced tools available, Pixlr stands out the most from other similar web applications.

Examples of Web Applications - Ademar Tutor

3. Trello

Trello is a flexible, fun, and easy-to-use project management tool. Trello provides you with tools to define projects and their requirements and has a dashboard page where you can create, organize, and prioritize actions. The card system allows you and your team members to interact and collaborate with each other.

Also, you can add comments, links, files, and even photos to project cards. Ultimately, Trello's interface is very clean and fresh-looking, which makes it easy to navigate.

Examples of Websites

Examples of Websites - Ademar Tutor
Examples of Websites - Ademar Tutor

1. CNN

CNN is one of the most famous multinational news-based websites in the world. CNN provides live coverage and analysis of breaking news and a full range of international, business, politics, sports, entertainment, health, science and weather content, and in-depth interviews.

Examples of Websites - Ademar Tutor

2. BBC News

Launched in 1997, BBC is one of the most popular news websites in the UK, reaching over a quarter of the UK's internet users and around fourteen million readers worldwide. The website provides international news coverage as well as sports, entertainment, political news, and science.

Examples of Websites - Ademar Tutor

3. Wikipedia

Wikipedia is widely known as the largest general reference work website on the internet. It is a free, multilingual open-collaborative online encyclopedia that is created and maintained by community volunteer contributors with the use of a wiki-based editing system.

Stage 1
Web Application Development Process - Ademar Tutor
Ideation Stage

Step 1 - Idea Generation

This step is all about generating an idea of what kind of web app you desire to make. An idea must be something that solves a problem or can cater to the user. Because if not, your web app will end up a failure, which would defeat the purpose of creating a web app.

That said, here are the main questions that should be answered in making a web app idea:

  • What do you want to build?
  • Who will use your app?
  • Why would these people use your app?
  • How will the application be used?
  • What features and functions will it have?
  • What is the goal you want to achieve by building this app?

  • Making answers to these questions is very helpful. Your idea can be an improvement over something that already exists or something that no one has ever thought of before. What's important is that your idea gives significance, solves the user's problem, and caters to their needs.

    Step 2 - Market Research

    Once you know what web app you want to make, it is time to understand your users and identify your target market.

    In this step, you need to think about the potential market for your idea. You need to research the market to see if a similar product exists.

    But don't worry if a similar product exists; this just leaves the fact that your idea's target market is there. And if it is otherwise, it is either you've hit the jackpot, or someone has ventured this path before and eventually hit a dead-end.

    But you don't want your product to fail, right? That is why in-depth market research is needed for you to gather enough information and understand if there exists a market for your product.

    The following tips will help you improve your market research:

  • Search for Google Trends
  • Search about your web app idea, and it will reveal related trends. Google search trends can be handy for market research since you will learn what information the people int your target market are searching for.

  • Use SEO tools
  • Write a list of keywords relating to your web application. If the SEO tool shows that many people are searching for your keywords, that can be an indicator that your target market exists.

  • Use Social Media
  • Present your idea through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any social media platform. This way, you can gain valuable insight into your target users and gain more information about them.

  • Attend events and forums
  • If there's a local event in your area related to your target market, share your web app idea. If there is someone you know in your target market, approach them, explain your idea, and record their feedback. Because the more you talk and receive feedback and validation from your target market, the better.

    Step 3 - Define Functionality

    You've got your web app idea, you've confirmed your target market. It is now time to put your mind focusing on your app's functionality.

    Now, you need to keep in mind that your web app is not some sort of swiss army knife. You need to accept the fact that it won't have all the features and functionalities when it doesn't have to.

    This step's main objective is to eliminate multiple features you added and focus only on features that your app does best and solve your target market's problems. In other words, Restrain the urge to make your web app an all-in-one solution.

    With that focus features in mind, you can think about some basic functions your app will need. It can be a user account, password, contacts, payments, checkout, and more, it depends on what kind of web app you want to make.

    Once you've decided on your app's features, roll up your sleeve because it is time to get creative!

    Stage 2
    Web Application Development Process - Ademar Tutor
    Design Stage

    Step 4 - Web App Sketching

    Sketching your web app is your first step to web application design. What you need in this step is a pencil/pen and paper.

    After steps 1, 2, and 3, surely you have an idea of what your web application is, who your target users are, and the features it will have. Your sketch doesn't really have to be detailed as long as it gives you the basic idea of your app's flow.

    When sketching, be sure to include the following elements:

  • Navigation
  • Buttons
  • Branding
  • Forms
  • and any other interactive elements

  • Additionally, this is also the step where you need to map out your workflow. For example, from the sign-up page, it will go to a page where the user enters her/his information and creates a user profile, and so on. In other words, get your sketches in order.

    Once you have the basic workflow and layout of your web app, you can move on to the next step; wireframing and prototyping.

    Step 5 - Wireframing and Prototyping

    This is the step where you are finally getting on your computer and start working on your first models for your web app.

    A wireframe is more like a sketch, but it is done through a computer and more structured. Wireframes provide you exactly how your web app pages will look like.

    After making your web app wireframe, the next step would be creating a prototype. A prototype is basically taking wireframes a step further by adding more visual layout and an interactive display.

    The general idea of creating a prototype is to provide a more realistic idea of your web app and demonstrate the design's functionality by adding animations, variables, and advanced interactions.

    You can use various tools for creating wireframes and prototypes like Adobe XD, Balsamiq, Sketch, etc.

    Step 6 - Validation

    Now that you have your prototype that visually represents your web app, it is time to seek customers' validation.

    Technically, you can start validating as soon as your idea strikes you. You can ask your colleagues or your friends and seek some feedback from them. But now that you have a prototype of your web app on your sleeve, you can get more solid and technical feedback from your users.

    That said, start by asking some potential users and get them to try your web app prototype and ask for their feedback.

    Those feedbacks will help you improve your app and make it more feasible for the users. Thus, when you begin the all-important development stage, you now have a solid foundation to build on.

    Stage 3
    Web Application Development Process - Ademar Tutor
    Development Stage

    Step 7 - Choosing Technology

    Until now, we have been dealing with the soft stages of the web development process. But once you enter the development stage, more significant technical decisions are going to be made. Thus, this is where the real fun begins.

    First, you need to choose the appropriate framework, platform, and library to build your web app. Now, what you choose depends on what functionality does your web app has and as well as your preference.

    That said, there are several good web application development tools to choose from, so pick what best works for your application and what you are comfortable working with.

    Back-end and Front-end Development

    Elsewhere in this discussion, we have mentioned about the two divisions in developing a web application. The first one was the "front-end development", which is responsible for creating what the user sees and interacts with.

    The second was the "back-end development", which is responsible for what goes behind the scenes. This includes databases, servers, and everything that the user can’t see within a web application.

    Front-end is developed through the use of web programming languages like HTML, CSS, and Javascript.

    For the back-end, popular back-end programming languages like Ruby on Rails and PHP are implemented.

    In developing a web application, you can either code from scratch or use a front-end and back-end frameworks to build your web application. Still, it is best to choose what approach is best for your application.

    For front-end development, you can use frameworks like React JS and Angular. And as for the back-end development, you can use frameworks like Rails, Django, and Laravel.

    Again, choose what is suitable for your app and also your preference. If you're still having trouble with what framework you will choose, don't worry because later on in this discussion, we will discuss those frameworks mentioned and explain their strong points and what each framework is best for. So keep on Reading!

    Okay, once you've figured out what technology you want to use for building your web application, you can now proceed into the process of writing your code. Once your code is complete, and your web application is ready, it is now time to create a server location of your web app.

    Stage 4
    Web Application Development Process - Ademar Tutor
    Launch Stage

    Step 8 - Choose a Host

    In this step, you will need to create a server location for your web application. You will need to buy a domain and choose a web hosting provider.

    There are several types of web hosting services:

    • Shared web hosting - your website is hosted on a server shared by other websites;

    • Dedicated web hosting - you rent one physical server from a hosting company and have complete control of the server; and

    • Cloud-based web hosting - consists of a system of multiple, connected servers.

    Then again, choose what's best for your web app.

    Step 9 - Deploy

    From generating an idea, validating, designing, developing, and choosing a host. Finally! we are now at the last step.

    In this step, you need to deploy your web application from your local machine to your hosting solution and deploy it. To do that, you will use a CI tool.

    The following web app development tools provide continuous integration and will help you with deploying your web app to your host:

    1. GitHub
    2. GitLab
    3. CircleCI

    That's it. Your app is ready for your users. And without going further much into details, that’s the web application development process in a nutshell.

    PART 3.

    How much does it cost to build a web app?

    How much does it cost to build a web app? - Ademar Tutor

    The truth is, no one can tell a fixed price in building a web app since it depends on what type of web app you want to make. Factors including the app's complexity, timeframe, design, and features are some of the things you need to consider when estimating the app's cost development.

    Since there are no real and honest answers to how much the web development cost is, as it can range from $3,000 to $250,000. However, making a rough pre-estimation by knowing the type of web app you want to make is possible.

    That said, depending on the app's complexity, it can be divided into one of the three categories:

    1. Simple apps ($3,000 to $15,000)

    Apps with basic functionality, plain UI/UX, have minimum features and content. A simple web application will cost you $3,000 to $15,000, and the development time rarely exceeds one month.

    2. Medium apps ( $15,000 to $50,000)

    These apps are more complex and interactive than the previous one, with more features, design, and a large volume of content. The development cost can range from $15,000 to $50,000, and the development time can reach two-three months.

    3. Complex / Large-scale apps (~$250,000)

    This kind of apps offers more features, large databases, and tons of content. The development cost of large-scale apps can reach (but is not limited to) $250,000, and the average development time is six months.

    PART 4.

    Web Application Development Frameworks

    What is a Web App Framework?

    Web app frameworks or simply “web frameworks", are software frameworks designed to help and support the development of web applications. This includes web services, web resources, and web APIs.

    To put it simply, web application frameworks are libraries that help you develop your web application faster and wiser.

    The number of web frameworks nowadays has significantly increased. So, to help you choose the best framework for your web app, we've narrowed it down to six by selecting the most popular and commonly used among the developers.

    Note: There are two groups of web application frameworks: Front-end and Back end. We will discuss three frameworks for each.

    Best Web Application Frameworks - Ademar Tutor

    React is by far the most simplest and most popular open-source front-end web application framework on the list. It is the ideal framework for those who wish for consistent and seamless performance web applications.

    Large companies like Facebook, Netflix, Reddit, DropBox, and Airbnb use React as their front-end framework. Thus, React proves itself that it can scale and meet the needs of the most demanding web apps.

    Best Web Application Frameworks - Ademar Tutor

    We cannot call it a list of best front-end web app development frameworks without Angular. Angular is a front-end framework developed by Google which is best for building robust web apps.

    It can build large-scale and high-performance web applications while keeping them easy-to-maintain at the same time. Large companies like Xbox, BMW, and Forbes develop their applications using Angular.

    Best Web Application Frameworks - Ademar Tutor

    Ember is also one of the best front-end web application development frameworks on the list. Ember was designed to handle the increasing demands of modern-day technologies.

    If you want to build a modern web application like Twitch with an excellent user interface and seamless design, go for Ember. Ember describes itself as the complete front-end solution for developing large-scale projects. Companies like Twitch, LinkedIn, Accenture, and Square use Ember as their front-end framework.

    Best Web Application Frameworks - Ademar Tutor

    Ruby on Rails is one of the highly productive back-end web application frameworks on the list. You can develop an application about ten times faster with Rails than a typical Java Framework.

    Ruby on Rails provides multiple ready-made plugins and modules, which minimize the development time compared to other frameworks on the list. It also offers standardized file storage systems and conventions that help maintain structural consistency and readability while saving a substantial amount of time.

    Ultimately, Rails provides everything needed to create a database-driven web application using the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architecture. Well-known companies such as Github, Shopify, and Airbnb use Ruby on Rails.

    Best Web Application Frameworks - Ademar Tutor

    Django is one of the leading open-source back-end web app development frameworks based on Python programming language. This framework offers many significant benefits like optimal pluggability, reusability, and faster development.

    Moreover, Django uses Python for all operations, providing an optional admin interface to help create, read, update, and delete (CRUD) operations. Companies like Mozilla, Youtube, Disqus, and Spotify use Django as their framework.

    Best Web Application Frameworks - Ademar Tutor

    Laravel is a back-end framework that values readability, elegance, and simplicity. And like Ruby on Rails, Laravel also follows the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architecture.

    Laravel provides lightweight built-in templates that can be used for generating layouts and for content seeding. The templates are designed for developing simple and complex layouts as it provides widgets with CSS and JS code.

    Moreover, since Laravel follows MVC architecture, it offers various functions, improves both security and scalability, and offers better performance. Companies such as 9GAG, BBC, and Pfizer use Laravel.

    PART 5.

    Web Application Development Companies

    If you are planning to create a web application, perhaps you are thinking of hiring a suitable company for the job. But there are many development companies out there. Thus, we've narrowed your choices down to five by picking the best web application development companies to work with:

    When hiring a web app company, you are also hiring a technology partner, and a good partner can be or will be part of your business in the long run considering you are happy with their service. Thus, if you plan to hire a web app company for a successful startup, then Bootyard will be more than happy to help you turn it into reality.

    Bootyard is a Ruby on Rails web application development company that is based in the Philippines. Bootyard's primary focus is to develop your startup idea into a great quality software product.

    That said, the company will develop and design your product in a way that it will surely stand out from other competitors. Moreover, they will set up your product to where it will live and grow.

    If you want to know more about Bootyard, feel free to visit Bootyard.

    Solvd Inc is a software engineering company that is focused on Mobile and web solutions and QA for startups and expanding companies. The company is open to various fields, including healthcare, education, sports, media, fintech, and logistics.

    The company treats all the projects they receive from their clients as their own, providing great quality products whether the product is a startup or a well-known brand.

    10Clouds is a web and mobile application company with over one hundred excellent developers and designers based in Poland. The company focuses on various industries, including financial technology, education technology, and healthcare technology.

    Over the years, the company has designed and built software for various companies worldwide, mainly in the US, Europe, and Australia. With their excellent expertise, the company will surely make your idea into reality.

    Moove It is also one of the leading web and mobile application development companies on the list. The company designs and develops software for clients or organizations that want an impact through technology.

    Moove It develops software products in various fields, including education, finance, healthcare, and IoT. With good values, principles, and work ethics, the company can create strong partnerships with its clients.

    Steelkiwi is a web and mobile app development company that focuses on developing fault-tolerant, scalable, and quick-to-market applications. The company provides services like business analysis, UX strategy, UI design, product support, iterative development, etc.

    Steelkiwi works in various industries, including medical software development, booking and scheduling solutions, recruitment software, GPS-based solutions, and business process automation.

    That said, the company's goal is to develop a project that will reflect the client's idea and provide the best solution from their side.

    Red Diamond - Ademar Tutor

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