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Web Development on Netlify
Web Development on Netlify

Web Development on Netlify: Proven strategies for building, deploying, and hosting modern web applications

By Ekene Eze
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Book May 2024 186 pages 1st Edition
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Web Development on Netlify

Getting to Know the Netlify Platform

The world of web development is always changing, and having the right tools to build, deploy, and manage web apps makes all the difference. That’s where Netlify comes in! It’s an all-in-one platform that makes deploying and scaling web apps a breeze.

In this chapter, we’ll get to know Netlify and check out what makes it so popular among web developers and teams. By the time you finish this chapter, you’ll have a solid understanding of Netlify and how it can help you create amazing web apps.

In this chapter, we will cover the following topics:

  • What is Netlify?
  • How Netlify helps in overcoming the challenges in web development
  • Exploring Netlify’s feature set
  • Netlify use cases
  • Setting up a Netlify account
  • Connecting to a Git repository
  • Configuring a new site
  • Automating deployments with webhooks on Netlify

What is Netlify?

Netlify is a cloud-based web development platform founded in 2014 by Matt Biilmann and Chris Bach. Based in San Francisco, California, Netlify’s goal is to make web development a breeze and more accessible for everyone.

Originally, Netlify started as a platform for hosting and deploying static websites. Over time, it has evolved alongside the web ecosystem, adding advanced features such as serverless functions, form handling, and identity management. These features enable developers to create dynamic, serverless websites and web apps using the platform.

In 2019, TechCrunch reported that Netlify raised $30 million in a funding round led by Kleiner Perkins in which Andreessen Horowitz and others participated (https://techcrunch.com/2018/10/09/netlify-just-got-30-million-to-change-the-way-developers-build-websites/). At the time, the platform was already being used by over a million developers and businesses.

Netlify is also known for supporting the open source community and web development in general. In November 2021, they announced a $10 million Jamstack innovation fund to help early-stage start-ups grow and develop the Jamstack ecosystem (https://www.netlify.com/blog/2021/11/17/we-win-together-netlify-launches-dollar10-million-jamstack-innovation-fund/). We’ll talk more about the Jamstack in Chapter 4. They have also sponsored popular open source projects such as Nuxt.js and Astro in the past. Until last year, Netlify hired Zach Leatherman, the creator and maintainer of Eleventy to work full time on the framework. The creator of Solid.js, Ryan Carniato, is currently employed by Netlify and is working full time on improving the framework.

Today, millions of developers and organizations worldwide use Netlify, and the platform continues to grow and evolve. The company remains focused on helping developers create better, more modern websites and web experiences.

On February 1, 2023, Netlify announced its acquisition of Gatsby Inc., a popular static site generator that allows developers to build lightning-fast websites using React, GraphQL, and other cutting-edge web technologies. By combining Gatsby’s capabilities with Netlify, the company aims to offer developers more flexibility and options in building composable web experiences. According to Netlify CEO Matt Biilmann, “We’re excited to integrate Gatsby’s cloud innovations into the Netlify platform and open up Gatsby’s content hub and source plugin ecosystem to the diverse world of modern frontend frameworks like Astro, Next, and Remix” (https://www.netlify.com/press/netlify-acquires-gatsby-inc-to-accelerate-adoption-of-composable-web-architectures/).

With the acquisition of Gatsby and past internal efforts to support other technologies such as Eleventy, Solid.js, Astro, and Nuxt.js, we can expect to see significant improvements in web application development on Netlify, particularly in areas such as developer experience, performance, and development flexibility.

Netlify is also helping enforce web standards and proffer solutions to some of the common challenges faced by modern web architectures. Let’s see how.

How Netlify helps in overcoming the challenges in web development

Web development can be a complicated and daunting process, especially for newcomers and new businesses. Developers and enterprises often face issues related to complexity, scalability, hosting infrastructure costs, and security in web development.

Netlify aims to tackle these issues by offering a web development platform that makes it easier for developers and businesses to build, deploy, and host their websites and web apps in the following ways:

  • Simplicity: Netlify streamlines the web development process with an easy-to-use platform, featuring a user-friendly interface and a smooth developer experience. This setup allows developers and businesses to focus on creating fantastic websites and web apps without dealing with complex infrastructure configurations or server management.
  • Scalability: Netlify’s highly scalable platform can handle large traffic volumes and automatically scale to ensure websites and web apps remain available and perform well under heavy traffic.
  • Affordability: Netlify cuts the cost of running a website or web app by offering a cost-effective, easy-to-use platform with a free tier suitable for individuals and start-ups.
  • Security: Addressing developers’ and businesses’ security concerns, Netlify provides a secure platform built on modern security practices such as encryption and authentication, ensuring websites and web apps are protected from attacks.
  • Collaboration: Netlify’s platform facilitates collaboration between developers and team members, making it simple to share projects and streamline workflows. It offers built-in support for version control systems such as Git, enabling continuous deployment and easy rollbacks. This feature enhances productivity, allowing teams to work more efficiently and maintain consistency across the project.
  • Extensibility: Netlify supports a wide range of web development frameworks and tools, making it a versatile platform that can accommodate various project requirements. From static site generators such as Jekyll, Hugo, and Gatsby to modern frontend frameworks such as React, Vue, and Angular, Netlify can handle it all. This flexibility ensures that developers can choose the best tools for their specific needs and preferences.
  • Optimized performance: Netlify’s platform is designed to optimize website and web app performance with features such as automatic asset optimization, caching, and content delivery network (CDN) integration. These capabilities help reduce load times, improve user experience, and contribute to better search engine rankings.
  • Support for serverless functions: Netlify provides built-in support for serverless functions, allowing developers to build powerful, dynamic web apps without the need for complex backend infrastructure. This feature simplifies the development process while enabling the creation of advanced features and functionality in web applications.

In summary, Netlify addresses the common challenges faced by developers and businesses in web development by providing a simple, scalable, affordable, and secure platform. With its collaborative features, extensibility, optimized performance, and support for serverless functions, Netlify empowers developers to create modern, high-quality websites and web apps with ease.

Let’s now explore the features that Netlify offers that make the platform a compelling tool for developers.

Exploring Netlify’s feature set

Netlify offers a comprehensive feature set for building, deploying, and managing modern web projects. In this section, we’ll highlight some of these features to help you understand the capabilities of the platform and how it can benefit your projects.

Let’s discuss each of these features in detail:

  • Continuous deployment: Netlify offers seamless continuous deployment workflows that allow developers to automate the deployment of changes to websites hosted on the platform. When changes are made to the website’s source code, Netlify automatically builds and deploys the updated website to a global CDN. The continuous deployment process on Netlify involves the following steps:
    1. Git-based workflow: Netlify uses a Git-based workflow, which means that changes to the website’s source code are tracked and managed using Git. When a site is hosted on Netlify, developers can update the site simply by pushing new changes to the site's Git repository.
    2. Build process: When changes are pushed to the Git repository, Netlify automatically triggers a build process that compiles the website’s source code into a deployable format. Netlify supports a range of build tools and frameworks, including React, Vue, Angular, and more.
    3. Automated deployment: Once the build process is complete, Netlify deploys the updated website to its global CDN. The website is instantly available to users around the world, and Netlify handles all the infrastructure and scaling requirements.
    4. Preview and testing: Netlify provides tools and features for previewing and testing changes to the website before they are deployed. Developers can see a preview of the website for testing and review and can set up automated tests and workflows to ensure that changes are deployed smoothly and without issues.
  • Serverless functions: Netlify provides a powerful serverless functions infrastructure, allowing you to run server-side code without having to manage any infrastructure. This is particularly useful for applications that need to run backend processes or perform complex computations, such as form submissions, data processing, or authentication. The best part of Netlify’s serverless function offering is its simplicity, as we’ll see in Chapter 3.
  • Global edge network: Netlify offers a fast and reliable edge network that uses a combination of CDNs, edge servers, and other infrastructure to ensure that your content is delivered quickly to users around the world.
  • Global CDN: Netlify’s global CDN is a powerful and reliable solution for delivering websites from edge locations to users around the world. The caching, scalability, and security features make it an ideal solution for websites of all sizes, and the fact that it is included with all Netlify plans makes it a cost-effective solution for developers and businesses alike.
  • Custom domains: Netlify custom domains allow developers to easily set up and use their own domain name for their website and web applications hosted on Netlify. This means that instead of using the default yoursite.netlify.app domain, developers can use a custom domain such as www.yoursite.com, which provides a more professional look and feel.

    Custom domains provide several benefits, including the following:

    • Branding: Using a custom domain name makes the website look more professional and branded.
    • SEO: Using a custom domain name can improve search engine rankings and make it easier for users to find your website.
    • Credibility: Using a custom domain name can help establish credibility and trust with users.
  • Form handling: Netlify form handling is a feature that allows developers to easily add forms to their websites and manage form submissions. The form handling capability is built on top of Netlify’s serverless functions, which enables developers to add dynamic functionality to their static websites without the need for a server. These features integrate with popular third-party services such as Google Analytics, Mailchimp, and Slack, making it easy to collect data and automate workflows.

    Here are some key features for managing form submissions:

    • Notifications: Netlify can send an email, slack, or GitHub notification to you when a form is submitted.
    • Spam protection: Netlify uses honeypot and reCAPTCHA to protect against spam submissions.
    • Form data management: Netlify provides an interface to manage and export form submissions.
    • Redirects: Netlify can redirect users to a custom URL after a form submission is complete.

    We’ll cover form handling in more detail in Chapter 5 when we deal with advanced concepts and configuration options.

  • CMS integrations: Netlify CMS integration is a powerful tool for website owners and developers looking to streamline their content management process and ensure that their website's content is easily and effectively managed. With easy setup, intuitive content editing, version control, customizable content types, flexible publishing workflows, and role-based access control, Netlify CMS integration is an essential tool for anyone looking to create and manage a successful website.

    With just a few clicks, developers can add a CMS such as WordPress, Drupal, or Contentful to their Netlify-powered website and start managing their content with ease.

  • Asset optimization: Netlify offers a set of tools that help developers to optimize the performance of their websites. These tools work by automatically optimizing website assets, such as images and videos, compressing JavaScript and CSS files, and using advanced caching techniques. Developers can ensure that their websites load quickly and provide a great user experience, even on slower internet connections or older devices.
  • Build plugins: Netlify’s build plugins are a powerful feature that allow developers to customize and extend the build process for their websites and web applications. Build plugins are essentially scripts that run during the build process, and can be used to automate tasks, customize the build process, and integrate with third-party services and tools.

    Some popular build plugins that are available on Netlify include the following:

    • Netlify plugin for Hugo: This plugin provides seamless integration between Netlify and Hugo, a popular static site generator.
    • Netlify plugin for Algolia: This plugin allows developers to easily integrate their static websites with Algolia, a powerful search engine for websites.
    • Netlify plugin for Sentry: This plugin allows developers to easily integrate their static websites with Sentry, a popular error-tracking tool.
  • Instant rollback: Netlify’s roll back to previous deployments feature is a powerful and efficient tool for website owners and developers looking to ensure that their website remains available and functional, even in the face of issues or errors. With easy-to-use functionality, quick recovery, granular control, version history, and built-in version control, this feature is an essential tool for any website owner or developer.
  • Deploy previews: This feature is an efficient solution for developers who need to test changes to their website before deploying them to production. With automated previews, easy testing, collaboration, customization, and more, deploy previews help to improve development efficiency and ensure the quality of the website.
  • A/B testing: Netlify provides an A/B testing tool that allows you to test multiple variations of your website and measure the results. This allows you to optimize your website for maximum performance and user engagement.
  • Continuous integration: Netlify integrates with popular build tools and continuous integration (CI) systems such as Travis CI, CircleCI, and GitHub Actions. This allows developers to automate the build and deployment process, making it easy to keep their websites up to date and accurate.
  • Netlify CLI: Netlify CLI is a powerful command-line tool that enables developers to interact with and manage their Netlify projects directly from the command line. It simplifies the development workflow and streamlines the process of building, deploying, and managing Netlify sites and applications. The CLI also gives you access to Netlify Dev, which provides a local development environment that simulates the Netlify production environment for developers. The CLI is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux systems and can be installed using Node.js and npm.
  • Multi-site management: Netlify allows you to manage and host multiple sites from a single platform, making it easy to keep track of all your sites from a single dashboard. You can easily manage and update your sites, set up custom domains, and monitor performance and analytics, all from a single interface.
  • Identity management: Netlify provides a user authentication system that makes it easy to add user signup, login, and password reset functionality to your website. This allows you to create password-protected content, member-only areas, and more.
  • Analytics: This is an easy-to-use solution for tracking website analytics and gaining valuable insights into website traffic and engagement. With real-time tracking, customizable dashboards, detailed insights, referral tracking, and GDPR compliance, Netlify Analytics is a valuable tool for developers and website owners looking to optimize their website performance and user experience. With this tool, you can track the success of your website and make data-driven decisions to improve its performance.

Now that you have a fair understanding of the features that Netlify offers, let’s look at some of its use cases to explore how other developers and businesses are using the Netlify platform.

Netlify use cases

Netlify is a popular platform for website hosting and development that provides a comprehensive set of tools for developers, designers, and businesses. With its simple drag-and-drop interface, automatic deployments, and powerful integrations, Netlify has become a preferred choice for building and hosting websites, applications, and static sites.

Here are some common use cases for Netlify, with a focus on how the platform can be used to build, deploy, and manage web applications.

Hosting

Netlify is an excellent choice for hosting websites and web applications. It provides easy deployment options for large web applications, mid-sized projects, and less complex static sites, including drag-and-drop uploads, Git-based deployments, and continuous deployment. It also offers a global CDN for faster content delivery, as well as features for asset optimization, DNS management, and SSL certificate provisioning. Here are some immediate benefits of hosting with Netlify:

  • Easy deployment: Netlify makes it easy to deploy web applications and websites. You can deploy a site with just a few clicks or commands, and the platform provides a simple drag-and-drop interface for managing files and assets.
  • Automatic SSL certificates: Netlify automatically provides SSL certificates for all hosted sites, ensuring that your site is secure and can be accessed over HTTPS.
  • High-performance content delivery: Netlify uses a global CDN to serve your site content from the server nearest to your users, ensuring fast page load times and a smooth user experience.
  • Continuous deployment: Netlify integrates with popular version control systems such as Git, allowing you to automatically deploy changes to your site every time you push updates to your repository.
  • Custom domains and DNS management: Netlify allows you to easily set up custom domains for your sites and provides a simple interface for managing DNS settings.
  • Developer tools: Netlify provides a range of developer tools and services, such as serverless functions, form processing, and authentication, making it a versatile platform for building and hosting web applications.

Companies such as LiveChat, Peloton, Citrix, Twilio, and Apollo are all taking advantage of Netlify’s hosting capabilities to serve their users.

Frontend web development

Netlify’s frontend web development features make it an excellent platform for teams and developers who want to focus on building and deploying frontend applications without needing to worry about the underlying infrastructure. The platform provides features that help to speed up development, improve performance, and ensure that applications are always available and secure.

As a use case, let’s consider a scenario where a team of frontend developers are building a new web application. They want a platform that can support their frontend web development needs, while also providing reliable hosting, easy deployment, and powerful collaboration tools. Netlify would be an excellent choice for this use case for the following reasons:

  • Netlify provides integrations with popular frontend frameworks such as React, Vue, and Angular. This means that the team can easily build with their preferred frontend stack, and deploy and manage their frontend applications on Netlify, without needing to worry about configuring a server or learning a new framework. Netlify also provides a CI/CD workflow that can automatically deploy changes to the frontend application as soon as they are pushed to Git.
  • Netlify provides powerful asset optimization features that help to reduce the size of frontend assets, resulting in faster page load times and improved user experience. The team can enable these features in Netlify’s build settings to ensure that their application is optimized for performance.
  • Netlify supports serverless functions, which are small pieces of code that can be used to perform backend tasks such as sending emails or processing form submissions. This allows the team to build and deploy full-stack applications without needing to set up and manage a backend infrastructure. We’ll dive deeper into serverless functions in the coming chapters.
  • Netlify provides a range of collaboration and team management features that make it easy for teams to work together. It supports role-based access control, deploy previews, and audit logs, which helps to track changes and ensure that deployments are error-free. The team can also receive deployment notifications to stay informed about the status of their frontend application.

Progressive web apps

Progressive web apps (PWAs) are web-based applications that provide a native-like experience to users, with features such as offline support, push notifications, and a home screen icon. Netlify offers a range of tools for building and deploying PWAs, including a powerful edge network for fast and reliable content delivery, as well as integrations with popular PWA frameworks such as React and Vue.

Microservices

Netlify provides a serverless architecture for building and deploying microservices. This allows developers to build and deploy small, independent services that can be easily scaled and maintained. Here are some of the ways Netlify supports microservices:

  • Serverless functions: Netlify offers serverless functions, which allow developers to write and deploy small, stateless functions that perform specific tasks. These functions can be used to build microservices, as they can be triggered by HTTP requests and respond with JSON data. Netlify functions can be written in JavaScript, Go, Python, Ruby, or any other language that can be compiled into binary.
  • API gateway: Netlify’s API gateway allows developers to create and manage APIs that can be used to build microservices. The API gateway provides a simple way to route incoming HTTP requests to specific functions or services, allowing developers to build complex microservices architectures.
  • Add-ons: Netlify provides a variety of add-ons that can be used to build microservices. For example, the FaunaDB add-on can be used to build microservices that require a database, while the SendGrid add-on can be used to build microservices that require email functionality.
  • Continuous deployment: Netlify’s continuous deployment features make it easy to deploy and manage microservices. Developers can set up automatic deployment pipelines that build, test, and deploy microservices whenever changes are made to the code base.
  • DevOps integrations: Netlify integrates with a variety of DevOps tools, such as GitHub, GitLab, and Bitbucket. These integrations make it easy to build, deploy, and manage microservices as part of a larger software development workflow.

Jamstack websites

The Jamstack is a modern web development architecture that leverages the power of client-side JavaScript, APIs, and prebuilt markup, to deliver fast, scalable, and secure web applications. Netlify is a key player in the Jamstack ecosystem, providing a comprehensive set of tools, including serverless functions and built-in content management for building and deploying Jamstack applications. It also integrates with popular Jamstack technologies and content management systems such as Gatsby, Hugo, Nuxt.js, and Next.js. Some Jamstack sites running on Netlify include the following:

  • Jamstack.org
  • Netlify.com
  • Gatsby.com
  • Nuxtjs.com
  • Vuejs.com

Documentation sites

Netlify is also a popular solution for building and hosting documentation sites, providing a range of tools for organizing and publishing technical documentation, user manuals, and other forms of written content. With its automatic deployments, powerful integrations, and simple drag-and-drop interface, Netlify makes it easy to build and maintain up-to-date documentation sites, without the need for extensive technical skills. Loads of documentation sites are currently hosted on Netlify, including the documentation for Vue.js, Nuxt.js, Gatsby, and Solid.js, among many others.

Retail platforms

Netlify retail platforms include but are not limited to online course platforms, e-commerce sites, recreational sites, and so on. With Netlify, one can quickly build, publish, and scale effectively an online professional training program, a personal interest course, or a large-scale educational initiative.

Multilingual support

Netlify provides built-in support for multilingual websites, making it easy to create and manage websites in multiple languages. With Netlify, we can quickly build and publish multilingual websites for a global brand, a local business, or a personal website. Netlify has the required tools needed to promote websites in multiple languages, including features such as language switching, translation management, and automatic language detection.

As we progress in the book, we’ll talk about more practical use cases and discuss how different teams are currently using Netlify to improve their workflows. In the meantime, let’s set up your first Netlify account.

Setting up a Netlify account

Let’s get a little hands-on and create a new Netlify account. This will help us to practice some of the concepts we talk about as we progress in this book. Here’s a step-by-step guide to setting up a Netlify account:

  1. Visit the Netlify home page at https://www.netlify.com/.
  2. Locate the Sign up button in the top-right corner of the page and click on it:
Figure 1.1 – Netlify website

Figure 1.1 – Netlify website

  1. Choose a sign-up method: You have the option to sign up with an email address or use an existing GitHub, GitLab, or Bitbucket account. Select your preferred method and proceed:
Figure 1.2 – Netlify sign up page

Figure 1.2 – Netlify sign up page

  • If you choose to sign up with an email address, provide your email, create a password, and click Sign Up. You’ll receive a confirmation email; click the link in the email to verify your account.
  • If you choose to sign up using a GitHub, GitLab, or Bitbucket account, click on the corresponding button and authorize Netlify to access your account. This will create a new Netlify account associated with your chosen Git service.

After successfully creating your account, log in to the Netlify dashboard using your chosen sign-up method (http://app.netlify.com).

Figure 1.3 – Netlify dashboard overview UI

Figure 1.3 – Netlify dashboard overview UI

With your Netlify account correctly set up, let’s connect it to a GitHub repository and deploy your first site on Netlify.

Connecting to a Git repository

After setting up your Netlify account, you can connect it to a Git repository to streamline the process of deploying your applications from your GitHub account. Follow these steps to connect your GitHub account:

  1. Log in to your Netlify account and access your dashboard.
  2. Click on the Import from Git button, shown in the preceding figure.
  3. Select the Git provider you want to connect to (GitHub, GitLab, or Bitbucket). If you haven’t connected any Git provider to your Netlify account yet, you’ll need to authorize Netlify to access your repositories.

    For GitHub, GitLab, and Bitbucket users: Click on the corresponding service provider button and grant access to your account. If prompted, authorize the connection by clicking on the Authorize button.

Figure 1.4 – Netlify Git provider selection UI

Figure 1.4 – Netlify Git provider selection UI

  1. After authorizing the Git provider, you’ll see a list of your repositories. Choose the repository you want to connect to Netlify:
Figure 1.5 – Netlify Git project selection UI

Figure 1.5 – Netlify Git project selection UI

  1. Next, you’ll need to configure your site settings, including the following:
    • Branch to deploy: Choose the branch from your repository that you want to deploy (typically, it’s the main or master branch).
    • Build command: Enter the command that should be run to build your project. For example, for a JavaScript project, you might use npm run build or yarn build.
    • Publish directory: Specify the directory where the built files will be stored. This is usually a folder such as public or dist in your project.
    • (Optional) Advanced settings: You can add environment variables and configure other advanced options if needed.
Figure 1.6 – Netlify project branch selection UI

Figure 1.6 – Netlify project branch selection UI

  1. Click on the Deploy site button once you’ve configured the site settings, to complete the process.
Figure 1.7 – Netlify successful deployment UI

Figure 1.7 – Netlify successful deployment UI

Your Git repository is now connected to your Netlify, and your site will be live on the provided URL in your dashboard. Subsequent updates to that repository will be automatically built and deployed whenever you push changes to the configured branch in your repository.

Now that we have successfully deployed a site on Netlify, let’s explore some more configurations we can set on the site to enable more functionalities.

Configuring a new site

After connecting your Git repository to your Netlify account, you can add more configurations to the site to customize it and enable extended features such as changing the site name, adding your custom domain, environment variables, and so on. Follow these steps to configure your new site:

  1. On the Netlify dashboard, navigate to your newly created site. Click on the Site configuration button.
  2. In the General section, you can update your site’s name by clicking on the Change site name button. You can also delete your site or transfer its ownership to another Netlify user.

Figure 1.8 – Netlify site configuration

Figure 1.8 – Netlify site configuration

  1. If you have a custom domain, you can configure it in the Domain management section. Click on Add custom domain and enter your domain name. Follow the instructions to update your domain’s DNS settings to point to Netlify. We’ll cover domain management in more detail when we get to Chapter 2.
Figure 1.9 – Netlify custom domain configuration UI

Figure 1.9 – Netlify custom domain configuration UI

  1. After adding a custom domain, you can enable HTTPS for your site. In the Domain management section, scroll down to the HTTPS area and click on Verify DNS configuration to check that your custom domain is properly configured. Once verified, click on Enable HTTPS to automatically generate an SSL certificate using Let’s Encrypt.
Figure 1.10 – Netlify custom domain address UI

Figure 1.10 – Netlify custom domain address UI

  1. To configure build and deploy settings, in the Build & deploy section, you can update your build settings, such as the build command, and publish directory. You can also add build plugins and configure build hooks for triggering deployments.
  2. To add environment variables, click on Environment variables under the General section. Then, click on Add a variable to add, modify, or remove environment variables.
Figure 1.11 – Netlify Environment variables UI

Figure 1.11 – Netlify Environment variables UI

  1. Netlify provides additional features such as forms, serverless functions, and edge handlers. These forms, functions, and other features can be configured in their respective sections within the site settings if you have them in your project. We’ll cover them later in more detail.

After configuring your new site, Netlify will automatically apply the settings, and your site will be live with the specified configurations. Remember that any changes pushed to the connected Git repository will trigger a new build and deploy, reflecting the latest settings and content on your site. It’s also worth mentioning that these configurations are only applicable to this particular site and will not affect any new sites you add to Netlify.

Automating deployments with webhooks on Netlify

By default, Netlify simplifies the deployment process by automating deployments using continuous deployment. Whenever you push changes to your Git repository, Netlify automatically rebuilds and re-deploys your site. Additionally, you can use webhooks to trigger deployments from other services.

Webhooks allow you to trigger deployments from other services, such as content management systems (CMS) or other third-party tools. Imagine that you’d like to rebuild and redeploy your site when a new user account is created and a record is added to your CMS. You can achieve that easily with webhooks on Netlify. Follow these steps to set up a webhook:

  1. Navigate to your site settings on the Netlify dashboard.
  2. Go to the Build & Deploy section and scroll down to the Build Hooks area.
  3. Click on Add build hook to create a new webhook. Provide a name for the build hook, choose the branch you want to trigger the build from, and click Save.
  4. Copy the unique webhook URL that Netlify generates and add it to the external service that you want to trigger a deployment from. The process for adding a webhook URL in external services varies, so consult the service’s documentation for specific instructions.

With continuous deployment and webhooks in place, your site’s deployments will be automated, and this will ensure that your site always reflects the latest changes from your Git repository or updates from external services.

Summary

In this chapter, we introduced the Netlify platform, its origin, and how it solves the problem of deploying and scaling web applications. You have learned about the Netlify platform and its capabilities for deploying and scaling web applications. You have gained a good grasp of the Netlify platform and its unique features and deployment patterns.

You have also learned how to create and configure a Netlify account and how Netlify works with Git providers to streamline the CI/CD process. Additionally, you have gained an understanding of the different use cases for Netlify and how it solves the challenges of the modern web.

Overall, these lessons are crucial to understanding the basics of the Netlify platform and its capabilities.

In the next chapter, you will learn how to deploy a web application to Netlify in more detail.

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Key benefits

  • Leverage this one-stop guide to deploy, optimize, and scale frontend web applications like a pro
  • Discover best practices for deploying applications across popular frontend frameworks such as React, Vue, and Svelte
  • Grasp Netlify's core functionalities, including continuous deployment and performance optimization, through real-world examples
  • Purchase of the print or Kindle book includes a free PDF eBook

Description

Written by a former member of Netlify’s Developer Experience team, Web Development on Netlify is the ultimate companion for anyone looking to build, deploy, optimize, and scale frontend web applications on the platform. From setting up your account, and configuring settings and options, to deploying and optimizing web applications, this book offers comprehensive guidance through Netlify’s extensive capabilities, supported by step-by-step instructions and real-world examples. Focused on best practices and scalability, this invaluable resource is for both beginners and experienced developers, covering essential aspects such as performance optimization, A/B testing, webhooks, continuous deployment, and scaling considerations. Whether you want to get started with Netlify or expand your knowledge of the platform, this book has everything you need to take your web applications to the next level. Ekene’s clear and concise style makes it easy to understand even for readers with little to no Netlify experience. By the end of this book, you’ll be equipped with the expertise to revolutionize your workflow and take your web projects to new heights with Netlify, adhering to industry best practices every step of the way.

What you will learn

Explore Netlify's limitless capabilities to see how it provides everything your business needs Start by setting up your Netlify account and configuring settings Discover best practices for optimizing the performance of your web apps on Netlify Leverage Netlify's built-in A/B testing and webhooks capabilities to improve the functionality of your web apps Set up continuous deployment on Netlify and keep your web apps up-to-date automatically Maintain and troubleshoot your web apps on Netlify ensuring their continued success

Product Details

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Publication date : May 10, 2024
Length 186 pages
Edition : 1st Edition
Language : English
ISBN-13 : 9781801815833
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Product Details


Publication date : May 10, 2024
Length 186 pages
Edition : 1st Edition
Language : English
ISBN-13 : 9781801815833
Category :
Concepts :

Table of Contents

13 Chapters
Preface Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
1. Part 1:Introduction and Setup Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
2. Chapter 1: Getting to Know the Netlify Platform Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
3. Part 2: Deployment and Optimization Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
4. Chapter 2: Deploying a Web Application – Configuring Settings and Options Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
5. Chapter 3: Optimizing Web Application Performance with Netlify Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
6. Chapter 4: Understanding the Jamstack Architecture Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
7. Chapter 5: Advanced Concepts – A/B Testing, Webhooks, and Forms Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
8. Part 3: Scaling and Maintenance Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
9. Chapter 6: Scaling Considerations and Optimizations Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
10. Chapter 7: Maintenance and Troubleshooting Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
11. Index Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
12. Other Books You May Enjoy Chevron down icon Chevron up icon

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