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How to Create a Sustainable Web Application from Scratch


Creating web application from scratch requires taking a methodic approach so as to ensure that there is no undue risk of losing sight of the purpose of the project. Appropriate care has to be taken so that the project planning, monitoring, implementation, testing and release of the web application is conducted efficiently without wasting any time.

But one thing that requires attention regardless of discussing any specific technologies is the early UI planning – like how the UI will operate, etc. so as to be able to make choices about technology that can accommodate your UI desires. Choose between Click-to-edit, Drag and drop, Two-click delete and Automatic saving (post any action).

Phase 1. Requirements Definition

This phase calls for defining the scope and requirements of your web application with regard to what your application must do, main features and technical requirements:

Web Application

Scope: For defining the scope of your web application, you have to firstly compile a detailed and descriptive list of application features that you want to be realized.

Requirements: A careful introspection and analysis of requirements with the right balance of time, cost and objective, is an integral part of an application development process. It is here in this step of the process where you have to make an estimation of your potential traffic, choose a hosting service, database, as well as choose a server-side language (PHP, ASP, etc.). But, make sure that you do not underestimate or overestimate your requirements too much.

Phase 2. Design

Once you are done with defining the scope and requirement of the web application development project, you move across to a ‘cross phase’ i.e. planning and monitoring of the project to the Design phase that again can be separated into various sub-phases like design – for application map, for database, for Page structure, for Server-side language and for JS Framework.

Web Application

Designing Application Map: Application map is an important part of the design process because it comprises essential information about the structure of your application – the pages and the relationship between them. So, it is the map with locations (pages) and path (relationship between the pages) that helps you make your way to the next phase. This proves to be cost and time effective since you are clear about what needs to be implemented.

Designing Application Database: Designing application database is a simple process where you will be using an entities-relationships (ER) model that calls for first defining the tables, and then defining the attributes and relationships between tables.

Designing Page Structure: This next step involves designing an approximate structure of the page, where you have to identify all main sections using a name (e.g. #header, #navbar, #mainContent, #sidebar, etc.).

Designing Server-side Language: This involves taking an object-oriented approach for application development, which will help you in defining classes, functions and all server-side features you would require.

Designing JS Framework: Here in this step you are required to choose a JavaScript Framework (such as jQuery, Scriptaculous, MooTools, etc.), and compile a simple list that connects each specific feature to one or more pages identified in your application map.

Phase 3. Implementation

This is the most crucial phase of the application development process as the real challenge for realization of your application begins with the Implementation phase. This phase again is divided into several sub-phases like database (SQL Code), HTML (Page Structure), CSS (Page Layout), Server-side language (Classes, functions, etc.) and Javascript (AJAX and JS Framework features).

Web Application

Implementation of Database: This is a simple and the initial process of the Implementation phase where you are required to create a new database and write SQL code defining tables, attributes and relationships.

Implementation of HTML: Here you are required to use the page structure you defined in Design phase to implement HTML code. This in fact is the appropriate time when you require adding all HTML elements you need in sections identified during Design phase.

Implementation of CSS: This is an important phase of the Implementation process when you have to add styles to your application by starting to write CSS code mainly when the main structure is ready.

Implementation of Server-side language: This is the phase when you need to implement application class, application functions, DB interactions, queries, etc. In short, everything calls for a server-side interaction.

Implementation of JavaScript: This calls for the implementation of Ajax features using the same framework you chose in Design phase (jQuery, Scriptaculous, MooTools, etc.).

Phase 4. Testing

Testing is the most critical phase of a web application development process, as it involves the quality assurance aspect of application development before being delivered for use by end-user in the deployment phase. Here in this phase, you have to test your application/code by executing in various conditions (like in various web browsers) and make sure that that all the application bugs are detected and fixed (by modifying the code) and proceed for final validation (after validating the modified code) before release.

Web Application

Phase 5. Release Of The Web App

With finally the testing being done and bugs fixing over, the web application is now ready for release. You can proceed by publishing it in a test folder and make a final test. If it passes this test then you can move over for final release.


The aforementioned points in the articles takes us into a comprehensive tour of the web application development process from the start where it initiates with the defining of the features of the application that would be ultimately based on the resolution, path and goal of the whole app development process that is being commenced.

While it calls for the resources that are to be used for application development, to be streamlined and assigned, it is also important that all the technical issues be addressed such as the scripting language to be used and time for project completion. Moreover, besides determining the structure and framework of operations to be used, the implementation phase is crucial as it is at this phase that a kind of beta version of the application is available for the development team.

Have you been considering a web application development project for your business?



Ellis is a digital marketing strategist at VITEB. He is passionate about web trends, online marketing and social media. He is working with leading web development company, having dedicated Indian website developers & mobile application developers.

Discussion 3 Comments

  1. Walker

    I used this process in all of web applications I’ve made, and it’s really help when you are working on long term projects.

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