What to use when developing a website and application for a marketplace
In most cases, when creating a marketplace, a website and a mobile application are developed. Let’s see what technologies are better to use for this.
Typically PHP is used as a server-side programming language, MySQL as a database management system, and some kind of content management system (CMS). Why these particular technologies? Because this is the simplest and fastest solution that a lot of developers can work with. In case of an emergency, you can change the developer or development team and this will not entail any significant consequences.
There is an opinion that marketplaces are some kind of complex system that needs to be written in lower-level languages. But we believe that the more complex the technology you choose, the more you limit the number of developers you can work with, which means you initially increase the cost of development. In addition, you will always be attached to a person or team, which can make it difficult to support the project in the future. Therefore, here you do not need to limit yourself, but take a proven technology and make the first version of your project.
Moreover, PHP and MySQL are actively developing and even now with their help you can create solutions of almost any complexity and with any functionality.
We have decided on technologies, but what to choose as a CMS for the marketplace? As our experience shows, for almost any idea, you can use a ready-made solution that either fully covers the necessary functionality or requires minor modifications. For example, we at Tamaranga have created customized solutions for the bulletin board and service exchange .
Of course, there are also relatively free solutions, for example, on WordPress. There are many templates for both service exchanges and product marketplaces. But this system is designed primarily for magazines and blogs, which means you are almost guaranteed to run into performance and site optimization problems.
How we recommend to build the development of the marketplace:
- Choose one or another ready-made CMS.
- Write down what is missing to implement your idea, that is, what will need to be improved in the template or functionality and what you would like to see in the first version of the product.
- Estimate the cost of finalizing the CMS with developers. For a ready-made, documented system, finding a good developer will not be difficult.
This approach will allow you to quickly launch the site and save a lot of money. After all, this is exactly what is needed to test the niche and your business hypothesis in general.
Of course, there is another option to develop everything from scratch. But this is very long and expensive, therefore, you need to clearly understand why you need a self-written system. Perhaps you overcomplicated the idea or didn’t search for a ready-made solution well.
For example, we recommend finding out how much an ad site like Avito costs .
With applications, everything is more complicated and interesting. These are newer technologies than the web. This is not a formed market, there are few developers and a lot of pitfalls that need to be taken into account.
Here, unfortunately, there are practically no high-quality ready-made solutions, as is the case with sites. Most often, development is ordered from scratch with the appropriate budget and risks. But you need to think carefully about whether to do it from scratch.
It is impossible to say unequivocally which stack of technologies to choose, since now they are all quite young and each has its own advantages and its own objective disadvantages.
Let’s take a look at the three main development approaches and their salient features.
1. Native app for iOS or Android:
- high price;
- high requirements for the developer;
- high speed of the application.
2. PWA (Progressive Web Apps):
- in fact – a mobile site;
- the ability to make an icon on the phone screen.
3. Cross-platform application:
- average cost;
- developer at the price of a web programmer;
- high speed of work;
- restrictions on large animations and 3D objects.
This is a pure development separately for iOS, separately for Android in one language or another, which is made for this operating system. This is the lowest level option that can be implemented.
The main disadvantage is the high cost. You write each application separately for each system, pay the iOS programmer separately, pay the Android programmer separately, the back-end developer separately, and possibly also the database designer if some complex architecture is being programmed. Accordingly – high requirements for the developer.
Benefits – This is the most productive option. Due to the fact that it is a low-level approach, it has access to hardware power and can make the application faster among other things. We have access to hardware and can use all the resources of the phone that are available, thus achieving maximum speed.
Our partners have developed native applications for iOS and Android for the bulletin board.
Progressive Web Apps
PWA is the exact opposite of a native app. In fact, this is a mobile site that has several features, the main of which is the ability to make an icon for your project on the user’s phone screen. That is, you place the “Add to Home Screen” link on your site, then the user installs the PWA application on his phone and, when clicking on its icon, opens your mobile site.
However, there are a number of issues with downloading and transferring data. Since this is a website, you need to understand that these are page transitions, each page is loaded separately and requests the server, and this is a certain load in terms of both applications and server calls. But it is possible to cache the pages of the site and have access to them without the Internet, as well as reduce the loading time of screens.
Unfortunately, Apple is now resisting the development of PWA, as this technology will greatly squander the App Store market. Launching a pseudo app for iPhone users is not as easy and intuitive as it is for Android users. Therefore, if most of your audience is iPhone users, this technology will be less interesting for you for now.
By the way, there is a PWA plugin for Tamaranga products that will help you convert a website into an analogue of a mobile application.
Cross-platform development is a kind of arithmetic mean of the previous two technologies. Its essence is that the application for different operating systems is developed by one programmer. It is written on the same technology stack, and then simply generated separately for Android and separately for iOS.
- Two times less work, respectively, less cost than when developing native applications.
- High speed. Although this is a controversial point for many natives, nevertheless, tests were carried out where there was a delay of about 1.5-2 times when the application was launched due to the rendering of all functionality, but already in the process of using the mobile application, the speed was one to one with the native.
The main drawback is that cross-platform development is still more for the implementation of business applications, that is, when there are forms and directories with pictures. But if there is a difficult task, for example, a 3D fitting of clothes, then native is preferable, as this is a demanding task in terms of phone performance.
If we are talking about applications like Yudu and bulletin boards like Avito, then a cross-platform approach can perfectly close the issue of applications. You can, of course, blame the fact that the first launch is longer, but the price is 2-2.5 times less than for the native. From a business point of view, it is still more profitable to make the client wait a couple of seconds than to overpay several times more for development.