Those who have something to do with web development know that the SPA vs MPA comparison is one of the most debated topics at the moment. It seems that almost everyone has hopped aboard the single-page application bandwagon lately. Why is there so much hype around it? And what about the traditional multiple-page applications? Are they worse? These questions have brought us an interesting idea. In this article, we're going to be overviewing the two essential approaches to web application development - single-page-application (SPA) vs. multi-page web applications (MPA). This has to be done in order to help businesses make an informed choice that suits a particular project best.
So, when is it better to go with the single-page applications instead of the multi-page ones? Let's find out!
What is a Single-Page Application?
In practice, this means that a user can see the main content in a browser, but when scrolling or navigating to a different page, all necessary elements will be dynamically updated instead of the entire page reloading. Thanks to this single-page applications resemble native applications except for them working in a browser.
The Internet is filled with SPA examples. Some of them you use on a regular basis. Every time you open your inbox messages in Gmail, read the Facebook news feed or join a thread discussion on Twitter, you deal with single-page web apps.
What is a Multi-Page Application?
What is a Multi-Page Application As the name suggests, a multi-page application (or an MPA) is a web application that consists of multiple web pages that are downloaded when a user visits different parts of the page. This is a traditional web app development pattern suitable for websites that have to deal with big amounts of content.
As a rule, multi-page apps are complex with quite a few levels, links, and different UIs. The content on such websites is broken down into multiple micro-websites, sections, and subsections.
The Bottom Line: Choosing Between Single-Page Application vs MPA
When SPAs have an upper hand
Single-page applications are the perfect match if you need to create a dynamic solution with a limited data volume. Even though they run in the browser, single-page apps feel like desktop or mobile apps and that’s why they are so popular. Since single-page architecture has highly reactive behavior, it is ideal for building platforms like social networking sites, SaaS platforms, and closed communities where SEO has little influence.
When MPAs have an upper hand
In turn, MAPs will be a win-win option for large-scale companies that need to present a wide array of services and products and therefore the app will require quite a few features, pages, and menus. For example, if you need to create an online store or build a marketplace like eBay, a multi-page app is the way to go.
As you can see it is not about deciding whether a single-page app is better than a multi-page app or vice versa since both architectures have their own benefits and drawbacks. It is about picking what solution is more suitable for particular business needs. If you have any questions regarding this topic, feel free to reach out to us. We will happily help you with choosing the best web app for your business.