There are several great CMS available online, however, WordPress appears a great option as the website development platform. That's because of it's simple and easy to use admin UI that makes it super easy to create and edit dynamic content – without having in-depth technical knowledge.
However, one problem with WordPress is that the front-end needs to be written in PHP, and you need to combine PHP logic with HTML to WordPress website. Another problem is that WordPress isn't very fast, which is one of the most crucial factors that can make or break a mobile site. Lastly, WordPress does not provide control over some processes and so on.
You can find several solutions to deal with the issues you might encounter when working on a WordPress installation. For instance, you can make your WP site fast using the WP Total Cache plugin and other solutions. But, wouldn't it be better if you could gain additional benefits along with the ability to address the above discussed challenges? This can be achieved with the help of Node.js.
Wondering how Node.js help in improving WordPress issues?
The benefit of using Node.js is that it helps in writing WordPress templates in a manner that renders JSON in the browser rather than HTML. Additionally, we get the ability to build a front node server that take WordPress as its proxy and provide benefits such as:
- Enable caching any content based on your preferences.
- Provide better control over the flow and processes. Also, it allows to flush something when we want.
- There isn't any difference in how development tasks are carried out in WordPress, except that you're required to write your templates that output result in JSON format instead of HTML.
To avail such benefits, however, you need to create a front-end for your WordPress site in Node.js. You can do so, by using the Node.js framework called Express. Simply follow the below mentioned steps to understand how you can setup your WP site's front-end server in Node:
Step 1 – Set up your WordPress installation.
Step 2 – Next, rather than creating an index.php file in your theme's folder that renders HTML, make it render JSON format instead.
Step 3 – Setup a Node.js server using the Express framework.
Step 4 – Proxy all your requests to your WordPress install directly. And as soon as you get a response to those requests, merge the data of the JSON file with your template engine.
Step 5 – And at last, cache your result.
A Few Other Benefits and Drawbacks Of Using Node
One of the biggest benefits of using Node.js for developing the front-end of your WordPress site is that it helps in building the templates more parallel than ever – when you used the traditional PHP development approach. Well, whenever you need to write a standard template for any WordPress install, the logic is usually merged with HTML, making front-end development overly complicated.
Apart from the advantages that Node.js offers, there are a few downsides as well. First off all, it unable you to make use of any front-end WordPress plugins, since you're not required to anything that help in rendering HTML. Needless to say, this is a big drawback for the majority of developers as most of them are familiar with HTML. Another drawback could be the addition of another server that could result in increasing the complexity, especially when you're running smaller sites.
When working with a WordPress website, developers often find it hard to merge front-end development in PHP, and rendering the admin UI in HTML. A viable alternative is to create a front-end server using Node.js and make it render JSON instead of HTML.