Jamstack: Benefits of Distributed Persistent Rendering

Thought Leadership

By Felipe Silberstein | August 17, 2021
A partially visible laptop screen displays a code snippet.

Using Jamstack has become the new standard in web development for large companies. This method provides a range of benefits for teams who want to build flexible, highly customizable web experiences with the best of modern tools.

If you’re not familiar with it, Jamstack is a web development methodology that uses Javascript, APIs, and Markup. The approach adds security, capacity, and speed to your platforms, helping you maintain and expand thousands of key content pages.

Let’s take a closer look at what Jamstack offers and one of its key benefits for site loading: Distributed Persistent Rendering.

DPR: A new paradigm for site loading

One of the best things about Jamstack is that its creators and community are always looking for ways to improve performance and speed up site loading times.

A key feature of Jamstack that makes peak performance possible is Distributed Persistent Rendering, or DPR. The idea behind DPR is to help platforms with hundreds of thousands of content pages better manage their loading time. It works by deferring content rendering — your URLs, pages, and site assets — until they are requested. With DPR, only the essential elements of your site are included in the initial load with DPR. The rest of the URLs remain on standby, waiting to be requested.

DPR is agnostic in terms of the development approaches it can work with. It is intended for sites that are constantly creating new content and adding new applications. To optimize for DPR, you must identify which critical content you want to include in the initial load. To do this, it’s helpful to think about the content that must always be present for your users and doesn’t change significantly over time. This makes the initial load lighter.

For content not considered critical, you can instruct it to wait to load until it is requested by user queries through an API. Once it is requested, it will always be available for them. Pages that work best to defer are high-volume product pages you may have on your site or content that is not core to informing the first site experience for your user.

Preparing for change

One of the biggest challenges for development teams today is keeping up with the speed of change. Companies must always be prepared for continuous iterations of their tech to provide the digital experiences customers want. Unexpected events further exemplify the importance of creating resilient platforms that enable quick adjustments and don’t burden your development teams.

Many large brands have opted to use modern technologies like DPR, Jamstack, and headless platforms for managing their content. All of these technologies make it possible to massively scale content assets while keeping maintenance and loading requirements manageable.

At Apply Digital, we embrace these innovative technologies when building our client sites, as we’re confident in their ability to create the digital environment needed to grow and scale. If you’d like to learn more about how these technologies could work for you, please reach out to someone on our team today, and we’d be happy to discuss how we can help.