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What is Jamstack eCommerce?

Kaya Ismail • 12 May 2022

Jamstack is a modern web development architecture taking over the web, and it has huge benefits for eCommerce stores. If you’re looking to improve page speed and performance, rank better in SEO, and likely increase your conversions, then Jamstack could be exactly what you’re looking for.

What Is Jamstack eCommerce?

What Is Jamstack?

Jamstack is a web development architecture based on three components: client-side JavaScript, reusable APIs, and pre-built Markup. Originally coined by Netlify co-founder Mathias Bilman in 2015, the concept of Jamstack has grown in popularity considerably over the years. 


According to the latest Jamstack Community Survey conducted every year by Netlify, eCommerce is one of the biggest drivers of Jamstack adoption, with 34% of users leveraging Jamstack to build eCommerce stores. Also, these sites are necessarily small, with 32% of developers indicating that their sites cater to millions of visitors. 


How Jamstack Works

Let’s take a look at the three components of Jamstack and how they fit together. JavaScript is responsible for the client-side of websites, aka what the visitor sees. It ensures that there is dynamic functionality. Reusable APIs are used to connect different services such as an eCommerce platform or payment gateway to your Jamstack site, while Markup is used to serve Jamstack sites as pre-rendered HTML files. Jamstack sites are decoupled, meaning that the front-end layer is separate from the backend, and APIs are used to connect them during the build process. 


What Is Jamstack eCommerce? 

Building eCommerce websites with Jamstack helps eliminate common challenges like slow page speed, performance, and user experience. You can build your eCommerce website using Jamstack and then use APIs to connect to an eCommerce platform to handle backend functionality like managing inventory and processing sales. In addition, Jamstack and headless commerce also work well together since, like headless commerce, the front-end layer is separate from the backend infrastructure. 


Advantages of Building eCommerce Stores Using Jamstack

This is how eCommerce stores can take advantage of building with Jamstack. 

Page Speed and Performance

Jamstack sites are incredibly fast since the pre-built files are served over a content delivery network (CDN) rather than from a database. 


Better Developer Experience

The traditional alternatives to building websites can be restrictive to modern developers. With Jamstack, developers are free to focus on orchestrating the front-end experience without worrying about what’s happening on the backend. Not to mention, since Jamstack relies on JavaScript, developers are free to use some of the most popular front-end frameworks that they are likely already familiar with. 


Faster Time to Market

A benefit of improved speed performance and better developer experience is that eCommerce stores can achieve a faster time to market. Developers can quickly add new details to any eCommerce store or implement changes more rapidly than traditional websites, allowing new products, campaigns, and more to go to market faster. 


SEO

The speed of Jamstack sites is also important for SEO since site loading speed and performance are important factors in Google’s ranking criteria, which means that building your site with Jamstack can lead to higher organic search rankings. 


Omnichannel Marketing 

Jamstack sites can be delivered on any device using APIs, opening up the doors to omnichannel marketing across several channels. 


Security 

Jamstack sites aren’t connected to a server or database. As a result, they are less likely to be affected by security vulnerabilities or hacks. 


Scalability

Markup files are served over a CDN with Jamstack. So, without managing the load on the server, Jamstack sites can benefit from greater scalability and better manage spikes in traffic, something common for eCommerce stores. 


How to Make Jamstack eCommerce Work For You

We’ve looked at the three pieces of the Jamstack (JavaScript, APIs, and Markup), but how can you get them to work for you? Well, you’ll need a few things to make Jamstack eCommerce work:

  • A static site generator

  • A headless CMS

  • A content delivery network (CDN)

  • Services 

Static Site Generator & Front-end Technologies

A static site generator (SSG) is critical for making Jamstack work. It allows you to build a static site from pre-built HTML files and then deploy them to a server. Instead of rendering the files at request time like traditional websites, an SSG renders the files at build time. 


Some common examples of SSGs include Gatsby, Hugo, and Nuxt. Combining these SSGs with the JavaScript framework of your choice gives you everything you need to handle the front-end layer and create a Jamstack site. 


Headless CMS

After you’ve created your Jamstack site, you’ll need a way to manage the content for that site. A headless CMS connects to the frontend using APIs, allowing you to create, edit and publish content to the site. Storyblok offers a great headless CMS option for Jamstack sites. 


CDN/Hosting

Once you can create your Jamstack site and can manage its content, you also need somewhere to host it. The content delivery network (CDN) handles those hosting duties and gives you somewhere to deploy the files. Platforms like Netlify, Vercel, and Cloudflare are some of the most commonly used CDN options for Jamstack sites. 


Services

Once the frontend of the Jamstack site is handled, you still need to provide some backend functionality if you’re going to turn it into an eCommerce store. Here’s where APIs come in handy again, as you can use them to connect to an eCommerce platform like Shopify. However, you can also use them to connect to payment processors, search engines, and frontend as a service solutions that can help improve the experience for your internal team and customers. 


Launch Your Jamstack eCommerce Site With Instant Commerce

The benefits of improved page speed and performance, security and scalability, and more make Jamstack an excellent option for eCommerce stores. However, if you want to take your Jamstack site even further, adding a frontend as a service solution like Instant Commerce is a good idea.


Instant Commerce provides a no-code headless storefront builder that makes it easier to create a frontend experience your customers love on any channel. Instant Commerce removes the developer dependency for eCommerce merchants, allowing them to create a storefront using pre-built building blocks. 


Instant Commerce is also built using the Jamstack philosophy with files deployed to Cloudflare for hosting. In addition, we offer several integrations with many of the tools you’ll need to make Jamstack work for you, including Storyblok, Shopify, and more. 


Jamstack can help you speed up your eCommerce store, but there could also be other factors at play. Read Why Is My Shopify Store So Slow? (5 Potential Culprits) to discover what they may be. 

Author / Writer
Kaya Ismail
Content Marketer

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