kapsys-logo
Expertise
Technologies
Blog
Contact us
Blog

How To Deploy Your First Site Online with Vercel?

February 20, 2024 by
  • User Experience
host website on vercel

Navigating the vast world of website deployment can be overwhelming for many, especially those taking initial steps into this domain. With many platforms and techniques available, how does one make an informed decision? If you've pondered questions like "Where should I host my website?" You're you're in for a treat. 

This comprehensive guide from Kapsys will delve deep into the nuances of "how to deploy to Vercel," simplifying the process for you. By understanding the art of deploying to Vercel, you're not just putting your website online; you're ensuring it's hosted on a platform that stands for efficiency, simplicity, and robust performance. Dive in to unravel the steps to making your digital space come alive on the web!

What is Vercel?

Vercel__Develop__Preview__Ship__For_the_best_frontend_teams.png

Vercel is a cloud platform for static sites and Serverless Functions, known for its simplicity and performance. It is the company behind the popular open-source framework Next.js. Here's a deeper dive into what Vercel is and why it's become such a prominent tool for modern web developers:

  1. Developer-Friendly Deployment: Vercel emphasizes a simplified deployment process. With just a few commands or a push to a Git repository, developers can deploy their sites or applications live on the web.
  2. Support for Popular Frameworks: While Vercel has close ties with Next.js, it also supports other popular frontend frameworks such as React, Vue.js, Angular, and more.
  3. Serverless Functions: Vercel allows developers to write and deploy Serverless Functions, which let them run server-side code without managing a traditional server. This makes it easy to, for instance, create APIs or handle form submissions.
  4. Automatic SSL & Custom Domains: Vercel handles HTTPS for your deployments out of the box with automatically provisioned SSL certificates. It also offers a seamless way to connect custom domains to your projects.
  5. Performance Optimization: The platform is built with performance in mind. Vercel leverages a global Content Delivery Network (CDN) to ensure that your site or app is served swiftly to users worldwide.
  6. Real-time Feedback & Collaboration: Vercel's dashboard and deployment previews allow developers and teams to get real-time feedback on their deployments, facilitating collaboration and faster iteration.
  7. Integrated Development Workflow: By linking Vercel to your GitHub, GitLab, or Bitbucket account, the platform can automatically deploy your projects when you push to your repository, thus creating a continuous deployment workflow.

Vercel is a platform tailored for frontend developers and teams, aiming to provide a frictionless experience from development to deployment, emphasizing speed, security, and scalability.

host website on vercel

Why Choose Vercel for Hosting?

Choosing the right hosting platform can dramatically influence the performance, scalability, and ease of management for your website or application. Vercel, one of the contemporary leaders in this space, brings a suite of features tailored for modern web development. Here are compelling reasons to choose Vercel for hosting:

  1. Seamless Integration with Popular Frameworks:
    • Vercel is behind the popular Next.js framework, but it doesn't stop there. The platform offers out-of-the-box support for several prominent web frameworks, including React, Vue, Angular, and Svelte. This ensures developers can leverage the full potential of their chosen tools without fretting over compatibility issues.
  2. Automatic SSL & Performance Optimization:
    • Every deployment on Vercel is automatically secured with SSL, ensuring that user data is encrypted and connections are safe. Vercel automatically optimizes your assets (like images) for performance, serving them from a global Content Delivery Network (CDN). This ensures swift load times and a seamless user experience regardless of the visitor's location.
  3. Serverless Functions:
    • Vercel's Serverless Functions allow developers to build and scale applications without managing a traditional server setup. This simplifies backend processes and provides scalable, pay-as-you-go pricing, so you only pay for what you use.
  4. Developer-Friendly Experience:
    • Vercel's deployment process is designed to be straightforward. With just a few commands or through integrations with repositories like GitHub, developers can see their site go live. This removes the often complex and tedious steps associated with traditional hosting platforms.
  5. Real-time Feedback & Collaboration Tools:
    • Vercel offers a live deployment dashboard, giving developers instant feedback on the status and health of their deployments. Additionally, the platform provides deployment previews, allowing teams to review real-time changes before going live. This can significantly enhance collaboration and streamline the development process.
  6. Scalability:
    • With its serverless architecture and global CDN, Vercel is built to handle surges in traffic gracefully. Whether you're expecting a few visitors or millions, Vercel scales on-demand, ensuring your website remains responsive.
  7. Environment Variables & Secrets Management:
    • For applications that rely on APIs and other third-party integrations, Vercel offers a secure way to manage environment variables and secrets, ensuring that sensitive data remains protected.
  8. Integrated Development Workflow:
    • Connecting Vercel to version control platforms like GitHub, GitLab, or Bitbucket facilitates a Continuous Deployment (CD) workflow. This ensures that every code push can automatically trigger a deployment, keeping your live site updated and in sync with your latest codebase.

Vercel is not just a hosting platform; it's a holistic solution designed for the needs of modern web developers. From its developer-centric tools to its emphasis on performance and security, Vercel stands out as an ideal choice for hosting websites and web applications in today's dynamic digital landscape.

how to deploy to vercel

Best Practices When Deploying to Vercel

Deploying your website or application on Vercel can be a straightforward process, but following some of the best practices is essential to make the most of the platform and ensure your deployments are efficient and secure. Here's a compilation of best practices to consider when deploying to Vercel:

  1. Optimize Your Assets:
    • Compress Images: Before uploading, use image optimization tools to reduce the file size without compromising quality.
    • Minify CSS and JS Files: Tools like Terser for JavaScript and CSSNano for CSS can help reduce the file size of your code.
    • Leverage Vercel's CDN: Vercel automatically caches your assets on their global CDN, but ensure you set appropriate cache headers for optimal performance.
  2. Use Environment Variables:
    • If your project uses API keys, database credentials, or sensitive information, never hard-code them in your application. Instead, utilize Vercel's environment variables feature, which allows you to securely inject these values during the build or runtime.
  3. Continuous Deployment:
    • Integrate your Vercel project with GitHub, GitLab, or Bitbucket. This way, each time you push changes to your repository, Vercel will automatically redeploy your site, ensuring a consistent and updated deployment.
  4. Utilize Serverless Functions:
    • Whenever possible, leverage Vercel's Serverless Functions for backend tasks. This ensures scalability and reduces the need for managing traditional servers.
  5. Deployment Previews:
    • Before pushing changes to the production, always use Vercel's deployment preview feature. This lets you see a live version of the changes, ensuring everything works as expected.
  6. Monitor Deployment Performance:
    • Regularly check Vercel's dashboard for any build or deployment warnings or errors. Addressing these promptly can prevent potential issues on the live site.
  7. Set Up Custom Domains Correctly:
    • If using a custom domain, ensure you've set it up correctly within Vercel and configured the DNS settings as recommended. This will ensure that your domain is secured with SSL and performs optimally.
  8. Opt for Incremental Static Regeneration (ISR) with Next.js:
    • If you're using Next.js, consider leveraging ISR. It allows you to rebuild static pages on-demand, ensuring content freshness without sacrificing performance.
  9. Stay Updated:
    • With the ever-evolving tech landscape, ensure that you're using the latest versions of frameworks or tools Vercel supports. Regularly check Vercel's documentation and update logs.
  10. Secure Your Vercel Account:
  • Use strong, unique passwords and consider enabling two-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security to your account.
deploying to vercel

Wrapping Up

The process to "host website on Vercel" is straightforward and efficient. As you've seen in this guide on "how to deploy to Vercel," your site can be up and running with just a few steps. 

By choosing Vercel and adhering to best practices, you ensure an easy deployment process and a robust and fast-performing site. Now that you know how to deploy to Vercel, it's time to share your site with the world!