Django Functions


Django and Server-Side Rendering: Generating Dynamic Web Pages

In the world of web development, delivering a seamless user experience and optimizing for search engines are two critical goals. Server-Side Rendering (SSR) is a technique that helps achieve both of these objectives. In this blog, we’ll explore how to implement SSR in Django, a popular Python web framework, to generate dynamic web pages that not only load faster but also improve search engine optimization (SEO). We’ll cover the basics, benefits, and provide practical code examples to get you started on the path to creating high-performance Django applications.

Django and Server-Side Rendering: Generating Dynamic Web Pages

1. What is Server-Side Rendering (SSR)?

Before diving into the specifics of implementing SSR in Django, let’s first understand what SSR is and why it’s essential.

1.1. SSR: A Brief Overview

Server-Side Rendering (SSR) is a web development technique where the web server generates the HTML for a web page and sends it as a fully-rendered page to the client (browser). In contrast to Client-Side Rendering (CSR), where the browser loads JavaScript files and renders the page on the client side, SSR pre-renders the content on the server and sends a complete HTML document to the browser.

1.2. Benefits of SSR

  • Improved Page Load Speed: SSR reduces the initial load time as the browser receives a fully-rendered HTML page, leading to a faster perceived load time.
  • SEO-Friendly: Search engines prefer pages with pre-rendered HTML content because they can easily crawl and index the content, resulting in better SEO rankings.
  • Enhanced User Experience: SSR provides a faster initial load and better perceived performance, leading to a more enjoyable user experience.

Now that we understand the advantages of SSR, let’s dive into how to implement it using Django.

2. Setting Up a Django Project

To get started with SSR in Django, you’ll need a Django project up and running. If you haven’t already, follow these steps to create a new Django project:

Install Django: If you haven’t installed Django yet, you can do so using pip:

pip install Django

Create a New Django Project: Use the following command to create a new Django project:

django-admin startproject projectname

Navigate to the Project Directory: Move to the project directory:

cd projectname

With your Django project in place, let’s proceed to implement SSR.

3. Implementing Server-Side Rendering in Django

Implementing SSR in Django involves several steps. We’ll walk through each of them and provide code samples along the way.

Step 1: Create a Django App

First, create a Django app that will handle the SSR functionality. To create an app, run the following command:

python startapp ssr_app

This command creates a new app named ssr_app. You can replace ssr_app with your preferred app name.

Step 2: Configure URLs

In your Django project, open the file and define a URL pattern that maps to a view responsible for SSR. Here’s an example:

# projectname/

from django.urls import path
from ssr_app.views import ssr_view

urlpatterns = [
    path('ssr/', ssr_view, name='ssr_view'),
    # Add other URL patterns as needed

In this example, we’ve created a URL pattern /ssr/ that points to the ssr_view view. Now, let’s create the view in the ssr_app.

Step 3: Create the SSR View

Inside the ssr_app, create a view function that will handle SSR. In this view, you can fetch data from your database, render a template, and return the fully-rendered HTML page. Here’s a simplified example:

# ssr_app/

from django.shortcuts import render
from .models import YourModel

def ssr_view(request):
    # Fetch data from the database or perform any necessary logic
    data = YourModel.objects.all()
    # Render the HTML template with the data
    return render(request, 'ssr_app/ssr_template.html', {'data': data})

In this code snippet, we’re fetching data from a model (replace YourModel with your actual model) and passing it to an HTML template for rendering. Now, let’s create the template.

Step 4: Create the SSR Template

Create an HTML template for your SSR page. Place the template in the templates directory of your app. Here’s an example template (ssr_template.html):

<!-- ssr_app/templates/ssr_app/ssr_template.html -->

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">
    <meta charset="UTF-8">
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">
    <title>SSR Page</title>
    <h1>Server-Side Rendered Page</h1>
        {% for item in data %}
            <li>{{ item }}</li>
        {% endfor %}

In this template, we have a basic HTML structure, and we’re rendering the data fetched in the view using Django’s template tags.

Step 5: Test the SSR Page

Now that everything is set up, you can test your SSR page by running the Django development server:

python runserver

Visit http://localhost:8000/ssr/ in your browser, and you should see your SSR page with the fully-rendered HTML.


Implementing Server-Side Rendering (SSR) in Django can significantly improve the performance and SEO of your web application. By pre-rendering HTML on the server, you provide a faster loading experience for your users and make it easier for search engines to index your content.

In this blog post, we covered the basics of SSR, set up a Django project, and walked through the steps to implement SSR in Django. While the example provided here is simplified, you can expand upon it to create complex SSR applications tailored to your specific needs.

By incorporating SSR into your Django projects, you’ll be well-equipped to deliver dynamic web pages that excel in both user experience and search engine visibility. So, go ahead and start leveraging the power of SSR to take your Django applications to the next level. Happy coding!

Previously at
Flag Argentina
time icon
Experienced Full-stack Developer with a focus on Django, having 7 years of expertise. Worked on diverse projects, utilizing React, Python, Django, and more.