Development Workflow

Published on July 15, 2022. Updated on August 29, 2023.

A development workflow is a process you follow during development to save time and minimize errors. It includes stages like setup (scaffolding), development, testing, integration, optimization, and deployment.

Development Instances

Development Instances are used for developing, updating, and testing a site without risking the integrity of the live site.

You can set up different types of Instances (staging/production) through the Console.

  • Local codebase: Used to develop your site (write code) in your codebase in your local environment.
  • Staging Instance: Can be used for testing, presenting changes to clients for approval, Quality Assurance (QA), or User Acceptance Testing (UAT).
  • Production Instance: The production Instance is the live application or site that the public interacts with.

Stages from the above workflow can be removed or added based on the project’s size, scope, or requirements. For example, a testing site before staging can be added to separate testing from Quality Assurance (QA) and User Acceptance Testing (UAT).

Development Workflow

You develop your site (write code) in your codebase in your local environment and check your changes in real time by syncing to your developer Instance. The insites-cli command enables sync mode, which keeps track of changes in your local environment and sends files that have been changed to the server. The command only sends files that have changed after sync was started. It feels like working on localhost. It is recommended to use sync only for staging environments, as pushing changes immediately to production can be dangerous.

Once you have a release candidate, you can deploy it to your staging site. You can use the staging site for testing, review, QA or UAT.

If everything works as expected on staging, you can deploy your changes to your production site, which is the live application accessible to visitors.


We recommend using a version control system. You can choose version control systems such as GitHub or decide to go without any: all that is required is your codebase and an instance you can sync/deploy to.

It is recommended that all developers have their development instance similar to how they have their local versions. The source code is kept in git. Only production-ready code goes into the master branch. The code is then deployed from the master branch to production.

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