Make navigation user friendly on your Aurelia SPA

Posted on 2016-08-28 in Aurelia

Add a spinner

  1. Add the font awesome files to your project (CSS and fonts files).

  2. Import the font awesome style sheet in your index.html

    <link rel="stylesheet" href="/assets/fonts/fontawesome/font-awesome.min.css">
  3. Add the CSS code below to create the spinner either directly in the index.html with style tag or in a CSS file that you load in it:

    .splash {
        text-align: center;
        margin: 10% 0 0 0;
        box-sizing: border-box;
    .splash .message {
        font-size: 72px;
        line-height: 72px;
        text-shadow: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.5) 0 0 15px;
        text-transform: uppercase;
        font-family: "Helvetica Neue", Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;
    .splash .fa-spinner {
        text-align: center;
        display: inline-block;
        font-size: 72px;
        margin-top: 50px;
  4. Update the div in which your Aurelia application will be instantiated. Eg, replace:

    <body aurelia-app="main">


    <body aurelia-app="main">
      <div class="splash">
          <div class="message">Arena of Titans</div>
          <i class="fa fa-spinner fa-spin"></i>

Use the wait cursor while navigating

  1. Change your router-view from:



    <router-view class="${router.isNavigating ? 'navigating' : ''}"></router-view>

    this will add a class navigating to the router-view tag when the router is navigating and nothing otherwise.

  2. Add this global CSS code to your application:

    .navigating {
        cursor: wait !important;
        opacity: 0.7;
    .navigating button {
        cursor: wait !important;
        opacity: 0.5;

    This will display the wait cursor on the page and reduce the opacity on the page to signal the user a navigation is going on. You can of course change this code to match your application.

  3. Don't forget to add the router to your object. In the configureRouter(config, router) function, do:

    this.router = router;

Display a message to no-script user

Some of your users may use an extension like noscript which disable JavaScript on page you visit. By default, you will greet them with either a blank page or a never-ending spinner. I think it is more user friendly to show them a message asking to enable JavaScript. To do, add in your body tag:

     <p>Arena of Titans cannot work without JavaScript. Please enable it.</p>
     <p>Arena of Titans ne peut pas fonctionner sans JavaScript. Merci de l'activer.</p>