Conditionally going back to previous URL in NextJS

Checkout how can we modify going back in history behavior with NextJS

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Suppose you have a page that only has a button "Go to settings". Now, the settings page has a "Go back" button, which goes back to the previous URL(duh!).

Now, you have got a "loop", where on clicking the "Go back" button, it sends you to the previous page which only has a "Go to settings" button. Then, going back to the settings page, having "Go back" button. Round and round we go!

You have to manually modify the URL in-order to go to some other URL.

But with NextJS, you can conditionally change where the back button leads to. Let's take a look!

Current code

The code for settings page lives in pages/settings.js file. Here's how your current code might look like. We are using NextJS' router for routing purpose.

import { useRouter } from "next/router"; export default function SettingsPage() { const router = useRouter(); return ( <div> <button onClick={() => router.back()}>Go back</button> Some other stuff </div> ); }


Suppose the previous page, which only has a "Go back to settings" has the URL /something. When you go to settings page from this page, you can use NextJS' getServerSideProps context data to get the previous url from which the current page came to be.

Precisely, context.req.headers.referer contains this data. For example, going from /something to /settings page, will give you the full URL of /something page inside getServerSideProps.

Thus, we pass the context.req.headers.referer value to our page component through props. If you are not sure how can we pass this props, checkout the docs for getServerSideProps here.

Now, we just have to get the previous URL inside our page component, and conditionally change where the router function will take us.

import { useRouter } from "next/router"; export async function getServerSideProps(context) { const previousUrl = context.req.headers.referer; return { props: { previousUrl }, }; } export default function SettingsPage(props) { const router = useRouter(); // Check if previous URL is /something. If it is, send user to home page, otherwise go back as normal function goToPreviousPage() { if (props.previousUrl.includes("/something")) { router.push("/"); } else { router.back(); } } return ( <div> <button onClick={goToPreviousPage}>Go back</button> Some other stuff </div> ); }

That's it!


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