What is Progressive Web App? & How it benefits your Business?

Progressive Web App

Have you come across a Progressive Web App? Even if you have, what’s the difference you observed? On the other hand, if you have no idea about it, read below to know more about it.

We love apps, don’t we? There is one for everything. From ordering delicious food, to counting calories and eating mindfully. The irony, but that’s that. Not only are these apps interactive, but they also operate offline, have a great user interface and fit in the palm of your hand. What if the website were as interesting? And if you are not already aware, these are known as Progressive Web Applications. Also called PWA, they can double the conversion rates resulting in increased revenue.

Talking about the functionality, one may wonder about Native apps and Web apps. 

The former is loaded with features and is secure. It is all-present on home screens, docks, and taskbars, etc. The latter is accessible to anyone, anywhere and on any device.

So, what is a Progressive Web App? 

PWA is a web app that uses modern web technologies to provide an app-like experience to users. In a nutshell, PWA’s are build using advanced APIs to perform like native apps. Additionally, reaching anyone on any platform anywhere with a single codebase like web apps. The best of both types= Progressive Web App.

A PWA accessed through a desktop browser looks like any other website. But once you open it on the mobile browser it transforms into a hybrid of a website and mobile application.

It will come as a surprise but many of the giants such as Uber, Twitter, Starbucks, Pinterest are using the PWA technology. 

Listed below are key technologies that make PWA a hot commodity.

1. Security

Progressive Web Apps pass through HTTPS, a connection that guarantees maximum protection and privacy for the users and site data. 

HTTP prevents MITM attacks. Man in the middle (MITM) attacks is a computer security threat. When a perpetrator stands in a conversation between a user and an application—either to eavesdrop or to impersonate one of the parties, trying to steal important information.

 A PWA protects sensitive information. Protecting users and the session from these kinds of attacks and other vulnerabilities. 

2. Service Workers

Features like

  • Rich offline experiences
  • Periodic background syncs
  • Push notifications and many more are developed using Service workers.

PWA is heavily influenced by Service Workers. It is a JavaScript file connected to HTML code and handles network responses. All you need is javascript to develop a PWA.

3. Applications Shell

Progressive Web Apps are built using the Application shell architecture. This makes PWAs reliable and loads instantly on your users’ screens, like native applications.  Application Shell lends PWAs application-like interaction and navigation

4. Web App Manifest

It guides the behavior of the PWA, after its installation on the user’s mobile/desktop.  Web App Manifest is simply a JSON (JavaScript Object Notion) file.

This fine includes

  • firstly, name of the app
  • secondly, icons in-use by the app
  • thirdly, URL to be opened when the app is launched

Furthermore, it also allows users to identify your PWA as an app on the home screen. 

How can it help your business?

Progressive Web Apps can do wonders for your business and accelerate revenue generation. Here are some reasons why switching to PWAs is a clever move.

1. Low Development Costs

A PWA will not burn a hole in your pocket. All it requires is HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. It cuts the requirement of different devices and meets all endpoints on which it operates. 

2. App-Like Look and Feel

Modern users will choose mobile-apps over the website more often. Given this trend, the PWA’s pack a great & superior user experience. It combines the look and feel of the mobile app and the best of website performance.

Again, PWA’s like websites allows access to the database, making the indexing of pages easier to display in results. As a result, it positively impacts the number of page views.

3. Fast Installation

Progressive Web App installation process is a cakewalk. The users have to download an app and head to their devices without having to go to the App Store or Google Play store.

4. Platform and Device Independence

PWA operates everywhere, unlike other apps that heavily depend on OS and hardware. They can adjust to any screen and are highly responsive to different formats.

 Another great functionality is that most of the PWAs update automatically without having to bother the user with permission requests.

5. Offline Operation

Losing an internet connection can cause users to abandon your website. Fortunately, that’s not the case with the PWAs. It leverages the data cached during the user’s last interactions with the app.

Additionally, PWAs manage offline requests and send them when the connection is re-established. 

6. Push Notification 

As Native apps allow push notification for iOS and Android platforms, PWAs sends push notifications for a cross-platform website. This allows companies to make the best use of content advertisements. Push notifications attract customer’s attention better than email newsletters, blogs, and posts on social media platforms.

PWA Success Stories- Here are some proven stats of the world’s famous businesses. Source: Cloud Four
  1. The Starbucks PWA has seen a 2X increase in daily active users. Orders placed through the website are the same as mobile.
  2. Since Tinder switched to PWA, it cuts its load time from 11.91 seconds to 4.96 seconds. The PWA is 90% smaller than Tinder’s native Android application.
  3. Uber designed PWA to run faster on 2G connectivity. The core app is on 50KB gzipped and lakes less than 3 seconds to load on 2G.
  4. By rebuilding their mobile site as PWA, Pinterest increased its core engagement by 60%. User-generated ad revenue increased by 44% and the time spent on site increased by 40%.
  5. It takes only 2.5 seconds to load Forbes’ PWA on mobile compared to 6.5 seconds of its previous versions. Impressions per visit are up to 10%.
  6. Flipkart’s PWA is driving 50% of its new customer acquisition. Nearly 60% of visitors to the PWA previously uninstalled the native app due to app size, to free up space.
  7. Google noticed that Progressive Web App install banners convert 5-6× more often than native install banners.
  8. Lancôme’s PWA showed a 17% increase in conversions, a 51% increase in mobile sessions overall, and a 53% increase for iOS alone. 
  9. AliExpress increased their conversion rate by 104% for new users with their PWA compared to their traditional website and app. 
  10. OLX experienced a 250% more re-engagement using push notifications and a 146% higher click-through rate on ads. The PWA takes 23% less time to interactive resulting in 80% lower bounce rates.

Simply put, Progressive Web Apps, are the best of both worlds- native apps and websites. It provides your business with an unprecedented opportunity to produce a web experience your users will love. It deploys the latest web features to bring native-like capabilities and reliability. By building Progressive Web Apps, you allow your app (for product/ service) to be installed by anyone, anywhere, on any device with a single codebase.