How PWA helps you drive more Mobile Revenue
There isn't anything too magical or too out of the ordinary with progressive web apps, or more commonly known as PWAs. To put it simply, they're websites with offline capabilities. They're reliable, fast, and engaging, addressing the user experience, most of all. They're specifically designed to resolve all the problems inherent with web browsing and app use.
So, what exactly are PWAs and how do they manage to enhance the user experience, resolve all the issues and require less work to create at the same time? This article will explain all of that.
How Is a PWA Different From a Mobile App?
To better understand what progressive web apps are, we need to compare them to traditional mobile apps. These mobile apps come in two forms, native and hybrid applications.
As their name would suggest, native applications use the platform's native codebase. An Android app would be developed with Java while an iOS app would develop with Swift or Objective-C. Native apps use all the SDK and native libraries available on their respective platforms. They run by having all of their binaries saved and loaded directly on the device that's using them.
As the world of mobile application development grew in popularity, so did the need for streamlining the process. Also, the cost of initiating and maintaining multiple native apps for different platforms was rising, which led to the development of hybrid applications. These types of apps are still executed and distributed as native applications, but their purpose at launch was to load a website or a set of web assets. It meant that developers could use the same web code to automatically manage and deploy the app in a native shell on different platforms.
As technology improved, newer frameworks were introduced, allowing developers to invoke native app functionalities through custom libraries. The downside is that the experience is somewhat unfortunate, particularly regarding slow loading speeds and a lack of uniformity.
The Benefits of Progressive Web Applications
PWAs can best be described as websites that copy the features, user interface, and user experience of a native app. These include things like layout, push buttons, notifications, home screen icons, etc. The main difference is that they operate on the browser, offering the same usability on the desktop as they do on mobile. They're also much easier to build and don't require complex coding, working the same on Android or iOS.
Lower Cost - By merging the experience of mobile and desktop, PWAs can significantly reduce the cost of development. Also, the maintenance cost is also considerably lowered.
Push Notifications - Another benefit is that they offer push notifications, alerting customers of updates, sales, new products, etc.
Caching - By using a service worker and cache API, PWAs can work offline. It means that customers don't need to have an internet connection to visit your site/store.
SEO Capabilities - PWAs developed as Single Page Applications (SPAs) will ensure that users direct to SEO-friendly URLs, which can be revisited later.
Better Security - Web service workers invoked through PWAs are restricted to only executing on local development environments and SSL/HTTPS hosts. Modern browsers also restrict cross-origin requests. These features, by themselves, increase security.
Easy Distribution - Instead of relying on an app store like native applications, progressive web apps can distribute by copy-pasting its URL.
Increased Reach - Since PWAs are web-based, it allows for better customer adoption and a higher range of visibility than native apps. PWAs natural distribution and SEO capabilities further increase this reach.
Higher Conversion Rates - Given the fact that using PWAs is as simple as visiting any other website, and together with all the other benefits presented here, it's not surprising that PWAs see a massive increase in customer conversion rates.
Given its many benefits, it's no wonder that PWAs are quickly becoming fan favourites around the world and in North America. It also comes at a time when the current native app market is oversaturated, and mobile use is through the roof. There are over 2 million iPhone apps and close to 4 million Android apps.
Rising above the competition would be a challenging task, to say the least, having no guarantee that potential clients will download your app, in the first place. PWAs, on the other hand, it's as easy for the customer as visiting any other website.
Numerous multinational companies and organization have already adopted PWAs and are using it to great effect. Twitter's PWA Twitter Lite managed to decrease its bounce rates by 20%, increase tweets sent by 75%, and increase pages per session by 65%.
OLX, on the other hand, experienced a 250% increase in re-engagement on the mobile web, as well as 80% lower bounce rates.
Other examples include Best Western River North Hotel with a 300% increase in revenue, Pinterest with 60% higher engagement rates and a 44% increase in user-generated ad revenue. Forbes was able to reduce its page loading time from 3-12 seconds to 0.8 seconds, while Alibaba increased its conversion rates by 76%, and its number of active users on iOS and Android by 14% and 30%, respectively.
PWA Requirements for Your Site
The basic requirements to implement a PWA on your site include:
- Web Manifest - It will allow you to add the app to the user's home screen and defines the components that dictate how the web app will behave.
- Service Workers - These can be scripted to intercept network requests and respond from cache even when the user is offline.
- Drupal Integration - PWAs can integrate with Drupal by using the PWA module.
Another key element here is to use PWAs in combination with Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs). Legacy PWAs solve only half the equation, while AMPs deliver ultra-portable, embeddable content. These significantly increase the loading speed of the page, dropping it under one second. It dramatically improves the user experience, especially for those who use offline browsing or experience slow or intermittent network connectivity.
If you are looking to boost your mobile revenue by using progressive web applications, Ameex Technologies is here to help. Contact us today and let's get started on this journey together!
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