IT Outsourcing – Progressive Web Apps
The smartphone market has been growing steadily year after year, resulting in more and more mobile traffic. This caused a distribution problem in the mobile applications so it was necessary to find a solution to optimize the websites for these devices. From there, the Progressive web apps (PWA) were born with the purpose of providing the best possible experience to users.
What are Progressive Web Apps?
They are web applications created to take advantage of the benefits offered by current web capabilities to develop and provide a pleasant and fast experience on portable devices. They are really much faster since they use fewer data because they customize and store cache uniquely. This way the page loads almost immediately regardless of the network connection, ensuring that the bounce or abandonment rate is very low, since usually when a site takes a long time to load (more than 4 seconds) the abandonment rate is very high.
Therefore, the main objective for which the PWA were developed is to improve the quality of Internet navigation on mobile devices regardless of the quality of the network or the device being used. With this technology that includes web and mobile, several problems were solved at the same time, stability, speed, and usage.
- Stability: when a person has a bad internet connection or if the connection falls at all this causes the person to have a bad experience with respect to the application or website they visit, even though the bad network connection is not the fault of the web owner.
- Speed: It is no secret that when we go to surf we all want the results to be almost immediate, and that the whole interface loads quickly.
- Use: usually, people don’t like to enter a website no matter how nice it is but if it is heavy and consumes a lot of memory space, they will leave the website.
Advantages of PWA
Certainly, the benefits we can enjoy from PWA are definitely great, below we’ll mention them.
PWA vs. Mobile Websites
The development of new web technologies has always sought to improve the performance and optimization of resources, and achieve the way they can be used to the fullest. The PWA are better than the mobile ones in relation to quality and performance, next we will explain you in detail why.
- Work offline: PWA are designed in such a way that if the user loses his connection to the network for some time he will be able to continue surfing and will not even notice that his connection has been dropped, this is possible because of the algorithm and the way it stores the cache.
- Load faster: many mobile websites with different level structures tend to take longer to load the sub pages. On the other hand, PWA’s offer fast and smooth navigation, which gives a better user experience and keeps a very low bounce and abandonment rate.
- SEO positioning: PWA have proven that users have more interaction and stay longer, which positively influences SEO positioning.
PWA vs. native mobile applications
To compare both applications we will use a survey conducted by Google, where more than 11 million users stated that they are using PWAs, and conversely 4 million are using native applications. There are several reasons why PWAs are the alternative that most people prefer.
- More economical: even if a native multi-platform application is developed to be more economical, it will not allow us to save as many resources as if we can do it with PWAs.
- Low maintenance: compared to native applications it requires almost no maintenance since PWA are constantly being updated along with the website automatically.
- Practical: PWAs allow the designer to create the experience they want to convey to the user when navigating with their mobile device and to meet their expectations, no matter what device they are using.
Undoubtedly, the PWA are changing the market and having a great impact in many areas, since it is very versatile, practical and economical. A clear example is the important companies that have chosen to switch to PWA, for example, Trivago, after switching to PWA has improved the engagement of its customers by more than 100%, another key example is Pinterest, which increased the engagement of its users by 55%, and drastically reduced the percentage of rebound.
Disadvantages of PWA
Like any new technology, it is not yet in perfect condition, because it is a relatively new technology, only 5 years old and it has already been enough to prove that it is an excellent alternative to solve many problems. However, it has several weak points where it should be further improved.
- Problems with iOS: although PWAs started to be developed in 2015 it was not until 2018 that Apple started to work on them for its operating system, so it is still not in optimal conditions, and a common problem with iOS is the notifications of PWAs that are not yet available.
- Not taking full advantage of the hardware: at the moment PWAs are not able to take full advantage of the devices resources, however, they can provide a good experience that is pleasant to the user.
- Difficult to measure: Although one of the great benefits of PWAs is the ability to work offline this also represents a disadvantage because what the user does at that time can not be recorded and these sessions are not recorded when measuring the metrics.
Progressive web applications have definitely boosted customer conversion rates in many sectors, and this has been of great benefit to both small entrepreneurs and large companies. With PWA, it became possible to provide a unique, secure, fast, and enjoyable mobile experience for the user. Although it still has a long way to go to be perfect, every day more companies are betting on PWA.