The Beauty of Progressive Web Apps

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As more and more Web traffic comes from mobile devices -- particularly traffic to e-commerce sites -- it's becoming ever more important for businesses to have content that loads onto small screens easily, quickly and effortlessly. To some degree, native mobile apps until now have filled that need, but they have significant limitations.

They must be downloaded, and they don't necessarily have all the functionality of full-fledged websites. It's at this juncture that progressive web applications (PWAs) come in. PWAs, which exist in a space between apps and websites, are mobile-friendly. At the same time they offer everything that consumers want while Web surfing and shopping.

PWAs offer several advanced capabilities of native apps -- including instant home screen access, offline work and push notifications -- but also are discoverable by search engines and are accessible on all modern Web browsers," he told TechNewsWorld

Because of their capabilities, PWAs are becoming a vital part of many e-commerce strategies. By bridging the gap between Web and native apps, PWAs are becoming a cornerstone of digital product development strategies for organizations across all industries including e-commerce that want to create more advanced digital experiences, as well as save development effort and cost," said Cardarella

Progressive Web Applications Advantages

One of the primary benefits of PWAs is that they cater to consumer preferences.

  • With a PWA, an e-commerce provider can provide a consistent experience for shoppers regardless of the device they use to access the app.
  • For consumers, PWAs offer a consistent and responsive experience across all devices. They load like a typical website but offer several advanced capabilities of native apps, including the ability to be added to device home screens with one touch, work offline, and push notifications. They also offer advantages of websites, such as discoverability by search engines and the ability to be accessible from all modern Web browsers.
  • The shopping experience on a PWA won't be broken by a weak Internet connection or its loss.
  • PWAs are also less obliging and more independent. They are not tied to any particular app store, and if the user enjoys it as a website he can save it on his home screen directly from the browser.
  • From a business perspective, PWAs require only one code base to deliver a website and mobile app-like experience across devices and browsers. This not only minimizes development and maintenance costs; it also saves organizations money by enabling faster deployment of new features and bug fixes.

Success With Progressive Web Applications

Like websites and native apps, PWAs must be developed strategically, and with a clear understanding of who will be using them and why:

  • Successful PWAs are informed by an in-depth product strategy, based on comprehensive discovery analyses such as stakeholder interviews, analytics, secondary research, primary research, user interviews and competitor analysis.
  • They are designed with ease-of-use as a guiding principle, to meet and exceed key user and business needs. On the back end, they are built with flawless technology, such as Elixir.
  • Elixir is a functional programming language that draws strength from the Erlang virtual machine on which it runs. Companies turn to Elixir to build fast, fault-tolerant applications that can handle tens of millions of users simultaneously.

Effective PWAs give consumers everything they want and need in their searching and shopping experiences.

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