Should Retailers Take PWA Seriously?
PWA vs RWD VS Native Mobile application, the debate is ongoing and never ending. In this blog I try to answer some of the questions around the technology, its advantages, when should you consider going with one over the other and some ideas while you decide on your roadmap.
Lets start with understanding what a PWA
whereas on the other Hand Native Mobile applications are software programs designed specifically for use on a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet. They are designed to provide a better user experience than web-based applications found on a desktop or laptop computer.
A Responsive web design (RWD) is an approach to web design that provides optimal viewing and interaction experience across a wide range of devices, including mobile phones, tablets, and desktop computers.
The main difference between mobile applications and responsive web design is that mobile applications are separate software programs that have to be downloaded and installed on a user’s device, while responsive web design is an approach that is built into the website code and alters the website’s appearance and functionality when the website is viewed on different devices.
Mobile applications tend to have more features than sites using RWD and can be tailored to the specific device they are installed on, which can improve the user experience. On the other hand, RWD is easier to maintain and update, since the same code can be used for a wide range of devices.
Are retailers adopting PWA?
Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are becoming increasingly popular and are quickly becoming the go-to choice for many retailers. PWAs are designed to be extremely fast, secure, reliable, and engaging for users. They also help retailers reach a wider audience, since PWAs are accessible on any device or platform. Plus, PWAs require less development time, are cost-effective, and don’t need to be installed from the App Store.
PWAs also offer retailers a range of features such as push notifications, offline access, and cross-platform compatibility. In short, there are plenty of benefits to adopting PWAs for retail operations, making them an ideal choice for retailers.
Is PWA only strategy a good gamble for Retailers?
Yes, some retailers have chosen to only use Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) and not native mobile applications. For example, AliExpress, the largest online and mobile commerce platform in China, has reported significant improvements in user engagement and conversion rates after transitioning to a PWA.
Similarly, cosmetics retailer Lancôme saw a 17% increase in mobile conversions after launching its PWA, and Flipkart, an Indian e-commerce company, saw a 70% increase in average time spent on site after launching its PWA.
These examples show that for some retailers, a well-designed PWA can effectively replace a native mobile application. However, the success of a PWA strategy depends on the specific needs and goals of the business, and some businesses may still require a native app for certain features or capabilities.
In summary, the decision to move from a native app to a PWA should be based on a comprehensive analysis of the specific needs and goals of the business, as well as a thorough understanding of user behaviour and engagement.
What are the advantages of PWA over native application
Advantages of Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) over native mobile applications include:
Accessibility: PWAs can be accessed through a web browser, eliminating the need for users to download an app from an app store.
Improved performance: PWAs are typically faster and more responsive than native apps, providing a seamless user experience.
Lower development and maintenance costs: PWAs can be developed and maintained more easily and cost-effectively than native apps, as they do not require separate development for different platforms.
Offline support: PWAs can work offline or with limited connectivity, providing users with access to content and functionality even without an internet connection.
Reduced storage requirements: PWAs take up less storage space on a user's device compared to native apps.
Easy sharing and promotion: PWAs can be easily shared through a URL or a QR code, making it easier to promote and distribute the app.
Increased discoverability: PWAs are more discoverable through search engines, providing a wider reach and more visibility for the app.
Faster updates: PWAs can be updated quickly and easily, without the need for users to download and install a new version from an app store.
Overall, PWAs offer many of the same capabilities as native apps, with the added benefits of lower costs, improved performance, and increased discoverability. However, the decision of whether to use a PWA or a native app should be based on a thorough analysis of the specific requirements and goals of the project.
What is the advantages of native app over PWA
Advantages of native mobile applications over Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) include:
Access to native device functionality: Native apps have access to the full range of device functionality, such as camera, accelerometer, and other sensors, which can provide a more immersive and interactive user experience.
Improved performance: Native apps are often faster and more responsive than PWAs, as they are optimized for the specific platform and have access to the device hardware.
Improved security: Native apps are generally considered to be more secure than PWAs, as they are subject to stricter security measures and can be more easily monitored and updated.
Better integration with other apps: Native apps can be integrated with other native apps on a user's device, providing a more seamless user experience.
Improved offline support: Native apps can provide offline support that is more robust and reliable than that of PWAs, as they have access to the device's local storage and can store data for offline use.
Better discoverability: Native apps are more discoverable through app stores, making it easier for users to find and download them.
Access to app store monetization options: Native apps can be monetized through app store purchases, subscriptions, and other app store offerings, providing businesses with more revenue opportunities.
While PWAs offer many advantages over native apps, such as lower costs and increased accessibility, native apps can provide a more immersive and interactive user experience, improved performance, and greater security.
The decision of whether to use a native app or a PWA should be based on a thorough analysis of the specific requirements and goals of the project.
Should retailers think seriouly about PWA over RWD
There are several reasons why Retailer should consider using a Progressive Web App (PWA) over a Responsive Web Design (RWD):
Improved User Experience: PWAs provide a more native-like experience compared to RWD, as they offer features such as offline support, push notifications, and home screen icons, which are not typically available in RWD.
Better Performance: PWAs are designed to be fast and responsive, providing a smoother and more seamless user experience compared to RWD.
Increased Accessibility: PWAs can be accessed from any device with a web browser, eliminating the need for users to download an app from an app store, which increases accessibility and reach for your audience.
Lower Development Costs: PWAs can be developed and maintained more easily and cost-effectively than native apps, as they do not require separate development for different platforms.
Improved Engagement: PWAs can provide features such as push notifications, which can help to increase engagement and retention among users.
Improved Discoverability: PWAs are more discoverable through search engines compared to RWD, providing a wider reach and more visibility for your website or application.
While RWD provides a flexible and adaptable design that can be optimized for different screen sizes, PWAs offer a more native-like experience and improved performance, making them a compelling choice for businesses that want to provide users with a fast and reliable mobile experience.
Ultimately, the decision of whether to use a PWA or RWD should be based on a thorough analysis of the specific requirements and goals of the project, as well as a comprehensive understanding of user behavior and engagement.