Loading speed, usability, readability — all of these factors are important for the UX of your website. But would it be enough for the modern web user? Presently, mobile friendliness steps forward as people prefer smartphones over desktops. If you want to be ahead of your competitors, it’s about time to consider building a progressive web app.
Progressive web apps (PWA) consist only of modern techniques to give users the best mobile experience. Today, we focus our attention on the advantages you get with PWA development and the tools our specialists use to build such apps.
A progressive web application is an app which can act as a web page and as a native mobile app at the same time. These are three main features of such products described by Google:
- Speed: additionally to instant loading, users also get lightning-like interactions. Monotone scrolling or slow-mo animations are just unacceptable.
- Engagement: the app really looks like a native mobile product, so it is natural in terms of the mobile user experience. The Web App Manifest offers lots of options for your application: the look of home screen icons, screen orientation, a page which should be loaded first, etc.
You could’ve noticed that PWAs look a lot like native mobile apps, but where is the boundary line between them? There are some basic native features that PWAs have already inside, but we expect more to come. This is what we have at the moment.
- Full screen
- Splash screen
- Push notifications
- Access to hardware sensors (it is restrictive)
- Access to the phonebook
- Modifying System Settings
The list of native features is not limited to the one above — these are only the main traits that you can implement in your product right away. Now, let’s review the business benefits you might get.
When the concept becomes clearer to us, we’re going to move on to the real benefits which progressive web apps can offer to both your business and audience.
What do usually developers deal with working with app stores? Tons of the red tape is the answer. Building a PWA, they can easily avoid this step and focus on the quality of the product. All that needed is hosting your product on the web server. Besides, you should’ve heard about rules provided by iOS and Android and the process of approval. Having a PWA, it won’t become a part of your reality.
Eventually, you’ve got much time and skill savings, and you’ll be able to release your product faster getting the first profit.
We’ve mentioned that mobile-friendly solutions are now on top regardless the website’s niche. But what’s more important, progressive web apps can work equally great on any device whether it’s a smartphone, a PC desktop, or a tablet.
This priceless feature not only gives a flawless experience to your audience but also helps your brand stay consistent within the web environment.
With all the offers from app stores, the number of apps on our devices grows exponentially. Considering this, your PWA product has a huge advantage — it won’t take much space as it is hosted on the web server. If users want to install your application on the home screen, it still won’t require the storage or regular updates.
This benefit is also possible thanks to the web server storage. New users don’t have to go the store, look for your app there, and then download it. To start working, a person needs only one thing — a URL address. And, as a result, your app will be spread way faster as people can share this address via any tool and any device.
At this point, we’re moving to promotion, and here we’re discovering the SEO strength. Yes, progressive web apps are indexed in more detail than a traditional native app. According to the report provided by Connexity, nearly 60% of searches are held through mobile devices. So, your PWA product is indeed more powerful than native mobile apps when it comes to the SEO optimization.
Delivering a memorable experience to your users with a progressive web app is not as hard as it seems at the beginning. TecSynt developers know how to deal with PWA development and how to surprise your users.
Apart from this, KO provides the development process with a simple way to connect your UI with the used data model. Even if there are any complex UIs, the tool knows how to handle it. Even when your web app is almost ready for release, Knockout can be added on top without making changes to the architecture.
This is another instrument that can be used with a ready-made web solution. At first, a developer creates a manifest — it can be made right on PWABuilder’s website, adding the website’s name, its description, and an icon to use. And there are some more details that you can change according to your preferences: the screen orientation of your PWA, its language, and color.
With all this data, PWABuilder creates a manifest. Eventually, your first PWA is built in no time, and it’s ready to improve the experience of your users.
React and Polymer are simpler instruments but also popular among developers. React is a JS library which was initially created specifically for the UI development. Polymer, in its turn, has a bunch of reusable components that can be used to speed up the development process.
Webpack is used to gather all JS resources in one place even if it is a non-coding data (such as fonts or images). This is one of the most powerful tools to build the website’s front-end.
Why is it so great for progressive web apps? Webpack allows developers to use two plugins that generate the service worker and manifest. These two characteristics are necessary for any PWA product. And what’s more important, Webpack is successfully used with complex projects, and can handle any difficulties.
And finally, this is an inspirational source used by both developers and entrepreneurs. Here, you can find lots of progressive web app examples and finally see how exactly PWAs look like and how they work.
With this row of examples, you can create a picture of your future product and make a list of requirements for developers. The website’s content is divided into several groups, so you can find your branch and dive into it.
Considering a growing number of websites, entrepreneurs should be on the lookout when it comes to the rich user experience. Progressive web development is a key to improvements within your web product: you’ll be able to make your website a mobile solution without creating a mobile app (at least, for now).
The market offers lots of tools to make the transition process as quick as possible. Your audience has gone mobile, and you should follow it to hold a conversation with the users more effectively.