Progressive Web Apps - out to make a real impression in 2020

Discover the emergent technology changing mobile-driven Ecommerce.

If you’re an Ecommerce brand hoping to make a good first impression with your customers and haven’t heard of PWAs (Progressive Web Apps) before, you’re going to start to hear a whole lot more about them.

PWAs are by no means a new thing, they are picking up pace and likely to be one of the biggest Ecommerce trends of the year.

PWAs take the best parts of native apps and the web, to deliver much faster and engaging mobile experiences for consumers. PWAs are becoming a real driver in online retailing and are a great option for retailers looking to improve their mobile strategy.

Today’s tech savvy consumers are just as likely to shop online as in-store and have growing expectations about the speed and ease of how and where they interact with online stores. This is where PWAs are helping to transform the mobile experience for users and enabling retailers to better manage their omnichannel approach at the same time.


Why Progressive Web Apps?
To use an every-day native app, a user must first find the app in the app store, download, install it and then finally open it. When a user finds a progressive web app, they will be able to immediately start using it, eliminating the unnecessary downloading and installation steps.  When the user returns to the app, they will be prompted to install the app and upgrade to a full-screen experience.

A progressive web application takes advantage of a mobile app’s characteristics, resulting in improved user retention and performance, without the complications involved in maintaining a mobile application.

PWAs use existing technology based on languages such as HTML and Javascript and work through ‘service workers’ – small files stored on the user’s device acting as a bridge between the server and user. The service workers pre-cache parts of the web app so that it loads instantly the next time a user opens it which enables offline use until the user is online again. For apps that don’t need timely information, people can look up things and search the app without being connected to the internet.


Why PWAs are here to stay

Enhanced mobile experience: The reason for PWAs success lies in the power to improve the entire mobile experience.  Consumers are driving the shift from desktop websites and native apps to Progressive Web Apps as they are able to interact with the brand on their mobile in a positive way.

Speed: According to google research 53 per cent of mobile site visitors will leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load. PWAs cache the data meaning starting an app again becomes lightning quick, helping with conversion rates. In fact, they can be up to 10 times faster than a mobile site. 

Less commitment: PWAs work on all devices and don’t need to be upgraded or installed. For many consumers who rarely go to the app store or don’t like to download apps, it is the perfect way to reach them still.

Engaging: Like a native app, PWAs allow online retailers to send push notifications to help drive engagement with users, without being too in their face. They feel and behave like a native app, having access to a device’s functionalities so the experience still feels integrated.

Offline mode: Offline-availability is also made possible with Service Workers technology. 


Next steps?
PWAs can help brands reach more customers, improve search rankings and conversion rates, and through responsive design strategies load content quickly across smartphones, desktops and tablets on any network.

Tin Soldier believes PWAs will be a key development for e-commerce businesses in 2020. 

If you are considering a PWA for your business and want to make the right first impression, give us a call and let us help plan your next steps.

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