Nowadays we use mobile devices on an everyday basis. It’s something you could already hear years ago, however now there’s an upcoming breakthrough in the mobile market – thanks to PWAs. You might have seen this term appearing all over the web. It happens for a good reason. By implementing a PWA solution you can increase your mobile and desktop sales. This article explains how progressive web apps work and what are the best use cases in software development.

What is a PWA solution?

Progressive Web Application is a type of web application that can be used simultaneously as a website and a mobile application on any device. It aims to bridge the gap between websites and mobile apps by using modern technologies such as push notifications, offline operations, and welcome screens. PWAs take the best from both of these solutions.

It was created using web technology and is based on HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Since it’s a web application working as a website, PWAs don’t require distribution in app stores and fall under iOS or Android policies. Developers can publish web apps online, however, one of the requirements of the Progressive Web Application Checklist (standardized by Google Developers) is making it possible for users to add an app to the home screen of a mobile device. 

What makes a Progressive Web App?

The goal of PWAs is to develop cross-platform applications instead of native apps. Before going live with a progressive web app, you should pass a core checklist. It fulfills basic requirements and helps to build the best user experience. To sum up, PWA aims to:

  • Fast load time
  • Work offline
  • Responsive web experience
  • Cross-browser support
  • Installable app-like experience
  • Register a service worker
  • Follow practices for healthy code.

One of the most powerful trends in web development for 2021 is definitely PWA. More and more companies are switching over to PWA as it decreases the Cost of User Acquisition and generates higher conversion rates. It’s just a simple way to improve results without a need for native mobile apps.

Piotr Sobusiak

CTO

Top 9 case studies of Progressive Web Apps

A lot of leading businesses have decided to develop a PWA leading to a higher conversion rate and better user experience. This technology is a competition to many native app frameworks and additionally, mobile web browsers support it well.

1. Uber

Uber rebuilt its web client from the ground to create a high-performance web application. Its PWA offers app-like functionalities. It can be used by anyone regardless of device or connection speed. The core app is only 50 kB. The Uber web app can load in 3 seconds even on a 2G connection by a significantly lighter weight. Its purpose is to imitate a native application.

2. Spotify

As of the fourth quarter of 2020, Spotify had 155 million premium subscribers worldwide. This music application can be played anywhere at any time and with any device. Spotify has been using web technologies for a long time. The Web Player is in line with the overall Spotify look and feel and is built on HTML5 standards. It’s simple and fast in all key aspects.

3. Pinterest

Pinterest’s old mobile web experience was a monolith. Its website was rebuilt as a PWA and led to several improvements in performance and better rates. It loads faster on average hardware. Moreover, core engagement has increased by 60% and user revenue has increased by 44% thanks to developing Pinterest’s PWA.

4. Trivago

For one of the world’s leading hotel search engines, the PWA solution helped build an app without involving big teams of software developers. Features like offline mode, home screen shortcuts, and push notifications increased user engagement by 150%. Also impressive is the conversion rate with 97% in click outs to hotel offers.

5. Forbes

A Forbes magazine refined its application for browsers. The developed solution was faster than the mobile website so far. Forbes PWA improved mobile user experience and minimized load times. One of the indicators was that they registered up to 43% more sessions per user.

6. Prismade

Although it may not be that popular app on this list, Prismade was developed by the Applover team. Their main goal was to show various possibilities of their technology’s usage for business. The PWA solution was developed with Vue.js and Prismade JavaScript SDK that greatly facilitates integration with the backend where all the magic happens.

It’s great to work on real innovations. The solution we developed could promote our client’s smart printing solution with a new demo application. It’s not a difficult task to build PWAs, but it requires an in-depth understanding of the technologies involved. It combines the UX of a native app with the benefits of a mobile website.

Kevin Nowald

Full-Stack Developer

7. Lancome

The luxury cosmetics Lancome brand saw mobile traffic outdid desktop traffic. Instead of minimally updating their site, Lancôme looked to PWA technologies to provide an immersive, app-like experience. With PWA Lancôme achieved a 17% increase in conversion rates and a 53% increase in mobile sessions on iOS.

8. Telegram

This instant messaging app is another great example of PWAs. With over 100 million active users in two and a half years, it’s a lightning-fast experience for mobile device users. Additionally, it’s 100% open source for all developers who wish to create Telegram applications.

9. Starbucks

Starbucks has a fast, performant, easy-to-use PWA that looks and feels like a native app. Its PWA allows customers to browse the menu, customize their orders, and add items to their carts. Since the launch, Starbucks reported a 2x increase in their daily active users.

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Building Progressive Web Apps

It’s clear that PWAs are the way to go. They are rapidly growing in popularity and many companies that chose this solution increased their engagement and revenue after implementing progressive web apps. As seen by the examples above, it is only the starting point. It’s becoming a new standard and is strongly promoted by all major players. One day it could even replace native mobile applications. Being ahead, you should consider investing in a PWA rather than a mobile-optimized site.