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How Are Big Brands Making Use of PWA to Improve Their Business

By Apeksha Mehta
May 7, 2020 8. min read
Last update on: July 15, 2020

As the technology industry continues to make more and more investment in innovative web solutions, PWAs are becoming more prevalent. Today, PWAs are fully supported by Chrome and Opera, whereas Firefox, Microsoft Edge and iOS are making great progress in providing greater support for PWA.

This growing support for PWAs is driven by demands from leading brands seeking to take full advantage of their capabilities. Twitter has recently invested heavily in making its main site a responsive PWA to create a faster user experience with an enhanced interface, joining the likes of Facebook and Pinterest which both use PWAs.

Similarly, media powerhouses like the BBC, The Washington Post, and Forbes have also launched PWAs to distribute their content more seamlessly across consumers and various types of devices, from desktops to cell phones.

The PWA landscape is rapidly changing the e-commerce vertical and big business like Twitter, Starbucks, Washington Post, Pinterest, the Weather channel and much more have launched their PWAs in the last six months.

So why are top brands making the switch towards the technology and reaching out to PWA development experts? Let’s find out.

What are Progressive Web Apps

PWA stands for an app that you can install on your system. It uses the cached data from your previous interactions to enable it to operate offline or without a stable internet connection.

A progressive web app is a website that functions just like a native app. It has all the functionality of a native app and still manages to deliver the usability of a website. PWAs are intended to address a range of problems ranging from inadequate networks to data obstruction or total lack of connectivity.

Google describes PWA’s as web experiences that are:

PWA features

  • Reliable: Loads instantly and never shows a website to be down, even under unpredictable network conditions.
  • Fast: Responds easily to user interactions, with silky smooth animations and without janky scrolling
  • Engaging: Feels like a normal app, with an intuitive user experience.

Progressive web apps use the latest technologies to blend the best of both online and mobile applications. Progressive web application development is increasingly becoming the norm for the future. For businesses trying to optimise user experiences, PWAs fit right in the requirements in terms of budget, feature, development time and more.

PWAs offer an enhanced user experience through progressive enhancement. Robust PWA solutions are useful in accelerating the technological capabilities, empower companies and add the right balance to the business.

Since the advent of PWAs many businesses have leveraged the power of this platform to reach new markets and enhance their user experience. Afterall, Progressive web apps are simple to develop, test and maintain, post deployment.

A Quick Detour: Native Vs Progressive: Who is Winning?

How are Brands using PWAs to connect with users?

The ease of access, cross-browser compatibility and faster page load times help companies render a higher-level user experience that impresses consumers and gets them hooked.

How are Brands using PWAs to connect with users

1. Rising consumer Expectations:

Customers have little tolerance for brands that have poor digital experiences. With plenty of choices at their disposal, consumers can easily move on to another brand if they have an underwhelming experience. When Pinterest and Starbucks launched their PWAs, they both saw a noticeable increase in interaction metrics. Pinterest saw a 60 percent rise in mobile interaction with quicker page loads, while Starbucks’ PWA was designed for web-based order management, and is now preferred by consumers over the native app for the coffee company.

 2. Native-like appeal:

PWAs provide a consistent and adaptive interface across all devices. It loads like a standard website but has many advanced native mobile app features, including the ability to add one touch to device home screens, to operate offline, and to allow push notifications. They also offer website benefits, such as search engine discoverability and the ability to be available from all modern web browsers. Additionally, PWAs can appear in the App Store and Google Play alongside native mobile apps.

3. Reduced resources and expense through streamlined coding:

PWAs need only one code base to provide website and mobile app-like experience across devices and browsers, which implies it needs only one team, one software platform, one test approach, and one digital product roadmap to plan, design, create, and manage both a website and a mobile app-like experience. PWAs not only reduce the cost of product design, development, and maintenance, they also save money for organizations by allowing for quicker delivery of new features and bug fixes.

4. Adaptive:

Innovative brands understand that technology is changing at an incredible speed, and they need to implement more forward-looking technologies to avoid rapid cycles of strategy, design, production and re-construct for digital solutions. Progressive Web Apps are fundamentally versatile and continually changing to meet the new functionality improvements. If you are rewriting a legacy website or native mobile application as a PWA today, it will work for years to come as expected. PWAs are built for transition, ensuring that companies should avoid investing in one-off websites and mobile apps that eventually need redesigns to meet evolving demands and technologies from the audience.

Know more: How PWAs drive business for SMEs?

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Brands that are doing PWA right

Brands that are doing PWA right

1. Forbes

Forbes, a multinational media company, turned to Progressive Web Apps for their new mobile experience in order to improve loading times for their readers. The previous Forbes site took about 3-12 seconds to load.

The new site grounded in progressive web app technology is capable of loading in 0.8 seconds. As a result, Forbes saw a 43% increase in sessions and a 100% increase in engagement.

2. Flipkart

Flipkart, India’s biggest e-commerce site, adopted a mobile-only strategy in 2015. After shutting down their mobile site and focusing only on their native app, the company was not seeing the desired results. They decided to combine their web presence and native app into a PWA to allow their current and prospective customers to have instant access to their store.

Compared to their previous mobile presence, Flipkart has tripled time-on-site with their Progressive Web App. Users spend an average of 3.5 minutes on Flipkart Lite versus 70 seconds on the predecessor.

Flipkart has also generated a 40% higher re-engagement rate among first-time visitors and a 70% higher conversion rate due to the “Add to Homescreen” icon, because customers have instant access to Flipkart whenever they want.

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3. MakeMyTrip

MakeMyTrip is India’s leading travel company with 8 million visitors monthly. After the addition of PWA, the major changes in the site such as improvement in conversion rate is 3X, the loading time of the page has increased by 38% and shopper sessions have increased up to 160%.

4. TwitterLite

Twitter wished their mobile web to be faster and more attractive. In addition to PWA, Twitter launched TwitterLite which becomes the fastest and easiest way to use Twitter. With lower data consumption, TwitterLite also gives benefits such as reduced in Bounce Rate up to 20%, and the page per session increased up to 65%, 75% in Tweets.

5. Alibaba is the world’s largest marketplace for suppliers, buyers, and manufactures. It is the biggest E-commerce platform that recently adopted PWA and witnessed a significant increase in interaction rate up to 4X, and a huge rise in the conversion rate by up to 76%.

6. Starbucks Coffee

Starbucks allows its customers to check the menu, create the orders and add the orders to the cart even when there is no signal or poor connection. With the addition of PWA, Starbucks improved its performance and renders a highly responsive and fast performance

7. Trivago

Trivago is a big name in Hotel Search Engine Marketing. The availability of Trivago’s PWA is in 55 countries worldwide with 33 languages.
After the adoption of PWA, the percentage of user engagement has increased by up to 50% and Click rate has increased by 97%.

[Also Read: Microsoft Is Turning Outlook Into A PWA]

Apeksha Mehta
Apeksha Mehta
Senior Software Engineer
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