Did you know that 40% of last year’s Black Friday purchases came from mobile devices? Since mobile is strengthening its positions in the eCommerce sector, businesses seek for more ways to hook smartphone users and boost conversions. Combining the most engaging features of both native applications and websites, progressive web apps (PWAs) became the perfect fit for retailers struggling to attract more customers and increase revenue.

Progressive web apps came into our lives in 2015, reinventing the way digital businesses engage consumers. The dynamic, app-like mobile web experience PWAs offer can lead to a 300% increase in revenue or 53% higher conversion rates. Impressive, isn’t it?

Having analyzed what’s so phenomenal about PWAs in eCommerce, we’ve found the reason why the industry benefits from progressive web apps so much. We’ve even tried to implement a PWA solution to bring our findings to life. Keep reading to find out how our PWA can provide your customers with a brand new, enhanced experience.

Benefits of PWA: Fast, Reliable and Engaging

Websites and native apps are no longer able to satisfy the skyrocketing customer expectations. PWAs embrace the finest user experience a mobile app can offer, provide quick and easy access to the necessary information just like a website and tackle the disadvantages of both. Simply put, a progressive web app is a self-contained mobile application delivered through a web browser. The best part? Users don’t have to download it!

eCommerce is the first industry to get the most out of progressive web tech, since online shoppers are very picky when it comes to the retail performance on the web. A two-second lag increases bounce rates by 103%, and a 100-millisecond delay can bring your site’s conversion rates down by 7%. Ouch.

Creating a mobile application is not a panacea as well. Downloading an app is cumbersome takes time and phone space. According to a recent survey, the latter is a critical aspect for today’s users, as 25% of respondents admit deleting apps when their device’s memory is full. Moreover, 49% of the U.S. smartphone users don’t even download a single app within a typical month.

When every second and megabyte counts, PWAs come to rescue. Being fast, reliable and engaging, progressive web applications are changing the way world’s leading eCommerce businesses perform. For example, Alibaba.com, a large trading platform, experienced 76% higher conversions upon PWA adoption, and OLX, the largest online destination for ads in India, boosted its re-engagement by 250%.

PWA eСommerce

Why Are Progressive Web Apps So High-Performing in eCommerce?

eCommerce web applications possess features an outstanding online shopping simply must have to convert customers.

Fast page load

Progressive web app’s pages load cached content instantly, reusing it in new contexts. George.com, a leading UK clothing brand, gained a 3.8x increase in average load time due to accelerated and lightweight pages, which take milliseconds to launch.

Effortless payment

eCommerce apps support Payment Request API, which is a total necessity for seamless and secure payments, completed in one click. This option lets users skip the annoying and long-lasting checkout process, optimizing the overall ordering procedure.

Push notifications

Web push notifications help online retailers engage customers even if their browsers are not operating at the moment. This function helps to alert users about discounts, sales and new stock items hassle-free, providing more chances to be noticed, rather than get lost in a pile of emails. A cosmetics brand Lancôme, for example, got an 8% increase in conversion rates thanks to push notifications.

Connectivity independent

Service workers and cache API retrieve and store website components, allowing an app to work regardless of the connectivity conditions. The offline mode makes it possible for customers to use a PWA even in areas with limited or no Internet connection.

Home screen icon

Users may reach a progressive web app in a single tap, merely adding its shortcut to the home screen.

ElifTech’s PWA Example: Going Progressive

As Google starts to actively push PWA solutions, the technology grows exponentially and gets more accessible. ElifTech decided to leverage our development experience and best practices to create a progressive web app example and see how this solution could improve sales in eCommerce. Our team of experts aimed to create a simple demo application for quick and efficient order placement.

The implementation

We added a set of core features to make our progressive web app alive and kicking.

Products and categories navigation

A user-friendly, handy and easily-operated app was our #1 focus. We wanted to make the search process effortless. If users need any additional information to complete an order, they should be able to find it instantly. Our development team also made order placement quick and convenient: only three steps at the checkout stand between users and purchasing the item.

ElifTech PWA ecommerce

Product section

When tapping a product image, customers receive a drop-down section with the element’s details divided into three key blocks: Description, Product Image and Price. The possibility to add items to the cart and edit their quantity was also hidden inside.

Shopping cart

We went with the classical view of the shopping cart. It includes product information, order price and the button to edit the quantity of items or remove them from the cart.

Offline mode capability

Our professionals used service workers to handle situations with low connectivity and allow customers to finish their order regardless of the Internet connection. Upon the order confirmation, all customer’s data is stored at the app level and moves to the server side for processing as soon as the connection is renewed. Users can check their order status in the My Purchases section.

ElifTech PWA ecommerce

The challenge

The main issue we faced was loading data about goods. We couldn’t maintain the app functionality offline at a decent level, as required by the PWA standards. To resolve this challenge, we implemented a simple algorithm that allowed us to save the first 15 items at the application level, so that users would be able to purchase products without the Internet connection. It helped us to not overwhelm the app with large amounts of product data stored on the server side.

The tech stack

We used the following technologies to create our progressive web app:

  • React
  • Redux
  • Service Worker
  • Node.js
  • Express
  • MongoDB

Wrapping Up

Creating even a basic PWA solution like ours will give you a first-rate app capable of boosting sales of various eCommerce businesses. We have built an adaptive, integrated, secure and engaging solution for consumers who use their mobile devices to shop. Now that the PWA tech meets the requirements of the ever-demanding mobile user, chances are this type of client-vendor communication will become the most widespread platform for online retail solutions.

If you’re interested in developing PWAs or would like to build one for your business needs, don’t hesitate to get in touch with ElifTech anytime! We’ll gladly consult you on the topic and answer all the questions you have on Progressive Web App development.