Magento 2 PWA (Progressive Web App) is becoming more favored by Magento stores and their users due to its convenience and improvements compared with a normal website.
This post will help merchants understand more about this technology with its benefits and the development process. Let’s get started!
What Is Magento 2 PWA?
Progressive Web App is the combination of a website and a native app. It brings the website surfers the experience of using an app on any device.
Magento Progressive Web Application is a short terminology for Magento websites that are integrated PWA technology/ converted to a PWA.
What Are The Benefits of Magento 2 PWA?
Owning all PWA’s features, Magento 2 PWA also outperforms both a regular website and a native app.
1/ Upgrading the site to a new level
Magento 2 PWA includes some unique features that do not exist in the website or the app.
- Add to the home screen:
This function allows users to install PWA on their devices within a touch. By tapping the popup “Add to home screen”, users can now access the Magento site any time they from their home screen without typing the URL again or searching on Google.
- Offline mode:
Users can access the information they loaded before even in low or no connection.
Service workers support this function, allowing PWA users to save the data in their device through precaching.
- Background sync:
This feature helps customers save their last action, and it will be processed when the connection is improved.
For instance, the connection is lost when a customer is filling in information for his or her order. They can continue to fill in the form and submit the checkout. When the Internet is reconnected, the order’s data will be delivered to the merchants to proceed.
- Push notification:
This function used to be only available when customers download the app on their device.
With PWA, push notification is now possible for a website. This creates more communication and interaction between firms and customers. The clients can now be continuously updated on the sales discount, new arrivals of the store without any disruption.
- Fast load speed:
With the offline mode, the website loading time becomes faster. It is 2–3 times quicker than loading pages on a normal website.
2/ Having an “app” with lower cost
The price to develop a Magento 2 PWA is $1,500–10,000, depending on your selected PWA solution.
On the other hand, for a native app, the price starts from $15,000, which does not include the annual fees to submit it to App Store/ Google Play and maintain the app during the operation process.
3/ Improving SEO rankings
Using Magento Progressive Web App is good for SEO. It is linkable and searchable on Google or other prevailing search engines. On the contrary, for a native app, the users could only find it on the App Store or Google Play.
4/ Building up user list with ease
Since installing PWA does not take much space in the device’s memory, customers are willing to use PWA without hesitation.
Compared to native apps with a lengthy installation process and large consumption of space in the memory, this is a big plus of PWA.
How To Install PWA On Magento Websites?
1/ Installing PWA extensions
Magento PWA extensions are usually for free or have a low price.
Installing extensions is both easy and fast. Merchants can install by themselves by the guide from the extension provider or hire the provider to install.
With such a short amount of time and money to invest in Magento Progressive Web App development, this method can only include PWA’s basic functions. Some core features of PWA, such as offline mode, push notification, add to the home screen, do not usually work.
The site structure still consists of the frontend and backend like a normal website. This is not the same as a PWA site structure, which has a PWA storefront, API (the connection between storefront and backend), and backend.
2/ Using Magento 2 PWA Studio tool
This is a set of tools for developers to develop PWA storefront for sites using Magento 2.3 and above.
Magento 2 PWA Studio is also the official tool developed by Magento. This tool brings businesses a new e-commerce website with full features of PWA.
Unlike using extensions, store owners can’t just install PWA Studio to integrate their site with PWA. They must hire developers to utilize the tool as well as add more functions to completely convert the websites to the Magento Progressive Web Apps.
If the online store uses Magento 2 PWA Studio without customization, it will miss some core functions of a normal Magento site such as adding to wishlist, comparing products, writing a review,… Plus, most of the extensions and custom functions of the original website will become useless after PWA conversion.
Therefore, compared to the third solution — using the Magento PWA theme that will be mentioned in the next part, the overall process will last longer.
Another limitation of using Magento 2 PWA Studio is that the current theme (Magento PWA Venia) is not fully optimized for the desktop.
3/ Applying PWA themes
There are different kinds of Magento PWA themes but you should select the ones that are developed based on Magento 2 PWA Studio, so code conflict could hardly occur.
Besides, you should avoid hiring untrusted agencies as they might provide themes that do not follow the Magento code standard. This can cause severe issues to the website that could result in lagging, site downtime,…
Some Magento 2 PWA themes cover more advanced features for an online store such as Shop by brands, One-step checkout, Mega Menu, Product Labels… than what are provided by Magento 2 PWA Studio.
However, it might still require extra work to make the available extensions or custom functions of the site compatible with the new PWA storefront. Only those operating in the backend only are not affected by PWA integration.
Among the three solutions, developing with a PWA theme has a higher cost (from $1,500).
The time to convert the Magento website to PWA using the Magento 2 PWA theme is around 1 to 3 months.
When more and more people are tending to online shopping instead of physical stores or supermarkets, it is high time Magento merchants improve their online shops’ quality to attract more customers and bring the best service to visitors.
One thing to enhance the website quality is to install Magento 2 Progressive Web App. The benefits of adding Magento 2 PWA to the e-commerce website are both undeniable and uncountable.
Last but not least, merchants should consider upgrading their online store to PWA as soon as possible to optimize the customers’ experience. Thus, it can also boost site traffic and increase online sales profits.