Creating App-Like Shopping Experiences on the Mobile Web

This post was updated on July 27, 2017.

Retailers generally differentiate their ecommerce sites from their competitors’ based on design, whether it’s a responsive, adaptive, or m.dot solution. This is great for branding, but those solutions don’t address the friction that causes mobile conversions to lag. With mobile traffic surpassing desktop for the first time in 2016, retailers who don’t increase revenue from mobile will struggle to stay afloat.

The Mobile Web Strikes Back

When the App Store in launched in 2008, retailers could finally deliver an amazing shopping experience strictly for mobile users by taking advantage of features like the camera and location tracking. That was great, but there were still pros and cons to deal with:

app vs web image

Today, with help from Google, the mobile web is finally striking back. The premium shopping experience that retailers want to deliver – which is often the business case for investing in an app – can now be delivered through a Progressive Web App (PWA). The mobile web is finally able to deliver the shopping experience that customers want. And when web browsers take on the functionality and performance of apps, we know that customers convert more.

app vs web image

Retail Apps Y/N?

Progressive Web Apps create an opportunity for retailers to deliver an experience truly catered to mobile, and to a much wider audience than a native app could.

PWAs open up features that were originally restricted to apps, such as web push notifications and offline mode. It creates a much faster experience, which increases conversions, loyalty, and revenue. And, your web app will reach a much larger audience than your retail app would.

This extended reach gives retailers the opportunity to focus on uncovering those high value mobile moments that exist between customers and the brand. It shifts the retailers’ focus from a disconnected experience, to the customer experience as a whole.

The PWA provides the fast performance shoppers look for and the ability to engage shoppers with relevant information when they want it. And once that trust is built, an app can step in to cater to those loyal shoppers that have come to rely on your brand.

What’s in it for You?

You now need to think about where you’re starting with your mobile experience – what do you want to deliver as a retailer or brand?

Responsive websites are essential, but they’re no longer enough. If you’re evaluating responsive design, consider what other app-like features it can provide – the answer is probably none. A responsive website is only one part of a premium mobile shopping experience.

It’s time to think about the experience as a whole by having the tools to engage with where the majority of your shoppers are, and rewarding them with a seamless experience that builds loyalty.

With a customer engagement platform, you can leverage the investments you’ve already made, and transition towards an experience that gives your shoppers exactly what they look for on their phone.

Watch our webinar with Magento and Gorilla Group to learn how Progressive Web Apps can close the conversion gap between desktop and mobile.

Watch the Progressive Web App webinar

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