What Is Progressing Web App?

Progressive Web Application is application software that is built using web technologies to make web applications that provide app-like experience to users. They act like a native app on mobile and work offline too. Whenever a customer opens the website for the first time, they are asked to use the website as a PWA, when they click on Yes, an icon is added to the user’s mobile as an app, that will redirect you to the website once you click on it. So the next time, users can open the website with a single click of the app and can experience the app-like look and feel of the website.

Features Of Progressive Web App V/S Native App

  • PWA can be created using an existing web framework with no separate programming language or technologies. You can create a PWA at a lower cost when compared to Native apps.
  • PWA can be used on any platform like a normal website and supported on both iOS and Android, whereas separate native apps need to be created for iOS and Android.
  • The “Mobile” mode in the PWA helps to send push notifications even if the user is not using the app. It keeps them updated with promotion offers.
  • The availability of offline mode makes PWA work on low-speed internet. It functions even when there is no internet by fetching old data.
  • PWA works faster than the mobile website, and sometimes, it loads faster than the native app.
  • In the Magento e-commerce development market, PWA proves to increase conversion rates very quickly and drastically with an increase in the number of users.
  • There is no need to download the app and install it from the App store. Once created, it can sync automatically when it is in the internet range.

Progressive Web App Using Magento 2

The term PWA was launched by Google in 2015, and since then it has become a hot topic for E-Commerce and Web developers. With the increasing use of mobile and digital media, the expectation of the mobile customer, demand an app-like browsing experience, within the website. Thus, Magento introduced the PWA studio to support PWA.

Magento 2 PWA Studio is a collection of developer tools that ease the process of development, deployment, and maintenance of PWA storefront for Magento 2 Websites. It will replace the Magento storefront with the PWA storefront that will be connected to Magento backend using API.

For a Magento developer, PWA is treated as a separate project. It’s one type of ReactJS Application, using GraphQL to connect with the backend.

PWA Studio Tools & Libraries

  • PWA-buildpack CLI Tools – Building and development tools help set-up Magento PWA.
  • Peregrine Hooks And Components – A collection of useful components and custom React hooks.
  • Venia Store And Visual Components – Ready-made demo Magento storefront created using PWA studio tools.
  • UPWARD – It describes the behavior of the application server and how it reacts to the API response. It’s an intermediate between the PWA storefront and Magento API.
  • Shared Magento Server – It provides access to the Magento developer to run the Magento PWA application on the cloud.

PWA Studio Tools & Libraries

How Can We Convert Magento Website To PWA?

A Magento 2 website can be converted to PWA via 3 methods, and it takes the benefits of all those methods.

PWA Extensions

This is the easiest way to convert any Magento website into PWA. There are many paid extensions available in Magento Marketplace for Magento PWA.

PWA Magento Theme

PWA theme is the Magento component that defines how the Magento PWA storefront will look. This will connect Magento Storefront and backend with the API.

PWA Studio

Magento 2.3 has recently introduced a PWA studio that helps to develop, deploy, and maintain PWA storefront for the Magento website. This method is costly to compare to the other two as one needs to hire a PWA storefront developer who knows of basic tools.

Magento Theme V/S Magento PWA Storefront

   Magento Theme   Magento PWA Storefront
Definition It’s a type of Magento component that defines how a store looks like. The theme is integrated with Application and mainly used Magento core code for functionality. It’s a progressive web application built using Magento studio tools. It renders an app shell, handles root component assignment, and Embed GraphQL payloads into server render.
Components In the Magento theme, a component is referred to as the UI component. It’s a standard element like Table, button, etc. In the PWA storefront, a component is referred to as the React component. It’s a modular piece that makes React application.
Dependency Management Magento theme use Composer file for dependency management PWA studio uses Yarn for dependency management.
Inheritance Magento theme inherits from Parent theme “Blank” Which provides a base file for the new theme. PWA storefront does not inherit the parent theme. Storefront is created from scratch using React Module. It provides greater flexibility.
Required Skillset Magento theme developer requires general knowledge about jQuery, knockoutJS, Magento Layout & templates, Magento UI component, UI library, etc. Magento Storefront developer requires less Magento knowledge but it requires knowledge of React JS, GraphQL, Yarn, Peregrine, Redux JS, etc.

Wrap Up

PWA is the new and upcoming technology that is taking the e-commerce industry by the storm; especially for those who cannot afford the Native app for the website financially. For Magento store owner, PWA can be the replacement for Native App and responsive website to increase conversion rate.

Through this blog, we have highlighted some essential queries that a Magento developer might come across while working with PWA. PWA could be considered a breakthrough in the e-commerce industry given the current situation of the world economy. Escalating e-commerce needs could lead to a rise in the use of this feature. Let us know if you’ve any questions regarding PWA.