The website you’re currently reading is actually a ‘mobile-responsive progressive web app’.

Bit of a mouthful, isn’t it! But what does that mean?

Responsive web design

The mobile-responsive part means that the website adapts depending on the device you view it on, to give an optimal experience for each type of visitor. If you look at this website on your laptop or desktop computer, and then look again on your phone, you’ll see how the layout changes to make everything work better for each screen size.

This is very important for a number of reasons, but two of the main reasons are:

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  1. It gives a better user experience, and when your website visitors are having a nice time, they’re much more likely to become paying customers than if they find your website frustrating to use; and
  2. Google prefers to show responsive websites in search results (see point 1 above: Google wants its users to have a good time). This means that you’re more likely to rank higher in Google search results if your website is responsive. And better search visibility means more traffic to your website, which means more customers. Optimising your website for search engines is called SEO (search engine optimisation).

Progressive web apps

And going back to this website being a ‘mobile-responsive progressive web app’. What does the progressive web app part mean?

Progressive Web Apps are a fairly new technology, which turns a website into something closer to an app. This means that parts of the website are saved on your phone, in a similar way that a normal app is installed on your phone from the App Store.

This has a few benefits, and since we like lists, here is another one:

  1. It makes the website faster to load. Since lots of the website is already saved on your phone, this means that as you browse between pages, each page can load more quickly, because your phone doesn’t have to download the files from the web server again. This also means the site is quicker to load when you visit it again in the future.
  2. The website can be viewed when your phone isn’t connected to the internet. This has limitations: you can only view the pages that your phone has already saved. Go ahead and try it now: turn off your Wifi and/or mobile signal, and try browsing this website. You’ll see that the pages you’ve viewed before are still available for you to read offline. When you try to visit a new page, you’ll see a message informing you that you need an internet connection to access the content. Nifty isn’t it!
  3. Progressive Web Apps can be saved on the home screen of your phone for viewing later. Try it now: Depending on what kind of phone you’re using, you should be able to tap the Share button on your browser, and then choose ‘save to home screen.’

So there you have it. Mobile-responsive progressive web apps don’t have to be a headache! If you’d like to chat about turning your website into a mobile-responsive progressive web app, just drop us a line.

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