Progressive Web Apps (PWA) can deliver mobile-app like experience banking on modern web browsers’ capabilities, web APIs and technologies. PWAs follow AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)to bridge the cross-device compatibility challenge.
PWA has already made an impact in the B2C segment and is adopted by globally renowned eCommerce brands like AliBaba and social apps like Twitter, Pinterest and more.
However, the significance of using PWA in the B2B industry is largely overlooked. In this article, let’s look at the various situations where PWA can solve the challenges in the B2B eCommerce space.
PWA can enhance the mobile-web experience
There are three key stakeholders that are involved in a B2B eCommerce buying journey: Field / Site Engineer who identifies a product need to initiate an order, the Procurement who approves the order and the Account Manager who facilitates the entire buying B2B journey by working closely with all parties.
Each of these stakeholders may use different devices to access the B2B eCommerce website to fulfill their responsibilities. Here are some specific use cases that appeal to each of these stakeholders.
Field Engineer – By natures of the work, the field engineer lacks access to a desktop or laptop and relies mostly on a phone to access a B2B site. The field engineer can perform actions like scanning barcode of parts, placing orders, viewing order status notifications, referring installation instructions and service history.
Procurement – For procurement managers, the most common actions performed would be approving orders, reviewing quote requests, managing field engineers, and setting price and contract rules. Being confined to desktop access creates limitations to perform crucial responsibilities like order approvals, beyond business hours.
Account Manager – As an account manager would mostly be on-the-go for client meetings, mobile devices like Laptop or tablet would be a primary tool for accessing a B2B website. The responsibilities include configuring ‘built to order’ products and review sales orders.
Native Apps Vs PWAs
In the above B2B scenario, we can either provide a dedicated native app for each stakeholder or a progressive web app.
Native apps have to be customized to each stakeholder in a B2B buying process to address their specific responsibilities.
However, having a PWA in place serves as a super-fast version of the entire B2B website which can be accessed by all stakeholders from different devices to perform their specific responsibilities.
Thus a progressive web app can overcome the shortcomings of native apps and guarantee a superior user experience to all stakeholders.
Benefits of PWA for a B2B store include:
- Fast-loading mobile web pages can handle high web traffic.
- Quick and smooth web experience even at low internet speeds.
- Cross-device compatibility ensuring consistent user experience.
- Development costs are significantly less than those of native apps.
PWA is now mainstream
PWAs are now mainstream. Tech giants like Google, Microsoft, and Apple have started taking into account PWA seriously.
Google – Google has included page speed as a ranking factor for mobile web pages. Using PWA can help quickly load the pages.
Microsoft – Microsoft Store features both PWA and native apps together. For users who prefer to not install apps, can go with PWA.
Apple – PWA is supported by Apple devices running on iOS 11.3 version or higher. Again, users who don’t like to install native apps can use mobile web pages to access the B2B site.
Other big brands – Uber, Lyft, Tinder, Instagram, and Twitter are among the many big brands that benefit from PWA technology.
The strength of PWA is its cross-device compatibility and providing consistent user experience despite addressing different use cases from users belonging to various designations and hierarchy.
While maintaining the native apps, integrate PWA components in the mobile website can increase conversion significantly because, over a period of time, the traffic data from mobile websites is expected to be higher than those from native apps.
Overall, PWA can not only provide a consistent user experience with mobile web pages for better conversion but has also received a significant adaptation among tech giants.
If you are considering PWA for your B2B site, this is the right time to join the bandwagon.