Key PWA Benefits: Pros and Cons of Progressive Web Apps

6 May 2024
Damian Lisowski
Damian Lisowski
Backend Developer
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  • Intro

Progressive Web Apps are a new generation of web applications. They load in browsers like regular websites but leverage mobile technologies to deliver an experience that mirrors that of traditional mobile applications. They work cross-platform, without requiring Android or iOS users to download or install an application package. 

Businesses today are starting to catch on to the numerous benefits of Progressive Web Apps. They are fast, reliable, and most importantly, easy to build. But what exactly does it mean for businesses and developers? What is PWA and how does it benefit your business? In this article, we’ll explore the key benefits of Progressive Web Apps as well as their downsides and potential limitations. 

  • Progressive Web Apps are a new generation of web applications designed to deliver an experience that mirrors that of traditional mobile applications, without installing an app package.
  • PWAs offer several benefits for businesses including being cheaper to build and offering benefits that improve user experiences such as offline capabilities and fast loading. 
  • Progressive Web Apps are great for developers because they’re easier to build, maintain, and update. 

Top 10 Benefits of Progressive Web Apps for Your Business

  • Low Development Cost
  • PWAs Behave Like Native Mobile Apps
  • SEO-friendly
  • No Installation Required 
  • No Dependence on App Distribution Services
  • Cross-platform Compatibility
  • They Work Offline
  • Built-in Security Benefits
  • Less Disk Space
  • Faster Time-to-market

An increasing number of businesses are capitalizing on modern web capabilities offered by Progressive Web Applications. This new generation of apps delivers the best of both worlds by simplifying development while delivering a smooth app experience to mobile users. Let’s explore some of the benefits of Progressive Web App development from a business point of view. 

Low Development Cost

For many businesses, affordability is a major consideration in executing any project. The low cost of Progressive Web App development is one of the most compelling reasons to go for this type of application over traditional mobile apps. 

Progressive apps are built with web tools like HTML, CSS, and Javascript. These are readily available skills that tend to cost less compared to the specialized knowledge of native languages like Java and Kotlin needed to build native mobile apps. The fact that you only need to build one app instead of building separately for each native platform further simplifies the development process for PWAs, saving costs.

PWAs Behave Like Native Mobile Apps

A Progressive Web App is a cross between a traditional website and a native app. Modern PWAs are designed to look and feel just as good as native applications while still delivering website-like performance. They are responsive, which means they can adapt to different device screen sizes. 

This has a significant impact on user experience since the user’s familiarity with their app-like interface makes the app easier to use. Smartphone users may also add PWAs to their mobile device’s home screen, so they can launch them seamlessly without browsers. 


Progressive apps are generally more discoverable than native mobile apps. The major platform to download and install traditional mobile applications is via app stores, which can be quite restrictive. A Progressive Web App on the other hand is indexable by search engines. Part of the building block of this site is the JSON file which describes the elements of the app like the URL, icons, and other information to make them discoverable by a search engine.

This makes it easy for users to find your application organically via search engines using relevant keywords that are related to your business. Leveraging organic traffic this way ultimately drives more potential customers to your business. 

No Installation Required 

This is one of the biggest factors driving the rapid adoption and growing popularity of Progressive Web Applications. Unlike a native app that requires users to download and install an app package on their device, PWAs load directly inside the web browser of your device. 

This approach simplifies access for users, eliminating barriers associated with conventional app installations. With no need for installation, the user journey is simplified, which translates to higher user adoption rates for businesses. 

No Dependence on App Distribution Services

Traditional mobile apps are characterized by a very cumbersome distribution process. The only way to download them is through app stores such as Google Play Store for Android apps and Apple App Store for iOS. To ensure the integrity of the apps hosted on these platforms, the distribution authorities often set stringent technical and ethical requirements that all apps must meet before they can be approved. 

This process can be time- and effort-consuming. The distribution company is also at liberty to remove apps that fail to meet their changing requirements without notice. Since you won’t have to install an app to use a PWA, these are hurdles you won’t have to scale. 

Cross-platform Compatibility

Progressive Web Applications are designed to work everywhere without a complex installation process. They’re built with web technologies that aren’t tied to a specific operating system or device. This allows them to work on various devices, operating systems, screen orientations, and screen sizes. The fact that users don’t need to install an app also means they can easily switch between devices and still enjoy a continuous experience. 

They Work Offline

These days, modern Progressive Web Apps can deliver basic offline capabilities, thanks to advanced scripts known as Service Workers. This is a system that handles network requests, caches app assets, and stores temporary files. This has proven to be one of the biggest upsides of this kind of application because it ensures that the app continues to function even when users are offline or in locations with limited connectivity. 

For your business, interrupted access can directly impact customer loyalty and crash revenue in the long run. Building an app that can work in offline mode allows users to maintain access to some of your services, even in places with poor connectivity, and enhances business continuity. 

Built-in Security Benefits

Progressive Web Apps use an advanced encryption protocol (HTTPS) to protect user data. This protocol encrypts all data transmitted between the app and the serving, making it difficult for hackers to view or access them. In addition to this, PWAs don’t require access or permission to native device functionalities. This limits your customers’ exposure to security threats even when they occur. 

Less Disk Space

Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are designed to be lightweight. Users don’t have to download large app packages that take up valuable space on their devices. The lightweight design of these apps promotes adoption since users no longer have to worry about running out of space or the app slowing down their device speed. It also makes them more likely to engage with your app web pages and improves the overall user experience. 


Do you have a business idea you want to get to market as quickly as possible? Building a Progressive Web App is the fastest way to make this happen. You won’t have to build separate apps for multiple platforms or wait for weeks or months to get your app approved by an app store. Progressive Web Apps can be developed in a fraction of the time and resources it’ll take you to build a fully functional native mobile application. 

Benefits of PWA for Developers

Businesses aren’t the only ones that benefit from progressive app development. For developers, the fact that Progressive Web Apps are based on common web technologies like HTML, CSS, and Javascript makes them relatively easy to build and manage. Here are some of the key benefits of PWA for developers. 

Short Development Time 

Even when you work with a large team of developers, it can take several months to take a typical native app to market. Progressive Web Apps are significantly easier to build. They’re typically smaller and less complex, so they require less time and fewer people to build. There are also a lot of web tools and PWA frameworks that can be used to further simplify the development process. 

Easier Maintenance and Updates 

Developers will find it easier to maintain and update Progressive Web Apps compared to native applications. Unlike traditional mobile apps where developers have to submit updates to the app store for users to download, Progressive Web Apps are updated directly on the web server. This way, any changes made by the developers reflect instantly the next time users load the app. This eliminates the need for batch changes and installations. 

Build One App For All Devices 

PWAs work on all kinds of mobile devices and operating systems. This means you get to focus all your development assets and resources on a single task, making the task considerably easier for developers. 

Freedom from Distribution Platforms

Distribution accounts are cumbersome for developers to operate. Aside from the stringent requirements that must be fulfilled to upload apps, some stores require developers to pay a monthly fee to keep their accounts functional. With PWAs, there’s no need to pay for a developer account or go through a rigorous process to submit apps. 

Disadvantages of Progressive Web Apps

  • Limited access to native device features,
  • Compatibility issues,
  • Trust and reliability issues. 

In exploring the difference between PWA vs native apps, one has to consider PWA pros and cons. Although they offer users several benefits as highlighted above, standard web apps have limited access to native device functionalities such as GPS, geolocation, camera, and so on. A native application will also have access to dedicated OS features. For instance, Android apps can easily leverage Google Maps and other Google services.

They’re also written in JavaScript, which isn’t as system-efficient as apps written in the native language of specific operating systems. Consequently, a Progressive Web App cannot do many of the things a mobile app can do. Progressive Web App development will also require extra workarounds compared to a native app, especially when you need to add complex features or customization to your site.

Progressive Web Apps are also prone to compatibility issues. While they’re prone to work across platforms, how these apps are displayed depends on the browser on which they run. Older mobile devices or outdated web browsers may not support modern Progressive Web Apps too well and this may potentially lead to customer complaints for some businesses.

Finally, there are the issues of trust and reliability. Native apps are downloaded from the official stores of the specific operating system where they operate. They also have to pass through stringent tests to ensure they’re safe. Users can also leave reviews and get feedback about app performance. All of these benefits are absent with standard web apps, which might lead to low user trust and slower adoption. 

Let CrustLab Help You Use All the Advantages of Progressive Web Apps

By combining the benefits of the web and native apps, Progressive Web Apps deliver the best of both worlds to users. With these apps, businesses get to deliver an app-like experience to users while building quickly and at a lower cost. 

As a business looking to leverage these Progressive Web App benefits for your app development needs, partner with CrustLab to bring your Progressive Web App ideas to life. We are a reliable app development company with a wealth of experience in progressive app development for a wide range of use cases. Contact us to schedule a free consultation and learn more about PWA advantages that you can leverage for your business.


  • Why is a PWA better than a native app?

    The main benefit of a Progressive Web App over a native app is that PWAs are built to work across various operating systems and mobile devices. They run in the web browser, which means you can open a PWA whether you’re using an iOS, Android, or Windows device. The cross-platform compatibility of Progressive Web Apps also makes them easier to build. Unlike native apps where you have to build for multiple operating systems, you’ll only have to build one progressive app for all devices, making them faster and cheaper to build.

  • Can PWA replace native?

    Progressive Web Apps offer several benefits over native apps. They’re accessible across various mobile platforms thanks to their no-installation design and are generally easier to build and distribute. However, this does not mean they are better than native apps or that they can replace them. Native apps deliver better performance and a smoother experience for mobile users.

  • What is the difference between PWA and native medium?

    The essential difference between a Progressive Web App and a typical native app is in how they’re built. A progressive app is written with web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Consequently, they work like conventional websites and run directly inside a web browser. A native app is built with the native programming language of a specific operating system. They have to be installed on the device and are designed to have full access to the features and hardware of the mobile operating system on which they have been built.

  • Should I build a PWA or a native app?

    To decide whether you should build a Progressive Web App or a native app, you have to determine which option would be the perfect fit for your specific needs. If you want an app that will be accessible across different platforms, then a progressive app would be ideal for you. However, if your priority is performance and access to device features, then a native app would be better. You also have to consider the cost, timeline, and resources you are willing to dedicate to your project.

  • How do I convert PWA to the native app?

    The easiest way to convert a Progressive Web App to a native app is to wrap the PWA in a native app container. Tools like Cordova or Capacitor allow you to package the code and JavaScript files for your PWA within a native app shell so it can deliver some native app functionalities. However, the app’s core logic will still be based on the original web code. The alternative option is to rebuild the app from scratch with native code. This is a more cost and time-intensive approach since it means you’ll have to rewrite the app’s code base using native programming languages for each platform. But you’ll get a smooth-functioning native application this way.

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