Since the time web applications were first introduced, they have come a long way in terms of performance, design, and purpose.
We all know how vital a web application is for a business to gain an online presence, expand your business, and convert each visit into a sale or a business contract. To obtain all these, you need a have a kickass website, which could do that for you.
Especially in an era where mobile app usage has surpassed desktop usage, web applications are less preferred for tasks, but that doesn’t make them less critical. Because a web application is the spokesperson of your business before a person uses your app, it’s more likely that he would come across your web application first, which converts a visitor into a user or a customer.
So it is that important for your website to be up to date.
Gone are those days where you followed a template and put some straightforward content; technology isn’t the only thing that changed. Content changed too, and if you’re not using content, which contributes to SEO, your web application is not being used to its potential.
But why is it important to stay updated? Let’s discuss it.
Staying updated or keeping up with evolving website design trends and web development technologies is vital on two levels.
You don’t want to be that company struck doing things the old way. Yes, it would help if you stuck to your roots, which means your business’s purpose and all of that. But when it comes to technology, this isn’t valid.
This makes your business lag and gives potential customers a negative view of your company.
Few websites require Internet Explorer. These days, your website and apps should not only work across every browser but on every kind of device, be it a smartphone, a tablet, or a laptop.
And the other, you could be missing out on the advantages you would have by staying updated. Changes introduced over the past few years have improved the performance of web applications, capabilities, securities, and a lot more.
Shortly, new changes will create even more advantages. Do you want to ignore that?
Today we are going to learn about these changes and the effects they have on your web development. Here are a few ways development has changed and will evolve shortly.
After categorizing the significant changes in web app development, we came across these five as the main elements contributing to modern web app development evolution.
- Hardware Diversity
- Increasing Focus on Security
- Better User Experience
- Demand for APIs
- Real-time Applications
Since the new age devices’ hardware is much powerful than the devices a few years back, you need to take advantage of the current speed and capability.
It would help if you rethought all the compromises you’ve made to make your website perform faster; you can now use high-quality images or even background videos for a better design.
You can use better coding and not worry about the size and performance, which worried you long back and go for something cool and trending for your website.
Forget about your web app that can work on all the browsers; they need to be compatible with all kinds of devices. The term used for this is being “Responsive.”
Since the number of devices has drastically increased, you will mostly find different shapes and sizes of smartphones; you need to make sure your app is compatible and responsive on all kinds of devices.
Why should you do this?
Because mobile devices are the thing now, there are more chances that your web app would be used on a mobile device than on a desktop.
Some web applications are way better than most of the apps themselves, making them save the investment in developing a mobile app.
This doesn’t mean you need to make your web app better than a mobile app itself, but you can make it purposeful and responsive, which would make your customers not wanting a mobile app.
Also, make sure that your web app uses the hardware of mobile devices like the camera or the GPS; as I’ve mentioned above, you don’t need a mobile app if you’re web app could do all these.
Increased Focus on Security
Cyberattacks have increased drastically. Attackers are more sophisticated than ever. They would eventually grow as technology grows day by day.
But the technology has made sure you’re safe from all the threats and security breaches, we will not discuss it technically, but I’ll make sure you know how to choose the technology for your website to be a safer one.
Developers are still making the same security missteps made a decade ago; more than 90% of web applications have at least one “serious vulnerability.”
We’ve reached a point where the technology will provide impeccable security from all the potential threats. Yes, some platforms are great at providing security, and web development companies and web developers are aware of a website’s security needs.
Web app development platforms have always provided security features. Still, there was no use to their potential after recognizing the security breaches and most online businesses. Web development companies are now using the security features to their potential on whatever platform they are building.
But it would help if you were a bit careful about choosing a web app development company. You must check their previous work and contact their clients, try to know more about the quality. Ask if they have faced any security issues, and if they have, how did the company provide a solution to it, was the solution provided by them helpful?
So yes, web development platforms have the potential; all you need to do is find a web development company or web developer who could make the best use of the technology. It will help your website to be a safe place for your use as well as you.
Better User Experience
No other factor is more critical than User experience to gain users or loyal customers or even returning visitors.
If you make an excellent user experience, you should expect a great online response.
User experience is how the user feels while using your website; it could be in three-point views.
- Look and feel
Your web app needs to perform, it needs to be fluidic and easy to use, and it shouldn’t crash or hang. It’s not possible to make it 100% bug-free; bugs come up with the usage and addition of data onto the website and how your website is programmed.
So, it’s the web app developer’s responsibility to make sure your app performs well, be wise in choosing one. Not going to repeat how you do that; I’ve already mentioned it above.
When it comes to look and feel, it’s the content that makes all the difference. Content again is not just text; it’s the pictures, text, and videos you put on your website need to be interesting.
Here’s an example of one of my favorite websites; check out the content in it.
This screenshot is from Koala Mattress, an Australian-based ecommerce website.
The content in it is simple yet attractive; they use the kind of English you would use in the real world, making it enjoyable.
You could add pictures where people could relate to the products or services on your website. It undoubtedly boosts your business. It’s a much better strategy than putting up template pictures that are repeated all over the internet. I see many repeated pictures a lot, which creates a hostile or unimpressive impact on your users.
Go for something unique; if you can invest more, do a photo shoot; create a concept with which your users could relate.
Usability is something where your customers or visitors shouldn’t find a hassle while using your website.
How do you achieve that?
You don’t confuse them with complex options or features. It’s always good to be innovative but not up to the extent that you scare them away.
Ensure that people understand the options’ intention and purpose; make sure they know what option does what.
It isn’t that hard to achieve this; there are two things to achieve this.
If you add new button styles, make sure it is in the same place as every other website. Or, if you are adding new options and changing places, make sure the symbols or button styles are familiar.
If you don’t want to go with either of these, make sure your users’ content helps your users navigate through the app.
Demand for APIs
HTML5 is the standard since 2014, but it is continually evolving as new features and APIs are regularly added to it.
HTML5 is still surrounded by different confusing questions and information, changing web development in many ways.
HTML5 is offering various advanced features that make web apps behave like native apps.
Two massive changes define the space, adding all the new HTML5 APIs that add native-like features to web browsers. The limited list of currently available APIs like camera access is rapidly growing to include new features like local storage / offline access and notifications, and a lot more.
Did you ever observe the website asking if you would like to get notifications?
These notifications can only be seen when you have installed the particular apps. But now, the notifications can be sent by using browsers on all kinds of devices. Clicking on the received notification will take you to the targeted web page.
It doesn’t stop there. HTML works Hand-in-hand with Cascading style sheets or CSS in short, which also undergo some exciting changes.
CSS is responsible for the layout and look/feel of a page; it’s behind the responsive design—a web application’s ability to appear different on different devices and screen sizes.
What’s new with CSS?
One of the exciting things I’m looking forward to is the upcoming advancements in CSS, not the least of which is, of course, variables that can be manipulated right in CSS without preprocessing post-processors.
Firefox has already implemented this in its newest version, and it has come to Chrome too. Realistically it will be several years before people start adopting these as old browsers won’t support it, but it represents a new era for CSS as we step into the next level of CSS.
Technology has undoubtedly blurred outlines between mobile apps and web applications; a web app could almost do everything a mobile app does but on a browser.
A real-time application or the application program functions within a time frame and lets users sense the actions immediately.
Real-time web technologies have been around for more than a decade now, but it’s only recently we’ve started seeing them used in the sorts of applications we use daily.
It’s only because the technology is better understood; it has undoubtedly matured and become standardized.
But it’s also because users have been exposed to the user experiences that real-time web technology provides and are now demanding those types of experiences in the apps they use.
Well, mobile apps are real-time apps. They send out notifications as soon as they have something new, and web apps are closing down the difference between them. There are push notifications now, as I’ve mentioned above, which keep you updated on what’s new on a website.
Google Chrome makes the best use on Android devices; it uses machine learning and sends out notifications of your most searched categories. Like a notification of a Football match or your favorite blog page update.
What does a mobile app have that a web app doesn’t?
Well, a mobile app, as we know, is something, which is in the device and could gain access to all the hardware on your phone, much quickly creating a fantastic user experience.
As far as a web app is concerned, it has its limitations. Even though it could perform most of the tasks that a mobile app could perform, it cannot currently use its hardware as efficiently as a mobile app. But as we see it, there would be a time where web apps will give fair competition to mobile apps in all aspects.
Therefore, a user who would not prefer downloading an app on the device could choose to use the web app, while the mobile apps’ goal is to make people not use the browsers anymore. Yes, web apps are closing the gap.
You might find this interesting: “Mobile Web vs. Mobile App: Which Is Right for Your Business?”
Web applications offer distinct advantages as these are platform agnostic, saving significant web development costs and time to market. On the other side, as these apps execute within a web browser, they do not have the luxury of using the native platform’s powerful features.
It’s a challenge for web application development companies to develop their apps just like native apps. This approach has forced a lot of businesses to go native or opt for the middle path to develop hybrid applications.
But a lot of that has been changed by the new-age platforms and also google. Google’s AMP makes a web page load faster than any of your apps; it merely uses the cache memory and helps you load the pages with lightning speed.
Tablets and smartphones offer well-equipped web browsers using the latest technologies like HTML5, CSS, and JS. These platforms allow us to develop websites and develop an application that runs in web browsers.
Unlike native apps in languages such as C++, the developers can implement the mobile app with no particular expertise. The app updates are easy to perform – install them on the server is all you have to do.
Some platforms offer the best user experience of web app development, we are in an era where user experience is prioritized, and web app development is on point.
Mobile applications have surpassed web app usage, but web applications are closing the gaps and achieving the same user experience as mobile apps.
It wouldn’t be much longer when you get confused about choosing between these two.
The web app development companies and web developers should examine every possibility on a case-to-case basis and determine the best solutions in terms of app features, budget, and development time.
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- A Complete Tour on Power App Development
It has been observed that a dynamic change in market state, change in preference or progression in technology, all these factors can potentially lead your application to swim or sink. Sometimes, changes in the online environment demand new and high-tech applications to streamline business processes. You need to plan and work by keeping market and users’ demands in mind so you can make the best out of it.