web app vs mobile appIf your business isn’t harnessing the power of the digital age. There’s every chance you’re falling behind your competitors. Never before has it been so important to make it easy for customers to find and interact with your company. If you’re still operating with a basic website, it’s time to take the leap into something a bit more user friendly. But what is the difference between mobile and web applications?

Let’s explore the differences, and you can decide which is right for your business.

What are the Main Differences?

The main differences between mobile and web apps can be summed up quite easily. Mobile apps are considered ‘native’ to one particular operating system. This means they are built specifically for iOS or Android, and they work as part of that operating system.

Web apps on the other hand aren’t native to any specific system. As their name suggests, they’re accessed in a web browser, so they can function on any advice that allows you to use the internet.

Many businesses have both, and they will design them with the same look and feel as each other so you can barely tell the difference.

Cost of Development

There is a significant cost different between the two. Mobile apps provide much more functionality, can work offline, load much faster and security is at a premium. With that comes an added cost. You’re generally looking at building an app from scratch, in every aspect from design through to functionality. Web apps, on the other hand, can be made from templates and are easier to make.

Furthermore, mobile apps are built for a specific operating system. This affects the cost because the people you hire to build them need to be experts in building within that system.

Which Do Users Prefer?

Users much prefer mobile apps, for a whole range of reasons that we’ll detail below. However, every business should weigh up their needs with the cost. Since mobile apps are considerably more costly to create, you want to make sure you’re getting value from it.

In particular, if you’re in a retail environment and you sell online, you can’t go past mobile apps for e-commerce. To put it in perspective, the most popular app among millennials isn’t Instagram or Snapchat. It’s Amazon. It’s not that web apps can’t give you a similar e-commerce function, but people are placing a premium on convenience. Mobile apps deliver that in waves.

Benefits of Mobile Apps

There’s no shortage of reasons for your business to consider a mobile app. Here’s just a few:

Loading speed: Flicking from page to page on an app is almost instant. There’s very little loading time required, and people love that convenience.

Greater functionality: Mobile apps can draw on system resources, meaning their capacity for additional features is increased.

Notifications: Mobile apps have the ability to reach users through notifications. For example, if you have a sale or a special deal, you can notify customers instantly without them accessing the app first.

Security: Mobile apps, particularly those holding your personal data, need to be operating with the latest security technology. They need to be approved by the App Store/Google Play Store, so you know your details are safe.

Ease and convenience: Apps allow users to store personal data such as shipping address, payment details and order history. Web apps can do this too, but a user has to log in to their account. With mobile apps, everything is available in one click.

Benefits of Web Apps

Web applications aren’t without their selling points either.

Cost: Web applications are far cheaper to build and maintain.

Quick to launch: App store approval isn’t needed, meaning no drawn-out launch process. Once you’ve built it, it can go live.

No download: Users don’t need to be convinced to download something. Web apps operate within a browser, so they can be accessed easily.

MRU Consulting are experts in both mobile app development, as well as reliable, fast loading web applications. Every business is different, with different budgets and needs. We’ve got you covered for both, so get in touch today for a risk-free quote and see what we can do for you.

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