Do you wish your e-commerce store or web app had better audience reach? There’s a solution for that.

While it is true that many users fulfill their e-commerce needs on a desktop computer. Unsurprisingly, an increasing amount of people are using their mobile devices to purchase goods. According to StatCounter, traditional desktop users only make up 52% of the total device market share. At the same time, mobile users make up 39%.

In addition to this, according to OuterBox Design, “79% of smartphone users have made a purchase online using their mobile device…” in 2018.

It’s true, in order to keep up in e-commerce, you have to break into the mobile market. Seeing as how building an app for a single platform can potentially cost $25,000 depending on complexity, It takes a lot of investment to get started in one app store.

Developing an e-commerce app has another big problem. Your app will only reach half of your potential audience depending on the device — iOS or Android users. According to StatCounter, iOS and Android operating system market share is almost split down the middle. This means you might have to build the app twice to reach maximum audience engagement. However, there is a solution to this — web/native hybrid applications built with a mobile app framework.

What is a web/native hybrid application?

A web/native hybrid application — or simply hybrid app — is a mobile application that combines a web user interface packaged within a mobile application framework. This means that you can market your website as a mobile app and distribute it in an app store. Advantages to this solution include being able to reach more users with one application, and lower cost of updating and maintenance due to less codebase thanks to new technologies.

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There are some potential downsides. First, a hybrid app will not function without an internet connection. For users who are in remote locations, they will experience performance issues. Second, because processing is handled on the web server instead of the device, a hybrid app will “feel” less native than a 100% native app. However, most users won’t be able to tell the difference.

 

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Despite the downsides, there are many hybrid apps already on the market that are extremely successful. Some of which include Amazon App Store, Twitter, Gmail, and Instagram.

This makes hybrid apps a viable solution for businesses who are looking for a simple informational or e-commerce app. For more complex apps like games, a fully native app might be required.

If you’re interested in developing a hybrid app, check out our e-commerce hybrid app demo. It was built using React Native. Get in touch!

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