Website and Mobile Apps: Differences and Similarities

Mobile sites and applications have firmly entered our lives, on the one hand. But on the other hand, with daily use of both, many do not understand how they differ and which is better.

A website is a collection of linked web pages that contain images, text, audio, video, and other content. The site can be single or multi-page, and its content can be plain text, or it can contain different media.

A web application is a program that you can access using a browser. You can also say that web applications are sites with rich functionality and interactive elements. Web applications are highly customizable. They can solve a number of tasks and have extensive functionality. In general, creating an application is more difficult than a website, and it requires an experienced development team.

Mobile site

Let’s take a look at the mobile version of the site. What is it really? A mobile site is an adaptive version of a site for mobile devices, i.e. it’s the same site but looks good and is easy to use on tablets and smartphones.

Mobile site benefits:

  • Simple use. The site will be used by a much larger number of users due to the ease of transition, no need to do extra steps. To use the application, you will need to install it. If you believe the statistics, then a relatively large percentage of users will not install the application, even when they go to a store or marketplace.
  • The mobile site looks correct on all devices regardless of the platform (Windows Phone, Apple, Android).
  • But the application will have to be developed separately for each.
  • The site is easy to update and all changes will immediately occur to the user.
  • It won’t work with an app. For an update to appear, even after the release, it takes time to check.
  • The cost of the mobile version is always several times cheaper than the application.
  • This is due to the complexity of development. To make the application work on popular platforms, you will have to create it from scratch for each.

We’ve covered the mobile site and its benefits, but don’t rush to make a choice, let’s take a closer look at the features of the apps.

Mobile app

A mobile application is a software product that is installed by users through stores, marketplaces. Its main and distinguishing feature is that development is carried out for each platform separately. This is due to the difference in the functionality of operating systems and is necessary for the correct operation of applications. I think you have ever met an application that, for example, works great for you on one platform, but terrible for your friend on another. It is also not uncommon that on one platform the full functionality, and on the other – its cropped version.

Application Benefits:

  • With the application you will always be in touch with users. You will be able to send push notifications. And also to remind both about the application itself, in case the user has not logged into the application for a long time, and about some important event. This feature is not available on the website.
  • Application Appearance. Often, sites are inferior to applications in terms of interface, because. they are much bulkier. Therefore, to fit them into a small screen is quite a difficult process. With the application, everything is easier. Only the information you need will appear on the screen, the buttons will be large enough that you don’t need to use a finger sharpener to get into it, as is the case with some sites.
  • Ease of use. It is quite simple and easy for users to understand the operation of the application than the operation of the site, especially with a complex structure. After all, each platform has its own standard actions (for example, moving between application screens, calling menus, etc.).
  • Personalization. Any application has the ability to remember user actions and adapt the application to it. For example, the user enters some data. You won’t have to enter any more data when you use the app.
  • Working with the application without using the Internet. You can always use the application even in offline mode. And this is a fairly weighty argument that sites do not have.
  • Customizing the application for the user. Popular platforms are able to keep track of their owner and know exactly when and what he does (puts on charging, uses a certain application, does not use a smartphone, etc.). Thanks to this, you will always be able to make changes and additions to the application by the time it is used.

What to choose

The advantage of web applications is their scale – simultaneous use by a large audience. The disadvantage is that you need constant access to the Internet. Mobile applications can be accessed offline. The client-server version does not require installation, unlike mobile applications, and, therefore, does not load the device’s memory. The functionality of mobile resources is more. But it will take more time and money to develop it. But the promotion will cost less than the promotion of a client-server resource. Web application updates happen automatically. 

A new version of the mobile application will have to be downloaded. Mobile apps have access to device memory and other data. The web application requests the necessary data each time. With a mobile application, communication with customers is constantly maintained (notifications, push messages). Usually the predecessor of the mob. application is always a web application.

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