The tech world has to face a constant dilemma of choosing between a website and a web application. Both of these platforms are easily accessible from the browser and both require an internet connection. But, how can you differentiate the two and know which one will suit you better in 2021? Continue reading to find that out.
A professional software development company that specializes in the development of websites and mobile applications will be better able to discuss with the clients the purpose and importance of each of these platforms in proper details. Hence, here is a tutorial that will make it easier to understand the key differences between the two. Once you understand those differences, it will be easier to know which one is more your type.
Website: What Is It?
Websites have been around since the dawn of the internet. Generally, it consists of web pages that are connected under a domain, like eco-n-tech.com. It is hosted on a server using a special IP address. A website can be considered as an extended business card where individuals can access through a link. A business card that tells the person about who you are and the service you offer.
A website can be opened on different platforms like desktops, tablets, laptops, phones by opening the browser, typing out the domain name, and then clicking on it. Usually, websites are known as a one-way informational feed, where viewers are unable to communicate or interact back with the site. When it comes to mobiles, there are websites that are specifically designed for smaller sizes. Also, responsive design websites will automatically adjust to the type and size of the browser where they are displayed.
A website is an important aspect of any business nowadays, since the majority of the acquisition processes tend to occur online. Therefore, it is important to have a strategy that helps with growing and developing a community of recurring users.
Web Application: What Is It?
A web application can be defined as a software that’s easily accessible from a browser and it’s stored on the server. Also, you need an internet connection for accessing it.
What makes a web application different from a desktop application and a mobile application is the fact that it can be accessed through a link and doesn’t require the user to download it from a store in order to install it on their device. Moreover, a web application tends to be responsive, hence it easily adapts to the dimensions of any size of screen where it is accessed from, for instance, a laptop, a Smartphone, a desktop, etc. Usually, a web hosting solution is required that handles requests and a database which stores important information. A lot of the web applications tend to be dynamic and need server-side processing. On the other hand, some of them are static and don’t really need it.
A web application’s main purpose is to help the user with a specific task, like keeping a record of business expenses, managing online courses, managing ads accounts, and so on.
Website And Web Application: Differences Between The Two
In the case of a mobile website, it’s pretty much similar to any other type of website. It is made up of browser-based HTML pages, which are connected together and can be accessed through the internet (typically for mobile it means through WiFi, 3G, 4G, 5G networks.) What mainly differentiates a mobile website from a regular website is that it’s designed for smaller display sizes and touch screen interfaces. Furthermore, responsive website design has become the new standard for websites. In addition to being mobile friendly, these websites can be viewed on devices of all sizes, whether it is desktops, tablets, or smarphones.
Similar to any website, mobile websites or responsive websites are able to showcase images, data, text content, videos, and so on. Additionally, they are also able to access mobile-specific features like location-based mapping, click-to-call (for dialing a phone number), etc.
Applications are apps that are downloaded and then installed on your phones instead of being accessed through a browser. A user will visit their device-specific portal like Google Play Store or the App Store in order to find the app they need and download it. The app might use data and content from the internet, similar to a website, or it might download the content so it’s easily accessed without using the internet.
How To Know Which One Is Right For You
This question can easily be answered without much thought. You will need a website if you want others to know about your business and the products/service you offer. You will need a website application if you are looking for an online tool to help you in automating a process.
On the other hand, if you developed a web application and are looking to sell it, then you would need both since a website will help you promote the product you created. Usually, a website does not have functionality, hence if you are looking for people to register on your site, then you will need a website that contains parts of a web application. A website is just presentation pages, while a web application consists of authentication and other functions.
The Different Characteristics Of A High Quality Website
After learning the difference between a website and a web application, it is time to discuss about their characteristics that make them important. The main aim of a website is to offer its readers with correct information. Hence, listed below are all of the characteristics that a good website should possess:
Firstly, a website needs to be secure when it comes to its readers. The HTTP requests tend to be unsafe. In order to avoid security issues and keep your readers’ personal data safe, you would need to use HTTPS protocols that will fix the initial issue by working with TLS/SSL encryption.
2. Premium Web Content
Your readers should get information that is reliable and authentic, and helps them with whatever they are looking for. Prior to writing, it is important that you do proper market research and recognize the topics that will get their attention. This will make it easier for you to provide related content.
3. SEO Friendly
If you want your website to appear on top in the search engines, then you need to ensure that it is SEO friendly. This includes both on the content level and technical level.
4. How Responsive It Is
People use different devices to access a website, hence the website should be easy to look at when using it on one of these devices, whether it is a tablet, laptop, desktop, or smartphone.
How quickly a website loads on the screen is highly important. According to studies, people will leave a website if it did not load within two seconds.
If you want a great website then it is best to work with a web designing company. Professional website developers will handle everything and will make sure that all of the characteristics mentioned above are taken care of. This will help your website to grow.
The Different Characteristics Of A High Quality Web Application
You will find web applications pretty much everywhere these days, whether it is social networks, ecommerce platforms, e-learning platforms, and so on. All of these areas permit a user to perform their task in a short amount of time, provide them with important information, or entertain them. Listed below are the different characteristics that a good web application needs to have:
It is important to have a secure authentication process when it comes to a web application. Users should be able to easily log in with their usernames and passwords in a safe manner. Sharing personal information is always a tough area for users, hence it is important to have an app that is safe for them to use.
A good web application should be intuitive, hence customers are able to easily use it. Also, you won’t have to waste your time in order to create extended documentation for it. This is why the UI/UX design is an important part when it comes to the success of your app.
The input from the user is important when it comes to this step. From the moment your product starts to be used, users will want you to add more features. Therefore, it is important that the development company ensures that you app is scalable and can easily add on new features when needed.
The data should be easily processed without it affecting the loading speed.
When it comes to web application development, it tends to be more complicated as compared to website development. Hence, you have to consider different factors and in order to develop a great web application; you will have to get in touch with a web development company. A professional company will make sure that the application is performing, and they will keep you updated about the development process.
Benefits of Getting A Website
These are the benefits of getting a website:
- You will be able to display your products or services.
- You will be able to promote your business online.
- You will be able to offer information to people that can help them in different areas of their lives, for example, in their business.
- It is easier to implement and includes additional benefits when it comes to using non-coding platforms such as Wix, WordPress, etc.
- You will reach more people and have greater accessibility. This is because websites don’t need any unique installation needs. Users can easily access it through their browsers, no matter which device they are on.
- You don’t have to worry about installing or updating your website, since this can be done by the creator. Usually, websites can easily be fixed and updated. Also, the users won’t even notice the update process, which is great. Users tend to move away from apps due to laziness, net restrictions, and major updates, but you don’t have to worry about that with a website.
Benefits Of Getting A Web Application
Listed below are the benefits of building a web application:
- You will be able to create a product that will easily automate specific processes or enhance certain areas of someone else’s life.
- You can run a web application on numerous operating systems and platforms.
- You can access a web application from anywhere and don’t have to install it on your hard drive.
- It takes less time when it comes to the web application development process as compared to the mobile app development process, because there is no need to built separate apps for different operating systems.
Drawbacks Of Getting A Website
These are the drawbacks of getting a website:
- You would have to regularly update your web design, because design trends change every year.
- You would have to keep your website updated with valuable content that will increase its ranks and keep the users engaged.
- You will have to take important security measures to prevent your website from crashing.
Drawbacks Of Getting A Web Application
Listed below are the drawbacks of getting a web application:
- As compared to desktop applications and mobile applications, you won’t be able to use them when there is no internet connection present.
- The web application might appear differently on old web browsers or not work properly. To prevent this, application developers would have to thoroughly test it.
When Is A Web Application Needed?
If you are looking to create a product that is going to automate specific tasks, then you will need a web application. Also, if you want to built a real estate app, an ecommerce platform, a management system, etc. then a web application is the right thing for you. Moreover, if there is a product that comes with certain functionality, then a web app is the way to go.
Even though creating a web application is the main aim of tech entrepreneurs, it is important to also have a website when it comes to businesses in 2021.
Hopefully, this article was helpful in explaining everything that you need to know about websites and web applications. In conclusion, if you are someone with marketing-driven goals, someone who’s looking to deliver content and create a wide presence that is easily maintained, can be shared between users, and easily discovered on search engines, then you will highly benefit from having a mobile-friendly responsive website.
However, if your aim is to offer a different user experience, like a gaming interface or a computer program instead of a website, or you require access to the phone storage of a user and its native functions, then a web app is the way to go.
Furthermore, it is crucial to understand that a web app and a website aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive. There are many businesses that have a mobile-friendly public website for a general web presence and also an app for other specific requirements. It all depends on picking the right tool for your needs.