The short answer, yes, you can convert your WordPress website into an app. A better question would be, what value would it add?
If you’re still toying with the idea of turning your website into an app, or if you’re still on the fence trying to figure out if it’s even worth the trouble, here are a few facts that may help point you in the right direction.
- Shopping based mobile apps account for 54% of consumer time-spend, followed closely by music/entertainment apps, and business apps at 43% and 33% respectively.
- Organic searches on mobile devices have a 70% task completion rate, and the revenue base for 2019 is projected to hit almost $700 billion.
- With a compound annual rate of about 46%, mobile-based internet traffic is estimated to be about 57% in 2021. Up 5 percentage points from 52% in 2018.
- Engagement on mobile apps is up to 400% more on mobile apps compared to mobile web browsing.
The aim here is to help you get an idea of the reach, and infinite possibilities you get from turning your site into an app. Now, having a responsive, adaptable and mobile savvy website is great, but consider the fact that although these websites do in fact get more visitors than apps, the apps have a higher dwell time. This means that your website may get the traffic, but your app will increase your chances of conversion!
Note that it’s not just about the reach of mobile apps, it’s about the rate at which they are growing and replacing desktops and mobile web pages. The Mobile app development business is a booming billion dollar industry set to take the world by storm, and it is crucial to ensure you keep up.
How to do it
This technological age has made things so much easier for app builders and developers, with several DIY programs that actually give you the rare ability to design and build your own app with basic coding/programming knowledge. Here are 3 key ways that will help you start out the process.
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- PhoneGap is a great place to start. It’s one of the few hybrid app building programs that are simple and compatible with the WordPress Development Company. It has a free plan if you’re only making one app, with a maximum allowable size of about 50MB, which should be sufficient.
PhoneGap does have its moments, as it can be configured to work offline, and you also get the leeway required to access push notifications and integrate with other APIs, apart from WordPress.
One notable problem with this WP-API is the fact that most extras you have on your site will have input fields in your app, but they won’t be functional. Which means none of your plugins will be of any use. But if you’re willing to look past this minor detail, then it’ll work just fine for you.
- Different app builders give you different capabilities. Telerik, Reactor or even Mobile Roadie are all tools with varying levels of WordPress support, but they are all entry-level, non-technical and they don’t really give you much in terms of options on customization.
- Lastly, there is always the option of an App Pressure. This is the very definition of saving the best for last. Unlike all these other methods, this nifty technique allows you to create an app that has all the main functions of your WordPress website. It doesn’t take up too much of your time in terms of custom development, and it gives you the ability to custom fit many different plugins.
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You will have to invest a bit in reliable hosting as it doesn’t do too well with slow speeds. But, other than limited functionality when offline, using an App Pressure is the best way to get the most out of your WordPress mobile app.
- The first and most important target when starting out is always visibility, to get as many people to see your product as possible. Same goes for websites. Having an app improves your visibility 10 fold, and it expands the possibility of acquiring a bigger audience. A reach of billions of people will be able to see your app on different app stores like Google Play.
- An app is quite different from a webpage because once downloaded, it becomes a part of your daily routine. You can bounce off a boring landing page, but as long as an app is useful, you will scroll through it several times a day.
- Social network plugins are key indicators in many mobile apps, which makes sharing your content that much simpler. We’re talking about CTAs (Calls to action) that are literally at your fingertips. They come with functional push notifications, share and like buttons that don’t require digital gymnastics just to get people to see your content, and seamless integration will authority social sites like Facebook or LinkedIn.
- As mentioned in the first part of this article, with apps, you get up to four times better audience engagement, which means better lead retention, and more chances of conversion as a trickledown effect.
- Most consumers search for brands on social sites because they seek real-time, personalized interactions. Apps create this personalized user experience, and as such, improve client satisfaction. This satisfaction will, in turn, translate to revenue!
The exponential increase in mobile traffic and mobile-based commerce makes turning your website to an app a crucial business decision at this point. We are fast running into a smartphone-driven world, and this is the best way to ensure you have front-row tickets when mobile-based commerce takes over the internet.
Patel Nasrullah Co-founded Peerbits, one of the leading web app development companies in the USA, in 2011 which provides Blockchain app development services. His visionary leadership and flamboyant management style have yield fruitful results for the company. He believes in sharing his strong knowledge base with a learned concentration on entrepreneurship and business