Difference Between Website and Web Application
Websites and web apps have helped various companies worldwide to take their business to a new level. Hence, new-age entrepreneurs, businesses, and brands globally are planning to take their business online.
Most people who want to start a business find it challenging to differentiate between a website and a web application. Moreover, there is a constant debate regarding the difference between website and web application.
The main reason is, both website and web application are accessible through a browser, both require the internet, and both are developed using the same programming languages.
Now the question arises, Is a website a web application? If not, then what’s the difference between both? What is the most suitable solution for your business?
As a reliable software development service provider, we know the main difference between a website and a web application. Moreover, we explain the difference between both things to our clients regularly.
Therefore, in this article, we will discuss website vs web application based on different factors.
But, before that, it is essential to understand the basics of a website and a web application.
So, here we go:
What is a Website?
A website is a set of web pages connected via a single domain name and published on a minimum of one server with a unique IP address. It is created by a single person, business, or organization.
In simple words, you can consider a website as a modern version of a business card that provides details about you and all the types of products or services you are offering.
Anyone can access the website from different devices via a web browser. The primary purpose of a website is to provide information to the users.
Key Features of a Website
The main aim of a website is to offer information to users in the best possible way. Here are some of the essential features of a good website.
- A website consists of high-quality web content to attract users and keep them hooked.
- A website is good at SEO from both the technical and content side.
- A website gets easily searched through a search engine like Google.
- User-friendly and responsive design.
- It offers better navigation due to hyperlinks.
- A website uses HTTPS to keep data secure.
What is a Web Application?
A web application is software or a program that can be accessed from a web browser. It offers a particular service to the user via an interface. A user requires an internet connection to access the web application.
A web app is connected to the central server to deliver content to the user and respond to it. Moreover, it consists of various functionalities and interactivity.
Unlike a mobile or desktop app, a user doesn’t need to download a web app and can access it from any web browser. A web application is highly responsive on various devices like desktop, smartphone, tablet, etc.
As web applications are customizable and highly interactive, you need a team of professionals to develop a web application.
Key Features of a Web Application
Here are some of the features of a good web application:
- It offers better security, which increases customer loyalty for a business.
- One can test a website using various automated tests.
- Modular and cross-platform.
Why do you require a website?
Here are some of the reasons why you require a website.
- Attract more audience and get new leads.
- Enhance brand recognition.
- Deliver customized content through landing pages.
- A website supports in achieving your business goals.
- Provide better customer support.
- To offer various details like the product, price list, and more.
To know more, you can go through this blog on the importance of a website for business.
Why do you require a Web Application?
Here are some of the crucial reasons why you require a web application for your business.
- Web apps can be accessed on any platform and from any of the latest web browsers.
- A user can access web apps from a wide variety of devices.
- It is easy to maintain due to the same code for various platforms.
- A user doesn’t need to update or install a web application.
Examples of Popular Websites
Here is the list of some of the most popular websites:
Zillow is a well-known real estate and renting marketplace that offers all the things a user requires for searching home. The website delivers a straightforward interface that helps users in buying, selling, or renting a property.
WordStack is yet another great website that is small and organized and yet focuses more on its product. The color palette is consistent throughout the website, and it supports the software that they are offering.
SoundStripe provides unlimited licenses and various tools to find the best music, SFX, and video instantly. The website design is completely organized. Moreover, you can find any sound for your project within a few clicks.
Examples of Popular Web Apps
Here is the list of some of the popular web apps:
Udemy is a popular online eLearning marketplace for students and tutors. They have also created native apps for android and iOS users. It doesn’t only offer information but also allows users to browse courses. Then, a user can purchase a suitable course and start learning.
Facebook is one of the leading social media platforms that allows users to create accounts, become friends, and interact online.
Gmail is a powerful web app that is highly responsive on various devices. Moreover, it possesses native apps for android and iOS users. The web app offers features like email, messaging, calendar, etc.
YouTube is the world’s second-most popular search engine after Google. The web app functions like the native app and allows users to browse and watch their favorite videos.
Key Difference Between Website and Web Application
Websites and web applications are different in various aspects. Here, we will be looking at some of the factors that differentiate a website from a web application.
The main aim of a website is to deliver information to the users and achieve their business goals. For instance, a business website showcases various products and services to users.
On the contrary, the main aim of a web app is to assist users in performing a task. A web app offers various features through which users interact with it. The main business goal of a web app is to provide customized services that help users achieve their needs.
However, different web apps have different purposes as per the business requirement.
A website usually offers visual and text content that users can see and read; however, it doesn’t impact the functionality.
The main issue now is that the majority of sites are interactive. They consist of some elements of interactiveness. For instance, a hotel booking website helps you check hotels in a city via GPS.
While in a web application, a user can read the entire data on the page and also handle the data. A user can interact with all the functionalities available on the web app, such as browsing products or filling a form, etc.
A well-known web app example can be an online eCommerce web application that allows users to browse products and purchase them online. Ticket booking sites are another suitable example of a web application.
Lastly, comparing website vs web app interactivity, a website consists of more information and less interaction as compared to a web app. While in a web application, the main functionality relies on user interaction.
Integration is known as the method of merging various components to form an extensive system. Generally, one can integrate websites and web applications with external software such as CRM, ERP, etc.
Talking about the websites, integration with other software is not necessary. You can integrate a website with the CRM to collect user data and deliver personalized content. Moreover, on a website, this thing is considered a feature.
In a web application, integration with external software is challenging due to its complex features. Here, integration of software with the web application is regarded as a functionality. Hence, a vast number of people worldwide prefer integration in web apps.
By carrying out third-party integrations in a web application, you can collect, store, and process the data. You can use the data to provide an enhanced user experience and heavily personalized content.
One well-known example is an integration of an eCommerce web app with CRM. By doing this, an online retailer can store all the user data in CRM. Further, it allows an eCommerce company to understand the behavior of all the people and resolve any issues.Also, it helps an eCommerce store to increase sales and manage things effectively.
It is the process of verifying the identity of a user before providing access to an online website or web app. This factor is necessary for a system that needs personal information. In this age of cybersecurity, all the user’s data should be secured from any attacks.
In the case of the website, authentication is not necessary. However, you can ask users to get regular updates about the website only by registering. Also, you can provide some extra features to the registered users. Apart from this, user identification helps you to remove any spammers.
Compared to the websites, most of the web apps require authentication. Why? The reason being, web apps offer a wide variety of options to users. For instance, a social media web app warns you when your password is weak. By doing this, the web app helps you to protect your account from hackers.
Lastly, while comparing website vs web application based on authentication, it’s clear that both might require authentication. But, authentication is compulsory in a web app.
Task and Complexity
A website showcases a group of data and the information on a particular page as requested by a user.
A web application possesses a wide range of functions and is highly complex compared to a website. Several popular functions in a web app can be creating an account, chatting with the user, making payments, etc.
If you want to develop a simple website, you can also buy a ready-made theme. Then customize it by taking the support of a front-end developer. However, to build a complex website, you need to hire a team of professionals.
Web applications also consist of both front-end and back-end. Here, the back-end is complex, and hence developers utilize various technologies available in the market like React, Python, etc. In short, the developers choose a framework from some of the best web application frameworks available in the market as per the business goals.
The website development cost depends on some of the most common factors like complexity, features, functionality, and customization. Further, the development cost will vary based on the developer’s experience and location.
To know the estimated cost of building a website, refer to this blog on website development cost.
Similar to the website, the development cost of a web application depends on various things, such as the type of web application, complexity, functionality, third-party integrations, additional costs, and more.
Moreover, a web application is interactive and consists of more functionality as compared to a website; hence, it requires a team of professionals as followers:
- UI/UX Designer
- Project Manager
- QA Analyst and more
Hence, a web application requires more investment than a website. To know about the cost of building a web app, refer to this blog on web application development cost.
On a website, one doesn’t need to do the process of re-compilation and deployment again and again. A developer has to update the HTML code.
While in a web application, a developer has to carry out re-compilation and redeployment every time a change is made.
Website vs Web Application: What You Should choose?
Having a website for a business is compulsory for a business. On the other hand, developing a web application and providing a better experience to users has become a priority for companies worldwide.
We hope that we have cleared a lot of your doubts on website vs web application. In a nutshell, a website is used to display information to the users, and a web application is used to allow users to achieve a specific action.
The selection of a website or a web application should be based on the level of interaction and security you want to provide to your audience.
If you still can’t decide whether to choose a website and a web application for your business, don’t hesitate to contact us.
As a well-known website and app development company, we can understand your business well and provide you with the most relevant solution.