Magento is one of the most popular eCommerce platforms, trusted by millions of online stores worldwide. It offers a range of themes that cater to different requirements and preferences of store owners. Magento themes have been popular choices for eCommerce stores for several years due to their versatility and convenience. However, with the increasing demand in the eCommerce industry, the Magento Progressive Web App (PWA) theme and template have gained more attention recently. You may be wondering what this solution is, how it differs from regular Magento 2 templates, and what its price point is. Some people even question whether it can surpass traditional Magento themes. In this article, we aim to provide you with a clear, concise, and comprehensive comparison between Magento PWA themes vs regular Magento themes. By the end of this article, you should be able to make a better-informed decision for your eCommerce website.
Table of Contents
- Overview Of The Regular Magento Themes & Templates
- Overview Of The Magento PWA Themes & Templates
- Magento PWA Themes Vs Regular Magento Themes
Overview Of The Regular Magento Themes & Templates
What Are Regular Magento Themes?
Regular Magento themes are pre-designed templates that can be used to customize the appearance of a Magento-based eCommerce store. They will decide your front-end appearance when installed in your Magento store’s back-end. These themes include various elements such as color schemes, fonts, layouts, and pre-built page templates that can be used to create product pages, category pages, homepages, and other types of pages for an online store.
Regular Magento themes are an easy and cost-effective way to create a professional-looking online store without having to spend a lot of time or money on custom design work. They are designed to be compatible with the Magento platform and offer a range of customization options that allow businesses to create a unique and personalized look for their store.
Magento regular themes are easy to install and integrate into your eCommerce site. Most front-end developers can easily execute the installation process, and the Magento default front-end design will switch to your new theme design.
Regular Magento themes are also simple to manage. The Magento back-end connects directly to the front-end, much like regular websites. This makes it easy to update and modify the content of your website without having to worry about the underlying technical details.
Once you have installed and applied your new Magento regular theme, your website will have a fresh and updated appearance. This can help improve user experience, increase engagement, and drive more sales.
Regular Magento themes are available at a range of prices depending on the features and functionality they offer. Some regular Magento themes are available for free, while others can cost several hundred dollars.
The price of a regular Magento theme typically depends on the complexity of the design and the level of customization available. More expensive themes may offer additional features such as advanced customization options, responsive design, and third-party extensions and plugins integration.
Regular Magento themes are usually available in three different price ranges. The first range includes free themes that offer basic functionality and design features. The second range includes basic themes that cost between $50 to $200, which offer better designs and additional functional pages. Finally, the premium range includes themes that cost between $200 to $1,000 and offer more advanced eCommerce features and versatile designs.
The free themes are suitable for those who are just starting out and have a limited budget. The basic themes are ideal for small to medium-sized businesses that want to improve their online presence with better design and functionality. The premium themes are perfect for larger businesses that require advanced eCommerce features and want to stand out in a competitive marketplace.
The design of regular Magento themes is a crucial aspect of any online store. The themes are designed to provide a visually appealing storefront that attracts customers and enhances the user experience.
The design of these themes often includes a variety of features such as customizable layouts, color schemes, and typography. Regular Magento themes usually come with pre-built templates for common eCommerce pages like product listings, category pages, and checkout pages. With just the basic price range of $80-$200, businesses can choose from a diverse range of high-quality Magento themes, catering to different industries, categories, and business scales.
Most regular Magento themes are designed with a responsive layout, which means they can adapt to different screen sizes and devices. This is especially important in today’s mobile-dominated world, where customers access online stores from various devices.
Another significant benefit of using regular Magento themes is that they can be customized with ease. Businesses can make changes to layouts, content, and design elements to fit their unique needs.
Regular Magento themes can vary in speed depending on their design and development quality. However, in general, they tend to have faster loading times compared to custom-built themes since they are already optimized for Magento’s framework.
The speed of a regular Magento theme can also be affected by various factors such as the hosting provider, the number of extensions installed, and the size of the website’s content. It is important to note that regular Magento themes are not automatically guaranteed to be fast.
Even if a theme provider claims to offer a fast theme, it may not necessarily result in a fast eCommerce site as such themes usually use sample data that is lightweight and simple. In reality, an eCommerce site will have a lot of product images and information, content, media, and extensions, which can impact the site’s speed. Therefore, website owners should take the necessary steps to optimize their website’s performance.
Additionally, there are many tools available for website owners to measure their website’s speed and identify areas for improvement. Regularly monitoring website speed and taking steps to improve it can significantly impact user experience and search engine rankings.
Regular Magento themes are primarily designed to address web design issues rather than enhance website functionalities. However, premium themes may come with built-in features to improve overall performance.
Regular themes comply with Magento standards and are compatible with all default Magento features, ensuring a stable website. Additionally, regular themes are compatible with third-party extensions, and any necessary modifications are usually minor.
To ensure good website performance, it is essential to optimize the site’s speed and performance based on some best practices such as optimizing images, minimizing code, reducing server response time, and utilizing caching techniques.
Overview Of The Magento PWA Themes & Templates
What are Magento PWA themes?
PWA, which stands for Progressive Web App, is a cutting-edge web app technology that enables websites to provide users with an immersive and engaging app-like experience. Magento PWA themes are a new type of theme/template that uses modern web technologies to create a fast and reliable eCommerce storefront. They are designed to work seamlessly across all devices and platforms, providing users with a native app-like experience.
These themes are built on a single-page application (SPA) architecture, which means that all the necessary resources are loaded in the background, making the site much faster and more responsive. They also come with advanced features such as offline capabilities, push notifications, and fast checkout, making them an ideal choice for businesses looking to provide a superior user experience to their customers.
Installing a Magento PWA theme requires a more complex process compared to regular Magento themes. The installation process includes setting up the PWA technology and configuring it properly. It is recommended to have a developer who has knowledge and experience in PWA technology perform this task.
Once the installation process is complete, the Magento front-end will be replaced entirely by the PWA storefront, with a new design and enhanced user experience. Any changes made in the Magento backend will be processed through APIs before they are reflected on the PWA storefront. This separation between the front-end and back-end reduces the likelihood of errors and speeds up the fixing time.
Magento PWA themes come in various price ranges, and their cost can vary based on several factors. Typically, the price range for Magento PWA themes is as follows:
- Basic themes: $300-$500
- Premium themes: $500-$3,000
The price of a Magento PWA theme can depend on several factors, such as the level of complexity, the number of features included, and the quality of the design. Free/open-source themes usually have limited features and a basic design, which is why they are more suitable for developers who want to experiment with PWA technology.
Basic themes offer a better design and more features than free themes, but they may still lack some of the advanced features required for larger e-commerce businesses. Premium themes, on the other hand, offer a comprehensive set of core and advanced features and high-quality design to support SEO and increase conversion rates, making them the ideal choice for larger businesses.
The selection of Magento PWA themes is limited compared to regular themes due to their newness in the market. However, almost Magento PWA themes are designed with a mobile-first approach to provide an exceptional user experience on all devices. They are optimized for fast loading speed and smooth navigation to ensure the best possible customer journey.
PWA themes come with modern and minimalist designs that feature clean layouts and high-quality images, creating a visually appealing storefront. They often include customizable options for color schemes, fonts, and other design elements, allowing merchants to personalize their stores to match their brand identity.
Additionally, PWA themes are designed to be responsive and adaptive, providing a seamless shopping experience across different devices and screen sizes. The focus is on creating a user-friendly interface that is easy to navigate, with intuitive search and filter options to help customers find what they need quickly.
Magento PWA themes are known for their fast loading speed, which is one of their major advantages. Because they are built using modern technologies like React, Redux, and GraphQL, they provide a quick and smooth browsing experience, even on slow internet connections.
Additionally, they utilize caching techniques that allow them to load quickly and respond instantly to user interactions. As a result, customers can browse and shop on your online store without experiencing any lag or delays, which can significantly improve the user experience and increase conversion rates.
Magento PWA themes are designed to enhance the performance of the website. The use of PWA technology allows for faster loading and better optimization of the site. As PWA themes are independent of the backend, they reduce the risk of errors and make it easier to fix them.
In addition, PWA themes are highly customizable, allowing businesses to create a unique user experience for their customers. The use of APIs ensures that data processing is efficient, which ultimately improves the website’s overall performance.
Below are some extra exclusive features of PWA, in addition to the regular Magento features:
- App-like functionality: Users can add the store logo to their home screen for quick access. Push notifications can also be enabled to re-engage customers, similar to a real app.
- Enhanced security with HTTPS: PWA operates exclusively using HTTPS, providing better protection for user data.
- Connection independence: PWA allows users to interact with the site even when offline, thanks to its service worker and caching approach.
It’s worth noting that only Magento PWA Studio-based themes can guarantee compatibility with Magento sites and ensure stable performance.
Magento PWA Themes Vs Regular Magento Themes
In general, Magento 2 themes are designed to modify the appearance of the Magento 2 website and provide a responsive and visually appealing storefront for online stores without necessarily enhancing website functionality or performance. On the other hand, Magento 2 PWA themes differ in that they not only change the website’s appearance but also convert the entire website into a PWA. This means that a variety of PWA features are added to the Magento site, in addition to the implementation of an appealing PWA storefront design.
Regular Magento themes are typically designed for desktop users and require more traditional web development practices. On the other hand, Magento PWA themes are built using progressive web app technology, which enables them to provide a faster, more reliable, and more engaging experience on mobile devices.
Since its release in 2015, Magento 2 has seen the creation and development of numerous templates, resulting in a diverse selection of designs available on the marketplace. These templates cater to various industries, such as fashion retailers and automotive parts suppliers focusing on improving the website’s visual design and responsiveness while offering basic functionalities.
On the other hand, Magento PWA themes are still a relatively new concept, and the number of available options is much more limited. These themes are designed specifically to convert the Magento website into a Progressive Web App, providing a more engaging, app-like experience to users.
However, despite the limited options, Magento PWA themes offer unique and innovative features that are not available in regular Magento themes, such as offline accessibility, faster loading speed, and push notification capabilities.
Magento 2 themes are available at different price ranges, depending on the design and features. Free and open-source options are available, while basic themes can cost around $300 to $500. Premium Magento 2 themes with advanced features can cost up to $1,000 or more.
On the other hand, Magento 2 PWA themes are relatively new, and their prices are quite higher than regular Magento themes. Free options are limited, and basic PWA themes can cost between $300 to $500. Premium PWA themes with advanced features can cost up to $3,000 or more.
Business owners need to keep in mind that free themes, whether they are regular Magento or Magento PWA, may come with potential risks. The quality of these themes may be difficult to assess and they may become unstable in the long run. It is recommended that merchants invest in high-quality templates to avoid future problems.
Installing regular Magento 2 themes is usually a straightforward process that can be done quickly. As a result, most front-end developers can easily install them on websites.
On the other hand, installing Magento PWA themes requires a different approach. Since PWA technology is relatively new and still evolving, the installation process is more complex and requires additional tools and configurations. Merchants who want to use PWA technology must first set up a PWA development environment using tools like Magento PWA Studio or Vue Storefront, and then install the PWA theme within that environment. This process requires more technical knowledge and experience, which may not be feasible for all merchants. Instead, it requires a deep understanding of PWA and skilled techniques from the development team.
Regular Magento themes can be installed directly onto the front-end of the website, and most settings can be configured through the back-end/admin panel. These themes are designed with traditional web architecture, where a server handles all the back-end logic, and the front-end is rendered on the client side.
However, Magento PWA themes are different. They consist of a PWA storefront that is connected to the back-end through robust APIs. This storefront completely replaces the old front-end of the website to provide better performance.
Due to this innovative architecture, updating the interface of a Magento 2 store with a PWA theme requires less effort. The reason for this is that the storefront is no longer strictly controlled by the backend and can be adjusted independently to some extent. This provides greater flexibility for business owners and developers to customize the storefront according to their needs. In addition, PWA themes offer better performance and faster loading times compared to traditional Magento themes.
Regular Magento themes offer responsive and unresponsive design options, but merchants typically prefer the former. Responsive templates use a fluid layout that adjusts to the screen size of the device accessing the site. This way, the site remains readable and accessible, regardless of the device used.
On the other hand, Magento Progressive Web App (PWA) themes are designed with mobile experiences in mind, as PWA is primarily a mobile-first solution. The PWA themes are highly responsive for mobile devices and offer a completely separate design for smaller screens. The PWA storefront is built on a responsive framework, making it highly adaptable to various screen sizes, including desktop, tablet, and mobile devices.
Both of these Magento themes are highly customizable, enabling businesses to create unique designs that align with their branding and marketing objectives. They offer a plethora of design options, from layout and color schemes to typography and navigation. This flexibility allows businesses to create highly engaging and visually appealing storefronts that drive sales and enhance user experience.
Magento 2 themes are mainly designed to change the look and feel of a website, with some including additional plugins for e-commerce functionality. However, the primary focus of regular Magento themes is not on features, but rather on design.
On the other hand, Magento PWA themes have a strong emphasis on features, which is what sets them apart from regular Magento templates. The functionality of Magento PWA themes is based on PWA technology, which provides several unique features that are not available in regular Magento templates. These themes are capable of providing an app-like experience to users while also incorporating Magento’s core eCommerce features.
Some of the outstanding features of Progressive Web App themes include the ability to add the website to the mobile home screen, offline functionality, push notifications, and lightning-fast loading times. These features enhance the user experience, making PWA themes a popular choice for many businesses looking to optimize their online presence.
Regular Magento templates have varying page load speeds, with some being faster than others. On the other hand, PWA templates for Magento are known for their incredibly fast loading times, especially after the initial page load. These templates typically load in less than 3 seconds, making them an attractive option for merchants who want to improve their website’s performance.
The fast loading speed of PWA themes is due to several factors, including the use of caching and service workers. Service workers allow the website to load content even when the user is offline, while caching stores frequently used data to reduce load times.
In addition to providing a better user experience, fast load times can also have a positive impact on a website’s search engine rankings. Google has indicated that page speed is a factor in its ranking algorithm, meaning that faster-loading websites may rank higher in search results. Therefore, that’s the biggest motivation for online merchants to apply Magento PWA in their stores instead of regular ones.
Customization is an important aspect of any website theme, and it is no different for Magento themes. Both Magento PWA themes vs regular Magento themes can be customized to suit the preferences of the merchant. However, when it comes to customization, Magento 2 PWA themes require more expertise.
Magento 2 PWA themes have a more complex structure, which requires developers to have a strong understanding of PWA technology and the ability to work with APIs. Therefore, merchants should hire experienced PWA developers to customize their PWA templates.
When it comes to modifying functions, it is also more complex to make changes to PWA templates compared to regular ones. This is because each function of the PWA storefront needs to connect with a corresponding function of the backend through APIs, which requires more dedicated effort and time to complete the customization.
When it comes to extension compatibility, both Magento PWA themes vs regular Magento themes are compatible with Magento 2 extensions. However, the process of making PWA templates work seamlessly with extensions can be more complex and time-consuming.
This is because PWA templates require additional APIs to connect with Magento 2 extensions, which means that development teams need to put in extra effort to ensure compatibility. In some cases, using Magento PWA ready-made extensions may be a better option than trying to integrate regular Magento plugins.
Overall, while both types of themes are compatible with Magento 2 extensions, merchants may need to adjust certain parts of the themes or extensions to ensure they are well-matched with each other.
After evaluating the advantages and disadvantages of both Magento PWA themes vs regular Magento themes, maybe now you have your own decision based on your business’s requirements and resources. While regular templates for Magento are simpler and easier to work with in terms of customization and extension compatibility, Magento PWA themes offer faster page load speeds, better mobile experiences, and stronger eCommerce features thanks to their PWA technology.
However, Magento PWA themes require more effort and time to customize and integrate with extensions due to their unique structure, and as we mentioned multiple times in this article, you may need some help from other experts with these customization tasks. No need to look further, right at Magenest, we have numerous years-experienced Magento PWA developers and specialists, who have a deep understanding of this technology and provide comprehensive solutions for your online stores. Don’t hesitate to connect with us now.