How to Develop a Progressive Web App with React? A Complete Guide

Are you planning to build a new web application for business? If you do not consider a Progressive Web App (PWA), you will be at a loss. Everyone in the web app development industry is talking about Progressive Web applications. 

Why? What makes them exceptional? These questions must be popping up in your mind right now. Do not worry! We are here to clear all your doubts. 

  • What is a Progressive Web Application?

    A Progressive Web App refers to a web application that looks and behaves like a native app. Besides this, a PWA offers numerous benefits like optimization, offline support, ultimate responsiveness, push notifications, progressive enhancements, etc. 

    No doubt, Progress Web Apps deliver a top-notch user experience. But if not done right, they may have a reverse impact on your business reputation. So, when you develop a Progressive Web Application, make sure it covers the things given below. 

    • It must come with service workers because they work as a proxy between API servers and web browsers. 
    • A secure network must serve your PWA, like HTTPS.
    • It should have a JSON file, which provides basic information about your app. 

For this reason, it is advisable to hire dedicated PWD developers because they use best practices, tools, and technologies. As a result, you have a robust Progressive Web App. Also, choosing an appropriate library and framework is essential for a successful PWA. 

When it comes to frameworks, building Django Progressive Web Applications is popular. But if you are wondering “which library to choose,” React is your best bet. Before we dive into the steps of creating a Progressive Web App with React, let us look at the benefits. 

  • Why build Progressive Web Applications with React?

    Created by Facebook in 2013, React is an open-source Javascript library that builds scalable user interfaces. Well, the process of doing so is faster and simple. Below are the perks of using React for Progressive Web App development. 

    • Hot reloading – With React, you can develop enterprise-level extensible web applications. Do you know what makes these apps unique is they support hot reloading? Hence, when your developer edits your app, it will keep running.

    • Code reusability – React has a ‘learn once, write anywhere’ principle. It means you can write code once and use it in multiple ways. 

    • Well-equipped – React has several developer tools, libraries, and boilerplates. All this make app testing, debugging, and designing more convenient. Depending on your project needs and requirements, you can choose the most suitable option. 

    • Easy to learn – Unlike other JS frameworks or libraries, React is easy to read. Since it supports JSX, your developer can write HTML-like syntax using JavaScript code. Besides JSX, you can create a dynamic PWA with JavaScript, CSS, and HTML. 

    • High-performance – React enables developers to build scalable and high-performing web applications. In general, JavaScript apps face performance issues. They are related to DOM manipulation. Fortunately, React uses virtual DOM. It means you can make changes in UI without changing the entire page. 

    • SEO-friendly – When you work with heavy web applications, you may face SEO-related issues. As a result, that specific part of your website will not be visible in Google search. The good news is React uses virtual DOM. It will ensure correct indexing of your web pages content. 

    • Support from the community – If you choose React to develop a Progressive Web Application, you can enjoy support from a large community. It comprises experienced and responsible React developers and designers who are always ready to help its users. 

Given these capabilities, many top brands have developed PWAs with React. Some of them are Starbucks, Tinder, etc. After all, it promises robust, high-powered and responsive web apps. 

  • A step-by-step guide to developing Progressive Web Apps with React 

Now that you are familiar with the advantages of using React for PWAs development, it is time to get to the step. Hopefully, the points listed above are convincing enough. If you are considering building a Progressive Web App with React, it is the right decision. To ensure the success of your project, you can hire a reliable Progressive Web App development company. Of course, they will assist at every development stage. But if you do not want pitfalls or mishaps, it is essential to know how to develop a PWA with React. Let us unveil the steps to create Progressive Web App with React. 

1. Build a React app – The first step of PWA development is setting up a React app. For this, you can use a tool – Create React App (CRA). It offers a hassle-free and convenient environment for developers to create PWAs using React. CRA allows you to use Babel and webpack, the built-in functionality of JavaScript. Hence, you can carry out bundling and transpiring with ease. They help in shipping your app to the browsers. 
Besides this, CRA makes installing and bootstrapping web app more convenient. You can use the following commands:  

Npx create-react-app cra-pwa --template cra-template-pwa

2. Service worker registration – No doubt, Create React App has numerous tools to help you at each development stage. But running your PWA offline is not an easy win. Therefore, you should register a service worker file.

To do so, you need to go to the directory of your project and open the file index.js.Now find this code. 

// If you want your app to work offline and load faster, you can change
// unregister() to register() below. Note this comes with some pitfalls.
// Learn more about service workers:

It shows that your service worker is not registered. So, you have to switch
unregister () call with register ().

3. Set up a web application manifest – You have built a React app and registered service worker. It is time for web application manifest configuration. Go to the public directory and look in the manifes.json file. After this, you need to change the metadata behind your web app’s appearance. 

4. Progressive Web App testing – For example, you have built a Progressive Web Application by following these steps. The next crucial step is to test your app whether it is performing well or not. 
If you want to test your PWA during the production time, use the following commands:

~ npm run build 
~ npx server build 

Before launching your app, make sure it complies with a checklist on PWA by Google. The best way to access Progressive Web Applications is with Lighthouse – a tool available on Chrome DevTools. 

A pro tip – When you hire a PWA developer, make sure they are familiar with the latest tools for Progressive Web App development. 

Below, we have explained how to check your app’s accessibility, performance, and compliance. 

  • The first step is opening DevTools. For this, you need to choose the ‘inspect’ option by clicking the page menu. Please remember, you should right-click the menu you want to inspect. On the other hand, go for shortcuts. If you use macOS, Command + Option + C. For other operating systems (Windows, Chrome, and Linus), Control + Shift + C. 
  • Now click on the Lighthouse tab and choose the ‘generate report’ option. It is essential to check your PWA box before generating a report. 
  • Depending on the score you get after auditing, you may enhance your Progressive Web Application. 

In closing 

Businesses of all sizes across the globe are choosing Progressive Web Applications. Why not? These applications look and behave like native mobile apps. But cost 3-4 times less. If you want to leverage the exceptional qualities of a Progressive Web Application, hire a dedicated PWA developer. 

If you are searching for a reliable Progressive Web Application Development Company, get in touch with SoftProdigy. Our professionals have years of experience building top-notch PWAs. 


1. Is creating a Progressive Web Application a complicated process?

Not at all! It is easy to create a Progressive Web App. All you need is a web application, installing a service worker, setting up a manifest file, and testing. 

2. Can we use the existing React app to create a Progressive Web App?

Yes, we can turn an existing React app into a robust Progressive Web Application. For this, you need to start with building and installing a service worker file. It helps in empowering your PWA in offline mode. In addition to this, a manifest file setup is crucial because it influences the appearance of your PWA. 

3. What does React Progressive Web Application testing involve? 

When it comes to testing a React PWA, it is a simple process. It involves solid planning, using the best testing tools, and analysis.