Google’s John Mueller states that progressive web apps (PWAs) do not, by default, rank better in search results than traditional websites.
This topic is discussed during the Google Search Central SEO office-hours hangout recorded on November 12, 2021.
Multiple questions came up throughout the livestream related to PWAs and whether they have an advantage over HTML sites in search results.
Mueller says there’s no preference given to PWAs, but converting an old website to a PWA could lead to ranking improvements for other reasons.
Read his full response in the sections below.
First let’s briefly go over what a PWA is, as it’s a relatively new framework and you may not be familiar with it.
In the simplest terms, a PWA is like a mobile app you can use in a mobile web browser.
A PWA looks and functions like a mobile app, but you don’t have to install anything to your phone. You can access it via a URL just as you would visit any other website.
Continue Reading Below
Many top brands have adopted a PWA framework for the mobile version of their website. Starbucks and Sephora are good examples of retail sites that are PWAs.
News sites such as the Financial Times have gone the PWA route, and downloadable mobile apps like Spotify and Pinterest have web-based PWAs.
Nearly any site can be turned into a PWA—but the question is whether it’s worth the trouble.