January 31, 2018 | by Christopher Hendrickson

Marfeel Launches Progressive Web App Technology, the Next Big Thing in Mobile

Barcelona, Spain – January 17, 2018 – Marfeel, Marfeel, an ad tech platform that revolutionizes the way publishers create, optimize, and monetize mobile websites, today announced the launch of its Marfeel PWA technology, which enables publishers to benefit fully from the next big thing in the mobile ecosystem. As an early adopter of progressive web app technology, Marfeel offers such forward-looking capabilities as 0.7-second page loads for first meaningful paint, push notifications, offline access to content, and striking increases in site traffic—all promising to increase conversions and engage users as never before.

As the popularity of app-store downloads continues to wane, Marfeel’s PWA technology aims to fill the void by bringing the benefits of traditional native apps to web apps via super-speedy mobile sites. A mobile site enhanced with Marfeel PWAs can be saved to the user’s home screen with the browser interface completely hidden, essentially giving it the look and feel of a native app.

Website speed is an important ranking factor in Google searches. According to a 2016 Google report, 53 percent of visitors abandon a mobile site when page loads are longer than 3 seconds. That’s a painful fact for mobile sites running over 3G connections, where the average load time is 19 seconds—and 70 percent of cellular network connections worldwide are expected to remain at 3G or slower speeds through 2020. Marfeel changes the picture with PWA technology, which renders content visible and ready for interaction (the first meaningful paint metric) in less than one second, even on a 3G connection.

Among the benefits that until now were exclusive to native applications:

* Reliably instant page loads of less than one second, even in chancy network conditions
* Immersive full-screen user experiences that deepen engagement
* Traffic that continually drives users back to mobile sites
* More responsive user interactions, without balky scrolling
* Significant boosts to SEO resulting from faster page loads

Marfeel technology earns the top score of 100 points when measured for PWA compliance, surpassing major global publishers like The Guardian (at approximately 65), The Washington Post (55 percent), and The Verge (45 percent). Compliance is measured against an extensive list of prerequisites, such as ensuring the site is served over HTTPS, pages load quickly even on 3G networks, and push notifications are timely and relevant, among many other factors.

PWA audits also examine websites for performance—for instance, site designs must be mobile-friendly on all devices, and pages must load very quickly even on 3G networks. Here again, Marfeel technology significantly outpaced major publishers with a score of 80-plus, compared to The Verge (at 60), the Washington Post (50), and The Washington Post (under 40).

(Marfeel compiled these PWA compliance and performance results in an October 2017 audit using Lighthouse, an open-source automated tool developed by Google, which also measures accessibility and best practices on a scale from 1 to 100.)

Marfeel co-founder and COO Juan Margenat says that although progressive web app technology may be unfamiliar to many publishers today, it’s destined to become “the next mainstay in the mobile ecosystem. That’s why even though PWAs are a promise from tomorrow, Marfeel is providing them today, so our partners can immediately reap the rewards of the enhanced engagement and performance that the Marfeel PWA delivers,” he notes. “Google pioneered this concept, and we’re pleased to commit to it as part of our philosophy of continuous improvement and staying on the edge of mobile evolution.”

Brasil 247, one of the leading online news publications in Brazil at 30 million plus page views per month, expects the Marfeel PWA technology to add value across its multiple mobile sites by steadily drawing users back for return visits, according to owner Leonardo Attuch. “As a Marfeel partner we’re deploying leading-edge technology that enables us to optimize the user experience. Along with the dramatically faster page loads that Marfeel’s PWA delivers, we’re bringing our users exciting new features like push notifications through their browsers and the ability to add sites to their home screens,” he says.

Global media company MContigo chose the Marfeel PWA technology to serve its growing online community. “We’re committed to respecting our readers, and that’s reflected in our site design and UX,” explains CTO Glaydston Veloso. “We particularly like having the ability to offer users more than one way to subscribe to push notifications. Marfeel’s PWA helps us move beyond the sort of invasive messaging that is unappealing to most users. And the lift it provides to our SEO results is a welcome bonus.”

Progressive web apps “aren’t packaged and deployed through stores, they’re just websites that took all the right vitamins,” blogger Alex Russell explains. A user’s frequently-visited sites gradually “earn the right” to live on the home screen and send notifications, he writes, thus progressively becoming “apps” that are “zero-friction, zero-install, and easy to share.”

The Marfeel PWA is built on top of service workers, a set of new JavaScript APIs that allow Marfeel to run script in the background even when the user is not browsing the website, which enables Marfeel partners to send push notifications when users are offline. Readers are presented with clear options for subscribing to a PWA site, in line with Marfeel’s core philosophy of delivering an organic and optimized user experience.

Mobile sites enhanced with the Marfeel PWA technology can intercept requests between the browser and the partner domain or URL, which enable them to deliver offline access. The enhanced speed provided by PWA technology also allows Marfeel to independently detect when a reader is browsing on a mobile device and then send the request directly to Marfeel servers. Reducing the round trip between Marfeel’s servers and the publisher’s desktop site shaves time off of the company’s already industry-leading standards. Infrastructure changes further contribute to increased speed. Marfeel has invested in a faster CDN (content delivery network), switching the logic of their code to the server-side so requests made by mobile devices are served directly by Marfeel’s servers.

In order to accommodate user subscription options, publishers must be using HTTPS protocol. In addition, because only the Chrome browser supports progressive web apps at this time, Marfeel PWAs are available for Android devices only.

About Marfeel

Marfeel is an ad tech platform that revolutionizes the way publishers create, optimize and monetize mobile websites. Marfeel’s proprietary technology analyzes publishers’ unique audience—user habits, behavior and usage patterns—and dynamically adjusts the mobile site layout to maximize readership, engagement, page views, loading time, and ultimately ad revenue. Marfeel’s exclusive partnerships with over 20,000 global ad networks and exchanges ensure top-paying ads from premium advertisers. Now reaching more than 500 million mobile readers a month, Marfeel’s mobile website conversion and monetization solution has been recognized by Google and Facebook, leading to strategic alliances with the search engine in 2015, and with the social network in 2017. Selected Marfeel customers include: National Geographic (FR), Dennis Publishing (US/UK), Elle (MX), ABC (US), PopSugar (US), and The Washington Times (US). Marfeel is backed by strategic investors in the mobile space, including Nauta Capital, BDMI and Elaia Partners. To learn more about Marfeel, please visit www.marfeel.com.