Web Application Examples for Beginners

Businesses today can reach a wide audience through a relevant, well-defined internet presence. Your first step to business growth may be creating a web application or reimagining an existing one.

As you think about how to use technology to reach your business goals, you may have questions about where to start.

Is a web application what I need?

What is the difference between a web application, a website, a mobile app, and a desktop app?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using a web application?

To answer your questions, we’ve put together an overview of web application examples for beginners.

The definition of a web application

A web application is a piece of software designed for use through the internet.

Before widespread internet use, you had to install software separately on each computer that needed it. As the internet grew, developers began to reimagine traditional software as web applications.

This opened access to an unlimited number of users, making it much easier for businesses to connect many employees and internal processes and market to a global audience of customers.
This breakthrough resulted in an explosion of tasks you could tackle online.

Today, web applications are used as Content Management Systems, Customer Relationship Management platforms, Merchant Service providers, social media platforms, subscription news sources, financial platforms, and much, much more.

If you can imagine a process or service, a web application can be made to support it!

How do web applications work?

All applications run on computers. A web application runs on a computer, called a web server, that you access from your local computer through the internet.

As you use a web application, the internet sends your local interactions to a web server for processing, and the web server returns the result to your local computer in a form that is easy to understand.

Some examples are: a payment confirmation screen, the result of a spreadsheet formula, the next frame of a video meeting, and the landing page of your account.

Web applications vs websites

Although a website is actually a specific type of web application, you usually hear the term used in its general sense—simply, a place you visit on the internet.

As a business owner, you can also think of a website as something designed primarily for marketing impact.

Imagine you are a restaurant owner with a website that has a high Google ranking. The online presence provided by your website primarily exists to boost your dine-in traffic.

A web application does everything a website does and more. With a web application, you can receive customer orders, relay the order information to your kitchen staff and driver, and use the data to update inventory and automatically order ingredients.

You can also track the popularity of menu items and project the success of future dishes.

Web applications vs desktop apps

A desktop app is a type of application that is installed on your computer and does not require an internet connection for you to use it.

Well-known desktop apps include Microsoft Office, Adobe PDF Reader, and File Explorer.

Many desktop apps now have web application equivalents. On your desktop, web applications are accessed from your web browser.

Web applications vs mobile apps

A mobile app is a type of application that you download from the App Store or Google Play.
You can open a mobile app directly by touching its icon from your home screen, whereas web applications are accessed from your browser.

Mobile applications are designed specifically to minimize limitations (such as small screen size and limited storage space) and maximize advantages (e.g., portability and innovative technologies like touch screens) of mobile devices.

Advantages and Disadvantages of web applications

Advantages of web applications

A web application allows you to do the following:

  • Connect to a global base of customers. 
    Have a sales and marketing presence around the clock wherever the internet goes. Automatically translate your content into an increasing number of languages.
  • Connect to a global base of partners and employees.
    Recruit employees, contract talent, and secure vendors from a global pool. Grant employees access to the internal processes and systems they need.
  • Effectively organize and capture data. 
    Guide user input intuitively. Reduce manual work by automatically calculating data and putting it in the right structural format. 
  • Filter human error. 
    Limit user selections to data sets predefined to meet your business requirements and automatically filter out common mistakes.
  • Reduce administrative overhead and time to process completion.
    Automate and streamline repeatable processes. Automate technical support with chatbots, searchable FAQs, and internal training with self-guided educational processes. 

Disadvantages of web applications

A web application may not provide the best return on investment for every business. 

To host a web application, you will need an ongoing technology investment, and if designed for complex internal uses, it may require a training investment. 

When you put your web application online, you gain the benefits of a potentially global audience, but you also expose your business to hackers, necessitating an ongoing investment in cybersecurity. 

Finally, in addition to developing the web application, you may need to invest in the marketing necessary to drive traffic to your web application.

What are some examples of applications?

Below are some well known web application examples for beginners.

Content Management Systems

  • WordPress
  • Shopify
  • Contentful

Customer Relationship Management Systems

  • MS Dynamics
  • Salesforce
  • Pipedrive

Merchant Service providers

  • PayPal
  • Spreedly
  • Stripe

Social media platforms

  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • YouTube

Subscription-based news sources

  • First Things
  • Washington Post
  • Babylon Bee

Financial platforms

  • Bank accounts
  • Quicken
  • Mint

Detailed Web Application Examples for Beginners

You may be familiar with many of the well known examples given above but remain uncertain whether a web application can be developed to fit your business objectives. 

To help, we have provided some additional examples in greater detail, drawn from work we have done for our clients.

Signature Closers

Signature Closers provides closing services for title companies and lenders.

Signature Closers used their web application investment to transform a notary application process that was prone to customer error and required manual copying and pasting of data from multiple sources.

The result is as an application that is easy to understand, error-filtering, and based on a single, streamlined point of data entry.

To make their system even more accessible to their clients and users, they added a companion mobile app that is even more convenient for certain use cases.

Outdoor Image USA

Outdoor Image USA provides outdoor advertising solutions to the nation’s leading advertising companies.

Outdoor Image USA used their web application investment to transform an insecure order process that saddled customers with multiple, time-consuming steps into a secure, streamlined, and simplified customer-facing flow.

Continuous Mile

Continuous Mile provides business consulting services in process improvement, safety leadership, and structured innovation.

Continuous Mile invested in a web application to create a new revenue stream and digitally capture customer data that was previously recorded on paper.

This created improved communication, better identification of safety issues, and business expansion into new areas of opportunity.

To make their system even more accessible to their clients and users, they added a companion mobile app that is even more convenient for certain use cases.

Is a web app is the right solution for your business?

Now that you have a better understanding of web applications and how they work, is there an area of your business that could benefit from investing in a web app? 

If you need guidance on how a web application can contribute to your business goals, we can help.

Edge Webware has over twenty years of experience helping businesses develop strategies that provide maximum ROI through technology, training, security, and marketing best practices. 

Contact us today and we can help you determine if a web app is the right solution for your business.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.