Benefits of push notifications

 min read
2 November 2022
Karol Korzeń
Karol Korzeń
iOS developer
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Contents

  • Intro

In a world of ever-changing marketing trends, companies bend over backward to distinguish their offers and find their way to reach the target audience. It is exactly where marketing with push notifications comes in handy. 

Push notifications are messages that pop up on the screen. This kind of communication is a must-have feature for businesses offering products and services online, as it enables them to contact customers instantly, even if they are not using an app or website at the moment. When an alert appears, they are prompted to check up on your service and perform the requested action. With push messages, you are able to either retain regular users or draw the attention of those that downloaded your application or visited your site but called it quits.

Unlike longish emails that are often caught up by filters and go to the spam box or a bit obsolete and frequently ignored SMS messages, push notifications are brief, concise, and almost impossible to miss. That is why they are ideal for the purpose of targeted and time-dependent communication, including temporary special offers, sports results, information about upcoming events, health reminders, and many others.

According to the study, push notifications can increase 90-day app retention by 190% for companies that aren’t already sending them. Furthermore, it was discovered that approximately 15% of iOS and 30% of Android users did not receive any notifications for 90 days after downloading. As a result, only 5% of them continued to use the app after that period.

So as you can see, push notifications can be an edge in a constant struggle to keep users involved and willing to exploit your services, but they can do more harm than good if used recklessly. Thus, this article will provide you with a thorough overview of push notifications and give you some guidelines on how to properly employ them to obtain higher revenue and enhance customer retention.

Why are push notifications important for advertisers?

You already know that push messages are a powerful marketing instrument. The benefits of this tool go beyond expectations, which is proven by various reports. According to recent data, around 60% of mobile users decide to enable push notifications on their devices. In a survey on the overall utility of push messages, 57% of respondents said they find them useful. In the case of web notifications, this figure was reduced by half, with approximately 30% of users accepting browser-generated alerts.

Another study exposed that the personalization of push messages can yield even more promising results. Customers admitted that they use the app more frequently when delivered notifications are based on their preferences (49.2%), location (42%), “real world” actions (37%), in-app behavior (32.5%), or address them directly by name (26.8%).

Having some statistics regarding the effectiveness of push notifications in hand, let’s now discuss how they can benefit your business.

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Increased engagement

Based on the above data, we can see that push notifications are messages with strong re-engaging power. So, it comes as no surprise that businesses frequently adopt them into their marketing campaigns to boost customer involvement. 

Sending push messages enables you to stay in touch with customers by informing them about special offers or reminding them of upcoming events. Using push notifications for breaking news is also a way to increase engagement. Users get short, personalized, and attractive updates that prompt them to revisit an application or website and check what is new. If they feel enticed, a quick tap on the notification will take them directly to the service without any additional effort.

You can also use a deep linking strategy in your push messages to make them even more effective. It is a clever method that allows you to control and optimize how users interact with your application. For instance, if you release an update or a wholly new product, you can deep link the notification so it will direct them to the appropriate place instead of the home page. By simplifying the customer’s path in this way, you increase the likelihood of downloading your product.

Greater customer retention 

With the dynamic development of mobile technologies and the increasing number of web and mobile services, users have plenty of options regarding their digital activity. That’s why customers very often download apps or visit websites but simply forget about them once something new appears.

The study of the influence of push notifications on user retention showed that these businesses that carefully analyzed their audience and sent thought-through messages increased their retention rates by 3 to 10 times. Strong retention raises brand loyalty because it indicates that you care about your customers. It also has a positive impact on the ROI, which is critical for the company’s success.

Higher conversion rates 

Prompt messages appearing in the notifications tab turn out to have a large impact on the conversion rates. Although this claim is especially relevant in the case of e-commerce, it can apply to sports betting, FinTech, or other industries as well. Push notifications provide guaranteed impressions because users are triggered to take action as soon as they see them.

Online shops or sportsbooks introduce time-limited special offers to evoke in clients a sense of urgency. Push notifications are an excellent way to communicate these deals because they can be sent in real-time, letting customers take advantage of the offer before it expires.

However, push messages are the most efficient when they are personalized. It means that if you send your client an offer that is incompatible with their interests, there is a slim chance they will take action. According to a study of the Southeast Asian e-commerce market, push notifications that were customized according to user attributes resulted in a 22% increase in conversion rate. Needless to say that the higher the conversion rate, the greater the company’s profits.

Audience segmentation

To be successful in marketing, one must first identify their customers’ preferences and then adjust their strategy to meet those needs. Thanks to web push notification systems, you can divide your clients into groups based on such factors as location, operating system, and browser. This kind of information is acquired when the user accepts to receive push notifications.

Thanks to segmentation, you are able to adjust the content of your message and send diverse versions of one notification to various target groups. For instance, you can decide to target a campaign only to iOS users or those located in the United States exclusively. As a result, your marketing efforts may lead to increased user satisfaction and higher traffic.

Enhanced customer care 

Push messages have great potential to improve your customer care strategy. They are considerably less intrusive than SMS or emails and have a higher open rate than both of these methods.

Pop-ups with valuable content that is personalized to the users’ demands and expectations can positively influence their customer journey. For instance, you can enrich an onboarding process by highlighting the most prominent features and providing the user with the app’s screens. Also, if you track the user’s path and see they encounter problems, you can direct them to the relevant FAQ section or suggest possible ways to resolve the issue.

Efficient upselling and cross-selling strategies

These two marketing tactics are frequently used to boost online sales and maximize profits. Upselling is the practice of recommending to a consumer services or goods that are more expensive and of higher quality than the chosen one. Cross-selling, on the other hand, is about offering additional items that may come in handy with the one put in the cart.

Inserting upselling and cross-selling suggestions into push messages might bring surprisingly good results. When a customer browses your store and clicks on a specific product, an instant pop-up message suggests a similar but more expensive item. As soon as they add it to the cart, a concise notification with matching products appears. With these attractive offers on the table, the client is more likely to buy additional things and spend more money, generating higher profits for the brand.

Best practices for creating push notifications 

Each day users get dozens of notifications on their devices. To get good results and be noticed by your customers, you should take advantage of best practices for marketing with push notifications.

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Personalization

Most, if not all, notifications should be tailored to a specific client based on their age, place of origin, OS, location, and history of service usage. With such data, you can divide your customers into subcategories and send personalized messages. 

Assume you have a sportsbook app, and your client, John, is interested in women’s tennis and has already been using your product for two months. Instead of cluttering his notification center with football-related details, you should incorporate previously gathered information and focus your notifications on the tennis subject. Furthermore, imagine John has wagered on matches with specific athletes. How pleased would he be if your app informed him of the upcoming sporting events of the players he follows?

Timing

To optimize user engagement, it is critical to time your notifications properly. You can determine the best time to send a notification based on John’s location (if you have access to it). For example, you may be aware that John stays at home every Thursday at 8 p.m., implying that he might have some spare time and is thus more likely to use your app. Sending him an alert at that time may boost the probability of a direct response.

Content

On the basis of John’s interaction with your app, you can also determine what other sports he might be most interested in. Assuming he was browsing through the latest volleyball results, it might be a good idea to send him a special offer on a current volleyball event. Use every detail you know about him to modify the message’s content and increase the likelihood of him taking a specific action.

Although it sounds plain and obvious, making the user feel like every notification is crafted for them is key to improving their engagement and boosting your business revenue.

iOS vs Android vs. Flutter

If your app is written in Flutter, implementing push notifications may take longer because you will need to prepare a push system for each platform. Another challenge for cross-platform applications will be the fact that each new update of native systems, both iOS and Android, appears in technologies such as Flutter with a slight delay. It is not unusual but may hold up the release of your product.

On the Android system, notifications are enabled by default. That changed in the newly released Android 13, where the user has to opt-in for notifications. All push messages remain on the lock screen and notifications panel, which you can grab from the top. On iOS, users must opt-in for notifications – you have to ask them for permissions inside the application.

An additional feature on iOS is a scheduled summary. Instead of getting notifications instantly, iOS stores all alerts to show them collectively at a specific time. It is a proper place to show non-urgent content that may interest your customer but is not necessary to clutter their instant messages.

The benefits of push notifications in your industry

Web and mobile push messages can be successfully used across various industries. Push notifications provide companies with an opportunity to reach and engage a wide range of audiences due to their universality, conciseness, and customizability. Let’s look at how these are typically used in iGaming, FinTech, and Healthcare.

iGaming

Online casinos, sportsbooks, and lotteries – all these services employ push messages in their marketing strategy. Supplementing your iGaming development project with a push notification service will give you an opportunity to create a campaign that will effectively promote your product. 

Thanks to timely alerts, a bookie can inform clients about hot deals, encouraging them to make a bet. In the case of mobile pushes, an app can reactivate users by sending them a reminder of upcoming events which they might find interesting or information about a new type of casino game. Any transactional updates, such as withdrawal or deposit reports, are also handled through push notifications.

If you have a sportsbook app yourself, it would also be an excellent idea to add to your product the capability to display a live feed with the score of the play and the latest rates in such notifications to boost app engagement! This feature is currently available in iOS 16 but might also appear in Android OS any time soon.

FinTech

With a boom in FinTech development, loads of financial companies decided to upgrade their offer and provide clients with more advanced features. Adopting this approach led to the creation of numerous financial apps, currency exchange services, payment platforms, and blockchain solutions.

It turns out that push notifications are applicable in all of the above cases. They are used to inform customers about major account modernizations, security problems, and transactional updates. Additionally, banks use push messages to maintain direct communication with their clients and provide them with support and investment tips. Based on the user journey, they can also remind a customer to complete a procedure they started, such as opening a deposit account or ordering a cash card.

Healthcare 

Due to the enormous increase in the number of people taking care of their health and physical shape, healthcare mobile applications and web services remain in demand. Given that such apps can send push notifications to popular and widely used fitness trackers, incorporating this feature into your software could be a huge step forward in terms of user engagement. To learn more about how your healthcare mobile app can benefit from push notifications, visit our blog.

FAQ

Informing customers about services and products through desktop and mobile notifications is clearly a powerful marketing strategy. Although push notification systems are widely used, a few issues might require additional explanation. We prepared answers to frequently asked questions in case you have any concerns about the types of push messages or the procedures you should follow before starting a push notification campaign.

What are the types of push notifications?

Push notifications can be divided mainly into mobile and web notifications, but it is also possible to display pop-up messages on wearable devices. Mobile notifications are those sent by downloaded applications and shown either on a smartphone or a connected device, for instance, a smartwatch. Web notifications are sent by browsers and can be viewed not only on desktops but also on mobile devices. Let us go over each type in depth.

Mobile push notifications

Push messages are frequently included in mobile development projects. Mobile applications use push notifications to make the user return to the application. They can be sent even if the app is closed, which is a huge advantage of push notifications in general. Such a message usually appears as a banner at the top of the smartphone screen, where the user can tap it to launch the app or swipe it away to dismiss it. However, depending on the operating system, the location of delivered push notifications can be altered.

Mobile app push notifications come in various types, from reminders about upcoming events based on your calendar or health application to timely offers sent by food delivery, hotel, or transportation apps. The user can turn them off in settings. 

Web push notifications

These include all alerts that you receive from a website or web app, either on desktop or mobile devices. Web push notifications are sent by a browser and can be displayed as pop-up messages while you browse a particular site or as notifications appearing in the feed bar. Unlike mobile notifications that can be sent regardless of the circumstances, web push notifications are messages to users that require a browser to be open, at least in the background.

The benefits of web push notifications stretch far beyond expectations, but the best aspect is their simple integration with web services. All it takes to send notifications through the browser is installing a web push code on your website. Hence, companies that don’t have dedicated mobile apps can still employ a push notification system in their web development projects and reap their benefits.

Push notifications on wearables

It is also possible to receive push messages on wearables, for instance, smart watches or smart bands. When a wearable device is connected to a smartphone, notifications from mobile apps are sent to this device as well. Of course, their format is adjusted to the size of the screen.

Considering the characteristics of push messages, it makes perfect sense to send them to devices that users wear almost all the time to prompt even quicker reactions. However, keep in mind that it may have the opposite effect. Too many alerts may distract the user and, as a result, annoy them rather than engage them.

How do users accept push notifications?

The opt-in process differs between the types of push notifications. In the case of web pushes, a user must accept a request generated by a web browser to be able to receive them. Typically, it is a white box displayed on the left upper side of a website with an option to allow or block notifications. Interestingly, you can specify when the permission dialog should appear. So instead of bombarding users with pop-ups as soon as they enter your service, allow prompts to be triggered by their behavior for example, when they click a certain button or perform a specific action.

To increase an opt-in rate, you can precede a browser prompt with a so-called “soft ask” that will explain the purpose of push notifications on your website or web app. If the user indicates their willingness to receive such messages in the “soft ask”, then the request from the browser will appear. However, to receive notifications, one must opt-in through a browser-based form because a “soft ask” serves only as an introduction to the valid request.

When it comes to mobile push notifications, they must be permitted by iOS users and, what has changed recently, also by Android users. Until the release of Android 13, mobile applications running on the Android operating system could send push notifications to users by default, meaning without asking for consent.

Now, both iOS and Android apps must give users the option of receiving such messages or not. Usually, it is done through a standard alert that appears when an application is opened for the first time. In order to encourage users to enable push messages sent by your app, you can provide them with a special welcome series that would display its major features and underline its value for customers. However, if a user decides to block notifications, they can switch them on in settings later.

Mobile push notifications are displayed in a form of head-ups, entries in the notification tray, badges on an app’s icon, or all of them at once.

Increase app engagement and conversion rate with push notifications

After this thorough examination, we can confirm that push notifications are an excellent marketing tool regardless of the industry. An appropriately designed push messages campaign can allow you to increase the revenue of your business by developing direct relationships with customers. There are plenty of push notification systems available on the market, so select one of the ready-to-integrate solutions and start delivering personalized push messages to your clients even today.

However, if you are interested in web or mobile development, don’t hesitate to contact us! We can lead your project from the ground up, providing you with professional expertise at every step of the development process. See our portfolio for more details on our deliverables.

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