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Engaging users with the new technology in town : Web Push Notifications

Every business, big or small, has tested various marketing communication channels to get the engagement rate they yearn for.

So far, most online marketers have been focusing on platforms such as emails, social media, mobile push notifications, SMS, in-browser popups and so on.

However, a completely new technology has arrived (All hail technological advancements!) and is already winning the hearts and souls of digital marketers. Yes, we’re talking about Web Push Notifications!

Web-Push-Notifications

Yeah, that’s me grinning at the thought of web push notifications.

Admit it, you love it! It’s just the marketing channel that we all needed. It’s fast. It’s easy. It’s so much better.

What better than moving your audience’s attention to a device where they spend a major chunk of their time?

Let’s travel a little back in time and see how it all started.

Push Notifications : Going back in time a little

Even before the concept of web push notifications existed, you must have had an idea of what these tiny popup windows are.

Remember the regular push notifications you receive from Facebook, Twitter, etc? That’s exactly what I am talking about.

7 years ago, Apple led the revolution of push notification on mobile apps. This engagement oriented technology became a huge deal in the market for an obvious reason – it didn’t require any personal details (phone numbers, email Id, names etc) of the users.

The aftermath? It gave crazy results (of course in a good way!).

Here’s one of many examples of the incredible outcome:

Push-notifications-require-higher-engagement

As per a study by Localytics, an Ecommerce business with data present on 3.7 million devices increased user sessions up to 278% with push notifications.

This became a major reason for companies to launch their mobile apps. However, being available only on mobile devices became also the main limitation of push notifications.

It was only natural for users to prefer visiting a website rather than downloading the app which would take precious space on their device.

Fortunately, things changed for the better.

Again in late 2013, Apple did it again! Completely transforming the digital marketing arena, they introduced web push notifications within Safari.

The browser now (only Safari though), for the first time, would ask the users for permission to send them push notifications. Once the users allowed, the notifications (blogs, sales offer – virtually anything) would go to them in real time irrespective of whether they are on the website or not.

And yet again, it gave incredible results.

Shortly, Chrome and Firefox announced that they would be supporting web notifications too and hence, the BOOM!

Impressive.

So, how do web push notifications look?

web-push-notifications

You must have been seeing these pop up windows while visiting certain a website lately?

These are Web Push notification opt-ins.They help you convert:
-visitors into subscribers
– visitors into leads
– leads to customers

What can you use it for?
-Newsletter signup
-Coupons
-Offers
-Blog subscriptions
-Survey/Poll
-And virtually anything.

Sounds tempting, doesn’t it?

I will take a little time here to define what exactly are web push notifications before we go more into this amazingly miraculous technology.

What are Web Push Notifications?

They are simply clickable messages which a website sends to its list of subscribers directly on their mobile/desktop devices in real time.

They are quite similar to push notifications with the only exception that they work for websites instead of mobile apps and are accessible on all devices rather than just mobiles.

How easy is it to use web push notifications?

Web Push Notifications are quite easy to setup and use both from the subscriber’s as well as the webmaster’s perspective.

Let me walk you through the process:

For Subscribers :

For the subscribers, it’s a 2 step process.

  • Opt-in: As soon as the visitor comes on the website an opt-in window shows up. It asks the users permission to send them notifications from the websites. When the user clicks on the Allow button, he is immediately added to the website’s subscribers list.
    Opt-in-box
  • Receiving web push notifications: When the visitor becomes a subscriber, the webmaster sends out notifications and updates directly to the user’s device (the one which they used to subscribe) in real time.

The users are redirected to the link once they click on the notification.

Web-Push-Technology

For Webmasters:

It’s equally simple for webmasters. All you have to do is land on Notifyfox, sign up and add your project. A Javascript code would be generated which you need to copy and paste before the closing head “</head>” tag of your HTML.

You can then select and customize your opt-in message. And you are all set to gather subscribers and send them notifications.
If you ask me, there are two things about Web Push Notifications which make them especially effective:

  • Users don’t need to give out their Email Ids (or any other details for that matter). Just a simple click works.
  • These notifications are delivered in real time. So it doesn’t matter if the user is online or not at the moment. The message would get on their browser as soon as they open it.

Why is this new technology worth it?

1. Web push notifications are easy to use and setup

As we discussed earlier, subscribing to web push notifications is a simple process involving at most 2 clicks (2 for HTTP websites and 1 for HTTPS).Also, you don’t have to be a tech buff to implement web push on your website.

2. Web Push Notifications amplify your reach

Web push notifications circumvent the loopholes of Email and Social media marketing.

For example, how many emails do you receive in a day? Say, around 100? And how many of them do you actually read?

My point is that it’s difficult to reach your users with Email Marketing, taking into consideration the number of spam that is being constantly circulated in the web space.

Social media is no different. It’s noisy. It’s cluttered. And let’s face it, cutting the line and making it to the top of the follower’s newsfeed is not that easy.

Web Push notifications overcome all these limitations. For instance, you don’t have to wait for the users to open their email or social media account. As soon as the subscribers open their browsers, your message gets delivered right there.

Hence, using web push notifications, you can reach your subscribers wherever they are and on any device.
If this doesn’t increase your online visibility, then I don’t know what would!

3. You can reach your audience wherever they are

A lot of research goes into finding the platform your audience is most active on. You have to continuously pull out numbers and create reports to find out that one network which gives you better results by even 1%.

Web Push notifications are hassle-free. They are completely network independent. Here you wouldn’t have to worry about that painful research.

Your message would be delivered irrespective of what your subscriber is browsing on the internet.

4. You get better Click-through-rates

Web Push notifications do not ask for user’s Email Id or any other contact information. Also, the users can easily opt out of these notifications in case they don’t want to end their subscription.

That is why web push notifications have proven to generate click-through rates (as high as 40%) in comparison to most marketing platforms.

5. You don’t need to be a design guru

With web push notifications you wouldn’t have to spend hours thinking about that best call to action or the best design. Also, you don’t have to test them on multiple devices to make sure the message is delivered to the users the way you intended.

Your only task is to create 2-3 lines and add a link to the page where you want your subscribers to land.

In terms of design, since the browser handles how your message is displayed, you don’t have to bother at all.

6. Web Push Notifications are best for time sensitive information

How many times do you check your email? Twice or thrice a day?

Now, what if you want a really time sensitive information to be delivered, say, a sale that will end in the next 3 hours. In this case, you wouldn’t want to send an email to your user and hopelessly wait for them to open it.

That’s exactly when push notifications come as a blessing. You can send them at any time of the day and they will be delivered instantly.

Web Push Notifications are indeed a powerful marketing tool at the hands of webmasters. But you need to understand, with great power comes great responsibility. Just because you have the freedom to send unlimited notifications at any time of the day, doesn’t mean you should exploit it and spam your subscribers.

Will Web Push Notifications kill all the other marketing communication channels?

Honestly, I don’t think so. Web Push Notifications are in their infancy stage right now and they will grow even more in the future.

That doesn’t mean you should ignore all other marketing communication channels.

Use your email list in combination with web push notifications to garner maximum engagement. Also, keep posting fresh updates on your social media walls.

Keep interacting. Keep engaging. Keep growing.

I hope this post helped you. I would love to see your thoughts in the comments below.

Do you want to build a strong subscriber list fast?

Learn how to leverage the full power of web push notifications.

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Shivangi is the Content Crafter at Notifyfox - a software helping marketers connect and communicate better with their users.  She is a writer by day and an avid reader by night.  When not working, you can usually find her buried deep down in Google SERPs.