The Power of Push Notifications

Push notifications are automated messages that are sent by an application to the user. Usually, this is when an app has been updated, there has been a recent social media post or for companies that sell a product there is a sale on.

A way of re-engaging with your audience, they can be a profitable addition to your digital marketing campaign. Opt-in rates for push notifications on apps (according to Accengages’ 2018 report) for IOS devices is 43.9% in comparison to Android that sits at 91.1%. This huge difference is due to the fact that with IOS devices, users have to agree to them, but Android devices enable push notifications without asking. According to the report, the average global opt-in rate between the two operating systems is 67.5%.

How your small business can be improved with push notifications

So how can you use push notifications to help improve your small business? Push notifications are a great means of keeping the relationship strong with the customer. Used by thousands of companies globally, they are proven to produce a high click-through rate if they are done correctly. If you’re thinking of using them, there are a few things to consider.

Firstly, the time of day you’re planning on sending them. According to Accengages’ report, the most popular time is 11 pm. Making sure that your notifications are going through at a time when people are most commonly using their devices will boost the reaction rates. The report also displays that notifications that feature emojis, have a +20% reaction rate. If you add a creative flair, whether that be through emojis, a bespoke message targeted at the user’s interests or through geo-targeting (a notification that uses the user’s location), push notifications are a great way of making your small business stand out from the crowd and making the customer feel that they are unique to them.

A call to action in the notification is another way of sparking engagement. Linking to a status, product or sale, it entices the user and makes the content seem more interesting. To draw the customer back to your app or website, you could also take an omnichannel approach. Perhaps more appropriate when your business has expanded, this approach spans the push notification across a multitude of channels, ensuring that the customer experience doesn’t end and is seamless.

The success of push notifications can be gauged through the click-through rate. If the user does not engage with the notification and go through to the app or website, the content, time of day or how frequently you are delivering them may need to be altered. It is a good indicator of how the campaign is doing and gives great insight into the user experience.

Push notifications may initially seem like a great expense for your small business. But this method is a great way of appealing to a larger audience and building your business’s reputation and persuading new users to discover more about your product or service. If you are running an e-commerce business, it’s a clever way of reminding customers about products that are still left in their cart (Accenages report shows that there is a 7.9% reaction rate for e-commerce companies), for travel companies there is an average of a 11.3% reaction rate across Android and IOS systems and for finance companies, a 9.8% reaction rate.

Despite these being the top three business sectors in terms of reaction rates, that doesn’t mean that if your business is in a different sector it won’t succeed with push notifications. Push notifications are a clever form of marketing no matter what you are selling.

What to avoid with push notifications

Push notifications can undeniably benefit your small business. But if done incorrectly, can cause customer engagement to dwindle. There is a fine art with them and restraint must be taken. No-one likes to be bombarded with notifications. According to Pushcrew’s 2016 report, you should send more than one notification a day, but any more than 4 is too much. Although, this of course, depends on what your business sells. You don’t want people to disable them, therefore the right balance is key.

With your app or website, you need to make sure that your customer is fully engaged with what you are selling. You need to convince them that they want to receive notifications, by showing their worth. If they are made interesting and have a creative flair (as well as being enticing), they can be an extremely beneficial tool.

The power of push notifications in the modern day is undeniable. Utilizing the technology that is on offer, it allows companies to branch out and appeal to a wider audience. If you’re thinking of implementing them for your business, invest in customer testing, see what your competitors are doing and add a bespoke touch that will make yours stand out from the crowd – convincing your customers to be engaged and strengthening the relationship you have with them.

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