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How to maximise the value of your app’s push notifications

How to maximise the value of your app’s push notifications

Push notifications can range from being really appreciated by users to be a real nuisance for them. Finding the right balance to reap all the benefits they offer is almost an art.

As Spiderman’s famous maxim holds: great power entails great responsibility. That’s why Yeeply wants to give out some tips so that you can make the most out of your mobile app’s push notifications without giving rise to any future disaffection of your users. Do you want to find out how? Read on!

Reasons to use push notifications in your app

Let’s start with the basics. Push notifications are alerts regarding an app that are sent from a remote server to devices that have the app installed.

They are pop-up alerts that appear on your smartphone triggered by an event like receiving a new message or e-mail, for instance.


animation of three smartphones with push notifications
Examples of push notifications. Source: Giphy


If you are reading this article, it means that you already have created an app or have in mind creating one. Are you already using push notifications? If you are not yet fully convinced about incorporating them, let us tell you what their main advantages are:

  • They work immediately: They can get automatically triggered when a certain action is performed in the app or when the device is located in a specific geographical area. It’s a very simple and effective way to get the user’s attention.
  • They are not intrusive: The user will see the notification, but will always be able to decide how to be informed about it: with a vibration, a sound, just an icon, etc.
  • They improve engagement and user retention rates: When you add value to your product through them, notifications increase engagement because you get the user to access your app at a time when he/she had no previous intention to do so. They also improve the user retention rate but ONLY if you use them correctly.


Do you want to know the secret to successful push notifications?
Let’s unveil it.


Tips for making your push notifications effective

Despite having said it many times, we yet can’t possibly overstate it: Getting your users to install your application is just the first step. The important thing is that they get to use the app over time and push notifications can help you to achieve this if you adhere to some tips.


User registration is a very common step when installing and starting to use a mobile application. Capitalise on it. Whenever possible, contact the user by his/her name. In addition, notifications based on a certain behaviour pattern work better than those sent in a generic way.

Add value

If you send a notification, there must be a reason for it. The kind of push notifications sent will depend on the kind of app, but they must always be of some value to the user or he/she will quickly deactivate them. A notification may be about an offer limited in time, the shipment of a product or having obtained extra lives in a game. The bottom line is that whatever it may be, it must be valuable to the message’s recipient.

Keep on carrying out analysis until you find the perfect timing

There will always be certain days and hours that work better than others. It will depend on the kind of application and the user’s profile, but your work should be aimed at finding this out. Carry out tests and analysis to find out what is the best time to send a notification.

 Animation of iPhone with push notifications appearing
Push notifications on an iPhone. Source: Giphy

Bear the time zone in mind

Consider the user’s time zone when scheduling generic push notifications (like when launching a new version of your app, for instance). Receiving notifications at ungodly hours can trigger the opposite effect to that which you are intending.

Make them visual

Be it with an emoji, an image or a GIF, the goal is to trigger a certain action and make the user feel that he/she is having a conversation with another person instead of with a machine. Emojis, images or gifs can help boost engagement.


Read on: Top Mobile App Trends for 2020


Allow the user to choose

Push notifications are sometimes activated by default after installing an app. However, not all push notifications are alike. This may strike the new user as somewhat invasive, as he/she still doesn’t know your app very well and has no idea if the notifications will be valuable or not.

To avoid this situation, you can send a notification or message later on asking the user to activate push notifications once he/she is already using the app.

In order to get to know your users better, it’s worth including a section in the app dedicated to the settings of the different kinds of notifications to which they can subscribe.

It’s a good way to ensure that the push notifications they’ll receive really interest them, and this will lead to higher user retention and interaction.

animated demo on how to enable push notifications on a smartphone
How to enable an app’s push notifications. Source: Giphy

Examples of the use of push notifications

We have discussed the benefits of push notifications and some tips aimed at using them properly. But the most important matter remains: In which cases is it advisable to send a push notification? Find the inspiration you need in the following examples.

User welcome

We all like to feel loved — your users too. Therefore, welcome them as they deserve once they finish installing your app. You can seize this moment to offer them a discount code if you have an online store, for example.

Or if your app is a game: how about some extra lives or free add-ons? Have a little gesture with your users to have them gain a remarkable first impression of your app.


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Adapt them to your user’s preferences

Another example of good notification practices is to activate them when there’s something new in the app: a product that’s available again, information about something being launched, a notice about a purchase just being shipped… It’s a way to have the user know when something of interest occurs without having him/her to deliberately check it in the app.

animation of notifications from social apps
Notifications from social media apps. Source: Giphy

Abandoned shopping trolley

An abandoned shopping trolley can be converted into a sale. It might not have been a good time for the user or an incident may have occurred.

In either case, you can interact with the user via a push notification remembering him/her that the products are still in the shopping trolley and that the purchase can be completed later on. If your user ignores this notification, you can also offer a temporary discount to encourage him/her to carry out the purchase.

Themed notifications

International days, weeks or special dates… They offer a chance to interact with users and launch specific campaigns. But remember that the notification must be relevant and observe CTA canons for the user to interact with it.


Related content: The Best iOS and Android Apps of 2019


Increase the value of push notifications

As we have been discussing, well-used push notifications are a perfect ally to increase your app’s user engagement. Should you have any questions on this matter and/or want an experienced team to develop your app, you can always rely on Yeeply.

Our certified app development professionals will put themselves to work on your project to get to know your users better and give you advice about the perfect time to send them a push notification. Work with Yeeply to team up with the best professionals.

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