PUSH notifications are an instant messaging technology that sends the information from a mobile app to a user based on pre-set parameters. PUSH notifications are used to inform users about in-app events, content update, promotional offers, etc.; they can contain a heading, a description and an image and perform certain functions: open a particular app section or content.
There are two types of push notifications:
1. Automatic, which come to the user on an event, for instance, content update or response to a post.
2. Manual, which are manually sent to users if required.
Automatic notifications have to be implemented by a web-developer on the server only. Manual notifications can be implemented independently on a backend, but a more convenient and flexible way to send them is a ready-made solution. We suggest using Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM), which is a native push notifications server for Android. It’s easily integrated into iOS apps, has flexible settings and a user-friendly interface.
One of the main requirements for sending push notifications is user consent. Besides, it’s a main requirement of the applications market – if it’s violated, the app may fail to pass the verification process. User consent is normally received after the first launch of the app. We suggest doing it after certain actions in the app, for instance, after browsing its content or upon registration.
Firebase Cloud Messaging makes it possible to create and send users push notifications, run experiments and view sent notifications reports.
FCM allows for setting the following parameters:
1. Notification content: heading, description and image.
2. Targeting: setting a user audience that will receive a notification. It’s possible to set the following parameters: platform, app version, language, country or region. It’s possible to choose an own user audience or a timeline within which the app was opened for the first time.
3. Scheduling: planning notification sending time (at a particular time or with a set periodicity).
4. Post-opening conversion tracking. Creating tunnels and tracking notifications efficiency.
5. Extra options: setting a deep link, disabling the notification sound, etc.
Examples of using PUSH notifications:
1. Increasing user involvement. It’s important for apps to occasionally involve users and remind them about uncompleted actions or new events. It’s related to apps that have, say, a social component or in which users subscribe to regular content updates.
2. User return to the app. Certain users don’t use the app upon its installation. To get them return, we suggest sending them notifications about new content or events. In this case, it’s best to use automatic notifications. Notifications content can be controlled via Remote Config – it will boost and simplify the development and add a text changing option at any point.
3. Notifications about new content or promotional offers. If you wish, for instance, to regularly control notifications content or tell users about seasonal offers, we suggest using manual push notifications. Send these notifications whenever you need and set the target user audience. For instance, the most involved users can be offered a subscription discount – they’re the most likely to make a conversion; those users who didn’t open the app for a couple of days can simply be reminded about it.