ARCHIVES: This is legacy content from before Industry Dive acquired Mobile Commerce Daily in early 2017. Some information, such as publication dates, may not have migrated over. Check out our topic page for the latest mobile commerce news.

Effective strategies to increase push notification opt-ins

By Jonathan Levey

Push notifications are short messages and mobile alerts that are specifically designed to pop up on mobile devices. They are designed by the application publishers and sent to users of mobile platforms.

Since they are never trapped in spam filters, app publishers use push notifications to speak directly to the users.

Why push notifications are effective in mobile marketing
Push notifications have proved valuable and convenient to app users. Previous stats from Localytics are enough proof of why they are viewed as great mobile marketing tactics. Their impact is significant because of the following:

• Influence on user engagement

Push messages are actively used to encourage inactive users to re-engage with a given app. The messages can improve an app’s position in the user’s mind if crafted in a friendly way.

In these 2015 stats from Localytics, users who opted-in to push messages were three times more than those who opted out. This was a 171 percent increase as compared to 2014 stats.

• Increased user retention

Using push messages helps retain the users in the long-term and short-term plans. This helps apps to reduce user churn rate, according to Bijou Commerce.

Users of push messages are continuously reminded to return to an app, thus keeping it top-of-mind.

In 2015, retention for push notifications saw an increase throughout the initial three months compared to retention rates in 2014.

• Increased app launches

Stats indicate that push notifications are the ideal way to enhance an app’s user experience.

Through the notifications, app launches increased by 27 percent.

Push notifications are a friendly guide to aid users in navigating through the app to find valuable information.

• Increased conversion

Push notifications can increase in-app conversion rates by four times.

When users get contextually relevant and timely information, they are not only encouraged to convert but are also made more likely to convert on a regular basis.

• A personalized user interaction

Push notifications enable app users to enjoy a personalized user interaction with a given brand.

Purpose of implementing a soft ask
One of the most important tactics used by app developers to increase push notification opt-ins is the use of a soft ask. This dialogue box appears before the mobile opt-in screen to serve the following purposes:

• To provide context for requesting permission, at a key experience point when the user is likely to be interested in receiving notifications

• To enable the user to decline initially, without taking the point-of-no return step of declining the iOS-native subscription model

• To provide another opportunity to try to re-engage the user and have them confirm that they do want notifications if they previously declined

Benefits of the soft ask
• It allows the app developer to serve the opt-in to the app users multiple times at varying places within the app. Asking the opt-in only at the beginning of the app may deny the user the chance of fully understanding the app.

• It covers benefits of opting in to the push notification messages before requesting for the green light. If the users know how they will benefit, they are more likely to opt-in.

MOBILE MARKETING goes beyond app installs. Successful marketing requires effective user engagement.

To maximize loyalty and retention, a positive app experience and user-friendly engagement should be a priority.

Built on a foundation of customer and publisher interaction, push notifications deliver value and optimal engagement within a single mobile platform.

Jonathan Levey is digital marketing manager at Flexjet, Cleveland, OH. Reach him at [email protected]