A Definite Guide to Web Push Notifications

A Definite Guide to Web Push Notifications

Are you curious about how to engage your users directly through your website in real time, even when they’re not actively browsing it? That’s the power of web push notifications, a game-changing communication tool for interacting your users online. First introduced by Google in 2013, web push notifications have quickly become a popular method to drive user engagement, despite their relative newness.

In this definitive guide, we’ll unpack the secrets of web push notifications. You’ll discover their benefits, functionalities, and best practices to help you leverage this technology to its fullest potential.

Ready to see how web push notifications can transform the way you communicate with your audience? Let’s get started.

What are web push notifications?

As a type of push notification, web push notifications, aka website notifications or browser notifications, are messages that websites (including web apps) can directly send to users through their web browsers, even when the website isn't open. They allow websites to engage users with timely, relevant content and prompts in real time. For example, e-commerce sites can provide users with cart abandonment reminders, social networks can notify users about new messages, and news sites can alert users to breaking stories.

Unlike app push notifications, another type of push notification that requires users to install an app, web push notifications work across browsers and platforms. These notifications can appear on a user’s desktop, smartphone, or tablet, providing a native-app-like push experience conveniently with browsers.

How do web push notifications work?

Web push notifications use push technology, aka server push, where communication starts from a web server (your side) rather than a client (the user side).  The components involved in sending website notifications are: the user, the user’s browser, the web server, and a third-party web push service tool.

  • User: The user must first grant permission for your website to push notifications. This opt-in is the key.
  • Browser: The user’s browser acts as the gatekeeper to require the user's permission before allowing your websites to send notifications through it. Popular browsers such as Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge support web push.
  • Web Server: This is your backend server that composes and sends the push messages. When you want to send a notification, your web server transmits it to the web push service.
  • Web Push Service: A third-party web push service provider handles the delivery of notifications from your web server to the user’s browser. The push service maintains constant connections with browsers.

Here’s the journey of a typical web push notification:

journey of web push notifications

  1. The user visits your website and opts in to allow notifications.
  2. The user’s browser registers the permission and gets a unique push subscription from the web push service.
  3. When you have something to deliver to your users, your web server sends a message request to the web push service.
  4. The web push service identifies the target browser and sends the notification.
  5. The user’s browser displays the message in real-time without needing the user to open your website.

So in summary, web push notifications use an indirect system to deliver timely content to users even when they aren’t actively browsing your website. The users can receive your messages and respond promptly when needed, ensuring your communication is always within reach.

What are the types of web push notifications?

You can leverage web push notifications to deliver different types of messages to your users for different purposes. Here’re the common types of web push notifications:

types of web push notifications

What benefits do web push notifications offer to you?

Exploring the variety of web push notifications, let’s examine their advantages for both your business and your customers.

  • Instantly interact with your users

You can reach users via web push notifications in real time, no matter if they are actively browsing your website. This gives you another touchpoint to engage users and keep your brand top of mind.

  • Re-engage inactive users

Web push notifications are a great way to re-engage users who have gone inactive. Divide your subscriber by activity level, then target less active users with notifications aimed at bringing them back. This helps recapture lost opportunities.

  • Enhance user experience

Web push notifications can greatly enhance the user experience when used thoughtfully. Welcome messages, booking confirmations, and meeting reminders all make interactions more seamless. Users appreciate these notifications that simplify tasks or save time.

  • Improve conversion rates

Well-timed, relevant notifications can motivate users to take actions like making a purchase or returning to an abandoned cart. SaaS web apps can also drive conversions with upgrade prompts, renewal reminders, etc.

  • Save money and gain a high return on your investment

Web push notifications allow you to reach users easily without breaking the bank. All you need to pay for is a budget-friendly service tool. Additionally, sending web notifications is quite scalable, adapting to your needs as they grow. They ensure that every marketing effort counts, offering a high return on your marketing investment.

  • Gain insights into user preferences to refine your strategies

The analytics, a common feature provided by the web push service, offer you crucial insights to grasp users’ behaviors and preferences. You can track opens, clicks, conversions and more. This enables you optimize future campaigns for improved performance and engagement, sending messages that truly resonate with your users.

How do you send a web push notification?

Here comes the crucial part you’re most interested in—how to send a web push notification. Simply follow these key steps:

1. Choose a web push service provider

You’ll need to choose a web push service provider to push notifications between your website and the users. Evaluate different providers based on key factors like delivery channels, successful rates, features, pricing, and geographic coverage. If you’re swamped and need a shortcut to a trustworthy web push service tool, our advice is EngageLab Web Push. You can move on to the next part to explore its popular features and see why it’s worth trying.

2. Obtain permission from your users

You need users’ acceptance to receive notifications from your website. This is a native request sent by the browser.

3. Categorize your users

Divide the subscribed users into different groups based on their behaviors, preferences, location or other relevant factors, so that you can push customized messages for different users.

4. Create engaging notifications

Create customized notifications that resonate with users of different groups. Personalized notifications can increase open and click-through rates.

5. Schedule and send notifications to users

Send your notifications instantly or set triggers to schedule for a future time.

6. Refine your strategies based on analytics

Access the statistics shown on the service platform. You can focus on open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. These insights will help you improve notification content and pinpoint the optimal time to push notifications.

Why is EngageLab Web Push worth trying out?

EngageLab Web Push is not only easy to use but also includes great features such as powerful segmentation, multi-channel delivery, diverse notification bar styles, and deep analytics.

Follow along to explore its key features, and you’ll soon discover why it deserves a try.

features of web push notifications

a. Seamlessly integrate with your website

It’s straightforward to integrate your website with EngageLab Web Push—just a quick domain configuration and SDK integration. The whole process will be completed in just three minutes.

b. Boost user acceptance rate via the customized authorization notification

Through EngageLab Web Push, you can send your customized notification request to users with personalized content at a scheduled time. This helps motivate users to accept receiving your website notifications.

If the user gives permission to receive notifications on your customized request, the native browser request will then appear. If the user refuses on your customized request, the native browser request will not appear. When the user visits your website the next time, you can still send your customized request to them. Compared to the native browser request notification, the custom EngageLab authorization notification helps improve the user acceptance rate to 70%.

custom authorization

c. Improve your user reach with higher delivery rates

EngageLab Web Push offers stable and secure messaging through high-concurrency and a multi-point backup system. It manages to extend user reach by adapting to all mainstream browsers, like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge, and Opera.

d. Reach out to the right audience at the perfect time

EngageLab Web Push helps you pinpoint the ideal audience based on user aliases, tags, devices, and location, ensuring your messages reach the right audience. It can also guide you in determining optimal times for sending website notifications, helping you identify when your users are most likely to engage.

e. Offer comprehensive statistics

EngageLab provides complete data analysis across your message lifecycle:

✓ message funnel analysis

✓ loss analysis for platforms and channels

✓ statistics on new users, active users, delivery rates, notification acceptance, etc.

✓ other after-effect analysis

It’s time to unlock the unparalleled user engagement strategies of EngageLab Web Push yourself. Take the first step today with the FREE version. You’ll see how it can boost user engagement.

engagelab web push

How do you create effective website notifications?

The better your notifications are, the more user engagement you will have. Here’re some best practices for web push notifications to help you create effective messages.

💡 Tailor notifications for different users

Send tailored notifications for users of different groups. Tailored notifications have higher open and click-through rates. The users will more likely respond to messages that resonate with them.

💡 Make your notifications actionable

Include a strong call-to-action (CTA) that encourages a specific behavior. For example, “30% off sale on all subscriptions today - Shop now”. Make sure the CTA button or link works properly.

💡 Use images and buttons

Images can drive higher engagement as they convey more information visually. Action buttons can also boost clicks.

💡 Choose push frequency carefully

To avoid having it backfire, don’t deliver too many notifications to your users. Send notifications only if you have valuable content to share with your users. You can start with one or two notification per week and then adjust based on performance.

💡 Test and optimize your notifications

Continuously take A/B tests on your notification content, timing, frequency, and targeting. Analyze performance data and double down on what works. Refine and optimize your notifications over time.

What is the future of web push notifications?

As technologies evolve rapidly in today’s digital world, you may wonder about the future of web push notifications before getting onboard. Let's now examine what lies ahead for this technology and determine whether it merits your investment.

Web push notifications have seen rapid growth and adoption over the past few years, and that momentum is expected to continue steadily. More websites will integrate web push as it proves effective at driving engagement.

With growing adoption, the major browsers will continue to improve web push capabilities and convenience. More operating systems may directly integrate web notifications. Consequently, the reliability and performance of web notifications improve, which in turn, encourages more businesses to adopt this tool.

Additionally, as machine learning improves, web push may become more predictive by recognizing patterns and anticipating user needs before they search. Personalization and segmentation will allow for more tailored, relevant notifications aligned to users interests and habits. This likely drives web push to evolve into a popular, full-fledged conversational platform through two-way messaging between users and brands.

We hope this guide has demystified web push notifications and shown you how to harness their potential effectively. We encourage you to start using the technology today. The more you practice, the more proficient you are. Get started and transform your push notifications with EngageLab Web Push.

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