Ever since the announcement of support and development of the web standard HTML5 Service Workers PushAPI in early 2015, I have been s-uber excited about the possibility of web-app only sustenance and weighing over natives.
A complete web-app (or what people are calling them now are Progressive Web-Apps) for me comprises of :
2. Offline – on the web.
4. On-load/demand functionality
This article is part of a series on Progressive Web Apps, which I have been delaying for the past year. So let’s get this started..
I love Web Push Notifications
Web Push notifications is this new development to send push notifications to a web-browser (wherever there’s a browser – mobile/desktop), works best on Chrome, Safari and now Firefox – well pretty much majority, at-least.
Push notifications as we all know, are the notifications which you traditionally get on your mobile devices through native/downloaded mobile apps.
Reaching and Re-Engaging your users through new, disruptive ways is a challenge any product is facing in the current scenario with multiple channels of reach & engagement.
Current issues with reaching/engaging with your users ~
- Social is getting algorithmic and brands are facing the pressure to pay up even if they have a huge dedicated following
- Emails have the best CTRs, but it’s a risky line of communication to push
- SMS for web-based products are just plain weird
- Native app push notification require someone to download an app and other complicated reasoning blah blah
Web Push Notifications are just perfect –
i. No need for an app. – Quick Deployment, basic general push functionality done in less than 30 minutes.
ii. Massive Reach – Browsers, they’re everywhere.
iii. CTRs are high as they have the same appeal as mobile native push notifications.
iv. Response is – high – doesn’t load a slow native app , but a quick lite web page.
Once you have added web push notifications to your product, and your user has subscribed to them, they can get your push notification on their desktops/laptops/mobiles!
Instead of a native mobile app pushing the notifications, the web browser will be pushing the notification.
Some of the biggest adopters are : Beyond the Rack, eBay, Facebook, FanSided, Pinterest, Product Hunt, and VICE News.
That’s an insane reach, engagement opportunity.
Product Strategy Talk
For Product Strategists/Planners ~
i. Notification X-Platform – Chrome/Safari/Firefox only requirement.
ii. Direct click-through to targeted URL – customizable – configurable with preAuths.
iii. Quick turn around time – bulk target audience taking an action in first 15 minutes of notification.
iv. Relatively quick deployment
With your facebook reach throttling and email open-rates dwindling, this is the next thing marketers should strongly consider ~
i. Relevant Content Marketing – Shooting that blog article to all the subscribers.
ii. Tracking — Following up in x hours/app visits etc.
iii. High Click Through Rates.
Brothers. This is easy, seamless af.
HTML5 Service Workers & Push API configuration and you are all set. I won’t get in to the nitty gritties of this for you since every use-case and app architecture is different. Your apps notification API can include and trigger the Push API with concerned requirement.
Basic definitions you should have an idea about : WebApp, Push Message, Push Subscription, Push Service & Express Permissions.
No Tech Team?
Third party services offering web-push notifications as a plugin/ad-hoc feature :
GoRoost — The first platform to make web notifications as third party notifications.
OneSignal — I am currently using this, works like a charm.
PushCrew — Being currently used by one of the biggest news websites in India – shows massive scale-ability and support.
Like any new tech development, there’re a few issues/entry barriers to web push notifications as well, which I hope will become easier over time/development :
For a user to subscribe to your web push notifications is a little tricky – especially if you’re not HTTPS.
Relevant Links :