When it comes to your mobile users, making a connection is everything. Savvy marketers have recognized the incredible power of push notifications for keeping their brand or app top of mind for users. Rich push notifications add another layer of engagement and interactivity that can take your message to the next level.
Let’s take a look at what rich push notifications are and how you can use them to create a memorable user experience.
Rich push notifications are short pop-up messages sent to a user’s device with a rich media attachment such as an animated GIF, video, or audio. They allow you to communicate with your customers in an inviting way even when they’re not actively using your app or visiting your website.
Rich push notifications can include interactive elements called “content extensions.” These allow users to complete actions right from their device’s lock screen without launching an app. You might use them to encourage a user to shop a specific item or sale, register for an event, or share the notification with a friend.
Rich media is naturally more compelling than plain text. (Wouldn’t you rather look at a fun GIF than a block of text?) Through images, videos, and other elements that catch people’s attention, rich push notifications showcase your message and invite users to interact.
There are many creative ways to use rich push notifications to engage customers. Some examples include:
The better you understand your users and what appeals to them, the easier it will be for you to create rich notifications they’ll find hard to ignore. Giving them information that’s relevant and useful combined with inviting rich media helps make your brand memorable and will inspire your users to make a purchase, attend an event, or sign up for a service.
Rich push notifications work through— yep, you guessed it — push technology. That means they deliver (or push) information to a user as opposed to the user requesting (or pulling) the information themselves.
Here’s the basic process. Marketers select a target audience for a rich push notification, craft a message, and attach rich media. Then the push notification is scheduled for delivery at a specific time or in response to certain triggers.
Rich push notifications can be personalized to include the user’s name, location, products viewed, or other relevant user activity. For example, a retailer might use a rich push notification with a product image to entice a user back to an abandoned online shopping cart.
Rich push notifications require devices running iOS 10 and higher or Android 4.1 and higher. Although the requirements for sending rich notifications are similar across devices, there are some delivery differences to keep in mind.
Users running iOS 15 or later can fine-tune their notification preferences by setting up Focus. It’s a tool that allows the user to schedule delivery times and decide whether to receive notifications from an app immediately or in a summary that’s delivered at a time they choose.
For marketers, this means that although your rich push notification may be available to your user as soon as it arrives, users with Focus enabled may not see the delivery notification right away.
Starting with Android 8.0, users can go into the settings for their app and manage notification preferences according to different categories called “notification channels”.*
For example, rather than turning off all notifications, a user might choose not to receive notifications about upcoming sales but opt to keep seeing those related to shipping and delivery. The user can also decide how they want the notification to alert them. For example, they might choose to have the notification arrive with a sound or just appear on their phone’s status bar.
We’ve made the case for rich push notifications as an engaging and effective marketing tool, but we get that you may still have questions. Let’s dive in and answer a few common ones to help you get started.
Statistics show that rich media formats improve reaction rates by 25%. And yet, only an estimated 8% of marketers use rich media in their push notifications*.
Of course, we’re talking averages. Using other essential push notification strategies can level up your push game even more. Basic personalization can improve open rates by nearly 10%. If you segment your audience, highly targeted campaigns can achieve click-through rates of 30% or more.
It’s no surprise that people respond better when content feels personal and relevant to them. Here are a few creative ways to personalize notifications:
Learn more about push notification best practices to craft your ultimate engagement strategy.
An old version of your app, network issues, older operating systems — there could be any number of reasons why someone might not be able to see the rich media attached to your notification. It’s essential to give your user a good experience even when they can’t see that image or play the video you carefully curated for them.
Think of rich media as an enhancement — although it adds something special to the experience, your notification should still be perfectly functional without it. Carefully craft your messages and use alternate text so that nothing important is missing if the rich media doesn’t display.
Don’t forget to segment your audience so that your users with older operating systems receive text-only notifications.
Text-only push notifications help keep your brand on users’ radars. Rich push notifications add another layer of visual appeal and interactivity to help keep them engaged, surprised, delighted, and even entertained. The better the experience your user has with your business and your app, the more memorable your brand becomes.
Grab-and-Go Push Notification Templates