The ability to send push notifications is one of the defining benefits of a native app, in contrast to a responsively designed web site. Push notifications inform, alert, and engage users on a 24/7 basis, whether or not the end user is actually using the app. By engaging your users with push notifications, in combination with highly targeted in-app banners, you’ll realize dramatically increased loyalty and app usage.
Push notifications provide an immediate mode of communication with users and reach all users who have opted in to receive them, whether or not they are using the app at that time. Push notifications often include a link directing users to a specific screen within the app that provides detailed information or actionable next steps.
According to Localytics, on average, 52% of users will opt-in to push notifications.[i] And, those users who opt-in have a three times higher retention rate, and 88% more app launches,[ii] illustrating the importance of sending notifications to keep users engaged.
Push notifications can be sent to all opt-in users of your app, or targeted to segmented groups based on their selected Location or Persona, or individual attributes. This ensures that the notice only goes to relevant users.
In-app banners are a complementary form of mobile app alert, which may only be displayed directly within the app, and typically at the top of screens. Although they are only seen if an app is in use, they do not require an “opt in” process, and can be used contextually and only on specific pages within your app.
Like push notifications, the use of in-app banners increases user loyalty and engagement. According to Localytics, apps that send in-app messages show two to three and a half times higher user retention and 27% more app launches than apps[iii] that do not.
Because banners can be placed contextually, and only the users currently engaging the app see them, they offer an excellent opportunity to communicate hyper-relevant, actionable content like a delayed shuttle bus or an event location change
At large enterprise organizations, where employees may receive hundreds of emails in a single day, push notifications and banner messages provide an immediate and relevant way to cut through the noise and communicate with employees using your workplace app.
Here are ten great ways to use (and not use) push notifications and in-app banners to engage your employees:
- Communicate emergencies, severe weather alerts, or office closings. By segmenting alerts based on location, you can notify only those in the Boston office that there will be a closing due to snow—and not those working in San Diego.
- Share major announcements or company news, such new partnerships, funding, or product launches. Then, drive users to the News module within the app, where employees can find additional details.
- Notify employees of upcoming benefit enrollment deadlines.
- Alert employees to any campus issues, such as delayed shuttles.
- Announce special events or programs, such as a Summer Outing, and link to a Summer Outing module that contains all of the event details.
- Onboard app users. Periodically send users a message to highlight different features in the app, so they learn how the app fits in to their employee experience.
- Announce new features or modules in your app with a banner on the home screen.
- Make contextual announcements through banners targeted on specific screens, such as the day’s dining specials on the Dining screen only.
- Deep link to other modules. For example, an employee can receive a notification that an important meeting location has been moved, and with the tap of a button on their app, quickly find the new location and even a map or bus route to get there.
- Remember: Don’t let your push notifications become overly intrusive. Well-timed push notifications engage users and promote app usage and loyalty. Users will appreciate them and actually look forward to them. However, an excess of push notifications, or sending push notifications that are irrelevant to the users, may become bothersome and result in users opting-out.
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