What are considered “valued” push notifications by app users? When is it OK to interrupt them with information and what type of information?

Push notifications can be a source of great value, or great annoyance for users.

Our experience has shown that push notifications get noticed by users and are an effective means of increasing user engagement.

It is important to be aware that what a user will consider of value is based to a large degree on the nature of the application itself.

Users of a 511 Road Conditions app will expect and value notifications related to major road-related disruptions or warnings, e.g. major accidents slowing traffic for an extended period of time, scheduled road closures, snow removal parking warnings, weather warnings.

Users of a Retail app will tend to value notifications related to upcoming special events, seasonal changes to venue hours, entrance or parking closures due to renovations, contests, new stores/services/food, and special deals.

In general all app users have the option of customizing how notifications appear to them on their devices, e.g. vibration, audio, visual appearance. They can also turn off the notifications for specific applications in their device settings, or in the case of Purple Forge apps they can also turn off the notifications in the app settings.

App owners who value the push notification channel will generally use push notifications with a frequency and with content appropriate to the expectations of the app users. Failure to do so will result in users turning off push notifications for the app, or worse yet – deleting the app from their device.

A good practice among app owners is to setup and maintain a schedule of planned push notifications that are integrated with, and part of, their overall communications and marketing plans, e.g. “Back to School Sale”.