The Value of Push Notifications

Before push notifications, mobile phone users had to search for the latest updates and alerts. Push notifications were introduced in 2009 to allow users to be notified as soon as something is published. Fast forward to 2017, and 88% of app engagement is reportedly boosted by push notifications. They’ve not only saved time for many users, but also made it easier to respond to messages and alerts. Push notifications have brought value to mobile devices in a way that helps users stay aware of what’s going on within different platforms and applications on their phone.


One thing in life that we won’t get back is our time. Once a moment passes, it’s gone. Push notifications are efficient, saving time for both the user and the supplier of an app. Imagine that push notifications weren’t around: you’d be spending your valuable time looking through a platform trying to locate the latest published updates. If you were unable to find what you wanted, you’d begin looking for more information on the web or via other apps. The supplier of an app builds trust with its consumer when push notifications offer the consumer important information in a timely manner. Once trust is built, that consumer will feel comfortable knowing they’re in the loop, and both parties will be content. More often than not, this trust and efficiency will keep consumers on that platform.


Personalized marketing

A user who enables push notifications on their phone allows certain companies to send out notifications personalized for that individual. Recent survey results showed that 70% of adults and 70% of young adults enable notifications from their favorite apps. These apps then send the users the latest updates according to the type of notifications each consumer has chosen to receive. For example, on the ESPN app on my mobile device, I’m able to select which sport I want to be updated on, as well as which teams’ updates will be pushed to me. Tailored push notifications benefit the supplier by boosting the number of daily active app users, but they also benefit the consumer by providing them with the specific information they want as soon as it’s published.

Using push notifications properly

As a user of many different apps, I personally choose to limit the number of push notifications I receive. I find that if I don’t, I end up with a flood of updates that is largely irrelevant to me. For example, let’s take the ESPN app again: previously, I enabled notifications for all of basketball. Updates would come often, to the point where the information was more annoying than informative. I considered uninstalling the app, but instead chose to disable basketball notifications, deciding that I would occasionally check basketball scores on the app rather than have stats pushed to me. This is a great example of what not to do, because when you have no value in each notification, everything that’s pushed into the consumer’s way becomes annoying. This breaks trust and inevitably leads to a loss in the number of users.

Experience with Push Notifications

Having the ability to send push notifications to students and parents through A+ has changed the way school staff get their information out. A great example of an A+ push notification was when one of our schools sent out a push notification to the students saying that school was cancelled due to snow. Later that day we put a survey on the app asking the students how they found out about the snow delay. After 518 voluntary survey responses 373 of those found out about the delay through the push notification. Another example of a push notification that one of our schools sent out was for an after school club. The push notification was for photography club and they were meeting after school, so we decided to show up and see if any students came to photography club because of the app. Three of the ten students came because of the app, and two of the three students believed that photography is definitely one of their career choices. A simple push notification impacted three lives and potentially created new careers.


Push notifications have brought many benefits to users, from simply saving people time to directing each user to specific updates they want. If you’re reading this from the perspective of the supplier of an app, know that push notifications are valuable if used properly. Rather than have notifications push away your users, you can use the information you’re pushing out to help your users. In that case, everyone’s experience will be significantly more enjoyable, and you’ll end up with a satisfied consumer who trusts your platform.

Interested in learning how push notifications can help your school?

Edited by Lydia Taverne