Why Aren't People Using Browser Notifications

22 replies
Hey...

I noticed a year or two ago, some marketers started using browser notifications in addition to their email marketing. They stuck with it for about a minute, then quit using them.

I also noticed a lot of sites give you the option to opt-in to their notifications, but they just use the generic opt-in that comes with the service - meaning there is absolutely no motivation for people to opt-in. By not offering a lead magnet for the opt-in, why would anyone join the list?

Many people are talking about only getting a 1-3% open rate with their email marketing.

With browser notifications being an alternative that allows you to stand out - as it is not competing for attention in an inbox (that's even IF your email hits the inbox), why aren't people taking advantage of them?

Am I missing something?

-Christopher K
#browser #notifications #people
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  • Profile picture of the author kilgore
    Here's why we've never used them:

    For one thing, they're really invasive -- the nice way to say this is that they're really, really visible. This, of course, is great for the reasons you identified (higher open rates, etc.), but you really got to ask yourself (as we did), what sort of information do I have to offer my customers/community/users that they're going to want to their lives to be interrupted by them, to essentially say to the users, "Stop what you're doing and read this because it's very, very important." And then to do it over and over and over again?

    If you're an SAAS provider and notifications are part of the feature set of your application (for instance, a calendar app telling you you have an appointment, a sports app giving you an update on the score of your favorite team, an internet marketing forum telling you that you have a private message etc), sure, notifications might make sense. But for run-of-the-mill marketing messages? I just don't see how to do it without seriously annoying your customers. Truthfully, we haven't tested it (other priorities) but my guess is that (a) sign up rates would be small and (b) for those who actually did subscribe, unsubscribe rates would be really high.

    People knock email for its open rates, but I think this tells an incomplete picture. A 20% open rate (who gets a 1 - 3 % open rate? that's crazy!) doesn't mean that only 20% of your subscribers saw your message. Nor does it mean that 20% of people actually read your entire email. All it means is what the term implies, that 20% of people opened your message. But while we can't measure it, my guess is that a whole bunch more people saw the email, read the subject line but decided not to open it. Not ideal, but guess what? The kind of info you're conveying in a marketing email subject line isn't really that different to the kind of info you might try to convey in a marketing-focused push notification, so even if you didn't get that open you still accomplished the same goal as you would by getting someone to read your push notification. Which is to say that (1) you can't really compare open rates on push notifications with open rates on emails but (2) that if there were a way to measure how many eyeballs read your notification vs how many read your email subject line, the difference would be far less stark than the numbers you gave suggest.
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  • Evry time you click on a browser notification, you collude with the wholesale blindin' of kittens.

    It is slow, it is ambient, but cloud by cloud, them kitties gonna blink outta all sensation.

    An' why so?

    bcs most notifications're way more irritatin' than GNASH GNASH GNASH chomper ants crawlin' round in your pants.
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  • Profile picture of the author NetMan
    Originally Posted by Christopher K View Post

    Hey...

    I noticed a year or two ago, some marketers started using browser notifications in addition to their email marketing. They stuck with it for about a minute, then quit using them.

    I also noticed a lot of sites give you the option to opt-in to their notifications, but they just use the generic opt-in that comes with the service - meaning there is absolutely no motivation for people to opt-in. By not offering a lead magnet for the opt-in, why would anyone join the list?

    Many people are talking about only getting a 1-3% open rate with their email marketing.

    With browser notifications being an alternative that allows you to stand out - as it is not competing for attention in an inbox (that's even IF your email hits the inbox), why aren't people taking advantage of them?

    Am I missing something?

    -Christopher K
    The problem is yet obvious, at least to me, how do you love to be "notified" every minute by a "browser notification" ? Yeah, same thing for me!

    So, this is why I've quickly stopped opting-in for this and also using them on my sites because people are doing exactly the same. After they have opted-in for a few of them, they also stop using it because it is quickly GETTING ANNOYING!

    Before exists this kind of notification through the browsers, there were some marketers out there who had "invented" a thingy, a small software, that you were installing on your PC that was staying in the tray to push notifications from the vendor. Went as fast, as it came in I think even faster.

    Might have been the enthusiastic envision that since it was now going to be done directly in the browser without the need to install a thingy, the people would adopt more this type of "push notification" -mainly use as an alternative to SPAM because if its abuse of use, for most of the marketers who used it- nevertheless it never lifted up because it is abused and thus, ANNOYING! Period.

    Best regards,
    Andy
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  • Profile picture of the author Master Blaster
    I was taught to use Browser Notifications as
    a way to make a metric sh!t ton of cash in a WSO.

    Funny thing is the WSO did not have me opt in
    for browser notifications. Scratches head.
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    • Profile picture of the author kilgore
      Originally Posted by Princess Balestra View Post

      Evry time you click on a browser notification, you collude with the wholesale blindin' of kittens.
      Just to be clear... we're talking blinding kittens here and not cats, right? Because, I'll be honest: I like kittens, much, much better than cats. And where do dogs fit into this? I'd never harm a puppy.

      But yeah, you hit it on the head (or at least in the pants.) Browser notifications are really annoying.

      Originally Posted by Master Blaster View Post

      I was taught to use Browser Notifications as
      a way to make a metric sh!t ton of cash in a WSO.

      Funny thing is the WSO did not have me opt in
      for browser notifications. Scratches head.
      Aside from the fact that they didn't use the very thing they were selling, did you actually try using notifications in your own efforts? I'd be curious to hear from anyone who actually made them work -- though I doubt many people have use cases where they'd be a good idea.
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  • Profile picture of the author josias
    I really depends on what's been shared/notified through the push notification. In my case, I don't really use them at all as I use emails or in-app notifications (you know, the little bell). As marketers, we should always try to continue a conversation and only sometimes to start it.
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  • Profile picture of the author MaxFeerden
    I never even thought about it. Never use browser notifications.
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  • Profile picture of the author hardworker2013
    Push notifications are too annoying like pop-ups and people tend to click off the website when they see them. That is why some people have not been using it. The top IM influencers though tend to have them on there blog because of there loyal subscribers and followers.
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  • Profile picture of the author jefson9
    From my experience directly using them, quite a lot of people accept the notifications just so the pop-up will go away
    Later on more than 60% of people tend to unsubscribe, and more than half of what's left never open their emails.
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnVianny
    Push notification are used mostly as the new 'adsense'.

    I mean they're used by webmaster to monetize traffic.

    So if you advertise on them....what sort of traffic will you acquire? lots of people who are simply dabbing here and there and sometimes tricked to click 'ok allow'.

    There are better ways to have quality leads.
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  • Hi,
    The disabling of browser notification is that it irritates because it blinks continuously whenever any notification comes that distracts users focus on any work.
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  • Profile picture of the author daveshrein
    For me, it's always been continuity.

    I go to a browser to find, not to be notified. In addition, when I receive an in browser notification for anything, it always has the same chrome image (not sure if that's how it is supposed to be, but that's how it is for me).

    I agree with another member who asked the question, "what do we have that warrants interrupting our users? And then doing it over and over again?"

    The alternative would be to create more interesting and intriguing content elsewhere if your open rates / engagement rates are low -- not necessarily try to replace or supplement those with something as seemingly compulsory as in browser notifications.
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  • Profile picture of the author dborg9
    They're too annoying, everyone disables them. Waste of your time to setup and money if you're thinking of buying software to do it.
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  • Profile picture of the author sgalla414
    As a marketing tactic they're annoying but from a "new content" delivery notification I would be more interested. Did that vegan recipe website that I love put out a new recipe? I might be interested in those notifications
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  • Profile picture of the author Christopher K
    Thank you all for sharing!.

    It seems some people would be OK with them as long as the notification is for content.

    Others find them annoying - probably because they're getting clobbered with sales messages.

    Sounds like about the same as how people use their email autoresponders...

    Some burn out their email list with nothing but marketing messages and others promote their fresh content and let their site do the soft sell.
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  • Profile picture of the author Medon
    Originally Posted by Christopher K View Post

    Hey...

    I noticed a year or two ago, some marketers started using browser notifications in addition to their email marketing. They stuck with it for about a minute, then quit using them.

    I also noticed a lot of sites give you the option to opt-in to their notifications, but they just use the generic opt-in that comes with the service - meaning there is absolutely no motivation for people to opt-in. By not offering a lead magnet for the opt-in, why would anyone join the list?

    Many people are talking about only getting a 1-3% open rate with their email marketing.

    With browser notifications being an alternative that allows you to stand out - as it is not competing for attention in an inbox (that's even IF your email hits the inbox), why aren't people taking advantage of them?

    Am I missing something?

    -Christopher K
    Well, your guess is as good as mine. Browser notification is becoming popular every single day. It is just a matter of time before it replaces the old email marketing. Using it does not need that you collect your target's email. The messages are sent directly to the user's browser. And I guess it has a higher open rate.
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  • Honestly, I found them very annoying and distracting. I often do writing in pro writing aid in my browser and if people are sending me notifications it can quickly become very distracting.
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    I personally find them annoying. I've literally limited myself from visiting sites that have browser notifications because they get on my nerves. Especially when i'm trying to get online and get right off.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kathrilas
    They are really very very annoying anyway for all that matters here. And I do not see any real way to exclude them from your life really no matter what. I realise many people are doing the same that's why they do not want to market with them really.
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  • Profile picture of the author Digital Push
    The annoyance part of the push notifications is there, true, but the problem is not the push notification itself, the problem are the people abusing them.

    One way to fix that is to segment the life out of your push messages ( so to speak ).

    We at DigitalPUSH noticed that people that send notifications in bulk will get less clicks and more unsubscriptions while those that take the time to pin-point their audiences reach CTRs of up to 15-20%.

    As always, it's not the method that's wrong... It's the people using it wrongly.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joseph Yoyo
    Creates an annoyance that would bring distrust to the company
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  • Profile picture of the author Bjarne Eldhuset
    The important thing is that the push notifications deliver what the person was promised.

    If it says "Click here to get push notifications once a day with the best amazon deals for kittens", and that is what is delivered, the user will be happy. If they are not, they can always unsubscribe.

    If it says "Click here to get push notifications with useful marketing tips a couple of times a week", and you send 1 lousy tip notification and 7 "new deal!"notifications, the user will probably not be so happy.
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