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App Users Are More Open to Push Notifications

But there's a fine line between being effective and being annoying

Consumers are warming to the idea of push notifications, but only to a point.

According to figures from Localytics, 22% of US app users polled by Qualtrics in November 2017 said they would stop using an app if they received between two and five push notifications over a weeklong period. That was down from 31% who said the same in an October 2015 survey.

Nearly one-third of those polled in 2017 would halt an app's usage if they received between six and 10 notifications over a week, about the same as in 2015. But more respondents from 2017 said they would stop using an app once they received at least 11 push notifications in a week.

Clearly app developers are treading a fine line when it comes to push notifications, taking advantage of the ability to cut through the noise to communicate directly with audiences, but not at a level that becomes annoying or alienating.

Overall, it seems like app developers are catching on to what their users want. Localytics found that 52% of respondents thought push notifications were better than they were a few years ago, while just 10% said they were worse.

Unsurprisingly, consumers want control over the types of messaging they receive. Nearly half of those polled said they were likely to use an app when it relied on stated preferences to generate content displayed or push messages.

Localytics also suggested that marketers tap into location-based push messaging to provide utility to users at the right time and place.

In a recent piece for Mobile Marketer, Melinda Krueger, associate principal of strategic services at Salesforce, shared some conclusions about push notifications drawn from her observation of retailers' use of them over the recent holiday shopping period.

She noticed that, for the first time, several retailers sent multiple push notifications in one day, but only because users had opted into such communication volumes from the outset.

Kruger also reported that the most successful messages followed the same strategy employed by successful emails. That is, they combined personalization with attributes like exclusivity and urgency.