What are Web Push Notifications?

Push notifications are usually referring to the notifications we get on our phones to alert us to a new message, update, alert, etc. They are usually generated by the apps we use.

For example, I have a weather app. Usually I open it to see the weather. If there is a weather warning, it will send me a push notification.

These are all examples of push notifications on a mobile device:

These are created by apps and sent to your mobile device.

However, push notifications can also be created by your website sent to your desktop computer. Here are some examples:

Push Notification Origins

For a blogger, the notifications we need are the ones that come from your website and go everywhere. These are not to be confused with the notifications that come from an application. Applications are from iTunes or Play Store. Websites are in the browser.

If you do not have an app (99% of you do not), then you want web push notifications.

What is a web push notification?

“Web push notifications” are when a website sends a push notification out.  It doesn’t matter where they go, the term refers to where they come from. 

When your blog sends a notification to a reader on any device it is called a web push notification. 

Benefits of Web Push Notification

  • push notifications on the web are where app notifications were 4 years ago – more people are willing to enable them
  • users consider notifications more important than email
  • notifications are read more often than email

The Right Time for Your Message

Timing, especially for web push notifications is extremely important. According to a recent study, notifications are often interrupting the recipient:

“Participants reported that mobile messaging and email apps interrupted them in almost 50% of cases”

The notification service that I recommend, One Signal did a survey in 2016 and came up with these best times for notifications across the following industries.

As of today, there are a few limitations – namely iOS doesn’t support web push notifications. However, most others do. And it is free to send unlimited messages via OneSignal.com. And it is free to sign-up! It’s all free of charge!

If you would like help setting up web push notifications, we charge $70 – contact us today!

Web push notifications compatibility

This chart is from OneSignal in Jan 2018.

On the left of this graphic is a list of browsers. And the columns represent different operating systems. To know if your user will receive your push notification, select the browser they’ll use on the left and find their OS.

For example, most people I know use Chrome on either Windows or Mac. Those people will always get notifications. As well, if I use Chrome on my Samsung (Android OS) phone, I will get the notifications. However, if you use Chrome on your iPhone you will not receive any web push notifications.

If you’d like to get web push notifications set up for your site, either contact us, or set it up yourself at onesignal.com.