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E-Commerce Apps with Notifications Encourage Consumers to Engage

27 August 2014 - 13:21 by Mike Price

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A report published this month by Localytics revealed that the way that retailers design their smartphone apps can have a big impact on how many customers they convince to shop online from their portable devices.

In particular, the integration of push notifications, which deliver a direct alert to people when there is an offer, order update or delivery to receive, was very effective at boosting engagement and driving sales.

The problem for retailers that create mobile apps is that while millions of people may download them, a similarly significant number will end up using the app once and then simply abandoning it, either because they are not enamoured with the features that it offers or they simply forget that it is even on their handset.

Driving down this rate of abandonment by first-time users is something that push notifications help to achieve, with the usual 21 per cent drop-off rate reduced to just 11 per cent where these alerts are active, according to analysts.

The report also found that engagement was up by 278 per cent in the e-commerce sphere when apps have push notifications on offer, which is a fairly strong endorsement of this kind of design.

Of course, there are going to be customers who are put off by the idea of a retailer?s app constantly prompting them to engage, so having the option to disable notifications available is another essential consideration to take on board.

Although engagement and sales slide month after month, even with better-designed mobile apps for safe shopping online, those with push notifications have been found to curtail this drop in interest. Perhaps the ultimate lesson to take away is that people still prefer to use m-commerce websites rather than standalone apps when they shop.