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Final Score: Push notifications vs. Emails

Published: May, 2023
Last updated: : May, 2023
In today's fast-paced digital age, attention is a valuable commodity. With so much information available at our fingertips, internet users' attention span has become shorter and shorter, now hovering around 8 seconds on average. This presents a significant challenge for brands and businesses looking to attract and retain customers. In order to successfully capture potential clients' attention, brands need to be strategic in their approach, creating compelling and engaging content that captures and holds their attention.Let's examine two top marketing channels proven to attract and convert clients to determine the ultimate winner.

Round 1: Email Marketing 📧

Email is a digital communication tool that allows to exchange messages and information electronically. It has emerged as a powerful and cost-effective marketing and advertising channel for reaching and engaging potential customers. Email marketing delivers targeted messages directly to their audience's inbox.“Over 4 million emails are sent per second”Via email marketing, brands can promote their products, share valuable content, announce special offers, and build customer relationships. Email marketing provides businesses a versatile and measurable strategy to connect with their target audience and drive conversions by personalizing messages, segmenting recipients, and tracking metrics like open and click-through rates. Additionally, email allows for the inclusion of multimedia elements such as images, videos, and hyperlinks, enhancing marketing campaigns' overall impact and effectiveness.

Pros & Cons of Email Marketing

Pros ✅Cons ❌
Reach: Emails have a wide reach and can be delivered to any email address, regardless of the device usedSpam: Emails can be flagged as spam and filtered out of users' inboxes
Customization: Emails provide great customization in terms of design and content. Images, hyperlinks, and other multimedia can be includedDelivery delay: In some cases, emails may not be delivered in time for the user to see it
Personalization & customization: You can tailor emails with the recipient's name and other relevant information, allowing for better information retention and extended exposure to marketingCluttered inbox: Users' inboxes can become overcrowded with promotional emails, making it difficult to find important messages
Search & information retention: Emails can be easily archived and searched later Time to prepare: Writing, designing, and marking up high-quality emails takes time
Opt-in: Users must opt in to receive emails, meaning they will likely be interested 
 

Round 2: Push Notification Ads 📱

Push notifications are short messages sent directly to a user's mobile device or web browser, delivering information or updates in real-time. They are typically displayed as pop-ups or banners on the device screen, even when the app or website isn't actively used. These seemingly small bits of information provide significant benefits for digital marketing and advertising.“Opening rates for push notifications are 50% higher than those for email marketing”The ability to reach a target audience immediately and directly allows businesses to deliver important messages or promotions promptly. This immediacy helps to increase customer engagement and encourages timely action. Using push notifications, marketers can also deliver tailored messages based on user preferences or behaviors. This level of customization enhances the user experience and can lead to higher conversion rates. Additionally, push notifications are an effective tool for re-engaging users and reminding them of new products, discounts, or special offers.
Pros ✅Cons ❌
Instant delivery: Push notifications land instantly on the user's deviceLimited space: A push notification is limited in the amount of information it can contain, making it difficult to convey complex messages
100% visibility & high engagement: The notification appears directly on the user's screen, which increases engagement because it captures their immediate attentionDevice-specific: Push notifications are device-specific, so they may not be received on other devices
Location-based: Users can receive relevant information based on location via push notifications 
Direct communication: Push notifications provide a direct line of communication between the app and the user 
Quick to prepare: You can develop a high-performing push notification quickly, and then it takes about 5 minutes to set up the campaign 
Personalization: Push notifications can be highly personalized based on user preferences and past behaviors 
Opt-in: Users must consent to receive push notifications, which means they're interested 

Round 3: Select Your Player

Okay, now it is time to count the points… While it is clear that emails are good for explaining complicated matters, introducing new processes, and updating users on recent blog entries, push notifications shine when it comes to time-sensitive information, important announcements, and reminders.Main similarities:User consent or subscription is required for both channels, ensuring that the information is relevant to them.Both channels leverage personalization: emails to a greater extent in terms of addressing users by name or mentioning something personal inside the body of the email; however, push notifications can be more effective in targeting users based on their past online behavior.Main differences:Emails and push notifications are very different when it comes to message structure. There is a lot you can do with emails: you can write an intro, a body, insert a video, attach a PDF, and so on. In contrast, push notifications have a limited number of symbols and media. You have to work on the content of your push notification just as much as your email subject line.Emails are more likely to be left unopened. Push notifications perform 50% better than emails in this area. 🪄Important rule for both tools:Today's main rule for any communication channel is "limit the frequency." Just think of your inbox and the number of different alerts you receive on a daily basis. Email, push notification, you name it… As a result of constant bombardment, we are developing blindness to most of the ads.As a rule of thumb, send push notifications 2–3 times per week max and emails no more than 1–2 times per week. Yes, there are industries where these rules might be broken, but for most businesses, this is the golden standard.
Overwhelming your users with messages can lead to unsubscriptions and uninstalls. So be very careful and rethink your strategies whenever you see these numbers growing. 
It is ideal to combine the two communication channels into the 'email push notification' concept in order to avoid going overboard. This way, on average, you can have 4 contacts with your clients per week without being irritable. The so-called 'email push notifications' work great when set up correctly!

Round 4: Conclusion

Push notifications offer immediate delivery, high visibility, and increased user engagement within the notorious 8 seconds of online user attention span, while emails offer more space for comprehensive content, better information retention, and design flexibility. The choice between push notifications and emails depends on the marketing goal, target audience, and message type. If you have a chance, we advise using both channels to create a comprehensive and effective marketing strategy, leveraging each channel's strengths. The partner you choose plays a critical role in the success of any communication tool you choose.  Nashpush is a fast & user-friendly interface for push notifications. So if you need to inform your users of your news, special offers, or upcoming events, just check out how easy it is to set up a push notification campaign.