Earlier days, it was a difficult task to bring users to a website. Though search engines and paid promotions can help to get the traffic, they will not help in recurring users. This means you need to spend lot of time, money and effort to bring new users to your site. Thanks to the technology, you have multiple promotional options available to get the same users coming back to your site for new content. Push Notifications are among the most successful ways websites use to keep their viewers hooked on their content. Here you will see how you can add push notifications in WordPress website to engage your viewers more.
What are Push Notifications?
Before we start, let’s see what these are. Push notifications are a short, clickable message you send to your followers or subscribers in the form of a notification on their phone, computer, or other devices. Usually, you can use push notifications to deliver whenever you publish new posts on your website.
Here is how push notifications work:
- You enable push notifications on your website.
- Users get a pop-up on the browser when viewing your site.
- They can opt to subscribe to get new content from your blog feed.
- Whenever you publish a new article, subscribed users will get browser notification.
- They can click on the alert and read your content instantly.
Users will see different style of notification depending upon your settings and the browser they use. Below is how the push notifications will look like in Firefox and Google Chrome.
Instead of showing automatic pop-up, you can also show a bell icon so that users can click on it to see the pop-up.
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Benefits of Push Notifications
Even though most people consider push notifications annoying, they work and are very beneficial to your website.
- Most of the people that visit your website are most likely never to revisit it. So, using push notifications can turn them into regular users.
- Increasing traffic on your website is another benefit that push notifications have.
- By increasing the traffic, you will increase the engagement that happens on your page.
- Returning users can potentially become your long term customers. If you use display advertisements, increase in pageviews will help to earn more money.
- You can reach out all subscribed users with your new product launch, discount deals and events.
In our opinion, push notifications are better than traditional email marketing. You do not need to spend lots of time on collecting and managing user’s email with push notifications.
How to Add Push Notification in WordPress?
There are a few different methods of how you can add push notifications to your website. One of the most used ones is by using the OneSignal plugin. This process even though seems complicated and long, it’s very simple. Just follow the steps below and in no time you will have push notifications for your website.
- Install the plugin
- Setup OneSignal account
- Configure the settings
- Test notification on your site
1. Install OneSignal Plugin
You can install and activate OneSignal plugin similar to any other plugins on your WordPress site.
- Go to the “Plugins > Add New” section of your WordPress admin panel.
- Search for “OneSignal” and find “OneSignal – Web Push Notifications” plugin.
- Install and activate the plugin.
- After successful installation, you can see a new menu item called “OneSignal Push” is available on your WordPress dashboard.
- Click on the menu to view plugin settings.
- You will see two options there – “Setup” and “Configuration.”
- There are four more subsections in the “Setup” section: Overview, Prompts, Safari Push, and Results.
- While in the “Configuration” section, you can configure your push notifications on your site.
OneSignal helps you to automatically send notifications in desktop and Android devices for Chrome, Firefox, Edge and Opera browsers. In addition, you can also setup notification on Safari macOS. You can track the analytics in real time, do A/B testing and setup automatic or scheduled notifications, setup mobile/web/in-app push with OneSignal plugin.
Note: Though OneSignal allows you to have unlimited mobile subscribers, there is a limit of 10K on web subscribers. You may need to purchase a premium plan in order to have more web subscribers on your site.
2. Setup OneSignal Account
Before you can start creating and configuring these push notifications, you will need to open an OneSignal Account. You can do that by clicking on the “Create a OneSignal account…” under “Setup > Overview.” Section. This will take you to the developer’s site for registering a new account. Once you are done with creating an account, you will start with the process of making push notifications on their website.
- The first thing you will see is the “Add your App or Website” screen. There you can add the name of your app or website and in which platform it is.
- After putting a name and selecting Web Push, you are on another screen where you will choose an integration method. Since we are using WordPress, we will select that.
- The next step is providing more information about your webpage, like the name, URL and icon.
- After you have given the information required about your website, you will get an APP ID and an API KEY. You need these details to configure the plugin installed on your website. Copy them and be sure not to share them with anyone.
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3. Configuring Push Notifications
Go back on the plugin page on your WordPress site and navigate to “Configuration” section. You will need paste the APP ID and the API KEY on the places as shown below. By doing this, you have made a connection between your website and the OneSignal services.
After successfully connecting your website to OneSignal service, you can customize the following settings under “Configuration” tab
- Scrolling below that you will see notification related settings. First of all, it is the “Sent Notification Settings” where you’ll decide if you want to use the post’s featured image as the icon for notification.
- Make your notifications hide after a few seconds here.
- Add a title for notification.
- Enable or disable the option to send additional notifications to iOS and Android users.
- Below that is another crucial part of push notifications. “Prompt Settings & Subscription Bell” is the title of this section. Here you can control whether you want your visitors to see the subscribe pop-up notification button or a bell icon.
- Scrolling a bit lower will show you a lot more customization you can make to what messages it delivers to your viewers when they subscribe, unsubscribe, what the button says, and many more.
- “Prompt Customization” is the next one, here you can setup HTTP or HTTPS prompt for all users.
- Another essential part is the “Welcome Notification Settings.” Here you can customize the welcome message you send to your new subscribers. You can add a title, a message, and a link to your website. If you leave the website URL empty, it will automatically redirect to your website.
- Below that is the “Automatic Notification Settings.” You will need to decide if you want to automatically send notifications when you make new posts on the WordPress editor. In addition, you can also enable notifications when you make new posts from third-party plugins on your website.
After you have configured all the settings mentioned above, you will need to click the “Save” button. It is recommended that you press that button every time you add something here in the “Configuration” section so you don’t lose it by mistake.
4. Testing the Setup
A good thing to do now is testing the new notifications that you have implemented. This way, you can see how they look before your viewers see them. If you go back to the OneSignal website, you can see that Step 4 there recommends you do that. Click on “Go to My Website” button and test the push notifications. We recommend you to subscribe and test whether new article alert is working fine.
Testing the notifications is a great way in order to prevent troubles that might happen when you launch them for your viewers.
As you can see, the process of adding push notifications is not that complicated. But just because you are using push notifications now, it doesn’t mean you are guaranteed more viewers. How you handle these notifications has a lot to do with it. For these notifications to be successful on your site, try not to push them too much. Once notifications become very annoying and frequent, your visitors will undoubtedly unsubscribe from them, or worse, stop visiting your site altogether.
To prevent that from happening, try to keep that at the lowest amount you can, and then see how your viewers are interacting with your notifications. Based on the result, you can decide if you want to increase or decrease the frequency.