12 Steps for Handling Push Notifications in Ruby on Rails
Published at August 03, 2023

As a popular web development framework, Ruby on Rails handles push notifications in mobile applications. Push notifications have become essential to Rails mobile applications in enhancing user experiences. 

According to Invespcro, sending mobile app push notifications can increase app engagement by up to 88%. In addition, sending push notifications can increase app retention by up to 3-10 times.

How to handle push notifications in Rails mobile applications? Let's find out together.

What are Push Notifications?

Push notifications are messages or alerts delivered to a user's mobile device from a server or backend system. These notifications appear on the device's home screen, even when the mobile app is inactive. 

They serve as a direct communication channel between the app and its users, informing them about relevant updates, events, or promotions.

Why are Push Notifications Important for Mobile Apps?

According to Business of Apps, sending targeted push notifications can increase retention by 39%.

Push notifications play a crucial role in enhancing user engagement and retention. They help re-engage users by sending timely updates, personalised content, and reminders. Additionally, they can prompt users to take specific actions, such as completing an unfinished process or returning to the app after a period of inactivity.

Push Notifications in Ruby on Rails Mobile Applications

Handling Push Notifications in Ruby on Rails

Image by Freepik

Here are the Best practices for handling push notifications in Ruby on Rails mobile applications to follow:

1. Setting Up Push Notification Services

Before implementing push notifications, developers must register their app with providers like Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM) or Apple Push Notification Service (APNS). 

After registration, they must configure their Ruby on Rails application to handle push notifications.

2. Segmenting and Targeting Users

Segmenting users based on their behaviour, preferences, and demographics allows developers to send targeted push notifications. 

This ensures that users receive relevant content, increasing the likelihood of positive responses.

3. Personalising Push Notifications

As per Airship's findings, personalisation can lead to revenue growth of up to 15% for financial services companies.

Personalisation adds a touch of individuality to push notifications, making them more engaging. Developers can create personalised push messages that resonate with users by incorporating user-specific data like names or past interactions.

4. Optimising Delivery Time

Timing plays a crucial role in the success of push notifications. 

By analysing user behaviour and time zones, developers can schedule notifications to be delivered at the most opportune moments, maximising open rates.

5. Handling Push Notification Errors

Push notifications may encounter errors for various reasons, like network issues or invalid device tokens. 

Implementing error-handling mechanisms ensures that notifications are retried or alternative actions are taken when errors occur.

6. Monitoring and Analysing Push Notification Performance

To gauge the effectiveness of push notifications, developers must monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. 

Analysing this data helps optimise future push notification campaigns.

7. A/B Testing Push Notifications

A/B testing involves comparing two versions of something to determine which one performs better.

Quoted from Airship, after conducting A/B testing, the Chicago Tribune experienced an increase in the opening of push notifications by 56%.

For example, mobile app testing and quality assurance involve sending different variations of push notifications to different segments of users to determine the most effective content, timing, or call-to-action. This data-driven approach enhances the impact of push notification campaigns.

8. Managing User Preferences

Respecting user preferences is essential in building trust. Implementing settings that allow users to control the type and frequency of push notifications fosters a positive user experience.

9. Implementing Opt-In and Opt-Out Mechanisms

Obtaining user consent through precise opt-in mechanisms is crucial in push notification implementation. 

Similarly, providing easy opt-out options ensures users can stop receiving notifications whenever they wish.

10. Securing Push Notification Data

Push notification data may contain sensitive information, making security a top priority. Employing encryption and secure communication channels guarantees the confidentiality and integrity of user data.

11. Handling Push Notifications in the Background

Background notifications are vital in informing users of scenarios where the app is not running. 

Proper notification handling background ensures users receive relevant updates regardless of their app activity.

12. Localising Push Notifications

For apps with a global audience, the localisation of push notifications becomes significant. Tailoring content to users' preferred languages enhances user engagement and improves the app's global appeal.

Best Practices for Push Notification Content

  • Keep notifications concise and engaging
  • Use clear and actionable language
  • Avoid excessive push frequency
  • Provide value to the user with each notification
  • Utilise emojis and visual elements to grab attention

To Wrap Up

Push notifications are a powerful tool for enhancing user engagement in Ruby on Rails mobile applications. Following these best practices, developers can create compelling push notification campaigns that keep users informed and engaged. 

Remember to prioritise user preferences, monitor performance, and continuously optimise the push notification strategy for maximum impact.

Contact us today to start your Ruby on Rails mobile app development journey with VirtualSprit.


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