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One of the greatest challenges businesses face is in determining the effective digital channels for engaging with users. Grabbing the attention of your target audience is not easy and that is why many brands leverage different marketing strategies in several digital channels to make sure their brand message is heard.

When considering effective marketing strategies to reach your audience, email marketing was the best choice a couple of years ago. While it still is effective, more creative, and engagement tools like push notifications are emerging. 

Both marketing tools have their strengths, understanding how you can best utilize them to engage your customers is important for the success of your marketing campaigns. However, most marketers believe that push notifications work better than email in multiple situations and there are strong reasons for the same.

Before looking into the reasons why push notifications are better than email, let’s consider the advantages of both. Let’s get started.

Email Marketing

Email is one of the most popular online marketing channels through some marketers consider it as old and outdated. But emails work great when you want to send out content like newsletters, event schedules, or detailed messages that users may not need immediately but would likely want handy at some point.

Emails are often less personalized messages and include lots of information, mainly text. This also means more editing and more time required to create the content. If you want to use emails to capture the immediate attention of the audience, there is a chance that your efforts might not be very effective. Automated sorting methods like “Social” and “Promotion” folders in Gmail have made it less likely that business mails come to the top in an inbox.

The Power of Push Notifications

Before getting into the advantages of push notifications, let’s see what are push notifications. Push notifications are short messages that you receive on your web or mobile browsers or apps. Push messages appear immediately to users across both web and mobile devices.

While you can only add only short info, they are ideal for call-to-actions and letting users get updates about time-sensitive information. Push notifications are also linked with higher click-through rates than emails so you can be assured that users will land on exactly where you want them to be. As push messages can be presented individually at a time, they always remain fresh.

14 Reasons Why Push Notifications Are Better Than Emails

data analysis on mobile while writing important information

With over 3.9 billion registered email users, on average a user receives more than 70 emails every day. That’s called email spam. While email marketing is still powerful, there are chances that it might end up spamming users. That’s where push notifications become relevant. So let’s jump right into the reasons why push notifications are better than emails and how you can leverage this powerful tool to build your business.

1. Easier to Get Subscriptions

Getting your users to subscribe to your emails is not very easy. Most users are reluctant to give their real email address on a website.

However, with push notifications, it is easier for you to get your users to sign up for your push notifications.

All your users have to do is the following.

  •       Receiving the opt-in prompt.
  •       Allow permission.

No personal information like email is required and the best part is that push messages work on both desktop and mobile devices. You don’t even need a mobile app to send notifications, web push messages have the same powerful effect.

2. No Fake Subscriptions

With emails, users can input fake email addresses, whereas push subscriptions cannot be faked. This is because the browser handles the subscription and there is no need to input any personal information which could be faked again. With push messages, visitors need not provide any contact information reducing the chances for fake users signing up to your messages.

3. Subscribers Have More Control

One of the biggest flaws of email is that users are at the mercy of the sender to offer things that they actually care about. Once a user has inputted an email to a contact form, there is nothing much he/she can do to stop the email from being used, bought, or sold. However, with push messages, users control the subscriptions to a site. If they don’t want to receive messages from your brand anymore, they can easily unsubscribe.

4. Push Messages Are Delivered Instantly

When you are sending out emails to your users, you are at the mercy of your users when they want to check the push messages. That is not a bad thing, that’s how it works. But there might be situations when you want to notify your users about something important and immediate. 

Maybe a new live broadcast that has started or to notify your users about a discount that would run out soon. That’s where push notifications can shine. Push notifications are delivered instantly. With most users carrying phones in their pockets and checking them often, it is hard for them to miss out on your notifications.

5. Better Engagement and Click-Through Rates

Remarketing using push messages is proven to be 3 times more powerful than emails. Considering the real-time nature of push notifications supported by high visibility, push messages to have a greater impact than email in a crowded inbox. 

Moreover, push messages to offer an easier brand recall than a subject line within an email inbox. Push notifications when combined with rich media boost CTRs to double the figures.

6. Better Visibility

mobile notification shown on smarphone

Push notifications have a clear advantage of being more visible than emails. Push messages don’t compel users to sign in to any email services or check an inbox. They are delivered right on users’ desktops or mobile screens making them more effective. 

Push messages draw attention and a smartly targeted campaign can help in boosting the visibility and conversions. Push messages also have an added advantage of displaying CTAs right on the body of notifications.

7. Push Messages Can Be Scheduled to Expire Automatically

Unlike emails that mostly reside in the user’s inbox, you can add expiry to push messages. For example, if you have a limited period offer running on your website for say a few hours, it is a smart strategy to leverage push messages to notify users at the right time. 

With push notifications, you can set an expiry period to the messages and after that, it won’t be delivered. So if the users were not online during the offer period, no notification would be delivered to your users once it expires.

8. Notifications Don’t Require Any Special Design

Sending out a simple email newsletter takes a lot of time as it requires a lot of work and effort to design it. First, you need to craft the messages, then you need to start drafting the copy, and then you have to design it. 

The design must fit the email standards and before sending out you have to test it on different devices and browsers to make sure it looks good everywhere. And it goes on. Whereas push notifications are much simpler to handle. As they are bite-sized, you can schedule them faster. 

Yes, creating a smart push notification campaign requires some effort, but it is much easier when compared to drafting email campaigns. You craft efficient content, add links, and then send your push messages. As browsers and apps handle how notifications look, you don’t have to worry about the design.

9. Level of Intimacy

Unlike email marketing, push notifications have the power to reach users at the most vulnerable times. This level of immediacy and intimacy will help to establish a personal connection with your users immediately. Your users might be busy when they receive your messages so make sure your push notifications are crafted in a way it offers real value to your users.

10. Ease of Optimization

Push notifications are much easier to optimize than emails. It is easier to carry out A/B tests on push messages as well. Changing anything in the content and structure of push messages is relatively much easier. Modifying anything in your push notification is easy and you can understand what performs better without much effort.

11. More Relevant

The relevance of push notifications is extremely beneficial. It has the advantage of being timely, targeted, and helpful. You just need to make sure you add relevant information in your push messages so that it suits the interests of your audience.

12. Reducing Abandoned Carts

If you are an eCommerce business, you would want to know how to reduce the number of cart abandonments that never make it to the checkout. Push notifications can be an effective solution to this problem than emails. 

While emails can also be used to recover abandoned carts, there are chances that your user might not see them. However, with push notifications, the chances of your users seeing your messages are more.

13. Degree of personalization

While both push notifications and emails can be personalized the degree of personalization varies. While the timing and subject line of emails can be customized according to your requirements, push messages offers more opportunities for better personalization. 

With push notifications, you can use rich media like images, videos, audio, and gifs in the content. By using your user’s geolocation information and apps behavioral data, push messages can be highly personalized in terms of geo-targeting and time of delivery. 

Personalization is really important if you want to make your marketing campaigns are compelling enough to reach and captivate the attention of the wider audience. With all customization opportunities push notification possesses, it appears to be the right match for best marketing campaigns.

14. Cost

If you want your email campaigns to work, you need to invest in creating, designing, and managing it. For example, a small-medium size business might spend around $150-$1,100 per month for email marketing. Whereas the cost of push notifications is relatively very low.

When Should You Use Emails

email opened on safari in a mac computer

The strength of email mainly lies in its length. It doesn’t mean that you must focus on writing lengthy emails, but the medium gives you much more flexibility with the content length in case you want to offer long and valuable information to your users.

You can efficiently use emails for the following:

  •       Sending newsletters.
  •       Nurturing leads.
  •       Onboarding new customers.
  •       Building brand awareness.

When Is It the Best to Use Push Notifications

When using push notifications, one thing you need to understand is that push messages are not an alternative to emails.

Both hold significance and the purposes are not interchangeable:

  • Push notifications work well when.
  •  Sending updates about products.
  • Informing users about discounts and price drops.
  • Notifying when a product is back in stock.
  • Offering time-bound discounts.
  • Recovering abandoned carts.

Push notifications are meant for purposes where you want to engage your users. The high visibility and time-sensitive nature of push messages remind users of your brand and help in creating a sense of urgency amongst potential users. 

If you consider effective marketing is all about capturing the attention of customers at the moment, then push messages are indeed a more laudable marketing medium than emails.


Have you tried leveraging push notifications to grow your business? What if we said it could increase your sales by up to 30% with minimal efforts? The only thing you need to follow is in implementing quality push notification campaigns. 

Also, never try to use push notifications as an alternative to email marketing. Both emails and push notifications are different marketing tools that come with their own advantages and disadvantages and work well for different situations.

Modern customers do not consider emails to be personally relevant and hence hardly engage with them. However, push notifications are considered to be more relevant, engaging, and less intrusive than emails. The key is to understand how both emails and push notifications cater to the relevant use cases and integrate the best fit in the right places in your marketing strategy. Considering all the opportunities push messages opens for your business, never miss the golden chance to give your brand a boost to its growth.

Written By
Marry Ann is a Marketing consultant at PushMaze. She is a self-driven budding entrepreneur and works together with the clients by implementing different marketing strategies in their businesses. Connect with her on Twitter

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