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Push and pull notifications: main differences and uses

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If you like or are in the world of digital marketing, surely you have heard of these two types of notifications. But if not, we explain what push and pull notifications are, and the differences between the two, so that you can take it into account when choosing which one is best suited to your brand .

read on so you don't miss a thing!

what are push notifications?

Push notifications are instant messages sent by an application or website. In other words, they are the notifications that a user receives on their device, whether they are using the app or not. The user must first accept that they want to receive these messages. The purpose of push notifications is to generate an alert on the user's device.

A very simple example, which I'm sure you see every day, is whatsapp: your phone turns on automatically when a message is sent to you and you can preview it without having to enter the app.

This strategy is very common for smartphones and tablets, but you can work with them on the web, and now that it is on the rise, on smartwatches.

what are push notifications for?

Their purpose is always to attract the user's attention. They can communicate different messages such as:

  • updates
  • promotions
  • news
  • communicating news (a like, a new publication, a new message, etc.)

These notifications can manifest themselves in different ways, with a vibration, alert, sound, depending on the personalisation made by the user, as mobile apps generally allow users to personalise how they receive notifications. They can also be shown in the form of a banner, a window can be opened, etc., but without losing the objective: to attract attention.


Advantages of push notifications

Now you know what these types of notifications are and what they are for, we now tell you what their main advantages are, so that you can take them into account when choosing which one best suits your brand.

One of the main advantages is that they allow you to see the notifications instantly, and in many apps without the need to access it directly. It is an easy and effective way of attracting attention. We are becoming more impatient every day, and push notifications help us to know in just seconds. The information received is personalised, and messages that are not of interest to the user are not sent.

Another advantage is that they save battery, and we know that this is sometimes important. As you don't need to open the applications to receive information, you don't waste the battery of your Smartphone to navigate through them, most of them pop up on the screen and without the need to unlock the phone you see the notifications in seconds.


what are pull notifications?

Pull notifications are only displayed when the user requests information, i.e. they are a more traditional way of receiving messages than push notifications, i.e. they only appear when the user requests the update.

A very simple example would be that of social networks, whether Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, when you scroll down to refresh the page, the new notifications that are displayed are known as pull notifications.

what are they for?

As we've already told you, these only appear when the user requests them, making them a perfect digital marketing tool because you can send the information to the user when they are actually interested in receiving it.

The user will receive the latest news, so this strategy is ideal for your content marketing campaigns, as you can show them your latest posts, for example.

An advantage of this type of notifications is that they are personalised, as the applications and websites register the user's activity, and therefore adjust the content they show. You have probably wondered why Tiktok always shows you the same type of content, and this is why the app adjusts to your interests, tastes and searches.

Advantages of pull notifications

The first thing to highlight about this tool is that it is not invasive, because it is only activated when the user requests it. You give them control over when they want to receive the information.

They are not annoying to receive, so it is a good digital marketing strategy. In addition, this type of technology is easier to implement and the architecture is simpler. It is perfect for mobile applications, it is a technique used in social networks because of its effectiveness.

Main differences between the two

The English translations of push and pull are literally push and pull, so push notifications push us to receive a message, while pull notifications are shown when we "pull" a page to get more information.

The big difference between the two technologies is that in push notifications, it is the server that sends the information at any time, without the user's request, while in pull notifications, the communication takes place once the client requests it, so it is the user who asks the server for the information.

Now that you know what each of them means, I'm sure you've thought that most of the applications you have installed use both of them, and the fact is that the two combined are ideal for your digital marketing strategies.

For example, on Instagram you reload the app to see the latest posts and stories, which would be the pull notification, while you receive alerts of who has liked or tagged you in a post, the push notifications. But you don't just see it on social media, you can also observe these strategies in your email.

As you have seen throughout this article both notifications are very effective and easy to implement.

we hope you've enjoyed this read!

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