By John Eberhard
There is a relatively new method of promotion available to businesses now, called “push notifications.”
But before I explain what these are, here are some basic definitions of terms:
WordPress: A system or platform for creating websites online. It’s the most popular system for use in creating websites today.
Plugin: A piece of software that can be installed inside of WordPress, that gives you some kind of feature or functionality on the website. For example, you can have a plugin that allows you to have online forms for people to fill out, or other plugins that allow you to have automated backups of your site, or added security functions.
Blog: Short for “weblog,” this is a feature on many websites today where the site owners can post articles on a regular basis. These are then displayed on the site with the newest article at the top, and older ones as you scroll down the page.
The way a push notification works is that you install a particular plugin on a WordPress site, and then a small popup window will appear to every visitor the next time they go to your site, asking for permission from the visitor to allow notifications to be sent.
Once someone gives permission, then any time you post something new to your blog, a small window will appear at the bottom of that person’s screen, with your logo and the name of your blog post. If the person clicks on it, it takes them right to your new blog post.
Obviously this could be an important new platform for reaching your public. This is especially important for any business with a site that is getting a decent amount of traffic already, because it is another way to reach people and notify them of your activities. But of course first people have to give permission for the notifications, and they are prompted to do this when they first visit your website after the plugin is installed. So you have to have visitors to your site to get them to sign up for this.
The plugin I am using is called OneSignal, and it is free for up to 30,000 subscribers. It’s a little bit complicated to install and set up but there are some YouTube videos that show how to do it.
One site where I installed this got 80 subscribers in less than a week.
I recommend this for any WordPress site. There is no downside to using this as far as I can see. But it’s really perfect for a site that gets a fair amount of visitors, and for a company that posts to their blog regularly.