How to Send Push Notifications from BigCommerce
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BigCommerce is known for its ease-of-use, robust features, and scalability, making it a great choice for many retailers.
In this article we’re going to show you how you can send push notifications from your BigCommerce site.
This is going to be a great thing for your business, push notifications are amazing for eCommerce brands - allowing you to:
- Alert customers about sales, promotions, new products, or restocked items
- recover abandoned carts by reminding customers about their left-behind items
- Update users about delivery and other important information
In general, they’re going to lead to more conversions, more sales, more profit, and more growth.
There are two kinds you should set up - web push notifications and native app push notifications.
You can send both kinds of push notification from your BigCommerce store and reap the benefits, let’s look at how.
Web vs Native App Push Notifications for BigCommerce Stores
Broadly speaking, there are two main kinds of push notifications.
The first are web push notifications.
These are the ones you sometimes get asked for permission for when you land on various websites and web apps.
They rely on browser infrastructure like service workers along with push notification services like Google Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM) and Apple Push Notification Service (APNS).
Web notifications are good because you get a chance with every site visitor to get their consent and then you have a direct channel to them until they revoke it!
Native app notifications are an even better channel for engaging your most loyal customers - those with your iOS or Android apps installed on their devices.
Native app notifications are more forgiving in terms of permissions, and can leverage both a wider range of message formats and the native capabilities of the device itself.
For a detailed breakdown of web vs app notifications you can check out this article.
We’re going to show you how to set up both, so your notification game is completely optimal.
Sending Web Push Notifications from a BigCommerce Store
To send web push notifications from BigCommerce, there are two possible routes.
We’re going to recommend the second but we’ll start with a brief overview of the first.
Custom Web Push Notifications for BigCommerce
The first is a custom setup, which involves both significant work and a fairly deep understanding of relevant technologies like Push APIs and service workers, along with an equally deep understanding of BigCommerce’s underlying architecture.
You’d have to set up a service worker, use BigCommerce’s Script Manager to integrate it with your store’s theme, and figure out a user permission flow. You’d then need to build additional workflows for sending subscription objects to your back-end for storage, event triggers with BigCommerce Webhooks to actually send the notifications at the right time, and plenty of other tasks.
This is not a technical developer guide, we’re writing for eCommerce entrepreneurs and marketers who want the most efficient solution. So we’re not going to get into the details of this.
If you want to go this route speak to your developer, but in our opinion there’s no need unless you have some very niche edge case.
There’s already a rich ecosystem of high-level tools that take away the complexity and make it simple to send notifications however you want.
Using a BigCommerce Push Notification Service Provider
All web push notifications rely on the base level infrastructure provided by the browser and the mobile platforms like Apple Push Notification Service and Google’s Firebase Cloud Messaging.
But there’s a layer of products and platforms above that have built very useful infrastructure on top, making setup simple and adding advanced functionality like analytics, segmentation and more.
These are known as push notification service providers and we recommend you choose one for sending push notifications from BigCommerce.
Here are a couple we recommend:
Omnisend is often used by BigCommerce stores for email and SMS messaging, but they also provide web push notification services.
The setup is pretty simple, and if you already use Omnisend its a straightforward way to integrate push into your existing workflow.
PushEngage is another solid push notification service provider.
Their platform works well with BigCommerce, and setup is as simple as adding a script to your site and some configuration in their interface. You can read about the process here.
PushOwl is a well known push notification service provider with a solid reputation.
They have an integration for BigCommerce which is very well reviewed and should be a solid choice with a relatively simple setup.
These are three push notification service providers that work with BigCommerce, and there are plenty of others too like pushassist, Push Pro, and more. Research each to see which one fits your needs in terms of pricing, features, and scalability.
Whichever one you choose, the process with be roughly as follows:
- Choose a Service - which fits your business and needs
- Integration - typically with a piece of code or script to your BigCommerce store
- Gather subs - prompt users to subscribe (without being too pushy) - position and timing are key
- Start sending notifications - according to your strategy through the service’s interface
- Analyze + optimize - most services will offer useful data on performance
Web push notifications are amazing for establishing some connection with site visitors, giving the possibility of reengaging and selling to them later even if they initially bounce.
Getting permission to send web notifications is almost as good as getting an email. But native push notifications sent from an app are even better for engaging your most loyal customers and boosting their LTV.
Sending Native App Push Notifications from a BigCommerce Store
To send native app push notifications from a native app you need a……. Native app.
But how do you get one?
Traditionally you’d need to spend tens (or hundreds) of thousands of dollars and months of headaches to build separate versions for iOS and Android that were branded like your main BigCommerce store and tightly integrated with its back end so they can seamlessly share data.
To send push notifications would need another layer of tight integration between your BigCommerce store, your apps backends, along APNs, FCM, or both.
This is all a relatively imposing project, will cost at least six figures, and will take 6 months plus to ship.
We have a better solution for you.
Get top quality eCommerce apps in just weeks, for practically zero upfront cost, pre-configured to send unlimited push notifications.
MobiLoud takes your BigCommerce store, and with the help of our platform and custom code - converts it into iOS and Android eCommerce apps.
The apps will automatically sync your entire product catalog. Whenever you update anything in BigCommerce, like adding a new product or changing prices - the apps will automatically reflect that too.
This all means that you can focus on your core web store, while the apps practically run themselves. Our team will handle all ongoing updates and maintenance for the lifetime of the apps.
Native push notifications are one of many benefits of building eCommerce mobile apps, but they’re one of the most important.
With MobiLoud, all our apps come pre-integrated with OneSignal - the top push notification provider on the market. You’ll get unlimited push notifications for both major platforms, and you’ll be able to set them up exactly how you need to drive conversions and revenue.
With a strong BigCommerce web store sending web notifications and MobiLoud iOS and Android apps to send native app notifications - your brand will be unstoppable.
To get an idea of what it possible - check out some of our example apps.
You should also read through some of our case studies.
And even better - book a demo today and get all your questions answered.