Retailers tune in to in-app messaging to turn on all app users

Most retailers amp up their campaign efforts during the holidays, so brands who want to stand out above the rest must get creative with their holiday messaging. Forget holiday emails and direct mail catalogues — mobile apps, particularly message centers, are a great way to get noticed and engage with users throughout the holiday season and beyond.

Among the 15 industries we analyzed for our mobile engagement benchmarks, we found retail is the fastest to adopt in-app message centers as a way to reach their app users. The power of an app is that users have already demonstrated strong interest in your brand by choosing to add you to their most personal device, their smartphones. There are plenty of ways for retailers to communicate with their users through apps, but using message centers can help separate your brand from the pack. This holiday season, we’re predicting innovative brands will turn to in-app messaging and message centers to shine.

Message centers are “offer boxes” that live directly within your app, creating a great place to deliver targeted promotional offers, product videos/tutorials, or even gift guides. The magic of message centers is that this rich content can be referred to at a later time as it is persistent within the app, offering users the ability to consume rich content stored within at their convenience.

Across all industries, the average push notification opt in rate stands at 43 percent. Message centers present a prime opportunity for brands to communicate with both this opted-in app audience, as well as the other 57 percent who haven’t opted in. When new content is added to a message center, a badge counter can be displayed on the app’s icon on the home screen, alerting users that new content awaits them within the app.

The use cases are endless — innovative retailers can use message centers to welcome users to your app, share the season’s biggest sale, or give them the latest update on fall trends. Specific icons can be used within the message center to help a user quickly identify different types of messages, such as a sale, tutorial or rewards information.

We predict that retailers who want to go above and beyond the typical holiday campaign will embrace in-app messaging as a new way to connect with customers. Our 2015 Mobile Engagement Benchmark series shares actionable benchmarks from more than 3,000 mobile apps to help you optimize your holiday messaging strategy.

Download our Notification Response Rates Report to learn more.