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Grow Your Business by Using Push Notifications Effectively These messages are active on most mobile phones. Here are five things to keep in mind as you prepare your strategy.

By Rahul Varshneya Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Consumers find push notifications highly valuable. Want proof? Seventy-six percent of 18 to 34 year olds have enabled push notifications on their phone, according to a survey by Responsys.

It also found that marketers witness 50 percent higher open rates on push notifications versus email, with click-through rates up to twice as high.

Now with iOS 8 around the corner for mass adoption, Apple is redefining notifications on its platform. The notifications become interactive, and as a business, you can now build engagement through your customer's lock screen.

Related: Mobile Marketing and the Magic of Push Notifications (Infographic)

Apple intends to make notifications more powerful and will allow app developers to harness their power in many ways, including letting users respond/react without having to quit whatever they're currently doing on their phone.

Notifications have been around for quite a while, but most give little importance to them. Here are some cues to get you started on understanding notifications better and using them to increase engagement, and therefore, conversions.

1. Make them relevant. Treat notifications messages like you would if you sent them out on social-media channels. Better still, focus on them like you would on writing a blog post for user engagement. The common thread is relevancy. Make notifications relevant to your customers.

2. Integrate with analytics. Relevancy of content increases when you send content to specific segments of customers. This means you have to know your customers well -- what are they buying, what interests them, what they looked at but did not buy, etc.

Tracking these metrics through analytics will help you carve out relevant notifications for a specific customer.

Related: 5 Ways Mobile Messaging Can Boost Retail Sales

3. Don't overload them. Even fanboys can get sick of communication. It's the same with notifications. In fact, it's easier to overdo it through push notifications. Don't push content daily unless there's a good reason. Communicate at appropriate intervals and at opportune times to get better conversions.

Find out when your customers are more engaged with your product/service and schedule your notifications to get more traction.

4. Think differently. Don't always push an offer or a deal. Think how Twitter and Facebook engages users by sending push notifications based on events. Some are subtle, yet generate enough interest to bring back users.

5. Give users control. This one is difficult to implement. Let your customers decide what notifications they want to receive. It may help to break up your notifications into categories so you can empower your customers with this decision.

Of course, choose your words wisely when writing copy for notifications to keep your customers hooked. Just as mass produced or generic messages do not work when you're sending email, don't expect push notifications to give you results with generic and non-personalized messages.

Related: Top 10 Ways to Get People to Read and Respond to Your Emails

Rahul Varshneya

Co-Founder of Arkenea - Developer as a Service Company

Rahul Varshneya is the co-founder of Arkenea LLC, a mobile app consultancy helping startups in mobile product strategy and development, and the author of Appreneurship: How To Build A Mobile App Business With No Technical Background.

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