Let’s Spice Up 3 Stale Push Messages All eCommerce Apps Use


Most eCommerce apps know that push messages are the number one way to engage with app users when they aren’t poking around inside your app.

Retail apps use push messages to notify users about flash sales, offer special promotions, and send updates about new items. For eCommerce apps, push messages are essential for driving sales and business growth.


But remember, your users’ phone is sacred space, and pushing out boring, uninspired messages will send your users rushing for the uninstall button before you can say super sale.

That’s why we’re spicing up three stale push messages all eCommerce apps use. We’re going to show how push messaging can be done right to entice users to shop.

Stale Push Message #1: You Left An Item In Your Cart

Reminding users that they’ve left an item in their cart is a great way to re-engage your fallen flock.

People can abandon a shopping cart for any number of reasons – maybe they got an important text, they reached their bus stop, they got lost in the frozen foods section, who knows? Our world offers a thousand daily distractions that could steer users off course, both online and offline.

Giving users a tap on the shoulder can get them back in the checkout lane. However, your polite reminder can often go ignored if you aren’t enthusiastic or persuasive enough.

Let’s look at the standard push message you might receive:

“You’ve left an item in your cart”

What’s Wrong With This Push: 

  • Lacks Specificity. This message feels mildly nagging. There’s no excitement in this message and no specificity – what item did I leave behind? Why should I care? 
  • No Call-To-Action. This push message is also noticeably lacking a call-to-action. Some apps may be hesitant to put in call-to-actions because they can seem all too obvious and take up valuable word space, but telling users specifically what their next step should be has a huge affect on conversions.

New Version #1: “Don’t leave your stylish shoes in limbo – come back and finish the checkout process!” 

New Version #2: “Don’t lose your dream dress. Check out in the next 10 minutes and we’ll give you 10% off!”

These new push messages are specific, calling out a pair of shoes and a dress left behind. With the power of app analytics, you can actually track what item a user last added to their shopping cart, and then dynamically insert that item into a push message for the ultimate personalization! 

We also added a more fun, conversational tone, as well as some quick call-to-actions to drive home the message.

Stale Push Message #2: A Super Sale Is Upon Us

Who doesn’t love a good sale? Push messages promoting sales are basically the bread and butter of ecommerce apps, driving tons of conversions.

It’s not a matter of mere luck though - there are subtle cues you can include in your push message, which can turn a so-so sale into something spectacular.

Here’s a run-of-the-mill push message you might encounter in the wild:

"Sales start now!”

What’s Wrong With This Push:

  • Needs Numbers. Using percent signs and numbers to explain the details of your sale can help your message stand out, as numbers and symbols are more eye-catching and concrete than plain text. What’s on sale? How big is the discount? Is there a promo code?
  • Lacks Punctuation. Don’t be afraid to experiment with capitalization, punctuation, and emojis in push messages to drive excitement and create some visual interest.
  • Missing Urgency. Adding hints at scarcity or urgency by way of a limited-time offer can push users into buying on the spot rather than waiting (and, as a result, probably forgetting).

New Version #1: “FLASH SALE: 50% off winter items – shop now for incredible deals! Ends in 24 hrs. snowflake-emoji.png shoppingbag.jpeg

New Version #2: “You favorited this item – and now it’s on SALE! Grab it before it goes and get $5 off!”

In these new push messages, we now have some capital letters, numbers, emojis, interesting punctuation, and a sense of urgency with the 24 hour deal. These should make for much more compelling push messages.

Stale Push Message #3: Here’s Other Stuff You Might Like

All eCommerce apps should encourage users to make more purchases by showcasing hot new products or popular items you suspect users might enjoy.

However, blasting users with every product on your bestsellers list won’t win you any fans. Instead, you’ll need to tailor content and personalize for the individual.

Here’s a common push message you might see:

“Today’s daily deal is X”

This is a pretty crummy push message because it’s just pushing random products and promotions. Use data to be smart about what you promote via push. 

What’s Wrong With This Push:

  • No Personalization. Personalization can go a long way if you customize your message based on the in-app behavior and profile of your users. Update users on things they care about by taking into account what they’ve bought, looked at, and favorited in the past. This is where your users’ data can work wonders for your messaging.

You can also utilize a user’s location to influence what kinds of products you might promote. For example, if it’s winter and you know a user lives in the Northeast, this would be the perfect time to suggest some winter boots or gloves.

  • Missing Compelling Language. This push message uses very bland language that lacks any excitement or details. Let’s make this copy more compelling with some more colorful wording.

New Version #1: “New deals just for Masters of the Force – save 15% on Star Wars merchandise today only!”

New Version #2: “Brr, it’s cold out! Grab winter boots from UGG, SOREL, or L.L Bean! Use promo code HOLYSNOW for free shipping. ”

These new messages have fun phrasing and have made use of user profile data to send super targeted, specific messaging that appeal to individuals and their unique interests. 

App personalization has been called out as a key factor for app marketing in 2016, which means broadcast, one-size-fits-all push messages of the past simply won’t cut it any longer for savvy mobile audiences.

Instead, apps must use user profile data, predictive insights, and past purchases to influence which messages are sent to different users.

Bonus Ecommerce Push Messaging Tips

  • Use Deep Linking. If you advertise a sale for boots, you don’t want your push message sending users to just any old screen in your app. Send them to the boots section! Deep linking in push messages is essential. Your users aren’t going to hunt down products, so you need to make getting from point A to Point B as easy as possible. 
  • “App-Only” Specials. Clever eCommerce apps make their app users feel special by using push messages to promote special sales just for app users. This helps build brand loyalty and app retention.
  • Images With Android. You can actually send entire images in push messages to Android users (not an option for iOS, sadly). Visual content is extremely powerful, so be sure to try using images in push when messaging your Android audience.

Better, Smarter Push Messages

Send smarter eCommerce push messages by following these best practices used to spice up our stale examples:

  • Put Visual Elements In Your Text. Experiment with punctuation, numbers, emojis, images, and other symbols that can help break up text and call attention to your special sales!
  • Don’t Waste That Data. Marketing efforts reap huge rewards when it comes to analytics data. Don’t waste that golden insight – use your user data to personalize messages and call out specific products, daily deals, and sales that will appeal to individuals.
  • Express Excitement and Urgency. Infuse your message with an air of excitement to catch attention, and use urgency and scarcity elements to drive users to check out.
  • Cart Call-To-Actions. Make sure to use specific call-to-actions in your push messages that tell users exactly what their next steps should be (like returning to their lost cart).

Use these eCommerce push messaging tips to drive better app engagement and boost retail revenue!recipes-for-perfect-push-messages