push notification service

Top 10 push notification services. Push messaging platform or custom development?

Push notifications are one of the most important mobile app features that every business should have. Representing a great marketing tool, they allow companies to get in touch with their customers and increase customer and brand loyalty.

By sending reminders and providing users with useful information, you improve your services and motivate them to make purchases or take certain actions. Today without push messages it’s impossible to imagine a mobile customer loyalty program.

They are an essential part of various kinds applications, including fitness apps, sports apps, patient apps, doctor apps, beauty apps, and a lot more.

In this post, we’ll consider the most popular push notification services and custom development for you to choose the best option for developing your perfect application.


Push notification platforms


1. Push.io

Push IO is a mobile push notification service provider building enterprise applications. This B2B company was founded in 2009 and acquired by Responsys in 2014. However, in the same year  Responsys was itself acquired by Oracle, so now push.io is the part of Oracle (that’s why when you go to the platform site, you’re automatically forwarded to Oracle’s Mobile Marketing).

The platform helps businesses promote their goods and services and provides a lot of great features. With the strongest points of push.io, namely high-scalability and AutoPush service, customers can streamline both developing and serving push messages. Push.io is a paid push notification service with a subscription model available for both iOS and Android.

The main features include:

  • In-app push notifications
  • Country targeting support
  • Timezone support
  • Custom attributes
  • Transactional API
  • Notification scheduling


2. PushCrew

PushCrew is a popular push notification service that provides two powerful APIs – JS API and REST API – allowing to implement custom use cases. For instance, sending particular messages to individuals or mapping internal information about customer audience, and so on. With PushCrew, you get the ability to easily send and schedule your campaigns.

The main features are:

  • Campaign segmentation
  • Contextual & device targeting
  • Geo-targeting
  • Campaign analysis
  • Notification scheduling
  • Visual notifications


3. Carnival.io

Carnival.io is another push notification platform you should take into account before starting adding a push notification feature in your app. For now, it’s one of the most balanced push messaging services that suits well both the needs of mobile app developers and ones of marketing managers.

The top advantage of Carnival is a simple integration with big analytics providers enabling event submission into such marketing platforms as Localytics.

Carnival provides the following features:

  • In-app push notifications
  • Customer audience segmentation
  • Real-time analytics
  • Message automation
  • Notification scheduling
  • User behavioral triggering
  • Personalized messages
  • A/B testing
  • Rich messaging (videos, images, links, gifs)


4. OneSignal

OneSignal is a relatively new push notification service used by more than 300,000 users. A great advantage of OneSignal is that it has Web Push API so that it can send notifications not only on smartphones but on users’ PCs too. Comparing to many other messaging platforms, OneSignal is free to use for companies of any size.

The main features of OneSignal:

  • A/B testing
  • Real-time analytics
  • Campaign segmentation
  • Geo-targeting
  • Contextual targeting
  • Device targeting
  • Mobile and web notifications
  • Visual notifications
  • Notification scheduling
  • Special enterprise plans for customers with specific requirements


5. Catapush

Catapush is one of the most interesting push notification platforms for integrating a push notification feature. Though being rather young, Catapush offers some really cool functions, for example, it leverages the power of Artificial Intelligence to track all users across all their devices.

Moreover, the tool provides a two-way communication, enabling you to receive replies to push notifications and get in touch with your users via chat. Also, the service provides SMS fallback, so even when there is no data connectivity or something goes wrong – instead users can send push messages through SMS.

The key Catapush features:

  • 2-way communication
  • Guaranteed delivery
  • Status tracking
  • Dispatch analytics
  • SMS fallback
  • Push personalization


6. PushAssist

PushAssist is a push notification service uses both web and mobile push to target customers with real-time notifications for higher user retention. The platform supports HTTP & HTTPS sites, allows audience segmentation, and provides integrated analytics capabilities.

The main features include:

  • A/B testing
  • Integrated analytics
  • Campaign segmentation
  • Geo/Device/Contextual targeting
  • Visual notifications
  • Mobile & Web notifications
  • Notification scheduling
  • Multi-device support


7. PushEngage

PushEngage is another push notification platform that offers great functionality to allow customers get in touch with their users and boost sales. PushEngage is an easy-to-use service supported by over 6,000 websites and providing audience analytics capabilities, multi-browser support, emoji support, and much more.

PushEngage has the following features:

  • User audience segmentation
  • Notification scheduling
  • Automatic notifications with RSS feed
  • Personalized visual notifications
  • HTTPS and HTTP support
  • Automatic responders
  • Contextual triggered notifications
  • Geo/Device targeting
  • Mobile and web notifications


8. SmartNotify Me

SmartNotify Me is a cloud-based push notification service enabling customers to interact with their users via mobile devices. With this platform, you’ll get the ability to send real-time personalized messages and increase sales.

Unlike above-mentioned services, SmartNotify Me doesn’t allow contextual targeting and notification scheduling. Nevertheless, it provides a lot of other useful features helping you retain customers and increase their loyalty.

The main features involve:

  • Customer analytics
  • Campaign/Audience segmentation
  • Device/Geo-targeting
  • Mobile and web notifications
  • Expiry notifications
  • Visual notifications


9. Urban Airship

Urban Airship is the oldest (created in 2009) and one of the most popular push notification services. The platform includes various valuable features, for example, AI-powered orchestration, personalized messages, high scalability capabilities, and real-time automation.

What’s important, Urban Airship provides different types of pushes, involving sending push messages to a certain OS or specifically tagged devices. Due to user analysis and audience segmentation, companies can make smart insights into customer behavior.

This push notification service has the following features:

  • SMS text messaging
  • Web and mobile notifications
  • Email notifications
  • Real-time marketing API
  • Predictive analytics
  • Customer intelligence analytics
  • Personalized campaigns


10. Kahuna

Kahuna is another good push notification platform you should consider when integrating a push notification feature. The service enables the creation of personalized triggered campaigns, supports real-time reporting and uses Artificial Intelligence to get value from customer data.

Besides, Kahuna offers the following features:

  • Personalized push notifications
  • Predictive analytics
  • Cross-channel marketing
  • Revenue and goal tracking
  • Individual customer profiles


Custom development

We’ve considered the most popular and multifunctional push notification services. When choosing one to be integrated into your app, focus on your objectives and project needs. For example, if you have only mobile app users, a feature of sending web pushes won’t add any value.

Also, if you have specific requirements or afraid that the platform will end working (like Parse) and you’ll have to move, think about custom development. In this case, you build a fully-customized solution, tailored to your needs and goals.

This option is more reliable and offers more flexibility. Here you’re not restricted to the service opportunities – everything will be functioning as you want.

An important point is that you pay for developing a mobile application including a push notification feature. In the case of the platform, you have to pay for using it (generally it is a subscription model).

So, when choosing the way to use push notifications, think on your requirements first or apply to a reliable development company that will solve your issues and provide you with meaningful recommendations to your project.