Case Study: Enhancing Push Notification Efficiency by 80%

by | Case Studies, Digital Technology

In the competitive landscape of SaaS solutions, timely and reliable push notifications are crucial for user engagement and operational efficiency. Our client, a leading project management software provider, faced significant challenges with their push notification delivery system. The application’s ability to send project updates, assignee changes, subscribed notifications, comment tags, chat messages, and task reminders in real-time is vital for its users’ productivity and responsiveness. However, the existing system struggled with delayed or failed notifications during peak traffic periods, undermining user experience and task management.

Discovery Phase: Comprehensive System Audit

Our initial step involved a deep dive into the client’s existing push notification ecosystem, comprising three primary components: trigger generation, notification processing, and delivery mechanisms. Our audit aimed to identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies, focusing on data processing flow, notification sending frequency, and delivery latency under varying system loads.

Key Findings:

  • Notification tokens were being processed without validation of their current status, leading to wasted resources on attempts to deliver notifications to non-existent or outdated tokens.
  • The absence of an external queue management system meant that in-memory storage was used for pending notifications. This setup was prone to data loss in case of system failures, with notifications vanishing upon server restarts.
  • The system lacked analytics on user interaction with the notifications, missing out on valuable insights into user engagement and preferences.

Proof of Concept (POC): Innovating for Reliability and Insight

Our POC phase involved setting up a sandbox environment to mirror the client’s notification system. This allowed us to implement and test enhancements without disrupting the live environment. Our solutions targeted the identified inefficiencies:

  1. Notification Queue Management

    • Developed a database-backed queuing system to organize notification requests sequentially, ensuring First-In-First-Out (FIFO) processing.
    • Implemented expiration times for notifications, automatically filtering out outdated messages to streamline processing.
    • Integrated with Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM) to retrieve and store message IDs upon successful notification delivery, enhancing traceability.
    • Introduced topic tagging within notifications (e.g., ASSIGNee_UPDATE, CHAT_MESSAGE) to facilitate targeted communications and analytics.
  2. Token Management

    • Automated the removal of invalid tokens based on FCM error responses, significantly reducing unnecessary processing and improving delivery success rates.
  3. Engagement Analytics

    • Captured message ID and topic data on user devices, enabling tracking of notification interactions. This feedback loop provides insights into user preferences and optimal timing for notification delivery, informing strategic decisions for engagement and marketing efforts.

Implementation and Impact: Transformative Results

Upon deploying the enhanced notification system, the impact was immediate and profound:

  • Efficiency: The cleanup of invalid tokens eliminated over 400,000 non-functional entries on the first day, drastically reducing the overhead on the notification delivery system.
  • Reliability: The introduction of a managed messaging queue ensured robust delivery mechanisms, with the expiration logic further refining the process to focus on timely and relevant notifications.
  • Insights: Tracking user interactions with notifications unveiled patterns in engagement, including preferred notification types and peak interaction times. These analytics empower our client to tailor their communication strategy for maximum impact.

Conclusion: Setting a New Standard in Push Notification Services

This project not only addressed the immediate challenges faced by our client but also set a new standard for push notification services in the SaaS domain. By leveraging detailed technical insights and innovative solutions, we significantly improved the reliability, efficiency, and strategic value of push notifications. This case study exemplifies our commitment to delivering excellence and driving digital transformation for our clients.

Tech Stack

Queue system

  • Backend: PHP
  • Frontend development: Angular
  • Database: MongoDB
  • Email delivery service: SendGrid
  • Analytics: GA4/Firebase Analytics
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