Posted July 30, 2015
By Burton Miller

The Bell is Here

roost-bell-is-here

Today Roost launched something we’re cleverly calling, “The Bell”. The Bell provides a rich experience around web push notifications. We’ll explain.

WHAT IS THE BELL?
The Bell is a gateway into an on-site notification center. This may seem obvious, but it has several powerful effects.

THE BASICS
The Bell organizes notifications for your users, even those notifications missed while away from their devices, in an in-page console. This console also includes a Settings area to provide complete controls to each audience member so that she may customize her subscription to personal preference. The Bell gives your audience full on-site control over notifications.

THE BELL FOR NON-SUBSCRIBERS
Some number of users who come to your site will not be ready to commit to off-site notifications. The Bell works for them, as well.

These visitors will see a list of recent notifications, and you can tailor this list specifically for this crowd. Every time they come to your site, they will able to see the most recent notifications. Users can also opt-in to receive off-site notifications (web push), if they prefer to maintain a realtime connection with your content.

Our early results show that both subscribers and nonsubscribers like the Bell. And this leads them straight to the most relevant content on your site. The number of unread notifications is shown in a badge on top of the Bell, which helps remind users of available content.
roost-bell-on-desktop-and-mobile

SHARING WITH THE BELL
The Bell also makes it easy to share your content. Several sharing options are visible when the audience member views their notifications. This should enhance the native sharability of your content.

sharing-with-the-roost-bell

THE BELL WORKS ON ALL BROWSERS
The Bell works with all browsers. Roost’s on-site messaging will function on 99% of browsers and sites, and this means your reach is everyone who comes to your site. Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, IE it doesn’t matter — mobile or desktop, iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, Linux – the Bell works. The Bell will keep your users engaged with on-site interaction and updates.

browser-logos

NO HTTPS? THE BELL DOESN’T CARE
When off-site Chrome notifications first came on the scene earlier this year, your site was required to use HTTPS/SSL in order utilize this new technology. And other browser-makers are following in Google’s footsteps. The reason for this is that off-site push notifications in these browsers are built on top of the Service Workers feature, which requires SSL for security reasons.

The latest version of Roost technology now functions fully on both HTTP and HTTPS sites. We handle the security for you. This innovation opens the door to many, many websites. And this includes the Bell, of course.

HTTPS/SSL is an excellent way to optimize your site for notifications, but it is not required.

“SSL is not required.”

CUSTOMIZABLE EXPERIENCE
The Bell provides customization options for the bell placement and appearance. If you would rather have the bell in the navigation bar or as an inline UI element, you can have just that in a few minutes. The subscription experience is also customizable, so that your users are prompted for off-site notifications at the appropriate time and place on your site–choose the triggers that make the most sense for your audience.
customized-roost-bell

THE BELL IS JINGLING
If you install Roost today, the Bell is part of the standard experience. Engage users on-site and off-site with Roost.

If you are already using Roost, and you can turn the Bell on whenever you like. Go to the Roost Dashboard->Settings, and flip the switch!