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messenger one-time notification api in beta

From discounts and promos to stock alerts and events – get notified with Messenger

There was buzz back in December, but Facebook Messenger has finally begun beta testing it’s latest initiative – a one-time notification API. The platform’s newest development will enable brands to reach out to their potential customers with updates and alerts that are relevant to their interests.

“In December, we announced our plans to introduce this API to support valuable use cases like price drop alerts, back-in-stock alerts, and other important follow-ups that people have requested notifications for,” says Facebook product manager Igor Slutsker. “Developers and businesses can start building on this API right away.”

So, how does it work?

Slutsker explains that it’s actually quite simple for business owners and marketers alike.

“Businesses can send a message to the user asking if they want to be notified on a topic. If the user asks to be notified, the business receives a token and can use this token to send out the notification with the information the user requested at a later time.”

Messenger will also put a cap on the number of one-time requests businesses can send to users, including limits on the actual follow-up to be only a single notification.

So ultimately, the user is in control over what they want to be notified about.

Here’s an example:

screenshots of an example of Facebook Messenger's one-time notification API functionality

You’re online shopping once again and stumble across a totally rad shirt you absolutely must add to your apparel graveyard. But wait – it’s out of stock!?

How great would it be if the retailer asked you if you wanted to be notified when the raddest shirt ever was back in stock? Heck yeah!

So, you get notified, the business gets a token, and you all walk away happy. Once the item is available again, the business uses the token to notify you: “Come get your shirt, bro.”

Well, maybe not exactly in those words, but you get the picture.