Notification plugin - critique and feedback needed


(Kuba Mikita) #1

Hi everyone!

I didn’t know this website before but I got to say - it’s fantastic! Definitely, I’ll stay here.

Recently I rewrote my Notification plugin. It’s an ultimate solution for WordPress notifications. I know this may sound like a poor-quality-product which has a ton of a marketing budget but it’s quite the opposite. One man show, almost 0 budget but I truly believe the high quality.

What this plugin does is simple. It sends notifications on any WordPress action.
By notification I mean email, webhook, push, SMS and anything you’d imagine.
By action I mean literally any action, like a hook. You have one_leg_pirate_send_a_message hook in your plugin? This can trigger the notification.

The goal of releasing this plugin was to create something like an Advanced Custom Fields but for notifications. This is why in the latest version I implemented the white label mode and the plugin can be loaded as a part of your plugin or theme.

I have a nice infographic showing what it is, it’s just too big to paste it directly. You can find it here: https://bit.ly/notification-plugin

I’d love to read your opinions on the plugin. Do you find it useful?

The source code can be found at Github.


(David) #2

Wow… Cool slug :slight_smile:


(Kuba Mikita) #3

Thanks David! The slug is actually a funny story, I can write something about it if you are curious :slight_smile:


(Leland Fiegel) #4

Haven’t had a chance to try it or dig into the code yet but definitely cool to have a self-hosted notification system. Have a few questions:

  • Have you heard of PushUp (seems to basically be a hosted service of the same thing)?

  • At what point (let’s say, by notifications per hour) is it no longer feasible to be pushing notifications from the same web server you’re serving your website from?

  • Is there any way to serve notifications with your plugin from another server to lighten the load on the “main” server, if necessary?

  • I sometimes see people on Twitter complain about being asked to agree to push notifications, but the people I follow on Twitter tend to be easily-annoyed techy people who run ad blockers. Do you have any numbers of “actual” users you can share that agree to notifications and interact with them?

  • Is there any sort of “opt-in” tracking system in your plugin to anonymously share such data with you?

I’m curious!


(Kuba Mikita) #5

I haven’t heard of the PushUp, but they seem to have very limited notifications and only one notification type - browser notification.

At what point (let’s say, by notifications per hour) is it no longer feasible to be pushing notifications from the same web server you’re serving your website from?

My favorite answer - it depends :slight_smile: if you have good infrastructure you can send thousands of emails per hour, I cannot see a problem. For cheap shared hosts I think the 100 emails per hour could be considered as sending spam. But this is of course applicable for email notifications, I think you can send as many webhooks you like. Please note that you can use SMTP and not send the emails via wp_mail() but ie. via Sendgrid.

Is there any way to serve notifications with your plugin from another server to lighten the load on the “main” server, if necessary?

Not possible at the moment, but I think it would be a matter or creating REST endpoint and securing it.

I sometimes see people on Twitter complain about being asked to agree to push notifications, but the people I follow on Twitter tend to be easily-annoyed techy people who run ad blockers. Do you have any numbers of “actual” users you can share that agree to notifications and interact with them?

The plugin doesn’t support browser notifications yet, and unfortunately, I don’t have such insights.

Is there any sort of “opt-in” tracking system in your plugin to anonymously share such data with you?

I’m using Freemius Analytics, but they don’t provide such data. Only information about the install.

If you are curious about the plugin name story, I’m posting press release from a year ago, which was never published anywhere :wink:

So I came into an idea about a plugin which would replace all other email notification plugins. It has some core triggers implemented (like published post, post sent for review, comment approved etc.) and you can define any trigger by yourself. Literally any action in WordPress can trigger a notification. While having trigger you can compose actual notification using merge tags and define its recipients. Simple engine but endless possibilities.

I had a plugin but I hadn’t a name. This is a free plugin so obvious choice was WordPress.org repository. I wanted something simple, but there are so many other notification plugins and I expected this will be not an easy task to find my perfect name. I tried few slugs by simply typing it into the address bar at the end of the https://wordpress.org/plugins/ url. And here it was, I saw magic “We couldn’t find that plugin” after trying “notification” slug. How cool name is that?

Quick last checks, plugin zip and https://wordpress.org/plugins/add/ form. I typed all details in, press “Send Post” and… “That name already exists. Please choose another name”. WHAT?

As you may know everyone can download the SVN plugin repository so this is what I done. I looked into the log and there I saw one commit by plugin-master sent on 20th December 2011 that created the repository. And that’s it, nothing more, just first commit generated by the system. Repository was empty for almost 5 years.

Without loosing hope I dropped an email to plugins@wordpress.org and I asked if there’s any chance to take this plugin repository. Mika Epstein was very helpful with that, she checked the repo and my plugin and simply transferred the ownership to me. It took few days and was quite stressful but on the end of the day I had my perfect name and plugin available for download at https://wordpress.org/plugins/notification/