How to effectively deliver real-time updates to your customers when you don’t have a mobile app

It is a common case when you want to send relevant real-time updates to your customers. There are many examples of such approach in social apps e.g. incoming messages, friend requests, status changes etc. The most popular solution for this is a mobile app with embedded push-notifications. However the case I am going to tell about is different. During search for rental accommodation in Prague(Czech Republic) I found that receiving information about new listings as soon as they become available gives you a significant competitive advantage as landlords usually don’t cherry-pick tenants and seem to work on a first-come first-served basis. This advantage can become really huge if you hunt for something with a high quality/price ratio.

Unfortunately after some market research I didn’t find a tool that can send me such real time updates. All tools available on the market can at most send you updates once in a while, usually no more than once per day, which was too rare for me.

The task

Getting the data

Storing the data

Building Telegram bot

Here is the implementation I came up with:

I skipped handlers for a few steps in user-flow like setting-up different filters but those handlers are similar to select_language and subscribe methods so I assume you got the idea.

Basically this is it! Once you run the bot service new users can start subscribing and getting updates. Publishing a new version is also as simple as deploying a new code and restarting bot service and can be done within 5 minutes.

The end product you can check out here.