Guide to Slack notifications

Slack notifications keep you informed about things that need your attention. Whether you’re using Slack on your desktop or from your mobile device, learn how notifications work and how to customise them to suit your needs. 🔔

How Slack notifications work

When you first join a workspace, Slack will only notify you of messages directed at you. Here’s when you’ll receive notifications by default:

These settings apply to both desktop and mobile notifications until you make changes. You can customise your notification preferences for desktop, mobile and specific channels from any device. Read on to learn how! If you’re having issues, skip ahead to Troubleshooting notifications.

Desktop notifications

Your default desktop notifications are automatically enabled as soon as you join a workspace. Use the steps below to customise your preferences.

⚙️ Notification triggers

Only @mentions, direct messages and keywords will trigger a desktop notification by default. You can change this preference to include all messages sent to channels you’re a member of or nothing at all:

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Notifications.
  3. Under Notify me about, choose which activity you want Slack to notify you of.

Using Slack for Windows? Notifications are set to deliver via Slack for Windows 7, and via the Windows Action Centre for Windows 10 by default. Follow the instructions above to make changes.

⚙️ Notification sound and appearance

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Notifications.
  3. Under Sound & appearance, choose how notifications should look, sound and behave.


⚙️
Badge notifications on the Slack icon

Once you have an unread notification, you’ll see a badge in the top right corner of your desktop Slack app icon.

Mac

Windows

Linux

Unread activity will display a red badge on the Slack icon by default.

unread_icon.png A dot means you have unread activity in one of your Slack workspaces.
unread_dm_icon.png A number means a teammate sent you a direct message, mentioned you or notified a channel you’re in or used one of your keywords.

Set your badge notification preference

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Notifications.
  3. Under Sound & appearance, tick or untick Show a badge on Slack’s icon to indicate new activity.

Tip: If you’re a member of multiple workspaces, you can pick and choose the ones you want to see badge notifications for.

On Windows, you’ll see badge notifications in two places: in your taskbar and in your notifications area.

Notifications area

When Slack is running, you’ll see a Slack icon in your notifications area.

  • A blue badge means there’s unread activity in one of your workspaces.
  • A red badge means a teammate sent you a direct message, mentioned you or used one of your keywords.

Your app is set to keep running in the notification area even when the window is closed by default. Choosing not to leave the app running will remove the Slack icon (and badges) from your notifications area. Here’s how to do this:

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Windows app.
  3. Untick the box next to Leave app running in notification area when the window is closed

Taskbar

In your taskbar, a red badge means a teammate sent you a direct message, mentioned you or used one of your keywords.

The Slack icon will flash once when receiving a notification by default, but only if your computer has been idle for 10 seconds. You can choose to flash the Slack icon even when you’re active: 

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Notifications.
  3. Under Sound & appearance, tick Flash window when receiving a notification

Tip: To keep the Slack icon in the taskbar when the app window is closed, select Flash window when receiving a notification, but leave the second option unticked. 

Note: If your taskbar is set to small taskbar buttons, badges on the Slack icon will not be visible.

On Linux, you’ll see badge notifications in your notifications area when the Slack app is running.

Linux_desktop.png blue badge means there’s unread activity in one of your workspaces.
unread_mention.png

A red badge means a teammate sent you a direct message, mentioned you or used one of your keywords.

Your app is set to keep running in the notification area even when the window is closed by default. Choosing not to leave the app running will remove the Slack icon (and badges) from your notifications area. Here’s how to do this:

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Click the Linux app tab.
  3. Untick the box next to Leave app running in notification area when the window is closed.

Note: Badges like this one 1 appear in your channel list whenever you’re mentioned by a member. 


Mobile notifications

To receive mobile notifications, download the Slack app for your smartphone or tablet and sign in to your workspace. You’ll begin receiving mobile notifications as soon as the Slack desktop app is closed.

⚙️ Notification triggers

Desktop

iOS

Android

Windows Phone

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu.
  3. Your mobile notifications will match your desktop preferences by default. Tick the box next to Use different settings for my mobile devices to make changes.
  4. Select your notification preference from the drop-down menu.
  1. Swipe left to open the right sidebar.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Notifications.
  4. Choose your preference.

Tip: Message previews will display for each notification by default, but you can toggle Show previews off if you like.

  1. Tap the  three dots icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Under Notifications, tap Settings.
  4. Tap On mobile, notify me about... to change which messages send notifications.
  1. Tap the  three dots icon in the top right.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Under Push notifications, choose your preference. 


⚙️
Notification sound and appearance

iOS

Android

Windows Phone

  1. Swipe left to open the right sidebar.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Notifications.
  4. Tap Sound and make a selection.
  1. Tap the  three dots icon.
  2. Under Notifications, tap Settings.
  3. Tap Settings (then System Options for Android 8 and 9 devices). 
  4. Tap Sound and make a selection.
  1. Tap the  three dots icon in the top right.
  2. Tap Settings
  3. Under Push notifications, make a selection.  


⚙️
From desktop to mobile: notification timing

If you’re actively using the desktop app, we won’t send you duplicate mobile notifications. Once you’re no longer active, you can choose when you want to start receiving notifications on mobile.

Desktop

iOS

Android

Windows Phone

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Notifications.
  3. Select your timing under When I’m not active on desktop…
  1. Swipe left to open the right sidebar.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Notifications.
  4. Tap Notify me on mobile
  5. Select your mobile notification timing. 
  1. Tap the  three dots icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Under Notifications, tap Settings
  4. Tap Start mobile notifications.
  5. Choose your mobile notification timing.
  1. Tap the  three dots icon in the top right.
  2. Tap Settings
  3. Under Push notifications, select Notification timing
  4. Choose your mobile notification timing.


Channel-specific notifications

You can set specific notification preferences for any particular channel or DM on both desktop and mobile. Choose when to get notifications or to mute activity all together.

Desktop

iOS

Android

  1. Open the channel.
  2. Click the  cog icon to the left of the search field to open the Channel settings menu.
  3. Select Notification preferences.
  4. Choose your preferences for desktop and mobile.
  5. Click Done.

Note: Review all channel-specific settings by clicking your workspace name in the top left. Then choose Preferences from the menu and scroll to Channel-specific notifications

  1. Tap the channel name in the header to view the menu.
  2. Tap Notifications.
  3. Choose your preference for the channel.

Note: To review all channel-specific settings, go to Settings. Tap Notifications, then Channel-specific notifications

  1. Tap the channel name in the header to view the menu.
  2. Tap Notifications.
  3. Tap Send notifications.
  4. Choose your preference for the channel.

Note: To review all channel-specific settings, go to Settings. Tap Notifications, then Channel-specific notifications

Mobile notifications: Channel notification preferences align with your mobile notification timing preferences.

Tip: Some channels are noisier than others. Try muting a channel for a little peace and quiet. 🕊


Email notifications

You’ll get email notifications by default if you’re not actively using Slack and you’re mentioned or sent a direct message. Here’s how to change your preference:

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
  2. Select Preferences from the menu, then click Notifications.
  3. Under When I’m not active on desktop, tick or untick Send me email notifications. If ticked, click change to choose how often notifications are delivered.

Tip: Looking to turn off notifications temporarily? Just click the  bell icon next to your workspace name and choose how long you want to snooze notifications for.


Troubleshooting notifications

If you think your notifications are stuck, delayed or not appearing at all, click on one of the articles below to begin troubleshooting. We’ll figure this out together!

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