Posted by Bert de Weerd and Tingmui Li, Google Play
When Google Play launched in 2008, it was easy for developers to get noticed with only a few hundred apps and games live on the Play Store. Fast forward to today, there are now millions of apps and games available to audiences in over 190 countries. The unique assets you provide to the Store – images, video, descriptions, even your app name itself – are essential to users making a decision on what to download.
Google Play is increasingly showing more of your assets front and center, surfacing graphic assets and descriptions right on Apps and Games home. To ensure that your store listing assets can help users anticipate your in-app or in-game experience and drive meaningful downloads, we are:
- Pre-announcing a policy change for app metadata
- Introducing new guidelines on Store listing preview assets
1. Pre-announce policy change for app metadata
Since your app title, icon, and developer name are the most important discovery elements on your store listing page, we are preparing to launch a new set of policies to keep these elements recognizable and unique, focusing on:
- Limiting the length of app titles to 30 characters
- Prohibiting keywords that imply store performance, promotion in the icon, title and developer name
- Eliminating graphic elements that may mislead users in the app icon
App title, icon and developer name that do not meet the upcoming policies will not be allowed on Google Play. You can expect more details about this policy change, including enforcement start dates, later this year.
We recommend reviewing the examples of do and don’t below and thinking about how these changes may impact you, so you can get ready for the upcoming policy changes.
Store performance or rank:
Price and promotional information:
Play programs and graphic elements that mislead users:
Emoticons & repeated or sequential special characters and or punctuations:
2. New guidelines for Store listing preview assets
We are also announcing new store listing preview asset guidelines for the feature graphics, screenshots, videos, and short descriptions you supply to showcase your app’s features and functionality. Assets that don’t meet our guidelines may be ineligible for promotion and recommendation on major Google Play surfaces like Apps and Games home.
The new guideline for developer supplied assets focus on the following principles:
- Do the preview assets accurately represent the app or game?
- Do the preview assets provide enough information to help users decide whether to install?
- Are the preview assets free of buzzwords like “free” or “best” and instead focus on providing meaningful information about the unique aspects of your app or game?
- Are the preview assets localized correctly and easy to read?
To ensure that your apps and games are eligible for recommendations on all surfaces on Google Play, please review our new store listing guidelines. We’ll start using these guidelines to inform our recommendations starting in the second half of 2021.
We hope you found both the policy pre-announcement and preview asset guideline announcement useful as you plan your roadmap for the year, and we hope you share in our excitement for a more useful and engaging Play Store.