When you launch an app in the Google Play Store, you want to make sure that users like what they see. Your ads, including screenshots of Google Play and Promo Video, will make a big difference in whether users convert or not. To help, Google has published tips for managing graphical assets alongside the guidelines, which can be used to help you optimize the App Store.
Google Play screenshots
Developers can add up to eight screenshots to their app for each supported device type. This may require you to design different screens for different screen sizes, including phones, tablets and Android TV. When users see the app on the Play Store website, they see screenshots on their phone before screenshots on tablets or Android TV.
Google notes that screenshots in the Play Store Android app may appear in the search results and on the Google Play website. Make sure your first screenshots focus on the most important aspects of the app to improve the chances of users clicking on it.
The screen requirements are formatted. These are:
- The image must be a JPEG or 24-bit PNG file (no alpha)
- Minimum dimensions of 320px and maximum dimensions of 3840px
- The maximum dimension can not be more than twice as long as the smallest dimension
Although the requirements are basic, there are still suggestions that are important if you want your screenshots to attract users.
Screenshots can be displayed on Google Play, not just in the store listing alone. As such, the screens should “convey the essence of your app or game.”
Google also discourages the inclusion of content that “reflects or suggests information about Play Store performance, ranking or price and marketing”. It is still recommended to call value propositions, as they have been shown in experiments to have higher conversions.
Google also has specific recommendations for mobile gaming:
For games, some parts of the Play Store display groups of recommended large-format games using landscape screens. This gives a higher conversion rate compared to just app icons. “
In order for a screenshot to be eligible to be displayed in this way, developers should offer three landscape screens (16: 9 aspect ratio). If the game is played in portrait mode, the landscape screens should be added after the portrait ones. Developers should ensure that the screenshots depict the experience of the game.
Google Play Promo Video is another important visual component. Although not required, Google says: “We strongly recommend offering a promo video for games in particular.”
Like screenshots, promotional videos can be displayed in search results and on the website. Some parts of the Play Store contain groups of recommended games, which may include promotional videos – according to Google, these can lead to more conversions than just an app icon.
That said, just one video does not guarantee more downloads. Videos should be tested to see how they affect conversions.
Google Play’s promotional video requirements are designed to ensure that users can watch the videos without interruption. Campaign videos must:
- Use a YouTube video, which means the video is displayed on a landscape screen. Apps in portrait mode will have black bars added to the side of the screen, unless the developer creates a new video to use the spaces on the page.
- Disable ads and turn off revenue generation for your video
- Set the video’s privacy setting to public or unlisted, and make sure it can be uploaded
Along with the requirements, Google has a list of recommendations. Videos should be informative and convey the core functions of the app; Those who do are more likely to be marketed in the store.
Videos will demonstrate the actual experience in the app. Google recommends that you spend the first 30 seconds focusing on the core features and content. This should be used to set the correct user expectations so that users know what they are getting when they download the app.
This includes the use of recordings taken from the app itself. Google recommends that you do not use pre-recorded footage, such as cut scenes, to be used to support the actual in-app experience.
Although Google allows the use of off-app recordings, such as people using the phone or tapping, the recommendations are not recommended. The exception to this is if the use or gaming is outside the device, such as how AR apps involve interaction with the environment, or shipping apps involve the delivery of packages.
These guidelines should be remembered and experimented with to different levels so you can see how they affect conversions.
All in all
Google’s advice contains some important good practices for screenshots and promotional videos on Google Play. Developers preparing visuals should take this into account, especially if it may improve the chances of being featured in the Play Store, on lists or in recommendations.
Following Google’s guidelines and reviewing these recommendations is only the first step in optimizing your conversion ads. There are many more great practices that developers should consider, such as A / B testing of creative variations to see how well the recommendations work for your app. These additional steps are an important part of an App Store Optimization strategy that should be considered when designing creative sets.
Want to learn more about App Store Optimization? Contact Gummicube and we help you get your strategy started.