Google Play Store: New Policies that effect your App’s Metadata

“Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes”, said Bowie in 1971, “turn and face the strange”; and here in 2021 Google is making a fairly dramatic change with a new page title update.

As of September 29th 2021, the character limit of an App’s title on Google Play has been reduced from 50 characters to 30 – a pretty big adjustment to make and one that will involve some copy craft for many apps.

Back in early 2021 Google announced it was looking to launch a new set of policies to app data in the Google Play Store regarding App Title, Icon, and Developer Name, as well as new guidelines for Store Listing preview assets. Some of the Metadata changes announced will mean developers will have to:

  • Limit the length of any app title to 30 characters
  • Prohibit keywords that imply store performance, promotion in the icon, title, and developer name
  • Eliminate graphical elements that may mislead users in the app icon
  • Removal of emoticons and repeated or sequential special characters and or punctuations

The details from Google specified that if apps do not comply with new these policies developers will not be allowed to advertise their apps in the Google Play store.

To help avoid such a situation, Google provides these specific examples of what you can and can’t do:

Google Play App Listing showing title character limit - things to doGoogle Play App Listing showing title character limit - things not to doGoogle Play App Listing showing what you cant do in your app iconGoogle Play App Listing showing what you cant do in your app title

Google also announced “new store listing preview asset guidelines for the feature graphics, screenshots, videos, and short descriptions”

Google have stated that developers will need to follow these principles, when bringing app listings into line:

  • 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 localised correctly and easy to read?

With the deadline for updating now here, we recommend developers prepare new submissions for their apps Metadata and App Store visuals, this will reduce the risk of being penalised or removed by Google. However, we believe it is very unlikely Google will ask for an immediate update.

Here are our thoughts on what might happen if you don’t implement the required changes:

  • It maybe that Google won’t allow any app updates until a change of the title.
  • Your app keeps the 50-character title however eventually your app will stop indexing the title or the keywords after the 30th character.

Many of our clients are already ahead of the game by working with the Redbox Mobile team to implement these changes. If you need some experienced eyes across your Google listings, we can offer services to quickly bring your app in-line with Google’s new set of policies.

Don’t risk impacting your current ranking, get in touch with the experts at Redbox Mobile and let us do the updates for you. Contact Us Today!

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Lucy Bennett
Account Director

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