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With effect from September 29, 2021, Google announced changes in the app’s guidelines and policies. Read on to know more about the Google metadata policy changes and how these can affect the ASO.

Policy changes to metadata fields

  1. App Title – The 50-character length of the app title has been changed to 30 characters. Keywords indicating app performance should not be included in the app title. The app title should not have aggressive marketing words. The graphic elements in the app title and icon must not be overtly persuasive.
  2. App description – The App description must clearly state the app’s functionality and should not mislead the user. You cannot use anonymous user testimonials in the app description. Avoid repeated special characters or emojis in the app’s visual elements. Use capital letters for brand names.
  3. Do not use A call to action in the app preview assets. The 30-second preview video has to be in landscape format. It cannot include people making conversation with the device.
  4. The app description should highlight the accurate features of the app and the actual in-app features.

Impact of the policy changes on App Store Optimization

Below are the main features of the Google metadata policy changes:

  • Although there is pressure to maintain the character length, the guideline applies to all. So, developers and marketers need to focus on using the most popular keywords in the apps. Hence the quality of the app elements will remain good.
  • New guidelines for app featuring will be introduced in the future.
  • The use of Google tags and back-end fields might change.
  • The change in the title length will affect the languages that need more space to convey the app message. e.g., German or French.
  • The prohibition of using specific keywords in the app name and title will negatively impact the algorithm if you are already using these in the metadata fields.
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Why Google metadata policy has changed?

  • To control and manage the scam apps that charge subscription costs and fees.
  • It is Google’s step towards cleaning up the play store to make a place for quality apps to gain more visibility.
  • To regain and maintain the credibility of the Google play store as a fair host.
  • To make the Google Play store more similar to the Apple App store in terms of keyword use and title length.
  • To avoid letting apps use irrelevant keywords and practice false advertising.
  • To give the play store a new look and make it ready for Android 12.

Although Google Play do not penalize the apps for non-compliance, it is good to make the metadata changes to your app to gain the credibility of a quality app in the Google Play store. The new Google Play metadata policies and guidelines aim to prioritize the users’ interests by turning the apps to stay transparent and provide accurate and accessible app details. Therefore, it is wise for the app developer and the marketer to implement these changes in the app. In addition, these policy changes enhance the app quality and increase the app’s user base.

Here’s our guide on featured apps on google play .