November 18, 2015 7:33 am

November improvements in Dev Center: submission, promotion and developer agreement

Starting this week you will see new capabilities in Dev Center. In this blog I’ll describe what’s new in more detail and share ideas how to make best use of them:

  1. App submission: new price tiers, and preview of a new age rating system that will start to be rolled out in December
  2. App promotion and monetization: new download badges and Store updates to increase customer acquisitions
  3. Content and agreements: integrating the previously separate advertising content directly into Dev Center, as well as minor updates to the App Developer Agreement

1.) New capabilities for app submission

New simplified age rating process: IARC

In December we will begin the rollout of the new process to simplify obtaining age ratings for app and game submissions. Today, upon app submission, developers must self-select a Windows Store age rating, and then obtain and add all of the individual market-specific age ratings (e.g. ESRB, PEGI, DJCTQ).

With the new simplified age rating system, based on the global rating and age classification system, IARC, you will be prompted to answer questions in Dev Center once, and your answers in turn automatically generate all the age ratings your app needs. This new process can save developers expense and hours of time when submitting an app to the Windows Store.

We are rolling out IARC to a select group of developers in December to preview, wtih the migration continuing in early 2016. Once your account is enabled to user IARC, the first time you update update the package, price or metadata, you’ll need to answer the questions (but just one time only). So we recommend reading the IARC questions, now so you are prepared to answer them upon your first submission.

Twice number of price tiers

Dev Center has doubled the number of prices available for your apps and in-app products. There are now almost 200 prices available, within the same range (between US$0.99 and US$999.99 or equivalent in different currencies). This allows you to optimize and adjust more precisely how you price your apps.

Additionally, the price values for the following markets were updated to account for foreign exchange rate fluctuations:
1_prices

These changes require no action on your part, though you may want to explore in Dev Center all available prices (viewed when choosing the price of an app update), to consider using the new price tiers for your apps or in-app products.

2.) More ways to promote and monetize apps

New badges to promote your apps

As the Store continues to add content types, we’re also unifying the ‘Get it’ badge for use on your web site and in your communications to show your customers that your app or game is in the Store. The new badge takes advantage of the value of the Microsoft brand.

The Store also now supported badges specifically designed to promote yout new apps or games optimized for Windows 10. We recommend using it for apps you have developed with the Universal Windows Platform.

Badge for all apps and games (optional) Badge for UWP apps
 2_badgeForAllApps  

You can download the new badges and badge guidelines here.

You can also monetize these badges through the Microsoft Affiliate Program, which allows you to earn a commission on any app or game sale that is generated from a customer clicking on the badge on your web site or in your communications.

Updates to Windows Store that help increase customer acquisitions

In parallel with the Dev Center improvements, Windows Store added this month several new capabilities to help customers easily find more apps and games to purchase:

  • “Top grossing” list optimized to drive attention to the most successful apps that generate revenue through both paid and in-app purchase.
  • Most frequently acquired in-app products appear on the app description page, showing potential customers the IAPs available in your app, e.g.:
    3_inAppPurchases
  • Strikethrough discounted pricing (e.g. $8.99 $2.99) displays automatically in the Windows Store when a scheduled price promotions are used to put an app on sale to help drive customer attention to this reduced price:
    3_sale
  • List with all the apps from a developer, shown when clicking on the developer name in the page description for any app:
    3_listForAllAppsFromDeveloper
  • Streamlined purchase experience, through an option to remove the requirement to always enter the Microsoft account email and password with every purchase:
    3_betterPurchaseExperience

3.) New Microsoft Advertising Content and updates to the App Developer Agreement

pubCenter content now integrated into Dev Center

The Microsoft Advertising content, previously available via the pubCenter site  is now available via the new Dev Center monetization and promotion pages, making the content easier to access by integrating with the Dev Center experience.

Updated App Developer Agreement

The App Developer Agreement has been updated to reflect the recent Dev Center changes:
4_ada

COPPA is the previously disclosed option to indicate if an app that used Microsoft Advertising targets children, and in these cases Microsoft Advertising will manage targeting differently.

The Dev Center experience will continue to evolve and grow.  As you explore and use these new capabilities, send us feedback on areas you’d like to see us invest in or improvements needed via the Windows Feedback tool, the “Feedback” button in Dev Center (5_feedback found in the bottom right) or vote for new features in user voice.

Join the conversation

  1. Thank you for Strikethrough discounted pricing, List with all the apps from a developer in particular.

  2. Noticed most the new Store features with a recent update, but do not see the ‘Top Grossing’ anywhere.

    • @Tony,
      The list with top grossing apps is being released in waves, in different markets and only to some users. The rollout speed will depend on the results of the initial waves, and could be as fast as early 2016 for all users.
      Bernardo
      Microsoft Store

      • The keywords I entered during App submission never works for Windows 10 App Store. For example, I submitted my app, EzPodder Lite (https://www.microsoft.com/store/apps/9nblggh3sh53), and use “podcast” as one of my app’s keywords, but searching “podcast” never shows my app at all. This has to be fixed. Otherwise, fewer and fewer developers will bother creating and publishing UWP.

  3. Hello, our app (Universal Windows) cannot be found in Store search by its obvious main keyword ‘encryption’. We looked through everything three times, but we cannot find the reason for the issue. This is really a serious problem! Please check what’s wrong there and give us feedback via our email address on record how this can be fixed. Thank you very much for your effort.
    Sincerely Yours
    Link to our app listing:
    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/apps/visualcrypt/9nblggh1z647

    • Don’t think keyword search ever worked in the new store (since July), see many replies to the previous post and complaints in the support forum. MS doesn’t seems to care anyway. The current work around is to embed keywords in your app name so that it can be found by the store search algorithm.

      • When I look at the search results for the keyword ‘encryption’ it looks like that hasn’t been updated for a year. And sample code among the best ranks. Also no changes from one day to the other. After a week of figuring, ‘optimizing’ the description, it’s really getting frustrating. It would really be MUCH better if they just admitted that keyword search is currently broken. I think your advice, to attach the main keyword to the app name, is probably the way to go – even though this is ridiculous and bad from the brand management perspective.