Changes are coming to the Google Play Store. Soon when users search for an app, they’ll not only see results that best fit their search criteria but results for sponsored apps, which means developers that pay to promote their apps will be given a more prominent placement.
It’s just like when you do a Google search. Here, I’ve searched insurance rates and received a lit of results.
If you look closer at the results, you’ll see that the top three results have the Ad tag, which means that the sites listed paid to received top placement on the search results. People are much more likely to click on one the results at the top of the page.
Now Google is offering app developers a chance to pay for exposure. According to a post on the company’s blog for app developers, “We are always looking for new ways to help you get your apps in front of potential new users. That’s why, in the next few weeks, we will begin piloting sponsored search results on Google Play, bringing our unique expertise in search ads to the store.”
It’s a polite way to say that if you want to stay at the top of the search results, you’ll need to pay for it. Google is starting out with a group of what it calls “pilot advertisers.” Opportunities for other developers to take part should come along later.
It looks as if the sponsored apps will also be tagged with the same yellow ad tag that notes sponsored search results. Before downloading any app, no matter where it turns up in the search results, it’s always best to check out the user reviews and find out what people have to say about it. Just keep in mind that turning up first in the search results, doesn’t mean an app is the best or the most popular app.