App discoverability is a constant thorn in the side of developers. It’s also an obvious annoyance for consumers who have to spent time sifting through app store chaff to find the bits of software really worth downloading. Amazon looks to be considering both sides of this problem with a new feature — called Billboards — it’s just added to the Kindle Fire and Fire HD app store.
Announced on its blog today, Billboards aim to act like posters for apps by announcing their existence and enticing people to download them.
Billboards appear at the top of Amazon’s app store when Kindle Fire and Fire HD users view the store. Tapping on a Billboard will jump straight into the app info page, where there’s also an option to buy or download it.
Amazon’s blog post includes some guidance for the kind of imagery it deems suitable for Billboards — encouraging developers to create simple, bold, eye-catching imagery. It also warns them off from listing specifics such as price or advertising discounts on the Billboards.
When creating your image, we recommend that you strive for an engaging image that speaks to what your app is all about. Make your image colorful to catch the eye of customers, and choose imagery that promotes the essence of your app and brand. Text on your promotional image should be large, simple, and readable. Do not add the price to the image ($0.99) or any discount call outs (50% off).
We recommend developers use promotional images that visually communicate the essence of their app. The promotional image should speak to what your app is all about, your brand and should entice customers to simply check out your great app.
App developers wanting to add a Billboard image to accompany their app should submit a 1024 x 500 pixels graphic (PNG or JPG format) via Amazon’s Mobile App Distribution Portal.
Of course there are no guarantees your Billboard will appear atop Amazon’s store — since Amazon is the one doing the picking. “Promotional images will be curated from our selection of apps and highlighted in the billboards placement,” it notes.