Facebook announced that it is testing games stories on the mobile news feed. This could attract devs to its recently launched HTML5 mobile gaming platform with bait of reaching hundreds of millions of daily active Facebook mobile users.
“We’ve made updates to the games categories as well as some of the main communication channels, including Bookmarks and the Apps and Games Dashboard. Additionally, we are testing new feed stories on mobile, to improve app engagement. Finally we have also published a Games Tutorial to provide game developers best practices for building on Facebook Platform,” informs Namita Gupta.
Facebook has also launched “Suggested Events” feature. Replacing the old Friends’ Events sub-tab of the home page’s Events bookmark, Suggested Events helps you discover things to do that take place at venues you’ve checked in to, that friends are RSVP’d to, that are hosted by Pages you Like, or a combination.
A spokesperson says “Suggestions Events” can be based on the music you listen to through Open Graph apps, which can help improve recommendations for those who checkin via Foursquare or don’t share their location at all.
Testing Games Stories in the Mobile News Feed
Gupta said “We’ve recently begun testing aggregated game stories for mobile platform apps to drive traffic from mobile devices to games. Gamers and non-gamers alike will see stories for the games their friends are playing the most.”
To track referrals coming from this story you look for the ref param “feed_gameplay”.
Games Category Updates
In order to streamline the categories, company has removed the “Other” category. If your game is categorized as “Other”, you’ll need to pick a new category, informs gupta. Adding, she said “To set your Game Category, go to Developer App and then hit “Edit Settings” for your app. You can now categorize your app by navigating to About > Basic Info and selecting “Games” in the first drop down menu in the category field and then selecting the relevant Game sub-category in the second drop down menu.”
Here are the additional updates:
- Added new categories for “Casino”, “Family”, “Sports”, “Strategy” and “Word”
- “Role Playing” is now “Adventure”
- “Virtual World” is now “Simulation”.
Since, company’s first ever Social Games Hack at the Facebook HQ, Facebook have posted videos for all the content presented there. Also, the company has “created a Games Tutorial that provides several pro-tips and best practices for using social channels, building seamless experiences on Canvas and finally monetization strategies on Facebook,” gupta said.
“We recently increased the number of bookmarks at the top right of every canvas page from four to six. Early results have shown that this has increased referrals from canvas bookmarks to games by 20%. Also, updated bookmark counters on the home page to clear automatically once clicked, similar to how notifications behave,” Gupta informs.
Combined Apps & Games Dashboard into a single dashboard, called “Apps and Games”. “The updated dashboard will allow users to see all their requests and invites in a single page and will highlight new apps and games to them. Invites from friends are pinned to the top of the dashboard, and the top apps section showcases the apps and games friends are using most.”