Facebook Updates App Center Game Categories, Spotlights Bingo Blitz, Vostu

By Justin Lafferty 

Facebook recently tweaked the categories in its app center, allowing users to more easily find games and bring more fun applications to the forefront. The site also highlighted developer Vostu and a popular game from Buffalo Studios, Bingo Blitz.

Facebook announced Wednesday that it updated the game genres available in app center in order to make it easier for people to find games

Facebook’s Sean Quinlan described the changes:

We are introducing new and updated game categories to the app center to make it easier for people to browse and find games. These changes to genres, such as breaking out “Action & Arcade” into two separate categories, are aimed at helping people find a variety of games and drive more traffic to developers with apps in the app center. The games category will move to the top of the category list and be prominently displayed, with games subcategories below it. We will continue to periodically update game genres to reflect the growing and diverse games ecosystem.

Additionally, Facebook gave kudos to game developer Vostu, maker of Candy Dash and Mini Fazenda. Vostu updated its payment flow using Facebook’s application-programming interface to make payment via mobile phone easier. The developer optimized virtual goods pricing to match the available price points, and it also streamlined the way mobile gamers pay.

Since Vostu did that, the total number of users who paid via mobile grew fourfold, mobile payment increased by 260 percent, and mobile revenues weight on total revenues more than doubled.

Facebook also put Bingo Blitz, developed by Buffalo Studios, in the developers’ blog spotlight. Bingo Blitz recently added monthly premium subscriptions, offering players benefits and rewards. The game also offered bigger daily awards for every day that subscribers returned to the game, along with access to special playing rooms.

The result? 85 percent of subscribers return daily to collect rewards. Buffalo Studios told Facebook that renewal rates are 80 percent for subscribers each month, and subscriptions have boosted total revenue by 8 percent.

Brooke Olson, vice president of studio operations at Buffalo Studios, discussed with Facebook how Bingo Blitz has found success:

We structured our (subscription) offering around daily rewards, so the more frequently people come, the more rewards they get. It has been a great retention mechanism for us.