Facebook Launches Registration for Application Verification Program

Want better distribution and visibility of your Facebook application? Today, Facebook launched the registration process for their previously announced “Applicatoin Verficiation Program”. How do you submit your application to be part of the program? Well, go fill out the Registration of Interest form for the Application Verification Program and you will be contacted shortly. Once you are contacted, you will have to pay a non-refundable $375 fee so that Facebook can review your application to ensure it follows the company’s guiding principles.

One of the biggest challenges for Facebook has been the proliferation of what could be subjectively described as less than useful applications. For example, the platform still continues to have an issue with simple quizzes such as “What kind of person do you attract?” Also there has been a revival of last year’s successful Snowball Fight! application. There is arguably not much value to throwing snowballs at other users but over 314,000 active users in the past month have participated in the fun.

So what exactly makes for a good application? According to Facebook’s integration point checklist, there are 12 important components:

  1. Applications should not surprise or deceive users.
  2. Email should be used to notify users of time-sensitive or user-requested application activity in their off-Facebook email inbox.
  3. Requests should only trigger action if a user responds.
  4. User-to-user notifications should be social, include both the sender and recipient, and should not request users to take action.
  5. Application-to-user notifications should be relevant to and targeted toward a user.
  6. News Feed stories should accurately describe a user’s action and full stories should come from high-user investment activities.
  7. Publisher is leveraged to provide rich content to user profiles and reflects the user’s intent and expectations.
  8. For tabs, Facebook has been a bit more broad and suggests tabs should “prominently and predominantly show information about the user”. Instead of using the tab as an alternative to the application, let the user share information about themselves.
  9. The application information section should only show information directly related to the user.
  10. Profile boxes should be compelling given that the user has entered enough information for it to be displayed.
  11. Message attachment button text should begin with a verb and make it clear what the attachment will be.
  12. Application should enable users to report inappropriate user-generated content and the application owner should respond to reports of inappropriate content.

One interesting component about the application verification program is that developers must have their application reevaluated every 12 months. The benefits of becoming a verified application have not been articulated by Facebook yet aside from a promotional badge and “increased visibility”. Specifics have not been provided in regards to what exactly increased visibility means.

Students and non-profits can receive a discount on the verification program fee and being accepted to the program will also result in discounts to the f8 developer conference. If you’d like more information regarding the program, you can go read about it here.

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