Tip: Submit better screenshots

Monday, July 14, 2008 at 11:56 AM

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but a screenshot can be worth a thousand users. You've worked so hard to create a cool gadget; don't let a bad screenshot get in the way of its adoption.

As you probably know if you've submitted a gadget, the directory requires one small screenshot and one large screenshot of your gadget.

The large screenshot is fairly straightforward and can simply demonstrate the gadget in action, as the following image shows.

Small screenshots are a bit trickier because of the limited area. The best advice I can offer is that the screenshot doesn't need to be 100% faithful. The important thing is to attract attention, while still giving an idea of what the gadget looks like.

Let's look at a few small screenshots from the directory.

This is just a cropped version of a full screenshot. Most often, this kind of cropping is a sign of laziness. A scrunched picture like this one is an ineffective way to draw in users.
If you're going to crop the screenshot, try to make the screenshot creative, like this one.
Here's another good screenshot, a scaled-down version of a full screenshot on an attractive gradient background. We may not all be graphic wizards, but we should all be able to come up with something similar.

By taking a look at the gadget directory, you can see what works and what doesn't for screenshots.

Have a tip you'd like to share? Send it to gd-developer AT google DOT com. To see all tips, choose the Tips label.

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