Chrome Web Store will show badges for reputable developers and extensions [Update: Official]

Chrome Web Store will show badges for reputable developers and extensions [Update: Official]

Update 1 (04/20/2022 @ 11:34 ET): Google has officially announced the new badge system. The company said in a statement, “since 2009, publishers have been hard at work building extensions that make Chrome more powerful, useful and customizable for users. It has always been our mission to make it easy for users to find great extensions while recognizing the publishers who create them. Today, we’re announcing two new extension badges to help us deliver on our goal: the Featured badge and the Established Publisher badge. Both badges are live on the Chrome Web Store today.”

The article as published on April 20, 2022, is preserved below.

XDA VIDEO OF THE DAY

The Chrome Web Store is Google’s repository of extensions and themes for the Chrome web browser, which has had repeated issues with malicious extensions. The new Manifest V3 standard aimed to fix some of the excessive permissions given to browser extensions by default, and now Google will start highlighting reputable developers and publishers with a special badge.

Google wrote in an email to Chrome Web Store developers on Friday, “we’re happy to announce two new extension badges to help us deliver on that goal: the Featured badge and the Established publisher badge. Both of these badges will appear in the store in the next few weeks. Developers who earn these badges may receive higher rankings in search and filtering, and may also see their extensions appear in special promotions both on and off Chrome Web Store.”

"Developers who earn these badges may receive higher rankings in search and filtering"

The first is a Featured badge, which “will be granted to extensions that follow our technical best practices and meet a high standard of user experience and design.” This badge is given to extensions manually by the Chrome Web Store team, so there isn’t a full (public) list of guidelines, but the email mentioned a clear store listing page and following best practices as some of the criteria.

The Established publisher badge will be granted automatically to developers and publisher accounts that have been verified and “established a consistent positive track record with Google services and compliance with the Developer Program Policy.” In other words, most developers that haven’t broke Chrome Web Store rules will probably get the badge at some point.

Google says publishers will not be able to pay money for either badge, but the company is working on ways for developers to request consideration. Starting on April 20, developers will be able to nominate their own extensions for a Featured badge.

The new badges are similar to the Recommended Extensions program for Firefox, which contains extensions that “meet the highest standards of security, functionality, and user experience” after a thorough evaluation by Mozilla. Extensions in the program get a ‘Recommended’ badge in the Firefox Add-ons repository, and developers also can’t pay Mozilla to be included in the program.

Email to Chrome Web Store developers

Dear Developer,

Since 2009, developers have been hard at work building extensions that make Chrome more powerful, useful, and personalized for users. The Chrome Web Store aims to make it easy for users to find top quality extensions while recognizing the developers who create them. Today, we’re happy to announce two new extension badges to help us deliver on that goal: the Featured badge and the Established publisher badge. Both of these badges will appear in the store in the next few weeks.

Developers who earn these badges may receive higher rankings in search and filtering, and may also see their extensions appear in special promotions both on and off Chrome Web Store. Learn more about the new badges below.

Featured badge

The Featured badge will be granted to extensions that follow our technical best practices and meet a high standard of user experience and design. Featured badges will be assigned to qualifying extensions through our extension review system. Chrome staff will manually evaluate each extension before it receives the badge, paying special attention to the following:

  1. Adherence to Chrome Web Store’s best practices guidelines, including providing a delightful and intuitive experience, using the latest platform APIs, and respecting the privacy of end-users.
  2. A store listing page that is clear and helpful to prospective users, with quality images and a detailed description.

Established Publisher badge

The new Established Publisher badge will showcase developers who have verified their identity and demonstrated compliance with the developer program policies. This badge will be granted automatically to publishers who meet the following two conditions:

  1. The publisher’s identity has been verified.
  2. The publisher has established a consistent positive track record with Google services and compliance with the Developer Program Policy.

Any extensions built by a developer who follows the Chrome Web Store Developer Program Policies and does not have any unresolved violations will be considered. For new developers, it will take at least a few months of respecting these conditions to qualify. Today, this represents nearly 75% of all extensions in the Chrome Web Store and we expect this number to keep growing.

What you need to do

There is no mandatory action, but we recommend that developers review their extension(s) over the next few weeks to ensure they’re in line with our best practices guidelines.

Note that developers cannot pay to receive either badge, but we aim to provide them with other ways to request consideration. Starting on April 20, 2022 the One Stop Support page will begin trialing an option that allows developers to nominate extensions for the Featured badge. Additional details will be available in the Discovery on the Chrome Web Store documentation.

We are excited to recognize extension excellence on the Chrome Web Store through these new badges. Thank you for your participation in the Chrome extension ecosystem!

– The Google Chrome Web Store team

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Corbin Davenport
Corbin Davenport

Corbin is a tech journalist and software developer. Check out what he's up to at corbin.io.

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