By default, Gnome 3 employs a non-traditional empty desktop with no intuitive way to drag applications for easy launching. Here’s how to enable Gnome 3 to bring back those desktop icons again:
1) Install “dconf-editor”
2) Once installed press “alt-f2” and type “dconf-editor”, when that opens go to “org->gnome->desktop->background“.
3) tick “show-desktop-icons“. You should already see a few icons on the desktop.
To add new applications on your desktop, right click on the desktop choose “create launcher” and add the application’s name and command (may require complete path) on the fields. You can also change the icons by clicking on the icon.. you can use the “Applications->Others->Main Menu” app to determine the complete path and icon path for your app.