Enrolling in the external offers program

 

As of March 6, 2024, and subject to meeting the program requirements below and section 9 of our Payments policy, developers can sign up for a new external offers program if they want to lead users in the European Economic Area (EEA) outside the app, including to promote offers for in-app digital features and services. See details below and visit our developer integration guide to get started.

The external offers program allows developers of Google Play-distributed apps to lead users in the European Economic Area (EEA) outside the app, including to promote offers for in-app features and services, subject to Google Play's Payments policy. Developers must meet the below eligibility and requirements, and complete their enrollment in this program prior to promoting external offers. Participating developers are subject to our Payments policy and the applicable service fees described below, which support our investments in Play and Android, will continue to apply.

Eligibility

In order to be eligible for this program:

  • Developer must be registered as a business.

Requirements

Developers participating in this program must comply with the following requirements: 

  • Limit external offers to users in the EEA.
  • External offers must only direct users to the developer’s own digital features or services.
  • Provide all destination URLs through Play Console.
  • Enroll and get approval for your app(s) in the external offers program as defined below.
  • Integrate with the external offers APIs to direct users outside the app, including calling these APIs so Google can surface the required information screen and developers can report applicable transactions.
  • Provide customer support and refund methods for users completing external transactions through an external offer, and provide a process to dispute unauthorized transactions.
  • Play store listings must not include information regarding purchases outside the app to minimize any possible user confusion.
  • When directing users outside the app, developers must:
    • Inform the user about the destination page and its purpose, and place this icon immediately following the link to indicate that a user will be directed outside the app. For example:

      See more gem offers at gems.exampleapp.com
       
    • Have a clearly visible URL on your destination page, allowing the user to understand where they've been directed.
    • Not pass additional parameters in the URL or pre-populate data from the app, in order to protect the user.
    • Not redirect or mislead users to a different destination page than that presented in your external offer, or present other false or deceptive information.
  • Pay Google the applicable fees for transactions associated with a Play app that are concluded outside the app following the external offer. Like our standard service fees, the fees associated with the external offers program reflect the value provided by Android and Play and support our continued investments across Android and Play. These fees consist of two separate components related to the value Play delivers: (a) a two-year time-limited fee for the initial acquisition of the user, and (b) a fee for the ongoing services (including Play’s security and update services) that Play continues to provide to the developer. 
    • The following fees apply, starting from the point that a user first completes a transaction within 120 hours of following an external offer (the first external transaction):
      • Initial acquisition fee: 5% for auto-renewing subscriptions and 10% for other offers of in-app digital features and services.
      • Ongoing services fee: 7% for auto-renewing subscriptions and 17% for other offers of in-app digital features and services.
    • The fees above apply to both the first external transaction, and to all digital content subsequently purchased on an external website for use in the app, irrespective of any time window.
    • After the two-year initial acquisition period, a developer may choose to discontinue Play's ongoing services for a particular app. Since users acquired the app through Play with the expectation of services such as parental controls, security scanning, fraud prevention, and continuous app updates, discontinuation of services requires user consent as well. Subsequently, ongoing services and associated fees will no longer apply to these users. Developers are still responsible for reporting transactions involving users who choose to continue receiving ongoing services from Play.

Enroll your app in the external offers program

To enroll in the external offers program, you must complete the following steps:

  1. Review the requirements on this page to determine if your app(s) meets all the eligibility criteria.
  2. Complete the external offers declaration form, accept the Terms of Service, and complete any onboarding steps required to enroll in the program through Google’s support team.
  3. Integrate the external offers APIs.
  4. Enroll your app(s) directly through Play Console. Once you've identified the apps and countries/regions in which you will be providing external offers, click on a section below to expand it and follow the steps to enroll your app and manage your external offers settings:
a. Enroll your app
  1. Open Play Console and go to the External offers page (Settings > Linking to external offers).
  2. Find the app you want to enroll and click Manage in the table. This opens the Monetization setup page for that app.
  3. Click + Add/Edit countries / regions to select the EEA countries/regions you want to apply the external offers program to for this particular app.
    • The list of selectable countries/regions is determined by the program's availability in those countries/regions.
  4. When you've finished selecting countries/regions, click Save changes.
  5. These steps need to be completed for each app you want enrolled into the program.
b. View information and manage program settings

You can manage your external offers program settings, including app level enrollment and profile information, on the External offers page (Settings > Linking to external offers).

c. View regional external offers invoice information
  1. Open Play Console and go to the Invoices page (Settings > Invoices for payments outside Google Play Billing).
  2. You can select the appropriate user region tab to view the corresponding transaction and service fee information associated with transactions made by users in that region such as your amount due, transactions, invoices and documents, and settings.
d. Manage external offers settings
  1. Open Play Console and go to the External offers page (Settings > Linking to external offers).
  2. Find the app you want to enroll and click Manage in the table. This opens the Monetization setup page for that app.
  3. Click + Edit country/regions to select the countries/regions you want to update external offers in.
    • The list of selectable countries/regions is determined by the program's availability in those countries/regions.
  4. When you've finished selecting countries/regions, click Save Changes.

5. Report all applicable authorized transactions to Google Play within 24 hours of the external transaction.

If you have any additional questions, you can contact our support team here.

 Open declaration form

Frequently asked questions

Can developers utilize external offers for users in other geographies beyond the EEA?

No, this program is limited to EEA users. Developers from other regions can enroll in the program to target users in the EEA outside of the Play App.

Which countries make up the European Economic Area (EEA)?

Currently the EEA includes: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden.

Are game developers eligible for this program?

Yes, both game and app developers are eligible to apply and participate in the external offers program.

For which type of products can I offer the external offers program?

The program is available for apps and games across all form factors including mobile, tablet, Chrome OS, Android TV, and Wear OS.

Are all developers required to enroll in the external offers program?

No, this is an opt-in program only. If you do not wish to direct users outside of the app, no action is required.

Can I make external offers available for only some of my apps?

Yes, after successfully signing up to the external offers program, you can select which apps you want to enroll for external offers at any given time using the Play Console.

How can I notify Google of any changes to external payments program country enrollment selections?

You can change the external payments program enrollment in a market for a given app package through your Play Console settings. Any updates will be effective immediately, including changes to applicable service fees.

What are the steps to integrate with the external offers APIs?

It is easy to extend your existing integration with Google Play’s billing system to utilize external offers APIs. The APIs are built upon the same design patterns and principles as our Play Billing Library and Play Developer APIs. This means they are compatible with your existing designs and will be mostly familiar to your teams. In our developer integration guide, we provide detailed guidelines and resources on how to get started. We welcome developer feedback on these APIs and any additional resources that would be helpful.

If you have any questions or feedback about the external offers APIs, please contact us here.

If I am already participating in an alternative billing program, can I also participate in the external offers program?

Yes, developers can take advantage of both programs if they so choose and if they satisfy requirements of both programs and meet the eligibility criteria for both. If you have both programs available in an app, the applicable service fees for a transaction depend on where the user chooses to conclude the transaction (within app or outside the app). To participate in the external offers program and start promoting external offers, you need to successfully complete the signup process and comply with all the program requirements.

Can I use Google Play's billing system alongside external offers?

Yes, developers can take advantage of Google Play's billing system while also participating in the external offers program. If you have both Google Play Billing and are promoting external offers, the applicable service fees for a transaction depend on where the user chooses to conclude the transaction (within app or outside the app). To participate in the external offers program and start promoting external offers, you need to successfully complete the signup process and comply with all the program requirements.

Why does the external offers program require a service fee?

Play's fees support our investment in Android and Google Play and reflect the value provided by Android and Play, including enabling us to distribute Android for free and provide the continuously growing suite of tools and services that help developers build successful businesses, all while keeping our platforms safe and secure for billions of users worldwide. 

To comply with the Digital Markets Act (DMA) regulation, developers may enroll in the external offers program. In order to continue our investments in the ecosystem, developers who participate with the external offers program will be subject to a new service fee model for user purchases associated with a Play app that are concluded outside the app, consisting of an initial acquisition fee and an ongoing services fee.

How did Play land on the new fee model for the external offers program?

The new service fee model for the external offers program has two components : 

The initial acquisition fee will be time-limited to reflect that Play is charging only for value it provided in facilitating the initial acquisition of the user through Play. The time period for the ‘initial acquisition’, in turn, will take into account the way that app developers typically monetize apps. Many developers do so through small incremental transactions running over extended periods. For any transactions falling outside the two-year initial acquisition period for a given user, developers will not incur the initial acquisition fee. 

The ongoing services fee will be charged for as long as the developer continues to use Play’s ongoing services (including Play’s security and update services). A developer can choose to opt out of Play’s ongoing services for a given app, once the initial acquisition period of two years has ended. Since users acquired the app through Play with the expectation of services such as parental controls, security scanning, fraud prevention, and continuous app updates, discontinuation of services requires user consent. Therefore, when a developer decides to opt out, eligible users of the app must take action to agree to the opt out. Ongoing services and associated fees will then not apply with respect to those users. You will still need to report transactions for users who choose to continue to receive ongoing services from Play.

How do the different service fees apply if I’m offering Google Play's billing system and also participating in the external offers program?
Here’s an example to illustrate how different service fees apply in this scenario. User A is using the Fantastiq App that monetizes with Google Play's billing system within the app and is participating in the external offers program. Here’s a sample of purchases from that user and the applicable service fees for the developer:
 
Where the user completes a transaction while using the Fantastiq App Fee model type Purchasing time Type of item bought Fee
Within the app Google Play's billing system Not applicable Fabulous Playing Monthly Subscription 15%
Outside the app External offers Within two years after the first external transaction Stream More Annual Subscription

Initial acquisition fee: 5%
+
Ongoing services fee: 7% (can be opted out of after the second year)

 

Outside the app External offers After two years after the first external transaction 100 Extra Hearts

Ongoing services fee: 17% (if user continues to use Play services)

Outside the app External offers After two years after the first external transaction Premium Monthly Subscription

Ongoing services fee: 7% (if user continues to use Play services)

 

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