Overview

When you install an app onto your Android device, detailed information about that product is presented in its Google Play Store listing. Before making your new app publicly available, you’ll need to provide all of that information to Google– name, description, screenshots and more. We’ve provided a comprehensive list so that you can prepare.

Getting Started

You’ll need to submit the following introductory information about your app in order to begin the process of creating a new Google Play Store listing:

Name: This is the main name of your app. It does not have to match the fairly limited text that appears beneath your app’s icon on a user’s home screen. The name is limited to 50 characters.

Default Language: The default language is the one used for text, audio, and video content in your app.

App or Game?: Select one of these two categories. You can change your response later if necessary.

Free or Paid?: Make your selection. You can switch your response to this question later on as well.

Finally, indicate that your app meets Google’s Developer Program policies and is compliant with US export laws before moving on. Additional information about developer policies is available here.

Complete Listing

Below are several sections of data that must be completed before a development team is able to upload an app and ultimately publish a new Google Play Store listing. This information is required before you can distribute your app to testers or submit your product for Google’s review. To access detailed information about each data category, select an appropriate item in the left sidebar of the app’s detail in the “Grow > Store Presence” section.

Main Store Listing

Name: This is the main name of your app. Again, the name does not have to match the text that appears beneath your app’s icon on a user’s home screen. The name cannot exceed 50 characters.

Short Description: The short description is limited to 80 characters. It initially appears by default when end users view your Google Play Store listing.

Full Description: The full description describes the features and benefits of your app. It can’t exceed 4,000 characters.

App Icon: Your app icon should be submitted as an image that is 512 x 512 pixels and no more than 1 MB in size. Both JPEG or 32-bit PNG formats are acceptable. To avoid a submission rejection, don’t use badges or text that reference store ranking, price, or Google Play categories (such as “top”, “new”, or “sale”). It should be 512 x 512 pixels in either JPEG or 32-bit PNG format. The file can’t be over 1MB in size.

Feature Graphic: The feature graphic helps promote your app in different places on Google Play. Avoid placing text near the edges and be sure to center key visuals to prevent unwanted cropping. Your image should be 1024 x 500 pixels in either JPEG or 24-bit PNG format. The file can’t be over 1MB in size.

Screenshots: Depending on the devices supported by your app, you’ll need to provide screenshots for phones, 7” tablets, and 10” tablets. The requirements for all screenshots are the same. You must provide between 2-8screenshots for each device type. Screenshots must be in JPEG or 24-bit PNG (nontransparent) format. The specific dimensions are flexible as long as the sides are between 320 and 3,840 pixels and the aspect ratio of the image is 16:9. File sizes can’t exceed 8 MB.

Video: You have the option to provide a link to a private YouTube video showing your app in action.

Store Settings

App or Game?: Again, select one of the two categories for your app. 

Category: Choose one of the following:

Art & Design, Auto & Vehicles, Beauty, Books & Reference, Business, Comics, Communication, Dating, Education, Entertainment, Events, Finance, Food & Drink, Health & Fitness, House & Home, Libraries & Demo, Lifestyle, Maps & Navigation, Medical, Music & Audio, News & Magazine, Parenting, Personalization, Photography, Productivity, Shopping, Social, Sports, Tools, Travel & Local, Video Players & Editors, Weather

Tags: You may select up to five of the following tags to further classify your app. View the full list of tags for apps and games here.

Contact Information: An email address is required. You can also choose to submit additional contact information including a website URL and phone number that connects users to customer care.

External Marketing: Indicate whether or not you want Google to advertise your app outside of Google Play. You’ll only want to decline if your product is an internal app for your business. Otherwise, the extra exposure will help your distribution.

App Content

(Note: App Content is located in the “Policy” section at the bottom of the sidebar, not in the “Grow” section with the rest of the items above.)

All of the items in the App Content section are either mini questionnaires or forms. Tasks shift to the “Completed” group once you have finished them. All items need to be completed before you can publish your app.

Privacy Policy: Supply a link to the privacy policy for your app.

Ads: Indicate whether or not your app includes ads. If your answer is “yes”, then your app will have a “Contains ads” label in its Google Play Store listing. 

App Access: If parts of your product are restricted based on login credentials, memberships, location, or other forms of authentication, then you should provide instructions on app access. Make sure to keep this information current because Google may use it to review your app. Importantly, app information won’t be shared or used for any other reason outside of giving reviewers access to your product. If it helps to increase clarity, you and your team can include multiple sets of instructions on app access instead of just one. Each set must include a title, a  username or phone number and corresponding password, and explanatory text. 

You may want to add a link to a private YouTube video in the app access section. This additional item is necessary in at least two common circumstances:

  1. You can’t provide Google with a live test account in your production environment. This is the case for some of our financial clients.
  2. Your app integrates with hardware that the reviewer can’t access. If this describes your situation, then it is important to record a video that shows the app running on a phone and communicating with its associated hardware at the same time. The reviewer needs to see, for instance, that when you tap a button in your app’s UI, the light on the hardware turns green.

In both cases, it is critical to demonstrate the core functionality of your app. Don’t attempt to demonstrate every possible use case. Instead, we recommend that you keep your video to 2 minutes or less. Remember that the reviewer can pause and rewind as needed, so the video can run through your demo at an efficient pace. Your video doesn’t need to be narrated either, unless you think there is something unobvious that requires an explanation.

Content Rating: This is the minimum age for which the app is deemed appropriate. You won’t provide an age rating directly. Instead, you will answer a series of questions about topics that are not suitable for all ages, such as violence and profanity. Google will then assign an appropriate age rating based on those responses.

Target Audience & Content: You’ll respond to the following questions:

  • What are the target age groups of your app? (If you select ages 13 and under, then you’ll have additional questions to answer.)
  • Could your store listing unintentionally appeal to children?

News Apps: Indicate whether or not your product is a news app. Products that cover current events must comply with Google’s policy regarding news apps. Therefore, you’ll need to provide information that helps Google verify your credentials as a news publisher. You’ll also need to explain how you source the content that is shown in your app.

Pricing: If you intend to charge for your app, you’ll need to set up a Google merchant account. Then you’ll be able to select a pricing category for the app and indicate the countries in which it should be available.

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creating an android developer account
testing android apps via the google play store