Alexa Skills Playbook


Building Alexa skills is both an art and science — technical requirements and creative considerations go into designing natural voice experiences. The secret to building engaging skills is to give thought to both.

In this guide, we’ll explore the best practices used by some of our most successful skill developers. We’ll look at what it takes to build an engaging skill, how to market it, and how to make money. We’ll also point you to additional resources and code samples to help you get started. 

How to Build a High-Quality, Engaging Alexa Skill

First, think about your customer and what kind of skill they might want — maybe it’s a fun new game or something that helps them be more productive. For inspiration, you can study the list of categories in the Amazon Skills Store; don’t forget to make sure that your idea is unique. Next, onto building the skill. If you have never built a skill before, it can be a daunting task. This playbook is here to help, it outlines some best practices and features to adopt.

For more advanced skill developers, the Alexa Design Guide will walk you through the principles of situational voice design. It will help you create voice-first skills that are natural, user-centric, and accompanied by complementary visual design.

Here are features to use when building an engaging skill:

  • Scale with your growth
  • Build for screens
  • Ensure accuracy and quality of your skill
  • Create new pathways for customers to discover your skill, naturally




How to Market Your Skill

Once you have learned about the technical building blocks, it’s time to turn to the other half of building an engaging Alexa skill: the art is in effective marketing.

Customers have thousands of skills to choose from in the Amazon Skills Store. This means that developers are always vying for customer attention and seeking ways to increase engagement with their skills. In this playbook, we’ll explain some strategies for setting yourself apart from other developers

Here are five ways to spread the word and set up your skill for better discovery:

  • Create a clear, intuitive name and description
  • Share your Alexa Routine to make the skill a part of someone’s day
  • Feature your skill digitally: on your website, social, in advertisements
  • Enable mobile customers to use their voice
  • Build for a language, not a locale, to reach a global audience

Finally, after helping with the building blocks and marketing strategies, this playbook offers advice on how to:

  • Make Money with your Alexa Skills