Design Your Skill
Designing for voice is different from visual design. Your design approach must consider voice-first interactions adapted to the way customers express intent naturally through speech. For Alexa-enabled devices with a screen, you can enhance the voice interaction with complementary visual design.
Design for the voice interaction model
Every Alexa skill has a voice interaction model that defines the words and phrases that users can say to Alexa to make the skill do what they want. For details, see About Voice Interaction Models.
If you are developing a skill using the prebuilt voice interaction model, the set of utterances for each skill type are pre-designed. Consult the Alexa Design Guide for other design considerations such as, best practices for developing skills for children, accessibility, and in-skill purchasing.
If you are building a custom skill, the first step is to design the voice interaction model. You might design a request-response dialog, use a conversational model, or use a mixed approach. For details about designing a custom voice interaction model, see the Alexa Design Guide. The design guide offers best practices for designing the interaction model, adding visuals to your skill, adding voice to apps, developing skills for children, and more. You can also try the Skill Flow Builder to design and test narrative-driven Alexa skills.
The following additional resources help you learn about designing an Alexa skill.
Concepts and procedures
- How Building for Voice Differs from Building for the Screen – The four design best practices that are unique to voice-first interactions.
- Amazon Alexa Brand External – Guidelines about how adhere to Amazon Alexa marketing and branding with your skill.
- 4 Principles of Conversational Voice Design
- Why Voice Design Matters: We Don't Speak the Way We Write
- How Building for Voice Differs from Building for the Screen: Build Adaptable Voice-First Interactions
- How Building for Voice Differs from Building for the Screen: Individualize Your Entire Interaction
- How Building for Voice Differs from Building for the Screen: Make Your Voice-First Interactions Accessible
- How Building for Voice Differs from Building for the Screen: Talk with Your Customers, Not at Them
- Build Advanced Alexa Skills: Confirm What Customers Want with Dialog Management
- 6 Dialog Management Resources to Build Advanced Alexa Skills
- Things Every Alexa Skill Should Do: Pass the One-Breath Test
Videos, podcasts, and webinars
- Alexa, what's an utterance?
- Alexa, what are slots?
- Alexa, what's a launch phrase?
- Alexa, what's an invocation name?
- Voice Design 101: An Introduction
- Voice Design 101
- Advanced Voice Design
- Building for Voice vs. Screens
- Building Voice-First Life Hacks
- Design for Voice in 3 Steps - Amazon Alexa Voice Design Guide
- How to Understand Intents - Amazon Alexa Voice Design Guide
- How To Interact with Alexa - Amazon Alexa Voice Design Guide
- How to Simplify Your Responses - Amazon Alexa Voice Design Guide
- How to Choose Projects for Voice - Amazon Alexa Voice Design Guide
- How to Ask Clear Questions - Amazon Alexa Voice Design Guide
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Steve Tingiris from Dabble Lab – Some insights into building a community, sharing knowledge, and voice innovation.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Justina Nguyen from Dashbot – Some analytics and constant improvement suggestions.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Rebecca Evanhoe from Mobiquity Inc – A discussion about voice design patterns.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Bahubali Shete from Klove Chef – A discussion about voice first and technology in the kitchen.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Brandon Kaplan from Skilled Creative – A discussion about building a voice-first business.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Dustin Coates from Algolia – A discussion about voice search, community, and maintaining context.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Adva Levin from Pretzel Labs – A discussion about design, personas, and skills for kids.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Tahsim – A discussion about bringing musical content to people through voice.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Nick Schwab from Invoked Apps – Some insights into the skill-building process.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Huy Nguyen ChefSteps – A discussion about voice enabling and voice technology in the kitchen.
- Talking #VoiceFirst with Jan König from Jovo – A discussion about designing for voice first.