How Users Experience Account Linking for Alexa Skills

This topic shows common account linking experiences from a user's perspective, and what happens behind the scenes. The examples use a fictional custom skill, Ride Hailer, that lets users order rides.

For an explanation of account linking concepts, see Account Linking Concepts for Alexa Skills. For the special case of app-to-app account linking, which is not covered here, see App-to-App Account Linking.

How users know if a skill requires account linking

By default, users can enable a skill without starting the account linking flow. This configuration makes it easier for users to enable your skill and use the features that do not require authentication. For example, Ride Hailer might let users ask how long it will take to get to a particular destination even if they haven't linked their account. Alternatively, you can require users to link their account when they enable the skill.

The skill detail page in the Alexa app indicates whether account linking is required or optional, as follows:

Alexa skill account linking required or optional.

How users experience account linking

Users can initiate the account linking flow for a skill from the Alexa app in three ways: 1) when enabling the skill, 2) from the skill settings after enabling the skill, or 3) from an account linking card that the skill sends to the Alexa app when the user tries to use a feature that requires authentication. The following examples show the user flow for each case, and describe how the Alexa app interacts with the account linking components that you set up.

  • When enabling the skill           
  • From the skill settings              
  • From an account linking card   

If your skill supports app-to-app account linking, users can enter the account linking flow from your app instead of the Alexa app. This case is covered in App-to-App Account Linking.