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Tips for a Successful Alexa Skill Certification: Example Phrases

Example phrases are sentences/phrases that are an integral and unique part of Alexa skills. These phrases are shown on the skill's detail card in the Alexa App, which helps users understand how they can invoke and interact with the skill correctly.


Customers are most likely to try these example phrases the first time they interact with the skill. Therefore, making sure that they work well and that they provide a good user experience is important.


A customer can see these example phrases displayed under the “Try saying” section when they discover your skill, and hence gives you the advantage of highlighting the key feature here.


A simple example phrase can be broken down into different components, which include the following:


[Wake Word], [Launch Word] [Invocation Name] [Connecting Word] [Utterance]


  • Wake word: This is “Alexa” by default on Alexa devices, but can be adjusted by customers based on their preferences. Feel free to use “Alexa” as the wake word in your example phrases.
  • Launch word: This includes a set of starting phrases like "open," "ask," "start," "launch," "begin, "run," “load,” and more. You can find more details here.
  • Invocation name: This is the unique name which you have selected to invoke the specific skill. For more information, read through our Tech Doc.
  • Connecting word: These are words which connect the launch word to utterances and include "and," "to," "for,” “when,” and more. For a full list of connecting words and to know how connecting words work with the example phrases, please see Understanding How Users Invoke Custom Skills. While this component can be omitted, including it would be more natural for consumers to understand.
  • Utterance: Sample utterances are required, should be robust , also cover as many different things that you think users will say as possible and should be modeled based on the sample utterances within your interaction model.


Customers can use a combination of the invocation name and some request, action, or command to invoke your skill with a specific request (intent). Here is how you can model the example phrases for such requests for customers:

https://developer.amazon.com/en-US/docs/alexa/custom-skills/understanding-how-users-invoke-custom-skills.html#cert-invoke-specific-request


The simplest and easiest way to help customers without a particular request, action, or command requires no specific intent to invoke a skill. See how to use example phrases with no specific intent:

https://developer.amazon.com/en-US/docs/alexa/custom-skills/understanding-how-users-invoke-custom-skills.html#no-intent


Remember to completely review and test your example phrases before submitting your skill for certification. Doing this helps you to get catch errors beforehand and check if the example phrases are giving the accurate response as expected by the interaction model of the skill. Check out this document for more details:

https://developer.amazon.com/en-US/docs/alexa/custom-skills/functional-testing-for-a-custom-skill.html#cert-example-phrases


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