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Build Your Own Amazon Echo Skill: Publishing and Tracking User Behaviors (Part 4)

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Build Your Own Amazon Echo Skill: Publishing and Tracking User Behaviors (Part 4)

The final part of creating your Alexa skill is publishing it to Amazon and keeping track of how your users use it - pointing out possible flaws and improvements.

· IoT Zone
Free Resource

This article is part of the 4-part series about how to build your very own Amazon Echo skill. If you just landed here, you can go back to Step Three: How To Build Your Own Amazon Echo Skill: Testing and Customization or start from Step One here.

In this series of four articles, we explore how and why you should build an Alexa Skill. In this Part 4 of 4 article let’s dive into the steps to publish your skill and track user behaviors below.

Step Five: Publish Your Alexa Skill

1. Create an enticing description for your Alexa skill.

In the developer console, go to the Publishing Information section (from the sidebar). Come up an enticing and brief description of your skill. This is the only way to attract users!


Here are some examples of Alexa skill descriptions:


2. Add example voice commands that activate your Alexa skill.

For your example phrases, be sure they match utterances you created in the Interaction Model section.

3. Upload your Alexa skill icon.

Provide one small image size at 108 x 108 pixels and one large image size at 512 x 512 pixels. You will see success message after uploading your icon images.

4. Fill out the Testing Instructions text area.

In the Testing Instructions section, add the text “Based on the SpaceGeek template.” This alerts the Certification team that your submission uses Amazon’s standardized template, expediting the review process.


5. Submit your Alexa skill.

Select “Next”. In the Privacy and Compliance section, select ‘No’ for spending real money and collecting personal information. Adding URLs to your product privacy and terms of use pages are optional. Choose to certify that your skill can be imported to and exported from the U.S.. Click “Save”.

When you are satisfied with your skill, select “Submit for Certification”. Confirm your submission. Select “Yes” to submit your skill. Congratulations your Alexa skill has been submitted for review and will be live soon!

Step Six: Track User Behaviors

We recommend using VoiceLabs.co to track how users are interacting with your Alexa skill. We found implementing VoiceLabs during development is also helpful for identifying bugs.

Here’s a quick overview of the analytics VoiceLabs provides:

Usage Dashboard

Shows users and sessions for a given time period:


Intent Usage

Shows the most frequent response paths Alexa takes following a user command:

Behavioral Flows Usage

This shows you the response paths users are taking after voice activating your skill:


In the example above, it shows 26 users used our Alexa skill “Name that Tune”:

  • 12 of them did so by naming the artist of the song (artistanswer).

  • 5 of them named the song (songanswer).

  • The rest issued another command.


Click on any of the circle icons to view more details about that specific user path. In the example below, I’m reviewing users who started using my Alexa skill by saying the artist name, then quit the skill:


Reviewing the user detail shows me that users following this response path either ask for help or exit Alexa skill:



Build Your Own Alexa Skill

We've written up the above secrets as part of a free help guide on designing your own Alexa Skills. You can download it here:

How to Build your First Amazon Alexa Skill

Final thoughts

Creating your own Alexa skill not only makes it easier for users to use your product, increasing retention, engagement and activity, you can also nudge them to perform other high-value actions as well. Letting your users interact with your product within a very comfortable context for them, usually relaxing at home, also breeds a much deeper emotional connection between them and your product.

Want to revisit one of the previous steps in this series?

How To Build Your Own Amazon Echo Skill: Overview and Planning (Part 1 of 4)

How To Build Your Own Amazon Echo Skill: Building It (Part 2 of 4)

How To Build Your Own Amazon Echo Skill: Testing and Customization (Part 3 of 4)

Topics:
iot ,amazon echo ,alexa skills ,tutorial ,user behavior

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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