Amazon is bringing Alexa in-skill purchasing — which allows for developers to generate revenue from voice apps — to Japan, the U.K and Germany, according to reports. The option was introduced in the U.S. last year, and allows developers to get money through apps by the sale of goods as a purchase, via subscriptions or consumables.
These can include things like an expansion pack for a trivia game, or an upgraded experience from a sound skill. The push is meant to incentivize developers to continue making voice skills for the device, as the technology is still fairly young, and many are figuring out what works and what doesn’t.
Alexa currently has about 80,000 voice skills, a number that illustrates how many skills aren’t getting traction. Amazon took the time to highlight some that did work, however, like a game skill called Escape the Airplane, which boasts a 34 percent conversion rate. Another successful skill is Nick Schwab’s ambient Sleep Sounds, which has almost 2 million monthly users. Customers get free trials or monthly subscriptions, and there’s a 30 percent conversion rate. The option for a premium experience in both skills is presented as such, and it’s never pushed on a user.
The expansion will mean developers can monetize skills pertaining to local content, instead of customers in those countries having to rely on American material. Developers who are interested in the project can submit an idea to Amazon here.
“There are two ways to monetize your skill: in-skill purchasing (ISP) and Amazon Pay for Alexa Skills. You can use ISP to sell digital goods and services, such as hints in a trivia skill or additional lives in a game skill, and more,” Amazon said on the submit page. “You can use Amazon Pay for Alexa Skills [to sell] real-world goods and services, such as food, clothing, car pickup services and more. With ISP and Amazon Pay, you can reach customers around the world through an interaction as natural as voice, powered by a seamless payment processing flow handled by Amazon.”