Amazon uses a hierarchy of nodes to organize its items for sale. Each node represents a collection of items for sale, such as Harry Potter books, and not the items themselves. Product Advertising API calls the nodes, browse nodes, because customers can browse through the nodes to find the collection of items that interests them. For example, customers might be interested in the browse nodes Literature & Fiction, Medicine, Mystery & Thrillers, Non Fiction, or Outdoors & Nature.
Browse nodes are related in a hierarchical structure. A browse node can be a leaf node or a branch node. A leaf node has no children nodes, but a branch node does, such as in the following example:
Different levels of the hierarchical tree of nodes can be used to catalog and find items. The nodes progress from general to specific. For example, a top-level browse node might be Shoes. Its child browse nodes can be Men's Shoes, Women's Shoes, and Children's Shoes. Child browse nodes are subsets of the parent’s product category. Navigating down the tree refines the search for items from general to more specific. Going up the tree generalizes the search from the child browse node towards the root node.
The following topics covers other relevant information related to browse nodes: