Search Index

Finding items you want can be difficult because of the number of items for sale on Amazon. You can return too many items in a response or return no items at all. Amazon addresses this difficulty by placing every item it sells into a product category, called a Search Index.

Search indices can be divided in groups of everything for sale on Amazon, as shown in the following example:

By specifying one slice in a request, you avoid returning items in all the other slices. This makes requests more targeted and reduces search times. For example, when looking for a specific book, specify the "Books" SearchIndex in the SearchItems request.

  • If a SearchIndex in not specified in the SearchItems request, the search happens across all Search Indexes. For example, if you search for "Harry Potter" as your keyword, the Product Advertising API can return results in many search indices, including Books, DVD, Video, and Music. By specifying the Search index, the search request is better targeted.
  • Specifying the wrong search index may leads into undesired or no results. For example, if your keyword is "carburetor" and the search index is HomeAndKitchen, the Product Advertising API might not return items that matches the search criteria.

SearchIndex values differ by marketplace. For list of valid search index values in each marketplace, refer Locale Reference.

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