Importance of APIs in Business
What is an API?
API or Application Program Interface is an essential tool for businesses, especially software businesses. They are means through which several programs interact with each other.
SMS API providers, Voice call API providers, etc., are essential to businesses as they enable companies to grow their businesses quickly. Just like “the internet” or dot com bubble, we like to call it opened doors to many companies and helped them expand. API is creating new waves into the industry across several businesses.
As more and more people incorporate internet, apps, web services into their daily lives, businesses need to incorporate APIs into their businesses. APIs allow companies to put the customers’ data to use, which in turn allows new opportunities to improve existing products, systems and operations.
A company should have both public and private APIs. When a company releases public APIs, it helps businesses engage with their customers’ phone through the internet directly. And when businesses develop, private APIs businesses can streamline their operations and increase the productivity of their business.
How APIs help businesses?
1. Connect with customers
An API can help businesses to connect with customers on a personal level. Like SMS API Providers, Map APIs, Quotation API, etc., help developers connect with the data that a business has already with the customers by helping them in different areas of the business.
The company can improve its customer base by reaching out to new customers who interact with the company.
2. Streamline Operations
Just like using customer data to improve, customer engagement is essential for a company. Collecting internal data and using it for the employees’ benefit to streamline repetitive operations. This will not only ensure streamlined operations but also minimise any errors in the processes.
APIs allow faster innovation in a business. The barrier to change is reduced, and more people or customers contribute to the success of a business strategy. They also help the company to create better products and stand out from the competition. As APIs allow for better cross-platform communication they can also continuously help people to improve their product and stay in touch with the customers
APIs make monetisation easier. Having several platforms means we can sell ad spaces and thus monetise the APIs. Any service that is transaction-driven or advertising-driven benefits when there are multiple platforms involved.
When it comes to customer-driven API strategy, we can have a branding strategy as we would be using the data which we already have. This will not only increase customer interaction but also help create a better customer experience.
What are the challenges while integrating API in your business?
As businesses grow older, the technology, systems and processes grow even more complicated. If a company does not attempt to add new software, like SAAS and APIs, the efficiency of the business will come down. If a business is running on old systems and trying to add new API will create challenges in integration.
Businesses may also develop challenges while testing, designing and monitoring those APIs. A good developer that can provide feedback and insight into APIs features can help with this problem.
How many types of APIs are there?
1. Private APIs
As seen earlier, private APIs are meant to increase productivity and efficiency. These can only be used by the developers or employees of the company. These are not meant to be released publically; in fact, they are completely hidden from the public. Many companies eventually do make their private APIs public.
2. Partner API
Partner APIs are shared with companies that have business relations with the company providing the API. Some companies prefer partner APIs over public ones because they want to control. They want control over who will access the resources and data of their company.
3. Open APIs
Open APIs or Public APIs are external consumption APIs that are more restricted with the assets, share than private or Partner API. As seen above, public APIs help with support, documentation and authentication of services. By doing so, they improve the adoption of APIs and also encourage third parties to create apps, add ons and integrations with your API. This not only makes their products valuable but also makes APIs in monetisation.
4. Composite APIs
Composite APIs allow businesses to get bundle calls or requests to get a unified response from different servers. If you wish to integrate data from other applications, you would need a composite API.
This will help you set off an automatic chain of calls and responses without the company’s intervention.