Application Program Interface (API) is a set of routines, protocols, and tools used to help build software applications. An API specifies how software...
Application Program Interface (API) is a set of routines, protocols, and tools used to help build software applications. An API specifies how software components should interact and makes life easier for developers by providing all the building blocks. A programmer then puts the blocks together. Additionally, APIs are used when programming graphical user interface (GUI) components.
You don’t have to be a specialist to understand APIs though. See it this way, its technology that lets you remotely adjust a room’s temperature. By using an API that interacts with the thermostat you can regulate your home’s temperature.
Apart from temperature control APIs can also verify your personal information such as your banking information. The possibilities are quite outstanding considering the fact that API is the software that shares data across apps, systems and softwares.
Giants like Facebook, Salesforce, Google and Twitter use APIs to enhance app performance.
But How Does It Help Your Business?
First off, expanding businesses need APIs to handle different applications because they unlock the true value of IoT. For instance, by integrating API into your sales application then you give the sales team a way to enhance performance. If simply Integrating Your Accounting and Sales App offers its own advantages, API integration would take your business to the next level.
API integration will reduce paperwork overtime and significantly reduce the time taken to take orders. On the spot orders can be directly processed and an automated confirmation email is sent to both the client and head office. Invoices are also easily processed using APIs and payments are dispatched on time.
But these benefits can extend beyond office walls. An excellent example of how APIs work in the outside world is by looking at how car service companies like Uber or Lyft function. APIs integrate all the functions from customer login, to driver matching with the pickup location all the way to using Google maps for easy navigation into a single process. This is a win-win scenario for both the company and the customer because it saves them time and money.
Creating New Business Models
Many APIs are already being used by companies to integrate diverse platforms or modules. However, IT professionals and organizations are now looking into linking different APIs together thus making new business models. This task seems to be a current challenge especially for platforms like legacy systems, cloud computing and scribe, among others.
This kind of new business model is taking shape in the Sales industry. API in omni-channels helps assimilate sales across different web pages from a single website thereby letting the customer pay the total at once. Customers can experience this commodity online as well as at the actual store where items of different categories can be payed at once.
Every customer has unique needs but APIs brings those needs together under a single umbrella. For example, software engineers can use APIs in their profession for services like phone upgrades.
New features or upgraded versions of smart phones nowadays are released in the market every six months. Yet, how does an existing smart phone user reap the benefits of these upgrades? Buying a new phone every six months doesn’t seem very smart. Instead, an API gives the existing user the freedom to upgrade to the newest version and developers to continue creating upgrades without having to worry about how reach the user.
API and Finance Reports
Another important industry that has seen some of the benefits of API integration is Finance. Strategists and analysts use different databases to analyze the financial status of a company. But, simultaneously accessing so many sites makes this process time-consuming as well as confusing. With an API, all these sites can instantly integrate into a single app that provides the profit status, loss accounts, sales reports and so on.
Thanks to API integration you can see the profit making areas and the grey areas in your business within a short amount of time. Even sales representatives can easily analyze their financial environment instead of having to refer to past and present reports, simultaneously. By saving time and effort on finance reports you can encourage sales reps to stay focused on achieving company goals.
API and E-commerce
The main goal of any e-commerce business should be to satisfy customers. That could go for any business really and API integration helps businesses do just that. But it is extra helpful for online stores. Here’s why.
On an e-commerce site, products are actually synced to the cart and finalized at the payment gate through an API! It manages the link algorithm that connects the product to the catalogue management system, video provider, shipping carrier and at the same time the rating and reviews. The e-commerce platform can also be aligned with a dynamic pricing engine and be shared via social media like Facebook or Twitter by employing API integrations.
In fact, the most complex APIs are being built within B2B companies who want to provide a contextually intelligent real-time experience across all the channels they sell through. When an app or platform provider anticipates persona needs and charts customer journeys, the APIs created show them. As a result, APIs can clearly reflect customer preferences and deliver efficient apps. It adds a new found respect to the abilities of an API, doesn’t it?
Benefits of Using APIs
- API services lets you supervise and automate applications
- You gain more control over app traffic
- Balance uniformity between different API versions across platforms and implementations
- Enhanced memory management and caching mechanisms improves application performance
- With APIs apps follow security policies and procedures thereby reducing the risk of fraud and misuse
- Minimize errors or completely reduce them under APIs as human intervention is almost non-existent
As of today APIs are the most valuable way of creating new business models and streamlining selling strategies across all channels. That’s a very powerful revenue enhancer. They remove barriers by integrating platforms and apps so businesses can quickly launch new models and grow even faster.
As technology continues to advance though, APIs will also continue to advance enough to become a necessary business strategy. Don’t hold your business back from the possibilities that new technology offers. Our App Development Services can help your business take the next leap into the future of app development.