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Unlocking business value with APIs

If you’re still viewing APIs as an appendage to your core product, whether that’s a software or a service, you’re missing a trick – good APIs are an in-demand product.

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Deepak Anupalli

VP Engineering, WaveMaker

The value of APIs has dramatically shifted over the past few years, taking centre stage for companies looking to maintain an edge over their competition. Technology is about streamlining and creating convenience, and APIs are no exception. APIs provide a set of rules for how software components interact (e.g. what information can be requested). These rulesets are the building blocks to developing new applications, and enable existing applications to expand.
Through this, APIs enhance compatibility and increase the appeal of your main products by simulating a more adaptive and robust connection between, for example, different software.
Let’s say that you’ve got a suite of great software hidden behind a wall. The wall is created by your clients’ inability to properly access, retrieve information from, or integrate your product or services into their own. APIs are the doorway that unlock this caged potential; they’re the structure to ensure a predefined request-and-response capability is in place, maintained regardless of changes to the front-end.
APIs ensure functional consistency. As an example, current non-API solutions that rely on retrieving information from a webpage, such as information pertaining to weather patterns, will cease to function once topographical changes have been made to the webpage. APIs facilitate a more intimate connection. This connection allows customers and clients to harness the best of your products’ functions and features within their own – and the success of this correlates directly to business value. Herein lies the value of APIs – they’re capable of unlocking the true business value of your core products by increasing their accessibility. APIs are widely used to promote brand and product profile.

“Look at any web store and you’ll see the extent to which Amazon’s API features, or medias page to see how YouTube’s API is being utilised. eBay reportedly generates a staggering 60% of its revenues through APIs.”

An API’s derived value, however, will ultimately depend on how many people are using it and for what purposes. So take a look at yours – is it time you better promote or invest into your API? Are your APIs being used to unleash the potential of your products, services, or software? APIs generate reciprocal benefit for both the user and the developer – the more you invest, the greater the appeal.
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