3 Tips for Creating a Successful API Solution

by Klaus on July 22, 2021

in Articles

Data has unarguably become one of the most prized assets of an organization. However, data-centric businesses require a successful application programming interface (API) platform to power digital transformation and agility initiatives. The benefits of APIs are understated. It enables data monetization, forging profitable alliances, and growth opportunities. That said, it’s now relatively easy to create a cloud-based API solution. As a result, the cloud API space has become increasingly competitive. Here are three tips to help you create a successful solution.

1. Choose an API type.

Application programming interfaces unlock data and allow business users to connect systems and datasets. When creating an API solution, you must choose an API type that works best for your project. Several factors come into play when choosing an API type, including its intended use, the applications and datasets that need connection, and the intended users.

Choosing an optimal API type will enhance API performance and API management. Companies require different types of APIs for various purposes ranging from systems and datasets integration to unlocking data. If you want to unlock data from critical systems like ERP and CRM, building a system API seems like your best bet. Process APIs come in handy when you want to break down data silos. This type of API allows developers to combine data and manipulate system APIs for a specific purpose.

Another type of API is the Experience Application Programming Interface. This provides a business context for unlocked data collated with the process and system APIs. It also exposes the data to the target audience through platforms like mobile applications and internal hubs.

2. Plan out your API’s capabilities.

Planning out an API’s functionalities is critical to creating a successful API. Many countries rush through this crucial process in API development. In many ways, creating an API solution is like designing the blueprint of a house. A successful solution requires a solid foundation to thrive.

What’s more, it’s essential to plan out the API’s capabilities and how it will run upon execution. This will help create an API that meets the needs of your intended users. Conversely, not planning out your API’s capabilities will result in poor design. If care is not taken, you may need to spend a significant amount of money to fix the problem.

Before you start writing code, it’ll help to first determine the intended users of the solution. You have to decide if you are building the API for application customers, third-party developers, or business partners. As an API provider, this information will help you understand the vital features to incorporate into your solution to give you a comparative advantage in the market. Although a typical API management solution features analytics, job creation, and productization, it might also help to create a survey for your intended users to understand the functionalities they want to see within your API.

3. Create a working blueprint for the API.

Once you have chosen an API type and planned out the API’s capabilities, the next thing is to design the API architecture. One popular architectural style is the REST API, otherwise known as Representational State Transfer. This type of API works with almost all networking protocols. As the API manager, it might help to use REST API for your build. REST typically leverages HTTP when utilized for web application programming interfaces. Specifically, developers don’t need to install additional libraries or software to use the REST API design.

This API architectural style is reputed for the freedom and flexibility it offers developers. Additionally, REST accommodates notable data formats like XML and JSON. That being said, one disadvantage of the REST API design style is that new developers find it challenging to navigate. Nevertheless, the bottom line is that REST is a complex but robust and flexible API.

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