The Rise of APIs and What It Means
We discuss the value APIs have made for both businesses internally and externally, as well as the impact they make outside of businesses in our everyday lives.
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Application Programming Interfaces, or APIs, allow two pieces of data to contract thus providing your codebase with the independence to evolve and create new business opportunities within systems. While the latter may not be entirely new information to developers, the use and adaptability of APIs have been on the rise to help businesses with everyday tasks and accelerate data sharing.
We've depicted the value APIs have made for both businesses internally and externally, as well as the impact they make outside of businesses in our everyday lives.
The API Revolution
Having an API layer with a single point of entry into separate systems helps with transitions within development teams, as most underlying systems are often built with different technologies years apart by different teams. The revolution of APIs that we have started to see allows a variety of client applications to behave consistently within digital touchpoints. With the ability to mature independently, businesses see this as freedom for new opportunities and growth.
With the growth of APIs, comes an array of scenarios enabling companies to be able to renovate their IT responsiveness to become more customer-centric, putting the information in an easy to use and understandable manner; metrics thus become an effective way to give existing customers the ability to interact with business data in a personalized way, ultimately connecting the customer and unleashing once hidden information.
For example, you might have noticed a "ticker" on a homepage you recently visited with metrics or posts pulling from the company's social channels or another source of information hosted somewhere other than their domain. These APIs are feeding information from another source, but, yet, with relevant information to the site visitor without having to go to multiple web pages.
Without recognizing it, you most likely have used an API today. We rely on accurate information and open APIs to pull data to streamline daily tasks that go can, oftentimes, go unnoticed. Opening your traffic report and having real-time information available about which route you should take home to get dinner started on time, or waking up in the morning and picking out an outfit with your weather application on your cell phone are all real-life examples of how APIs have impacted not only businesses but our personal lives for the better. Streamlining these processes by using an API with a single point of entry is only going to continue trending because of the convenience it affords to everyday life.
Business Progression via APIs
Businesses are seeing the importance of APIs more than ever, specifically in developer-centric companies. APIs allow programmers to build tools that help everyone do their jobs efficiently and effectively. Not only do developers reap benefits with APIs but sales, marketing, and other large departments that often work closely with developers see the benefits as well. Marketers, for example, spend an abundant amount of time tracking metrics in Google's Adwords and Analytics where APIs are commonplace. Google Adwords's Keyword tool allows Google’s search API to suggest keywords for lead generation, which, initially, bring leads to the marketing and sales team, but, over time, these marketing qualified leads from APIs turn into profit affecting the business's bottom line.
Additionally, APIs help third-party developers build out applications that help the company’s core product. Although our software, AnswerHub, at DZone Software is developer centric, we see many other job titles see an impact from the open API that our product has implemented. AnswerHub helps Community Managers and Developer Relation Professionals pull information about their online communities. For example, by using its open API, AnswerHub allows customers like Pixar to build their community, Renderman, that creates the aesthetic that fits their business needs while having information stream from the community to an analytic report for tracking purposes.
Published at DZone with permission of Miranda Casey, DZone MVB. See the original article here.
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