What Is an API Management Tool?

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API Management Tool

In an era of digital transformation, it’s important for companies to be able to handle their internal business issues in real-time. While also benefitting customers. The right management tools are providing insights to companies of any size to be able to stand out in their respective marketplaces. Application programming interfaces, or APIs, are a part of these solutions that are helping with the integration of historical data and providing real-time access to analytics for businesses to get ahead of the pack.

Understanding API Management

From legacy systems to cloud computing, there is much for internal and external developers to delve into to help a business stay on top of its inner and outer workings. That’s why important for companies to find the right API management tool for their business needs. API management is the use of scalable enterprise software for API design, publication, security, and monitoring. API programs enable developers to publish and consume interfaces to monitor the life cycle and ensure that the API is performing as it was designed to do.

A successful API management platform is one that drives the goals of the business. The details around managing a successful API program can get rather complex, but they can stay rooted in simplicity provided these API programs focus on the three “S’s”: scalability, security, and support. Scalability allows businesses to avoid issues in their backend systems to keep up with demand, inhibiting workflows. Security of these catalogs ensures that the metrics that analysts are receiving adhere to a company’s security policies. Support of this system makes for a positive experience for API developers turning into better customer service.

Components of API Management

Developing and designing APIs is the first step in establishing a good API management solution. This enables business users to quickly and easily model, test, and deploy these interfaces from their API management tools. To avoid repetitive tasks, having an established format allows various programs from XML to JSON to be able to adapt to these interfaces. After API development, API portals enable users to publicize the interfaces, bringing the gap from provider to consumer for operational efficiency. A good portal engages and empowers developers and users alike in the marketplace.

Beyond portals, an API gateway allows users to control access to back-end systems and services, maintaining a secure connection between data and APIs. These gateways allow organizations to manage API traffic, inside and outside of a company. From there, API analytics are used to monitor and manage all operational aspects of an API program to better understand web services and testing. With API analytics, businesses acquire a deeper understanding of the inner workings of a company and the technical impact of these personal interfaces.

Key Use Cases

The use of application program interfaces breaks down into three main categories: internal, public, and partner APIs. Internal APIs are driven by integration, connecting data and backend resources for application development. APIs can help deliver mobile apps to automate systems, eliminating the need for historical systems for basic functions on an enterprise scale. This allows for modernized infrastructure across various sectors from updating flight tracking for the airline industry to quicker payment services for retailers.

Public APIs expose internal data and functionality through these interfaces for use by external developers. These are commonly seen through embedded services. You may even see an expanded partner network that offers a managed solution that pairs companies in a digital ecosystem. For example, you may be offered discounts on tickets to a sporting event based on your purchasing airline tickets to a particular city. Partner APIs team these two up for supply chain velocity and better partner onboarding. The truth is the right API tools can unite your different sources to better your business.