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Why You Should Have An Open API

The incredible speed with which our world is changing technologically, the biggest challenge is to provide the consumers access to technology at their own terms that prove beneficial to either party.

As Adam Kleinberg, co-founder and CEO at Traction rightly stated, with an app you can establish a deep and meaningful relationship with your customer ultimately leading to the long-term engagement with your target, but with the increase in the number of digital devices entering the market the cost of producing “unique brand experience” has also raised. Apps are just channels but APIs establish a value platform.

What is an API?

API stands for Application Programming Interface.

Kevin Stanton, API chapter manager at Sprout Social defines API as - “API is a precise specification written by providers of a service that programmers must follow when using that service. It describes what functionality is available, how it must be used and what formats it will accept as input or return as output.“

Simply put, APIs are the sets of requirements that define how applications communicate with each other. APIs are in existence ever since the launch of computers for simple inter-operable tasks. However, it has grown to boost business and make the experience with technology delightful for the consumers by serving as a value platform.

APIs achieve this by enabling applications to share data and resume action without having the access to the entire code.

Why you should create an open API

  1. Accelerate the growth of your product by making certain features available to the developer community. e.g: Facebook API.
  2. Organisations can charge to access their API through which they can create a stable revenue model.
  3. The increase in the competition and innovation. e.g: With the new trend of the fitness related apps the competition among the big players in the segment like Apple, Google, Fitbit, Samsung, JawBone and Nike+ have led to the innovation in the field of ease of use, functionality, documentation and consumption of the information.
  4. Open APIs gives birth to brand evangelists which in turn builds a community which, when engaged, grows exponentially.

Why you should use an open API

  1. APIs are time savers. e.g: Using Uber API, consumers of Zomato are served with the quick update on the availability of the cab with the ETA.
  2. Not all are extraordinary at creating an excellent value platform. With open APIs, organisations can use value platforms that provide an option to add specific feature solutions to fill in the gaps whilst providing a great end to end experience. e.g: It makes a huge difference for the post virality if there isn’t any Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn share integrated with the blog.
  3. Services personalised to customers. e.g: Nike’s "Just Size it” API empowered users to select that shoe size by just clicking the picture of the foot.

  4. Developers can widen the reach of their product/service by leveraging APIs developed by well-known vendors like Facebook, Google, eBay. This helps them to establish stronger connections with the already engaged audience of the well-established brand.

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