An application programming interface (API) is a set of rules that allows different applications to communicate with each other. It allows one database to retrieve or use information from another database. This has huge implications for both growth and innovation in software development.
Representational State Transfer (REST) is simply an architectural style for the development of APIs that use HTTP to enable communication between applications. APIs that adhere to the REST style guidelines are therefore called RESTful.
Due to characteristics such as cacheability and flexibility (guidelines can be implemented as needed and most programming languages or data formats can be used), RESTful APIs are considered lightweight, fast and scalable.
RESTful APIs are by far the most popular API format in use today.
APIs can promote better efficiency in your marketplace. For instance, vendors can use an API to automatically upload product information from their internal systems to your marketplace instead of adding it manually.
Provide a superior user experience with enhanced functionality. APIs allow the integration of third-party applications (e.g. GPS location services like Google Maps) that add extra value to your platform. CobbleWeb has used APIs to improve many of our client’s marketplaces in areas such as product search, shipping, booking systems, product catalogues and customer reviews.
We're here to help!
Would you like to know more about the suitability of a particular technology for your marketplace? Get in touch for a free audit and recommendations.