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What is API integration? A Guide for Non-Technical Professionals

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By Fathur , in Uncategorized , at 2022-09-20 标签:, , , ,


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API, or Application Programming Interface, which translates as “application programming interface”, for example, epic emr integration api, provides interaction between the application (server) that provides it and external systems (software, applications), which are commonly called clients. Binarix will show and tell everything on real examples, based on our API for integration with external systems.


In the field of digital transformation, APIs and integration are critical. But it’s easy for a non-technical person to get lost in a sea of standards, terms, and changing trends.

So, what is API integration?

API integration is the connection between two or more applications through their APIs (application programming interfaces) that allow systems to exchange data sources. API integration allows you to manage processes across many sectors and levels of your organization, keeping data in sync, improving productivity, and increasing profits.

APIs are an interface that is an integral part of almost everything in the digital world. Regardless of business or enterprise size, APIs keep applications and web systems running smoothly and performing well. Learn more about what APIs are in simple terms, how they work, and why they are important to businesses.


However, there is an additional requirement to achieve optimal and automated business processes and procedures that interact and share significant data. This is where API integration comes in.

Why do we need API integration?

  • API connectivity helps applications share data and communicate with each other without human intervention. You enable communication between two web tools or applications through their APIs. This allows organizations to automate systems, improve seamless data exchange, and integrate current applications.
  • Enterprises can’t ignore the importance of API integration in today’s world. With the rapid growth of cloud-based products and applications, organizations need to create a connected system where data is automatically transferred between different software tools. API integration makes this possible because it allows process and enterprise data to be exchanged between applications in a given ecosystem.
  • This opens up a new level of flexibility in delivering information and services. It also makes it easier to embed content from different sites and applications. The API acts as an interface that allows two applications to be integrated.

Examples of API integration

E-commerce sites are some of the most significant users of API integration. Online stores have order management systems that process purchase and delivery orders. But to process them, they need access to servers and databases that include customers, products, and inventory levels.

There is a constant exchange of data between the online store and the shopping cart. Businesses achieve this through API integration.

Another example is integration with a payment gateway. As a consumer, you don’t see the actual transaction when you pay online. But in the background, data is transmitted to verify your credit debit card details. The payment gateway API is integrated into the online store and is often hidden from view.

How API integration is achieved

Currently, there are several ways to achieve API integration. They largely depend on the individual needs of your system or business.

Custom integrations

Custom integrations involve a handwritten script from a software developer with a thorough understanding and knowledge of API documentation. This method became popular a few years ago, but the cost of development (and ongoing maintenance) has made it less attractive than new integration methods. Using this approach can also be very time-consuming.

Application Connector

The Application Connector is designed to facilitate the transfer of data between two well-known software platforms. Connectors are affordable, accelerate the deployment of standard API solutions, and simplify the management and maintenance of integrations. They also reduce the need for API management.

API integration platforms

These are typically SaaS applications designed to develop API integrations that help join other SaaS applications and systems.

They support a certain level of flexibility because you can build your own integration applications using the robust tools available on the market. Some can extract and transform data into a form your application can understand with just one query. It allows you to query various private and public APIs as well as databases simultaneously.

These IPaaS services can also allow you to connect and integrate multiple APIs, greatly helping enterprises automate their workflows.

API integration process

There are a variety of API integration tools to choose from, and once you’ve selected your preferred one, you must follow a specific process that consists of three main parts.

  1. First, you need to assess your goals and business processes. Once you’ve identified your pain points, you can figure out how integrating internal and external platforms can help eliminate those problems. It’s important to get support from individuals such as system administrators and software analysts who can support your integration efforts and help identify benefits to your enterprise.
  1. Once you’ve identified your goals, you can now begin the development process and create your own application. Your application can then interact with the software platform’s APIs to create new features that help achieve your goals.
  1. Finally, you need to run some tests on your system to make sure that the integration application is fit for purpose and error-free.

Benefits of API integration

There are several notable benefits of API integration. Some of the most notable include:

Automation

API integration allows you to automatically transfer information and data from one application to another. Successful automation helps eliminate the manual (human) component, which saves time and greatly reduces errors.

Scalability

API integration allows companies to grow because they don’t have to start from scratch when building connected systems and applications.

Optimized transparency/communication/reporting

API integration provides full visibility into all systems and processes for improved collaboration and reporting. With a streamlined approach, you can effectively track and monitor data, thereby generating robust reports based on specific and comprehensive data sets.

Reduces errors

API integration allows you to transfer complex and voluminous data with fewer errors and inconsistencies.

Conclusion

API integration is the nexus where technological developments come together. There is currently a booming market for API integration and API integration tools.

It is safe to assume that we will soon see these platforms continue to evolve to solve even more complex enterprise problems.

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