APIs are everywhere and the API economy is growing exponentially. APIs have become a critical component of every enterprise across various industries. They act as key catalysts to help enterprises compete in the digital economy and accelerate transformation.
According to a recent survey by Gartner, enterprise API spends are expected to grow by 37% in 2022. Leading CIOs project API first strategy to be their priority over the next couple of years. Undoubtedly, an API first strategy drastically enhances the digital customer experiences, opens up new revenue streams, improves developer engagement, shortens time to market, etc.
An important element of an API first strategy is the creation of a developer portal. It equips enterprises to accelerate API adoption and help grow an ecosystem of partners and customers. But a simple developer portal with no room for advanced functionalities and capabilities will not aid API adoption and realise the right ROI. Enterprises have to start looking beyond developer portals and focus on building their own API marketplace. This equips them to monetise their digital products, package APIs and ultimately build new and innovative revenue streams. All while offering superior experiences to developers, partners and customers alike.
What is API Marketplace?
API marketplace is a next generation unified API portal to effectively discover, build, manage and publish APIs across an enterprise’s API ecosystem. An API marketplace differs from a developer portal in its ability to connect many APIs, users, developers (internal and external) and partners in a single place thereby fuelling innovation.
API marketplaces offer a robust & feature rich interface. They use an outside-in approach that treats APIs as products and help maximise the ROI. Most importantly, it is designed not just for the developer community, but also for multiple business stakeholders in the API ecosystem like product owners, marketing, sales, evangelists, technical writers, etc. It promotes the increased consumption of APIs and builds a strong API enthusiast community internally and externally.
What can enterprises expect from API marketplace?
Several companies as part of their enterprise wide API strategy are aiming at becoming vendor agnostic especially with their API portals. They are also globally looking to connect multiple gateways, multiple cloud setups and maybe even look at hybrid setups. Essentially a convenient way to get the most of their existing investments. API marketplace helps achieve this as it is built with a multi-tenant framework/approach to connect to multiple API gateways and cloud hosting providers. To reap the full benefits of an API first program, enterprises are looking for monetising APIs and to bring in innovative revenue channels either directly or indirectly. API marketplace fits right in stride for all the above mentioned expectations.
In addition to multi-gateway connectivity and enriched monetisation capabilities, some other key features that can be expected/incorporated in API marketplace are:
- A self-service portal with pre-built workflows for customer on-boarding, partner on-boarding, API key management, user management, roles and privilege management, etc.
- Large product catalogue, smooth navigation, full text search capabilities using metadata attributes like versions, categories, tags etc and secure display of results
- Ability to divide APIs into Groups
- Built-in SSO and RBAC capabilities
- CI/CD integration for content/API publishing and integrated mutual TLS authentication
- Multi-tenancy to support multi-org connectivity within a single portal
- Support API security standards (like OAuth, basic auth etc)
- Integrated panel for admins to manage users and groups, approvals and rejections, content management and more
- Social/community features like forums, blogs, FAQs etc.
- Support ticketing system, case management, automated emails, chat support, etc.
- API/App analytics and monitoring capability
- Easy content localisation to support different languages across the globe
- Developer outreach programs for hackathons, communities, workshops for encouraging external participation and accelerating innovation
Right strategy goes a long way!
In today’s rapidly changing digital world, having an API first mindset has become an imperative, and also companies must have a clear, well-defined strategy in place around the API portal as it is a vital component of successful API programs. API marketplace offers the right set of frameworks and workflows to succeed in the API transformation journey where all the diverse group of stakeholders can effectively participate, collaborate, co-innovate and create value driven API ecosystem experiences.
Since our inception in 2015, DigitalAPICraft has helped many enterprises across the globe to accelerate API adoption and create enhanced developer experience leveraging our innovative API products. This has helped us zero in on what enterprises are looking for and help build a one-of-a-kind API marketplace enabler. The product that suits all your API ecosystem needs. “One APIMarketplace“.
One APIMarketplace is our flagship product built with connectors to all the leading API gateways and with advanced features that enterprises can use to efficiently publish, consume, collaborate and govern all their APIs, developers, product owners, consumers and partners at one place. Please visit our website to learn more about the product or download the product brochure here.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
An API enthusiast and advisor to global enterprises on how to leverage APIs and microservices effectively to accelerate their digital transformation efforts. Currently leading strategic business development and product management for DAC, a premier Google-Apigee Partner and a leading product company in APIs. Gishnu is an Engineering graduate in IT with International academic exposure, who pursued MBA from Cardiff University, UK.