What is an E-Commerce API?

Back 2018-12-03 14:57:48
We all are used to instant connectivity. But how does data get transferred from one place to another? How devices and applications connect with each other in order to allow us to place an order with just a few types?
Written by
Bilge Alp Yildirim

The unsung hero of our connected world is the API, which is an acronym for "Application Programming Interface". It is the engine under the hood and enables the connectivity of different applications. The API takes requests and tells a system what is to do and returns the respond. Further the API can be called as the messenger between two systems.  In terms of E-Commerce an API needs to map all required e-commerce functionalities in order to run a successful online business. 

In a headless E-Commerce System the API enables the connectivity between the e-commerce platform and the presentation layer. The right API call enables the retrieval of product data, shopping cart functions, the retrieval of categories, registration information and more. Consequently the operator of an e-commerce surface just needs to address the API with the necessary parameters for every required function.

When we are talking about an E-Commerce API, it always goes hand in hand with the term of headless E-Commerce. The main benefit an API delivers for the merchant is total freedom of designing the presentation layer. Any content or product can be transmitted from the administration interface to any device with the help of an API.To clarify,  the API enables the backend to communicate with any device and surface, no matter if it is a usual frontend, VR environment, mobile App or an order button.

The possibility for innovative E-Commerce cases that the architecture of headless E-Commerce offers trough the API, invites to dream. For instance, i can imagine an automatic coffee maker with an integrated sensor, which automatically places an order of coffee beans, when they are nearly empty. Or a changing table, which orders disposable diaper, when the last one is used. Or imagine it would be possible to buy product directly from videos. A modern approach of teleshopping, which we already tested. The architecture of sleekshop offers the possibility to sell products directly trough a video

All in all, the potential of E-Commerce is far from being exhausted. I am really curious about innovations and new approaches in E-Commerce. 

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