Today, digital transformation is no longer a luxury wishlist item or a nice-to-have option for those companies that can afford to take the plunge. Instead, digital transformation is a very real and pressing necessity for all businesses that plan to avoid being wiped out by their completion and stay in the game for years to come.
The rate of implementation for digital transformation solutions is also increasing. This is happening for several reasons, such as customers getting used to digital experiences, the growing demand for digitization since the COVID-19 pandemic, and, finally, internal demand for improved data flows and availability. Whatever the reason, digital transformation tools and technologies are developing rapidly. The good news is they are also getting more and more accessible. This is another reason businesses across industries are looking to speed up the implementation of their Industry 4.0 solutions and improve their application modernization strategies.
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How can APIs be part of digital transformation?
There is a huge variety of digital transformation solutions a business can utilize. Unfortunately, when it comes to affordability, simple implementation, and rapid, measurable ROI, the choices are limited. One option, however, is powerful low-code development platforms that allow companies to design and build custom applications for their specific needs.
The API is another incredibly accessible technology that can also provide a company with truly amazing capabilities that were unimaginable for a small or medium company just a few years ago is. We’ve been talking quite a lot about the power of low-code apps in our blog, so today let’s look to APIs and how this technology can boost the digital transformation of your organization.
What are APIs?
Application programming interfaces (APIs) are software interfaces. They act as a connection between different computers and software. APIs help developers establish communication between apps and third-party services and platforms. They serve as an important tool, allowing developers to create powerful software applications able to access third-party data, services, or functions.
When it comes to digital transformation, APIs have become remarkably valuable. This is because they allow companies to create complex and powerful applications with multiple functions quickly, and with little effort. According to the “State of API Integration Report”, 83% of tech specialists surveyed consider API integration critical to their work.
How do APIs empower digital transformation?
Utilizing APIs brings a handful of serious advantages to a company. They empower and streamline your transformation process. Here are some of the main reasons you should use APIs.
They accelerate the development process.
APIs allow developers to quickly implement multiple complex features without spending time on actually developing them. They can use powerful third-party functions instead.
They are highly scalable.
Applying APIs also makes enterprise solutions highly scalable at a low cost. This means businesses don’t need to worry much about scalability – quite a serious problem in cases when the usage is growing exponentially.
They make technological innovations a lot more accessible
APIs also allow organizations to integrate truly innovative cutting-edge technologies, such as AI, Big Data, and machine learning. They give companies cheap access to features, they otherwise they couldn’t afford.
They create truly connected customer experiences.
Modern-day customers have an increasingly high demand for quick, seamless, and ultra-connected experiences. Businesses have no choice but to meet these demands. APIs are a tool that allows organizations to create advanced, fully connected, customer experiences. They interconnect multiple functions and interfaces and create a truly seamless customer experience.
5. They improve productivity through enhanced collaboration.
Most organizations use dozens of different software solutions and applications. This creates a complex network of technologies. Using APIs is often the key to make them work together efficiently. APIs allow organizations to establish quick and reliable communications between various applications, which results in growing productivity overall.
10 powerful APIs to use for your digital transformation
Let’s take a look at some of the best APIs that your organization can start utilizing as a part of its digital transformation efforts.
Pdflayer API is a powerful API that allows developers and businesses to automate the process of converting HTML or HTTP URLs to high-quality PDF documents. This REST API can be integrated into various applications using any programming language, including PHP, Python, Ruby, jQuery, ajax, and also Java. The result is quick and seamless automated HTML to PDF conversion in any application.
Serpstack is a real-time REST API that automates targeted search result (SERP) data collection. It allows organizations to scrape Google SERP data and image or video search results at scale. Serpstack is powered by a global proxy network with built-in CAPTCHA solving and is used by some of the largest brands worldwide.
Scrapestack is a real-time and scalable API that allows you to scrape data from other websites across the Internet. With this API, organizations can extract HTML data from any web page, It supports 100 geolocations, CAPTCHAs, and IP rotation for millions of IPs. The developers of this API claim it handles over 1 billion requests every month and also works with an average uptime of 99.9%. Scrapestack has a pool of 35+ million data center and residential IP addresses across dozens of global ISPs. It also supports real devices, smart retries, and IP rotation.
Screenshotlayer is a free REST API built to deliver high-quality URL to PNG, JPEG & GIF website screenshots and thumbnails. It does this through a simple API interface. Its architecture focuses on ease of use and integration, making for a high level of compatibility with any application, framework, or programming language.
Mediastack is a REST API interface that retrieves articles from news sources and blogs worldwide. The API delivers results within milliseconds in lightweight, easy-to-use JSON format. It has access to over 7,500 media sources across 50 countries, providing structured and readable news data from thousands of international news publishers and blogs. Mediastack also updates as often as once per minute.
Weatherstack is a real-time and historical weather data API that allows organizations to retrieve instant, accurate weather information for any location in the world in lightweight JSON format. This API is used by over 75,000 companies worldwide.
Positionstack is an accurate forward and reverse geocoding and embeddable maps API. It offers latitude and longitude and batch geocoding as well as worldwide coverage for over 2 billion addresses around the world. It is also highly scalable and handles millions of requests per hour.
Ipstack is a powerful, real-time IP to geolocation API capable of looking up accurate location data and assessing security threats originating from risky IP addresses. It is one of the leading IP to geolocation APIs and global IP database services worldwide. In addition, iPstack allows organizations to locate and identify website visitors before any data is entered into their system.
Mailboxlayer is a free, simple, and also powerful JSON API that offers instant email address validation and verification. It provides syntax checks, typo and spelling checks, SMTP checks, free and also disposable provider filtering.
Finally, NumVerify is a powerful REST API that provides both national and international phone number and carrier validation. It also handles location and line type lookup based on the most recent international numbering plan databases for developers and businesses.
How can I get started transforming my business through low-code and APIs?
As you can see, APIs can provide a company with access to some very powerful features and data without the need to invest significant resources into integration. Their potential is huge. One example of an innovative and truly business-powering technology that you can add to your enterprise applications and programs via API (and low-code platforms) is artificial intelligence (AI).
Check out this article to learn why the future of AI is low-code. You can also find out how to create fully-featured AI apps with third-party APIs and Visual LANSA! Or, if you are ready to start right now, contact us!