Today, in 2021, digital transformation efforts are no longer a fancy and lucrative option for those companies that can afford to take the advantage of it, but a literal necessity for all businesses willing to stay in the game for years to come without being wiped out by the competition.
The implementation of digital transformation solutions is also increasing its pace for a number of reasons, such as customers getting used to digital experiences and growing demand for digitization from the market in general since the COVID-19 pandemic has started. The digital transformation tools and technologies are rapidly developing and getting more and more accessible as well, which is another reason businesses across industries are looking to speed up the implementation of Industry 4.0 solutions as much as possible.
APIs as part of digital transformation
There is a huge variety of digital transformation solutions a business can utilize, but when it comes to affordability, simple implementation and significant measurable results soon after the implementation, the choice is actually not that big. Powerful low-code development platforms that allow companies to design and build custom applications for their specific needs is one of them.
Another incredibly accessible technology that can provide a company with truly amazing capabilities that were in fact unimaginable for a small or medium company to have just a few years ago, is APIs. We’ve been talking quite a lot about the power of low-code apps in our blog, so today let’s attend to APIs and how this technology can boost thedigital transformation of your organization.
What are APIs?
Application programming interfaces (APIs) are software interfaces acting as a connection between different computers and/or pieces of software. APIs help developers to establish the communication of an app with 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 a valuable component of these processes as 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 APIs empower digital transformation?
Utilizing APIs brings a handful of serious advantages to a company, empowering your digitalization processes and making them more efficient. Here are some of the main reasons you should use APIs.
1. They accelerate the development process.
APIs allow developers to quickly implement multiple complex features without spending time on actually developing them and using powerful third-party functions instead.
2. They are highly scalable.
Applying APIs also makes enterprise solutions highly scalable at low cost, so businesses don’t need to worry much about scalability, which can be quite a serious problem in cases when the usage load is growing exponentially.
3. They make technology innovations a lot more accessible.
APIs also allow organizations to integrate truly innovative cutting edge technologies, such as AI, Big Data, machine learning and so on, into their products. They give companies cheap access to these features, which otherwise they wouldn’t be able to afford.
4. They create truly connected customer experiences.
Modern-day customers have an increasingly high demand for quick, seamless, and ultra-connected experiences. Businesses are left with no choice but doing their best to meet these demands, and APIs are exactly the tool that allows organizations to create advanced fully connected customer experiences. They interconnect multiple functions and interfaces, creating, when properly implemented of course, a truly seamless customer experience.
5. They improve productivity through enhanced collaboration.
As today any organisation is using dozens and even hundreds of various software solutions and applications, this creates a complex network of technologies, and using APIs is the key to make them work together as efficiently as possible. 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 part of the digital transformation efforts right away.
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. Pdflayer REST API can be integrated into various applications using any programming language, including PHP, Python, Ruby, jQuery.ajax, Java, etc., providing you with a quick and seamless way to automate HTML to PDF conversion in any application.
Serpstack is a real-time REST API that was built for automated targeted search result (SERP) data gathering. 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, supporting 100 geolocations, CAPTCHAs and IP rotation for millions of IPs.The developers of this API claim it handles over 1 bln requests every month and works with an average uptime of 99.9%. Scrapestack has a pool of 35+ million datacenter and residential IP addresses across dozens of global ISPs, supporting 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 through a simple API interface. Its architecture is focused on ease of use and integration, making for a high level of compatibility with any application, framework and programming language.
Mediastack is a REST API interface that retrieves articles from news sources and blogs worldwide. It delivers results within milliseconds in lightweight, easy-to-use JSON format. It has access to over 7,500 of sources across 50 countries, allowing organizations to get structured and readable news data from thousands of international news publishers and blogs, updated as often as every single 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 with latitude and longitude, batch geocoding and worldwide coverage for over 2 billion addresses around the world. It is highly scalable, providing and handling 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. This is one of the leading IP to geolocation APIs and global IP database services worldwide. It allows organizations to locate and identify website visitors at a stage before any data is entered into the system.
Mailboxlayer is a free, simple and powerful JSON API offering instant email address validation and verification via syntax checks, typo and spelling checks, SMTP checks, free and disposable provider filtering, and much more.
NumVerify is a powerful REST API offering both national and international phone number and carrier validation, location and line type lookup for developers and businesses based on the most recent international numbering plan databases.
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 for free and without the need to invest a lot of resources into integration of this functionality into your products.
One example of an innovative and truly business-powering technology that can be made a part of your enterprise applications and programs thanks to the availability of APIs (and low-code platforms) is artificial intelligence (AI).