Numerous tech companies are operating via API programs. After many years of working with APIs, some practices appeared as helpful when it comes to API adoption and providing support and connection between providers and consumers. Different API providers have different approaches. As there is no magic formula for API adoption, we actually combined the best and the most useful practices when it comes to this subject.
We talked to API providers and developers. These conversations brought new dimensions and views of some practices, while we only confirmed the importance of some of the well-known ones. Here are both categories, grouped in one, unique approach.
If you want to achieve an easy API adoption, make sure that the developers clearly understand ways of integration with APIs. You should provide SDKs, samples, start solutions, and another code essentials.
• A regular content stream
Content is a critical point when it comes to developing and adoption of APIs. You should invest in case studies, tutorials, samples, posts – anything that might help you to attracts and assists the consumers, and provide them with a good experience.
We can say with certainty that documentation is one of the most important API elements. It can actually enable a transition from learning about APIs to turning the knowledge into practice. This way, you also gain experience.
- Have a dedicated domain or sub-domain
In order to attract new users, provide them a familiar location for the developers, so they can find the exact resources. A dedicated domain or sub-domain will surely boost the users’ number.
There are always many dialogues about APIs. This means you have to provide a constant dialog. It gives off an impression that you are turned to progress and development. Forums are a great way for the developers to find the answers to their questions, or they might ask one themselves.
- Proactive and reactive
Being proactive means that you are constantly attracting new attention and new users – this is a part about marketing. On the other side, focus on providing developers with what they need according to their practices. If you give resources to the developers, then you are attributing to the API’s community wealth and health.
Besides being proactive, you should be reactive also. In other words, your API team must have a reaction to the questions, concerns, and feedbacks of your the API’s consumers or stakeholders. People don’t like to wait and don’t have patience. Ensure that they get the answers as soon as possible. Fact reactions send a message that you care about making your developers, consumers, and stakeholders’ impressions matter to you and that you take their opinions as relevant.
- The proper strategy for API management
In order to onboard new customers, you have to define a proper strategy for API management. This is some kind of investment in services, which facilitates understanding of the API resources’ engagement. It is almost impossible to scale platform adoption without the authentication, access tiers, activity logs, and usage reports.
- Detailed tutorials
Each API provider we talked to sticks to detailed API tutorials, about a better understanding of business logic, taking advantages of resources, etc. These tutorials provide simple and safe steps that help the consumers to work with the features and ease up the integration process for the users who are working with APIs.
As you see, API providers use various practices in order to make an API easier to adopt and sustain. The goal is to retain new users. Stoplight API design is based on these practices and principles too. Innovations in the sector retain new users every day, which is the main goal of the process.