Nowadays everything is going digital and is following more automated processes. Slowly and gradually the manual workforce is reducing, and people are being titled towards making their system efficient enough by incorporating the new inventions and technologies. But there is a crucial component which links all these processes and ultimately leads to an uninterrupted automation process and it is known as APIs. API Integration for eCommerce has paved a smooth way for both the end consumers as well as the e-commerce firms.
The e-commerce companies are using all possible techniques and ways to improvise their services. One of the ways is using API integration solutions. Today the world is already facing the global crisis due to the Corona pandemic and the consumers are bound to be in house and purchase all the necessary things online be it clothes or groceries. And the Shipping APIs (Applications Programming Interface) helps to bring in new features which facilitates the existing services of the e-commerce companies.
WHAT IS API?
API refers to Application Programming Interface which is a liasioning link between the two applications which opens the channel of communication between them. One of the easiest examples to explain the same is booking an air ticket online. Here, one selects the flight as per the fare, timing, and date, then makes the payment (different options are available for payment gateways) and the ticket is booked. Thus, the coordination between the booking app and the payment gateway was actually established using APIs only. It helps to exchange the communication between two different apps and confirm that the payment has been made, then only it will proceed further.
The same process is applied for E-commerce as well when the shoppers are redirected to the bank page or any type of payment gateway. Shipping API Integration not just benefits the owners of the business but also the end customers.
HOW HAVE APIs INFLUENCED THE E-COMMERCE DEVELOPMENT:
The above instances clearly state that the APIs will definitely enhance the functionality of the E-commerce applications. Recently the API integrations have spiked which have a very positive influence on the integration of different applications. This consequently improves the capacity, capability, and efficiency of the E-commerce sectors.
This integration is not just supporting the developers of the e-commerce stores but also the owners of the businesses. Now, the features which are being integrated as the recent development does not necessarily need to be owned by the developer or the business owner, in fact they can just get them as the services from some of the specialized custom API providers.
HOW IS APIs DIFFERENT FROM SHIPPING APIs:
The Application Programming Interface helps to transfer the information from one application to another and then collect the ultimate viable information and present it the user in a single interface. In fact, it becomes easier for the developers and programmers to use certain kind of technology and then accordingly enjoy its advantage. The developers simplify the programming language and look for only what they need.
On the other hand, Shipping APIs, as the name defers, it integrates with the global as well as local carriers like DHL, FedEx, Royal Mail etc. This provides the end-user with the facility of multiple carriers. Thus, Shipping API just needs to integrate once only to have access to the full network carrier rather than integrating individually with all the carriers.
Shipping APIs can be called as the bridge between the customers or end-users and the Shippers. It facilitates the customers in placing the orders through different payment channels and allows for some other few options.
The APIs are classified in three categories broadly:
a) Private APIs
b) Public APIs
c) Partner APIs
And as per the usage, it is classified as below:
• Database APIs
• Operating systems APIs
• Remote APIs
• Web APIs
BENEFITS OF IMPLEMENTING SHIPPING APIs INTO ONE’S BUSINESS:
There are multiple advantages of implementing the Shipping APIs into the business. These are listed as below:
a) Increase in Efficiency
When the APIs are implemented, it streamlines all the business processes and automates the tasks which are not a very important part of the operations. These overall saves much of the time as well one’s money and gives the owners enough time and space to figure out and manage the other priorities. The same time can be invested in focusing on the core requirements of the business. Thus, overall efficiency of the company increases.
b) Real Time Tracking
As the Shipping APIs are integrated with the multiple carriers at a time then they can fetch the real time data from the respective carriers and provide it to their customers. It keeps the customers pre-informed regarding the delivery date and time and updates them in case any shipping issues are expected to be encountered.
c)Valid Global address at access
Address validation is a very important step to give a hassle-free service to the consumers. As if the documents get misplaced, address change surcharges or delivery fails, all these cases can be handled if we have validated delivery address.
d)Real time Shipping resources allows quick comparison.
Shipping APIs enable the real time charges and delivery time details of all the important carriers so that the customers can decide accordingly which carrier they would prefer in terms of fastest and cheapest delivery. The end users can select the one which fits best as per their need.
e) Shipping rates are comparatively lower
When Shipping APIs are implemented, then the shipping carriers offer the negotiated rates as these APIs not just represent a single company but are the face of multiple carriers. It can almost save up to 30% cost on Fedex and 40% cost on packages carried by USPS.
These reduced rates cut the operational cost of the company and increases the trust and satisfaction level of the customers.
f) Reduce the issues of Checkout abandonment
Maximum failure happens at the checkout page may be due to some high surcharges or shipping fees or lack of required shipping option. Thus, the checkout issues also get resolved. Hence, Shipping APIs provide you with the best rate which can directly pass on to the customers with a better deal. And then they do not leave the basket without any vague reason.
The above points clearly states that the API has become an integral part of the business operations. It is considered a smart approach to collect information about them and then get it implemented in our system. This whole thing is supported by highly advanced technological infrastructure. These things overall reduce the manual efforts, make the business more efficient, and create more and more opportunities of growth.
Everything seems to be correct if the Shipping APIs are implemented in the right direction based on correct guidelines. The overall well managed operations and processes of any business organization, make them stand far away from the competition due to their exclusive service and delivery. These all are possible only through proper implementation of Shipping APIs.