E-commerce is a big industry. In the US alone, e-commerce sales account for billion dollars in revenue each year. The number forecasts that retail purchases made online will be about half of all retail purchases. It’s essential for any e-commerce company, so make sure you put API integration at the forefront of your strategy. The question then becomes the best way to integrate API with your existing e-retail operation and how API will benefit your e-commerce business?
To understand how your business can benefit from API integration, you must first understand what an API is and how API integration works.
What Is API And How API Integration Works?
API is the abbreviation for Application Programming Interface. API is a set of standards that helps e-commerce businesses integrate their services and data with other companies, such as social media sites, shipping providers, payment gateway providers, and many more.
A business can use an API to access the service offered by another company without having to build it from scratch. For example, a shipping API allows the company to integrate its e-commerce shopping cart with a third-party shipping provider. Every time a customer places an order, the API automatically sends it to the shipping provider to get their package delivered by the third-party shipping provider.
How Can API Integration Help Your E-commerce Business?
Below is a list of how API integration contributes to the growth of your e-commerce business and the different types of API to make this happen.
1. Decrease Potential Risks
The API integration can help decrease the potential risks of working with people with a bad credit history, especially for a rental, real estate, or financing business.
Credit Report API
Credit report API for businesses provides information about an individual’s credit history. It’s essential to run this type of check before opening up lines of credit for vendors, partners, and other parties involved in the operation because it can help identify potential risks or red flags.
This data will tell you if there have been any late payments, bankruptcies, judgments, defaults, or other adverse credit. Knowing this information can help you decide the risks you’re taking.
2. Build Customer’s Trust
Online shopping can be risky for some customers as they can’t see and touch your items personally. API integration solves this problem by incorporating some services from trusted third-party companies.
Social Proof API
Online shopper’s go-to options whether or not they can trust your store are reviews and how famous your brand is. Since people know that customer reviews can be easily manipulated, many no longer believe in reviews on a store’s website. It’s where APIs like social proof API can be beneficial.
Social Proof API enables you to pull reviews from social media platforms for products that your website is selling. This way, if a customer has any questions about the quality of the product they are purchasing on your site, they can quickly check it with these trusted websites. A real person’s review on social media and other trusted platforms is much more trustworthy for many shoppers.
The more likes, comments, and followers they see on social media platforms, the more likely they’ll purchase a product from you.
Although cash on delivery is still the most popular form of e-commerce payment, accepting credit cards and other online payment methods can significantly boost online businesses. If your e-commerce business has a widespread and trusted payment gateway provider, it’ll build trust and credibility with your customers.
A trusted payment gateway provider that can be integrated not only on the web browser but also in mobile is a significant boon for any e-commerce business. The main advantage of using a third-party Payment API, aside from building trust with customers, is that they provide all the necessary security measures, so you don’t have to worry about that side of it.
3. Ease On Shipping And Inventory
Whether you’re a small business or an international operation business with multiple warehouses, aggregating orders from different locations to ship together can save valuable time by integrating APIs to your website.
Shipping API is an API that’s used to automate shipping calculations. It can be integrated into a business’s website, and it’ll handle all rates with different carriers based on customer location and weight.
Shipping API offers features such as:
- Handling carrier calculations automatically eliminates the need to manually input data into a spreadsheet every time there’s an order. There’ll be no more calculation errors because of human error as well.
- Printing labels with shipping information and barcodes, saving time and money.
- Automatically updating inventory levels in the system for real-time tracking of shipping data.
API for Warehouse Management
This API calculates how many units are available in stores, what orders need fulfillment now or later, which products should go together when shipping, and which products need more inventory. With this type of API, businesses can analyze and plan their supply chains, making them more efficient.
API for Warehouse Management integrations in e-commerce can streamline the planning process for e-commerce business’s suppliers, so they have an idea of what’s needed on a larger scale. It will also enable them to optimize inventory levels by knowing when to reorder the product from manufacturers.
4. Increase Customer Satisfaction
Every business owner knows that customer convenience is a must. You don’t want to make your customers jump through hoops or go on wild goose chases to buy something from you. And with the internet, they can find anything else in seconds and move onto it without missing a beat or spending money for that matter.
Integrating the API in your business is an excellent way to make it easier for people. They can sign up, find what they want to know about your business, see if they can buy anything from you, and search in their language.
Everyone might agree that signing up on a website to get full access is sometimes kind of annoying. Some customers might even choose to leave and visit another competitor if they’re not in the mood to go on the process of creating an account only to browse what your website offers. That’s why the creation of login API emerge.
Login API allows customers to sign in or provide a sign-in code to your site with their social media or email credentials. Instead of creating an account to sign up, the users can use their social media login details to make signing up quick and more convenient.
Having a digital presence means you’ll be able to target people around the globe who speaks different languages, and this is where API integration can come in handy.
The Translate API will help translate your website into another language, which means that you’ll be able to reach a new audience without having to translate the whole site yourself or spend tons of money on translations and localization services. This way, anyone who speaks one language but wants to read about products made for people with another language will be able to understand your website conveniently.
The Translate API gives convenience to customers. It will boost the number of people who will understand what you’re trying to tell them. It increases momentum, which in turn leads to more conversions on your end.
Customer Orders API
Shopping carts are great for e-commerce businesses because it increases the number of items that people can purchase from one place. But if your customer has 40 products in their cart and wants to change something about the shipping address or payment method, then without customer orders API, they’re going to start all over again. With the help of Customer Orders API, your customers can change one small detail and then place a new order with everything else intact.
Site Search E-commerce API
If you have an e-commerce website with hundreds of products, you know what a headache it can be for customers to go over your product list and find the item they need. But by using Site Search API, your customers will never have this problem again because all they need is a simple search box on your website, and their desired product will pop right up.
Site Search API is a software application that allows your website visitors to search through the product catalog quickly and efficiently. All they need to do for this feature to work correctly is type their desired keyword into a designated search box, which will then provide them with various results containing similar keywords or products. This way, customers can find what product they’re looking for without having to look through a long, complicated list of items.
If you’re an e-commerce entrepreneur who wants better site usability and more manageable customer satisfaction rates, then Site Search API is the perfect tool for your website.
5. Better Understand Your Customers
Customer Relationship Management is an essential aspect of maintaining a successful e-commerce business. CRM software can help store owners monitor customer behavior and target those most likely to buy from them again. Still, it can be difficult and expensive to organize and scout thousands of customers’ information. Store owners can do this without any upfront costs or complicated contracts by using an API for CRM.
API for Customer Relationship Management
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a process of managing a business’s interactions with current and potential customers. In digital marketing, CRM is often used to scour the internet for information about customer habits.
After researching their needs and wants on social media sites, these contacts are added to an online database that contains contact details such as names, emails, phone numbers, and many more.
CRM API allows marketers to extract and analyze these data. They can then use this information to understand customer needs better, personalize content for each individual, create targeted offers that will interest those who have already expressed an interest in the company’s products or services.
Marketing teams can use API integration to build personalized experiences for customers based on location and other factors. It also helps marketers to better understand customer acquisition campaigns and how they perform, leading to more efficient marketing strategies that convert customers into loyal members of the brand’s community.
6. Earn More By Cross-Selling Products
E-commerce has a lot of growth potential, but one of the most significant barriers to entry is marketing. One way that API integration can help your business grow exponentially is by creating opportunities from cross-selling products.
Cross-selling occurs when a customer purchases an additional product or service while making an initial purchase. For example, if someone buys a pair of shoes and decides they need a matching belt to wear with them, they can buy the belt simultaneously.
Implement cross-selling APIs into your business model by choosing which API provider you want. Then, determine how much e-commerce traffic your website receives per day. The more traffic you have means, the larger pool of customers you have to show your products to, the more traffic, the better chance of generating revenue from cross-selling.
Create a list of all the companies that offer complementary goods or services and include them in your API integration process. Include one complimentary product on every page of your website with an option for another purchase directly below it.
By integrating cross-selling APIs into your business model, customers will be able to browse products from different businesses and make purchases without ever leaving your site. It enables you to have the customer stay in your store and earn commission on the complementary product they bought together with your product.
7. Get Better Insights Into Your Store Performance
Every E-Commerce store owner wants to know how their business is doing. Analytics are the bread and butter of any online retailer, but if you’re not using a third-party API provider, then analytics can be hard to come by.
Store Analytics API
Store analytics API gives you the ability to get insights into your store performance by integrating with third-party APIs. It can help you gain more knowledge about what parts of your site are working well and which areas need improvement.
Since data is power in digital marketing, API integration will give business owners access to valuable information like:
- How many new customers are coming to your site each day?
- What’s the average time on page for visitors?
- Which pages generate the most revenue?
These insights will help you better understand what works and what doesn’t regarding customer experience, conversions, and revenue.
API is a powerful tool that can help increase your e-commerce business growth. It’s the backbone of any e-commerce business, and integration is crucial for performance. With increased potential risk protection and decreased shipping costs, you’re likely going to see an uptick in customer satisfaction as well. By integrating other businesses’ APIs, you’ll be able to sell their products —all while giving you better insight into how well each part of your business is performing.