Table of Contents
- What is the API management Tool?
- Standard Features and Capabilities of API Management Tools
- How API Tools Work
- How to Choose API Management Tools
- Rules for API Management
- Benefits and Importance of API Management tools
- Examples of Application Programming Interface Management Tools
Management of API entails how businesses monitor application programming interface (API) in development and usage. It ensures that the latest applications integrate with outdated systems to cope and perform without hitches under extensible workloads.
In a nutshell, it is a set of protocols that allow a business to run and control API cloud and application data connections. Since API allows access to a business system’s back-end server, there is a need for proper guidelines.
Implementation of set regulations focuses on business aspects such as pricing, analytics, API documentation, and client services. The technical bit of API management will look into the security, performance, user permissions, and API control.
Managing the API ensures seamless access to private systems and public cloud systems without compromising customers’ confidential data and the business. Overseeing APIs’ guarantee performance by setting protocols to the number of requests the API can handle and stops intentional or unintentional requests that may attack the system. Superintendence of the API warrants security as the system connects with third-party technologies.
What is the API management Tool?
Documentation, development, security, availability, analysis, developer engagements, and API traffic management are difficult and challenging, prompting the need for management tools. These are software that has been designed to simplify the development, distribution, security, and maintenance of APIs. The management tools help supervise an API throughout its lifecycle.
Standard Features and Capabilities of API Management Tools
i. API Discovery
Developers, partners, and customers must find your product, which in this case is the API. Through the search options, users and potential buyers can access information on what the API is all about, the solution it provides, and how to start using it.
The catalog allows developers to learn and access information valuable in building applications based on their business logic. The discoverability feature informs developers which provisions have been made available for internal or external publishing for their organizations.
Libraries of information allow access to information needed to browse and test an API. The find features enable users to know the version and description of APIs.
ii. API Security
The integrity of API to the owners and users is critical to warrant compliance on what kind of data is accessed. Validation of the input and output of content based on the schema patterns, rules, and signatures is vital to API users.
The ability to place rate limits and quotas on the number of queries protects the owners from traffic spikes. Due to exposure to numerous vulnerabilities such as reverse engineering, hacking, and third-party integrations, there is a need to ensure the API’s safety.
Data protection measures such as data masking, data encryption, and payment card industry compliance are essential security features.
iii. API Monetization
API monetization concerns the revenue generation of the API and continuity of the API operation. Highlighting the extent and duration to which users can use API tool resources is an excellent monetization strategy. Setting tiers of access to API resources allow businesses to budget and pay for features that meet their business need and financial might.
Metering allows API providers to set pricing according to units easing the billing process. In metered APIs, consumers pay according to their unit requirements. APIs can also generate income through indirect channels such as website traffic, software as a service, and brand equity.
The scalability of the API is essential to API owners and users at large. The capability to use push notifications, streaming protocols, and geolocation in mobile devices is vital in targeting consumers. API orchestration allows the API to perform multiple functionalities, workflow operations, and branch policies’ configurations in APIs. Ease in combining a selection of API deployment channels from in-house, software as a service, manages service, hybrid, and cloud services.
Monitoring customer traffic, location, API uptime, and performance are core functionalities when choosing a management tool. Data-driven decisions allow businesses to forecast and improve on areas that are not performing well. Insights from retention analysis enable a company to know how it is fairing in maintaining active and return customers.
Statistics from the API is a good indicator of overall API performance, usage, and business value. Other popular features include developer and onboarding, API lifecycle governance, traffic mediation, and mobile optimization and integration.
How API Tools Work
The management tool has various features that allow it to function as expected.
The API Gateway provides proxy services that protect the API and back-end servers against vulnerabilities by implementing configured security protocols and policies. Its API Store/Developer Portal acts like a bazaar where APIs are stored for stakeholders’ internal and external reach. Users can discover, test, subscribe and get community support from other users and developers. It gives tracking capabilities of API use, uptime, log transactions, history data, and other metrics that offer insights to your business needs. It also allows for designs, documentation, and deployment of APIs and administrative duties such as user, security, and endpoint management, among others, through its API Management Portal.
Related: API Management vs API Gateway
How to Choose API Management Tools
There are several management tools available in the market today. Depending on the functionality and organizational needs, several factors should be factored in the selection. When selecting a management tool for API, you should consider the following:
• Usability: The ease of use.
• Scalability: Ability to be extensible for future development.
• Security: Strength of protection policies.
• Scope: The breadth of components available to developers and consumers
Rules for API Management
As technology advances, APIs’ importance increases, and their demand rises as companies seek to incorporate the specific software into their daily practice. There is a need to create, develop, and manage APIs using set guidelines to ensure better practice when dealing with clients and users.
Every developer and user has different needs and different capabilities. While creating a management platform for API is essential to make it available to other partners and developers. Creating utility policies that are friendly and secure to partners of various levels makes it easy for users to cover their enterprise’s needs fully.
The use of analytics is to interpret, find, and translate data patterns into meaningful information. Analytics allows the user to collect and process qualitative and quantitative data that supports your business’s technology goals while limiting usage that may not be effective.
Uptime is the unit measure of the duration a system, machine, or computer has been available, reliable, and working. It is usually given in percentage. When developing a management platform, ensure that it is free from redundancy and temporary failure. High uptime and ease of scalability generally measure the quality of your management system.
iv. Universal Access
Every enterprise has an architecture that may need on-premise support, public or private cloud support, and sometimes a combination of these systems. The management platform should be able to provide reliable support to the various architectures used by the business.
The accessibility of APIs heavily depends on communication and documentation tools. These tools offer a guide on how to build and manage the system. Providing a library that contains quick and brief description details on functions and operations is essential.
Benefits and Importance of API Management tools
Through API analytics, a business can get insight and make comprehensive decisions based on the data given. API often allows communication to different applications. It is possible to have the data leaked to unauthorized persons or systems when an application programming interfaced is compromised. Tools used for the management of APIs protect the entity from threats that may affect the APIs.
The management tools support documentation of the APIs, which is an added advantage for sourcing developers. API documentation is essential for providing guidelines to the users.
With the use of tools for management API, an organization can create centralized visibility by setting the APIs connections in a single station. This way, redundancy is reduced, security is enhanced, and developers can find and fix existing loops.
Managing APIs using tools enables the organization to identify outdated security standards and replace them with modern and up to date systems. This process improves the procedures and helps in boosting the value of an entity.
Examples of Application Programming Interface Management Tools
- Kong Enterprise
- Comparison Chart