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Natalia API2Cart

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What is RESTful API? How Can It Be Used in eCommerce?

Web APIs (application programming interface) has become increasingly useful in the last few years. A REST API is the type of API that uses HTTP requests to GET, PUT, POST and DELETE various data.

REST, also known as representational state transfer, is a unique software architecture style that consists of several pieces of architecture constraints that are coordinated or used together. The purpose of REST is to define a work environment for connectors, components, and data elements.
REST focuses more on the roles of the components and less on the protocol syntax or the actual implementation of a protocol. This set of rules is aimed to assign how URLs and HTTP protocols are used.

In this article, we are going to explore in detail all the aspects of RESTful API.

What is RESTful API?

A RESTful API is a modern API that acts under the REST rules. To achieve the desired level of optimization, developers need to follow several important patterns.
First, let’s take a look at the top 6 main constraints that REST employs in order to achieve the desired level of optimization:

  1. Client-server: this constraint enables each component to operate independently. An API should act as a server for multiple numbers of clients.

  2. Cache: the API should not ignore caching, as to use the network as little as possible to save resources.

  3. Stateless: a RESTful API allows a stateless communication between the server and the client. This means that every single request from the client to the server and back has to contain all the necessary information in order to complete the transaction as quickly as possible.

  4. Uniform interface: the resources should be described flawlessly, and the manipulation of resources should be performed in a streamlined manner.

  5. Code on demand: clients should be able to use programs seamlessly.

  6. Layered system: a RESTful API is a layered system that used proxies, or intermediaries, for quicker data transfer.
    To properly build a RESTful API, you need to use HTTP properly, build a uniformed interface, leverage the power of REST architecture, use multi-language fields, and combine various resources into composites.

How Does the RESTful API Work?

Today, RESTful APIs are used on large sites, such as the ones used by Google, Facebook or Amazon. The way this technology works is to break down a unique type of transaction into several modules, with each module focusing on addressing a certain part of the transaction.

Because of this “modularity” infrastructure, developers can benefit from an expanded level of flexibility. However, no developer will try to design a RESTful API from scratch. As a rule of thumb, they are using the models offered by famous companies, including the Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI), Amazon S3, or OpenStack Swift.

REST is a simple style that uses HTTP calls for streamlined communication instead of complex models such as COM+, CORBA, SOAP or RPC. Using REST means that your transactions will be HTTP-based and will rely on specific messages.

The RESTful API works by employing a simple request/response mechanism. The verbs used in these operations are:

  • GET: used to retrieve a specific resource
  • PUT: update the resource
  • POST: create a resource
  • DELETE: used to delete a certain resource

A RESTful API is extremely effective, as it allows you to gain access to the resources without having to tie your API to the client. You can now build a stronger, more reliant infrastructure for your company using fewer resources.

An Example of Using RESTful API for Integration with eCommerce platforms

RESTful API can prove to be a gold-mine, especially for SaaS providers who want to tie their applications with multiple APIs belonging to eCommerce platforms. The RESTful API can make the integration process extremely easy, especially when integrating your solution with multiple platforms at once, such as PrestaShop, Magento, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, and others.

For instance, API2Cart is a company that fully leverages the benefits offered by RESTful API. They provide a unified API that enables SaaS providers to seamlessly connect their systems with 40+ shopping platforms at one go. As an API2Cart client, you’ll be able to quickly retrieve, update, add, synchronize, and even delete the data received from e-stores built on these platforms. This data, which belongs to your clients, which are online retailers, includes all the information connected with orders, their clients, shipments, products, and taxes.

Using the API2Cart unified integration method, you can avoid spending your money and time involved in developing separate connections with each shopping platform. All you have to do is integrate your software with API2Cart once and then experience seamless integration with dozens of supported platforms.

The benefits you can experience by using API2Cart’s unified RESTful API for seamless integration with all of these eCommerce platforms are many and include:

  • Gain access to millions of eCommerce store owners who can become your own clients
  • Save a huge amount of time and money on integrations
  • Enjoy happier clientele
  • Be able to experiment with new features and leverage more capabilities
  • Scale-up your business and reach more clients from all the corners of the globe
  • Enjoy a full 30-day free trial to test API2Cart’s API
  • Benefit from full-tech support

Conclusion

There is no doubt that using a RESTful API architecture is the best and simplest way to gain access to the data needed to operate your business. API2Cart offers a RESTful API and provides a seamless connection to over 40 shopping platforms.

If you want to learn more about how API2Cart can help you succeed, do not hesitate to contact us and talk to one of our project managers.

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