Application programming interfaces, or APIs, are vital for accelerating your enterprise’s digital transformation efforts. However, the more you rely on APIs – either those created by third parties or those your organization develops for internal or external use – the more crucial it is that you create an API management ecosystem strategy. In this post, we’ll describe an API management ecosystem, discuss the benefits of using an API management ecosystem strategy, and provide tips for how to create an effective strategy in your enterprise.
What is an API Management Ecosystem?
An API management ecosystem consists of the tools and methodologies you use to create, monitor, manage, and secure all your APIs. An API management ecosystem strategy takes a methodical approach to API usage rather than just creating or integrating APIs ad hoc.
Why You Need an API Management Ecosystem Strategy
An API management ecosystem gives you control over and visibility into all the APIs in use within your organization or by your clients. This can benefit your business by:
Using an API management ecosystem strategy can benefit your organization by saving you time and money, improving the performance of your applications, and securing potential points of weakness in your digital security perimeter.
How to Create an Effective API Management Ecosystem Strategy
Every API management ecosystem is unique, but there are a few best practices to follow if you want to get the most out of your API strategy.
Choose the Right API Management Platform and Tools
The framework of your API management strategy is the technology used to create, monitor, manage, publish, and secure your APIs. When choosing an API management ecosystem platform, you need to consider who will be using it and what their comfort level is. For example, if you don’t have many development resources to dedicate to API management, you might want to consider a no-code API integration platform that requires almost no coding experience.
Use a Methodical Approach
Your API management ecosystem gives you the tools with which to organize your APIs, so use them. Don’t allow your ecosystem to run wild with people creating or subscribing to APIs ad hoc and throwing them all in the same directory. Every API should have a clearly defined purpose (whether that’s a feature-set, integration capability, or some other factor) that doesn’t exist elsewhere in your ecosystem. Using a methodical approach and organized directory structure will help you reduce redundancies and get the most out of your API management ecosystem.
Establish a Culture of Digital Transformation
For your API ecosystem to thrive, you need your organizational culture to embrace digital transformation. Upper management in particular needs to understand the business benefits and importance of your digital transformation efforts, so your development projects have the necessary funding and autonomy to successfully execute your API management ecosystem strategy.
Practice Continuous Improvement
One of the cornerstones of DevOps is continuous improvement, and that applies to your API management as well. Your API management platform should provide you with metrics and analytics you can use to optimize performance. You should also collect copious user feedback so you can see how your APIs are working in the field. Continuously acting on this feedback will help you streamline your API management ecosystem strategy.
API Management Ecosystem Strategies to Accelerate Your Digital Transformation
A successful API management ecosystem strategy requires a methodical approach, a supportive business culture that prioritizes continuous improvement, and – critically – the right tools for the job. For instance, Copado’s low-code DevOps platform for SaaS gives you a centralized system from which to manage development across your cloud ecosystem. Copado makes API management easy, even if you lack the development resources of large DevOps enterprises.