For the past six months the dev team at AmeriCommerce have been hard at work building a new RESTful API. When you look under the hood on this API, it's truly impressive! This REST API is designed to be a replacement for the legacy SOAP API that the AmeriCommerce platform currently uses. For those of you not familiar with what an API is, it’s an application programming interface that allows software components to communicate with each other. Basically, it’s the nuts and bolts of how the AmeriCommerce platform integrates with 3rd party software and how other apps can connect (integrate) with our ecommerce platform.
What does this mean for you as a store owner? The new REST API features quite a few improvements that make AmeriCommerce better than ever, let’s take a look at some of them.
Speed is a huge enhancement. Our SOAP API is slow in comparison to the new REST API which is crazy fast. Under normal circumstances, it clocked in at less than half a second for all operations and even less for reads. One of the key components to the RESTful API is the reduced number of calls necessary to perform similar XML (SOAP) requests. This equates to a combined speed increase of up to 400% for the REST API.
Easier to Use Integration
Many developers prefer a REST API versus a SOAP API due to some difficulty in implementation. For example, with SOAP, the required XML structure must be created every single time. This is not necessary when using REST API, in many cases, instead of using XML to make a request, REST relies on a simple URL. Our JSON only REST API is a more lightweight alternative to SOAP and can be implemented using almost any tool. Along with easier implementation, the REST API also leads to lower bandwidth and a much shorter learning curve.
Deeper Access To Ecommerce Platform Tools
With the REST API , developers now have a more robust set of search and query tools as well as deeper access to store data than was previously provided in the SOAP API. This allows for more powerful queries. tighter integrations from AmeriCommerce into 3rd party apps or developer tools, and more efficiency in using the API.
Wider Support for Your Favorite Apps and Integrations
The REST API supports OAuth 2 authentication which is a very well-known standard, popularized by its security benefits and is used in popular apps and add-ons such as Facebook and Google. Additionally, with the REST API is more cross-platform accessible and favored across a wider range of programming languages. Which ultimately means the REST API offers more extensibility into more platforms where SOAP API’s typically weren’t as well embraced.
Currently there are no plans to discontinue the SOAP API, but it is recommended that all your integrations be converted to use the new API to take advantages of the many great features that REST API offers.
Learn more about our REST API:
About the Author
Justin McCullough is the Chief Product Officer at FSG. Head of Smart Buildings Division and Formerly VP of AmeriCommerce. He loves a challenge, big dreams, and getting stuff done. He is married with two boys, loves content marketing, ecommerce, and helping businesses succeed. You can catch him on twitter as mccJustin (twitter.com/mccJustin) or his own personal blog.
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