What is an application program interface (API)?

Glossary What is an application program interface...

The definition of API

An Application Program Interface (API) opens up access to a limited part of a software so developers can utilize it. By giving access to an API for a particular application, the API developer helps others extend the functionality of their app or provide previously inaccessible information.

Why are APIs important?

APIs are helpful in three main ways. Firstly, APIs help developers to easily add new features to their apps. Rather than building something from scratch, a developer can access a useful API to save them development time and ensure that key functionality works effectively.

Secondly, creating an API helps the company behind it to expand in a natural manner. By giving external developers limited access to internal tools under strict conditions, API creators can increase the reach of their software and brand – providing them value for sharing their work.

Finally, APIs can also help stitch the internet and mobile app economy together on behalf of users. They underpin essential online behaviors – such as share buttons or social login options. Even using mapping data in ecommerce apps requires an API, and as such APIs have become essential to users.

By using APIs, developers help reduce fragmentation across the internet and improve navigation through an interconnected ecosystem of sites, platforms and mobile apps.

APIs and Adjust

In a mobile advertising context, APIs are mostly used to help developers provide information to marketers. Rather than forcing people to read CSV files or manually comb through data, APIs help companies push that information into a dashboard. This is particularly important for marketers as it helps them to analyze like-for-like data across multiple campaigns at once.

Adjust uses a postback API to provide conversion data for advertisers running campaigns across multiple networks. By using an API to verify those networks, advertisers can easily track the performance of ad campaigns run with integrated partners through their dashboard.

Furthermore, Adjust’s KPI service API allows developers to pull campaign performance data into their platform.

This is particularly useful for businesses with their bespoke mobile marketing dashboards or tools, as this means Adjust’s data can be included within the custom dashboard.

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