What is an API portal?
API portals are bridges between API providers and API consumers that provide information about the API at every stage of an API’s lifecycle. API portals allow providers to expose and publicize their APIs, educate developer communities about them, provision user access, generate client keys, and more. For API consumers, API portals are the place to register applications, reset credentials, share and interact with API documentation, provide feedback about the quality of the API, and report bugs.
What makes a good API portal?
Good API portals should provide documentation on an API’s functionality–– allowing users to share and collaborate, consume, and get started with an API with ease. These portals also provide a record of APIs as they are updated and changed with every new API version. In the event that APIs are deprecated, API portals notify consumers of the API’s end-of-life.
API portals are a digital center of truth around an API’s capabilities. As collaboration on software and application development projects grow, API portals – such as MuleSoft’s Anypoint Exchange – make collaboration in application development easy.
Meet Anypoint Exchange
Anypoint Exchange is the global repository for all technical assets in an API or Mule application’s lifecycle. It is the central hub for saving, discovering, and collaborating on reusable assets, such as APIs, connectors, examples, and templates. Users can discover and use proven assets built by the MuleSoft ecosystem, or curate the private tenant of Exchange with organization-specific assets for internal collaboration and learning.
As new APIs are created, Exchange automatically generates documentation and maps API dependencies like fragments, connections, and policies. Anypoint Platform supports both OpenAPI Specification (OAS) and RESTful API Modeling Language (RAML), making API development language agnostic. API providers can also create a registration structure that allows the provider to track who is accessing their API.
After searching for an API or integration asset, the natural next progression is to test portions of the API before implementing it in projects. Exchange’s portals have API notebook snippets embedded within the portal as well as a mocking service integrated directly with Exchange to make testing easy. This allows the user share and test the functionality of the API with both internal and external users without implementation and, most importantly, without disrupting existing integrations.
Once an API portal is ready to share with relevant stakeholders, you can customize your portal to fit your brand. You can change the banner image, colors, favicon and more, so that it provides a seamless transition from your web properties.
As a central repository for all technical assets, Exchange also keeps track of APIs as they are updated.
It’s a great place to host information surrounding the deprecation policy, what circumstances may cause an API to retire, and how to migrate to a new version of an API. In the event that APIs are deprecated, Anypoint Exchange sets up a banner to notify users about deprecation of a specific API version and emails all existing consumers of the API to notify them as well.
Get started today!
Anypoint Platform includes Anypoint Exchange, which provides you with the ability to manage your internal and external APIs, and also provides external access to your APIs using portals. Try Anypoint Platform free for 30 days today!