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What is an API & How to Use it for Seamless Order Fulfillment?

June 15, 2020

6 min read

Times are fast evolving and almost every other operation is now being automated. Be it eCommerce or food service, the scope for manual work is now reducing. Every sector of the industry is working towards becoming computerized and managing everything from a single platform. But have you ever thought about how these processes are linked with one another? Here is a component that can help you decipher the mystery behind seamless automation – APIs. Let’s dig deeper into the details of API and how it can make eCommerce shipping easier for you.

What is an API?

API stands for Application Programming Interface. It is an intermediate link between two applications that allows them to communicate with each other. 

To understand what an API is, let’s take a look at a real-life example – booking movie tickets online. 

It is one of the easiest processes that we use in our day-to-day lives. When you open the website, you choose the movie you want to watch, choose the venue, select the showtime, select the seats, and make the payment. Voila! You can now print your tickets.

But, how does this work in the background? 

Basically, some information about your payment is exchanged between the payment gateway and the app to confirm the payment made. This communication is carried out via an API. 

The same would be applicable to your eCommerce website as well when you redirect your buyers to a payment gateway. 

Benefits of an API

APIs can reduce the work of developers by a large margin. Let’s see how they are beneficial for your business. 

Automation

With APIs, you can train your computer to manage your work. Manual dependency reduces and you can schedule tasks well in advance to avoid any confusion and maintain a streamlined workflow.

This helps the developers to meet their objectives and complete more tasks in lesser time. The API has no implementation, and it specifies how a few software components should be assembled to create a program. This helps businesses save time, costs, and efforts.

Integration

APIs can help you integrate several platforms with one another. With the help of integration, you can reorganize the inter-relationship of the different software as per your business needs. With its help, you can easily obtain better results while reducing development costs. Besides, you can also integrate your applications with third-party websites to optimize their functionality and improve usability for your business’s betterment.

For example, you can integrate your website and marketplace with Shiprocket’s account and import your orders. This way, you can ship your orders from one platform.

Personalization

One size does not fit all – you must have heard of this proverb. APIs also give you the ability to customize and create content for every user. Users can customize what they want to view and set up their API accordingly.

As said above, you can integrate your application with a third-party platform and gain deeper insights into how your users interact with the application. This will help you improve the user experience.

Efficiency

With automation being the trend, you can expect to get work done faster and information sharing is much more simplified and you can work on faster exchange. Content generated can be pushed automatically.

Innovation

APIs have also led to innovation as those who can utilize them can use them to make things happen. Earlier only those developers could use APIs who had an understanding of the data exchange models.

Synchronization

Since your platform will now be integrated with other necessary programs and applications, you can synchronize your operations with other apps and streamline your workflow in an efficient manner.

How are APIs Significant For Order Management & Shipping – Shiprocket

Order fulfillment is automated to a great extent in today’s times. Hence, integrating various platforms with the help of APIs can help you reduce manual work and streamline your workflow in a smooth manner. Let’s take a look at Shiprocket’s platform to give you a better understanding of how this would work. 

When a seller like you signs up on Shiprocket, they can integrate their website or marketplace in the platform. This is how it looks:

Once you integrate your store and Shiprocket, you open an avenue of options for customization. Here is what you get:

  1. You can edit the order mapping statuses so that they are common on both channels
  2. Sync your inventory with the store 
  3. Map the payment statuses 

Furthermore, you can also import orders automatically every 15 minutes from your store. All this, without having to lift a finger. This will help save time and consequently, you can give more time to your business rather than taking care of orders.

Non-Delivery Management Using Courier APIs

Another advantage of signing up with Shiprocket is that we have API integrations with all our courier partners. Thus, when it comes to non-delivery of orders, you receive an instant notification and the undelivered order reflects on your panel. 

This enables you to act faster on such orders and either schedule them for RTO or re-attempt delivery. These initiatives can help you reduce RTO by up to 60%. That can increase your profit by a considerable margin.

Conclusion

APIs are an integral part of any business that is backed by strong technological infrastructure. Hence, it is a smart approach to learn adequately about them and incorporate them into your system. Like we talked about, you can help reduce the number of manual hours put in and direct the efforts of your tech team on to more lucrative opportunities and growth. Also, eCommerce shipping can be a much simpler journey if you take it up with APIs and the right technology.  All the best!

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Can I buy packaging material from Shiprocket?

Yes, you can buy packaging material from us. Visit Shiprocket Packaging to have a look at our product range.

How can NDR management help me reduce my RTO orders?

With our NDR tool, you can process NDR orders sooner. So, the time between reattempts is reduced, which ultimately leads to increased chances of order delivery.

Can I ship my online orders outside India with Shiprocket?

Yes, you can ship your orders to 220+ countries with us.

How is the shipping rate calculated?

The shipping rate is calculated as per the volumetric or dead weight, whichever is higher.

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