Software companies, such as ERP, shipping management, WMS, order and inventory management, or pricing solutions have always struggled to find new ways to reach their target niche and beat the competition. In 2022, as the eCommerce market continues to grow to post the COVID-19 pandemic era, it becomes even more critical for these companies to get an edge on the market. This goal can best be acquired through shopping cart API integration development.
So why is shopping cart integration so important for various eCommerce software companies? Why should they go the extra mile and invest in reliable connections with multiple shopping platforms like Magento, Shopify, etc.?
It’s important to realize that shopping platforms have become the backbone of eCommerce store owners. The platform a retailer chooses to use for the promotion of products plays a major role in how he or she gets to run their business. When online sellers reach a certain point and have managed to scale their companies enough, they start using various software to simplify their processes and automate tasks. That’s where you come in.
As an eCommerce software provider, you are probably looking to expand your customer base and reach those eCommerce shop owners who need your service. However, you have to know that your software is not capable of servicing customers without developing a connection with the shopping platforms that they use.
Data is the lifeblood of your business, whether you’re order, inventory management, marketing, or shipping software provider. In order to gain access to data, it’s imperative to integrate your solution with all major eCommerce platforms available on the market. Let’s take a closer look at the most important aspect of the shopping cart API integration process.
The Meaning of Shopping Cart API
API is an abbreviation for Application Programming Interface. The interface can be considered as a contract of service between two applications or software products. This contract defines how the two systems communicate with each other using the required requests and responses.
The shopping cart API is a communication mechanism that allows B2B SaaS providers to access information about orders, products, customers, categories, baskets, and other store-related data.
For example, inventory management software needs to access inventory information, such as the quantities and prices of products in stock at different locations and synchronize it across various sales channels.
Main Aspects of Shopping Cart API Integration Development
Shopping cart integrations are unavoidable. They are a must-have for various eCommerce software companies and affect a plethora of their processes.
Shopping cart API integration refers to establishing an API connection between B2B SaaS solutions (such as warehouse management, shipping management, marketing automation software, localization software, and financing solution) and shopping platforms (like Magento, Shopify, WooCommerce, Lightspeed, and Volusion).
Let’s explore the example of how shipping management software can benefit from the eCommerce cart API integration. With the right integration, this type of software companies can get the data from e-merchants' stores needed for automation of shipping processes, improving the order packaging, generating shipments, etc. It includes the data on orders, products, courier details, etc.
At the same time, a software company offering order management needs the developed integration between its solution and shopping platforms to be able to retrieve the data that allows it to provide the main functionality. For example, the access to e-stores’ order info enables such systems to sync inventory across multiple sales channels.
At this point, you’re probably wondering what the best eCommerce platforms you should integrate your business with are. According to the latest stats, this list includes big names such as Shopify, Prestashop, Magento, WooCommerce, and OpenCart. However, local platforms like Zen Cart and 3dcart should not be ignored too.
What Shopping Cart Solutions to Choose for the Integration?
Let’s dive deeper into how you should choose the right shopping cart solutions to integrate your business with. First of all, you need to realize that integrating your solution with multiple shopping platforms can bring a lot of benefits to your company. Being able to help e-store owners to automate their businesses and to better organize workflows can go a long way to ensure you are perceived as a trustworthy, experienced service provider.
When it comes to shopping cart API integration, the connection with the top 5 platforms out there is an excellent scenario. Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, PrestaShop, and OpenCart power together millions of webstores and are continuing to invest in advanced features.
For instance, there are over 500,000 eCommerce store owners who are already using Magento on a daily basis. Also, more than 21% of all web stores available in 2022 are built on WooCommerce. Shopify has a whopping 1 million merchants, spread across over 175 countries worldwide.
These five platforms represent a significant part of the market. By integrating your solution with them, you’ll be able to gain access to all the e-shop owners who use them. Consequently, you can dramatically grow your customer base and overcome your competitors, most of which are probably not targeting all of these platforms at once.
Of course, when it comes to shopping cart solutions to choose for integration, we should also focus on less popular platforms, such as ZenCart, Gambio, Hybris, Ecwid, osCommerce, or Squarespace. Each one of these platforms has its own specificity. For instance, Gambio and Zen Cart are preferred by German-speaking e-shop owners. Ecwid and osCommerce are preferred by retail site owners from the United Kingdom, Italy.
How to Develop a Secure API Integration with Multiple Shopping Platforms in Short Terms?
As an eCommerce software company, you need to be able to develop secure API integration with multiple shopping platforms as quickly as possible. This is required, especially if you have big plans to expand into new markets and target new verticals. Integration with shopping cart APIs allows your software to get access to e-marchants' online store data and manage it as needed. For example, it includes the data on e-store orders, prices, products, customers, shipping details, etc.
However, at this point, you need to be aware of the fact that establishing a secure connection with only one shopping platform is quite a time-consuming process that takes time and costs a lot of money. Also, it requires continuous monitoring, maintenance, and updating.
A manual API connection with a platform such as Magento can take around 2 months to complete and requires over $10.000 in investment costs. What’s more, the integration requires further maintenance, which could spell additional financial resources invested.
The most straightforward alternative to a manual integration with each shopping platform is using a modern, reliable API integration solution that allows you to connect your business with multiple platforms at once. For instance, API2Cart provides a unified API that gives you the benefit of a seamless connection with 40+ shopping platforms at once. In addition, it allows you to leverage a single connection, so you won’t have to develop separate connections with each platform.
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