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API Management: 360-Degree Business Visibility with Analytics

Aug 11, 2015

How is your API traffic trending over time? Who are your top developers? When is API response time fastest? When is it slowest? Are you attracting more developers? Geographically where do you see the most API traffic?

Robust API management tools empower businesses to answer questions like these, and this helps enterprises improve their APIs, attract the right app developers, troubleshoot problems, and, ultimately, make better business decisions related to the API program. In a previous post, we examined the strategic importance of BaaS to an API management solution; here we'll discuss API analytics.

Real-time visibility into your APIs

API management solutions should provide the visualization tools, dashboards, and reports to help measure a broad spectrum of data that flows across APIs. This information is most useful in today’s dynamic API economy when it is gathered, analyzed, and provided to the business in real time. Beyond simple charts and graphs, both the ops and business teams should be able to gain deep visibility into the performance of the API program.

In other words, a sophisticated API management solution enables business and operational metrics to provide a complete 360-degree view of your API program.

Detailed snapshots of traffic and developer usage

API analytics provides visibility to the business through reports designed for API product managers. Traffic composition reports provide insights into the most valuable entities of an API program: the apps, developers, APIs, and resources. Enterprises use these reports to measure adoption by developers, traffic generated by various apps, and distribution of users across various geographies and devices. For example, you can determine which developers are contributing most and include them in nurturing programs.

Operation visibility should be provided out of the box—across all APIs and backend systems. For individual APIs, operations teams can measure traffic volume, response times, error rates, data exchange volumes, and cache hit rates. This enables them to quickly identify performance issues with their APIs and resolve them before they adversely affect the broad set of users and apps calling into those APIs.

Powerful visualization tools

Apigee Edge Analytics Services, for example, provides several visualization tools, including the dashboard (which gives an overall view of your entire API program), out-of-the-box reports for operations teams (proxy performance, target performance, cache performance, latency analysis, and error analysis), reports for product managers (developer engagement, traffic composition, GeoMap, and devices breakdown), and custom reports that allow users to select, combine, filter, and drill down into specific API metrics and plot those trends as interactive charts.

Other tools, such as Edge's API Health, enable users to measure the availability and response times of their APIs by making synthetic calls from multiple geographic locations.

For more on API analytics and other features of sophisticated API management solutions, download the free eBook, “The Definitive Guide to API Management.”

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