Last updated on November 16th, 2022 at 12:01 pm
What are Application Programming Interfaces ( APIs )? API is a broad term that encompasses a set of protocols, tools, and procedures that enable businesses to take advantage of the power of data. APIs power most applications in use today. This is because they allow developers to incorporate the core features of complex websites into applications . In addition, they allow you to integrate and use these features in a variety of ways. This is very important for business, because it is through the API that various programs can interact with each other.
As APIs grow in popularity, management them becomes extremely difficult and complex. This is where API management comes in. It helps you develop, analyze, document, and publish APIs in a secure environment. It has become so popular that the API management market is expected to reach $3,436.16 million by 2022. To make the best use of an API, it needs to be well documented and secure. This can be achieved through consistent testing and regular updates. To make this process easier, you can use API management tools .
Why do we need API management tools?
While API management tools make it easy for your organization to develop, manage, and secure APIs, they offer much more than that. They can also help in the planning and testing phases of the API. This is important because once an API is developed, you need to test it to make sure it works the way you want. In addition, API management tools also help ensure that previously deployed APIs are compatible with new ones. This can help reduce application development costs. Finally, they simplify the process of publishing and deploying APIs.
Now let’s look at how to choose the best API management tools for your organization.
How to choose the best API management tools for software development?
There are many API management tools. Therefore, you need to be careful when choosing which one you want to use to develop software solutions. Here are some factors to consider when choosing API management tools for your organization.
1. Ease of use
The first thing you check before choosing API management tools is ease of management. If the API management platform you choose is not easy to use, your team will find it difficult to manage the API. In addition, a good API management tool should make it easier for developers to manage. Also, it should integrate well with other frameworks you already have.
This is another important factor to consider when choosing API management tools. Scalability is critical to the growth of your business, and the tools you use must be able to support this growth. It is for this reason that you need to check if your tool can support the growth of your organization or not. Let’s say your software solution supports an e-commerce platform. If you are using a scalable API Management Platform, it will be easy for you to achieve optimal performance during peak periods (such as Black Friday). Otherwise, your system may crash due to increased activity.
Before choosing an API management tool , you need to check if it is safe to use. You need to check if it has reliable single sign-on ( SSO ) capabilities. In addition, it must have policies that make the use of SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) mandatory. It should also protect you from web threats and disable login unless VPN is enabled . In addition, it must be GDPR compliant to build the trust and loyalty of your customers. Ultimately, this will help improve customer retention.
The final factor to consider before choosing an API management tool is its complexity. You must ensure that the API Management Framework covers the publisher and consumer components of the API. API publisher components include design, build, test, secure , and manage. On the other hand, API consumer components include discovery, development, consumption, and monitoring. The ideal API management tool should be able to work effectively with most, if not all, of these components. So let’s take a look at the best API management tools for 2021 and how to use them effectively.
14 API Management Tools You Should Try
Here are some of the best API management tools you should check out today.
Apigee is one of the best API management tools for partner apps, cloud apps, consumer apps, accounting systems, IoT, and employee apps. With this software solution, you can develop, secure, analyze, and scale APIs from anywhere. In addition, this tool allows you to fully control your APIs and see how things work.
- It helps to deliver the solution (end goal) as a proxy, agent, or hybrid.
- This makes it easier for developers to use the data and tools to build new cloud applications.
- Developers can create and deliver applications themselves.
- It also helps in measuring and tracking. The tool comes with analytics that provide information about API traffic and help measure KPIs .
It has four pricing plans – Evaluation, Standard, Enterprise, and Enterprise Plus. The Evaluation plan is free. For other pricing plans, you need to contact their team for a custom quote.
2. AG software
This API Management Platform was recently named a “Visionary” in the 2019 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Industrial IoT due to its well-integrated API infrastructure as well as being innovative.
- Provides access to a range of open API standards
- Helps users manage the entire API lifecycle
- Has a fully customizable developer portal
- Has a secure analytics gateway that can help you tailor and scale your API
You can get started with a free trial of this software solution. For full pricing information, please contact the Software AG team.
Why is Mulesoft famous? Because this solution is one of the best API management tools for connecting applications. It is also well suited for managing and building APIs. In addition, it provides solutions for building an application network from scratch. This will help you manage users and analyze the traffic you receive. It also includes policies to help you protect your API from cyberattacks.
- Has a single platform API
- Helps you create a community that you can use to develop and collaborate with other developers
It has a free trial that you can explore. As for pricing plans, there are Gold, Platinum and Titanium pricing plans. You can contact the MuleSoft team for more pricing information.
Axway is a renowned API management tool that provides cloud-based data integration . Some of the solutions it offers include API management, B2B integration , content collaboration, and app development.
- Trending and Predictive API Analysis
- Pre-built development policies to ease the work of developers
It has a free trial. You can contact the Axway team for more details on prices and individual offers.
What does WSO2 mean? The manufacturers of this API control platform gave it a name that refers to the chemical analogy. The name means “oxygenated web services”. This name is quite appropriate, given the way the software works. WSO2 is an open source API management tool that can be deployed on-premises, in the cloud, and also provided as a service. It is useful when you want to manage the full lifecycle of an API, including governance, monetization, and policy enforcement.
- highly customizable
- Allow developers to earn money with the platform
- Regulates API traffic , thereby protecting it from future attacks
- Has an analytics platform that monitors and tracks results
WSO2 offers a 15 day free trial. For more detailed pricing information please contact the WSO2 team.
6. Kong Inc.
This API Management Platform provides end-to-end solutions for organizations looking to solve critical application problems . Their tools, Kong Gateway and Kong Enterprise, can help you control and manage the API. The first one is also an open source tool.
- You can manage your teams and provide an integrated development environment.
- They have a variety of plugins that you can use to extend the functionality of the tools.
- It is scalable, especially for organizations with large workloads.
You can download Kong Gateway for free. To access the Enterprise edition, you can request a free demo of the software solution. For pricing information, you need to contact their team.
7. Snap Logic
This API management platform helps people create, publish and consume APIs at any time. What is the best thing about this tool? The best thing is that you can do all of the above without any manual coding. It is a cloud-based API management platform and as such it works like an iPaaS (Integration Platform as a Service).
- Advanced analytics API for tracking and monitoring
- Compatibility with other API management tools
- Developer portal makes it easy to manage API consumers
It has a 30 day free trial. For more detailed pricing information, you need to contact the SnapLogic team.
8. Akana API Platform
What is Akana API? Akana is one of the best API management tools for lifecycle management. It has an end-to-end platform for developing, securing, implementing, monitoring, and publishing APIs. What value can Akana bring to your company? With it, you can build a partner ecosystem to engage and empower your developers to deliver APIs on time.
- Helps to create, discover and control APIs from a single user interface.
- It is highly secure and detects vulnerabilities in API code
- Provides in-depth API analytics
You can request a free demo of the tool. For more detailed pricing information, please contact the Akana team.
9. Fiorano Software
This API management platform is effective for integrating applications and services into APIs. It is available as an on-premises solution and as a cloud service. In addition, it provides a linearly scalable API gateway through which public APIs can handle error, overrun, and exception policies.
- Monitor all deployed APIs for bugs and performance tracking
- Mediation services that support data formats such as HTTPS and JMS
- Gives developers access to manage and deploy APIs through a web console
- It has a drag and drop feature that makes it easy to create an API.
You can request a free software demo or download a 45-day free trial. For more information about prices, you need to contact the Fiorano sales department.
Fusio is one of the best open source API management tools. This software solution provides users with tools that make it easy to create APIs from various sources.
- A unique developer portal where developers can register to use your API
- Provides developers with OAuth2 authorization to access non-public APIs
- It has a documentation app that shows all developers the available API endpoints.
Want a free API solution? Fusion is available for free. You can download it from their site.
11. API Umbrella
The Umbrella API can add basic functionality such as rate limiting, analytics, and API keys to any API. It is also one of the best open source API management tools.
- Speeds up the API by integrating the standard HTTP caching layer into it
- Helps you unify your APIs by providing a single, public entry point to them
- You can create one API key that can be used in multiple APIs.
You can download this software service for free.
12. Oracle API Platform
You can create APIs seamlessly with the Oracle API Platform. This API management platform supports agile API development and has style guides to help your teams adhere to REST and JSON standards. In addition, it helps measure KPIs and control access to APIs at runtime . Pricing plans start at $2.01 per gateway per hour.
13. TIBCO Cloud Machinery
TIBCO Cloud Mashery is one of the best API management tools used to convert to SOAP and RESTful protocols. It provides a full lifecycle API management solution for SaaS , B2B and public APIs. The company offers a 30-day free trial of the software service. The Mashery Professional plan starts at $500 per month. For more information about the Mashery Enterprise plan, you need to contact the company.
3scale makes it easy to manage internal and external users of your API. This API management platform allows you to share, distribute, control, secure and monetize your APIs. Is 3Scale open source? 3scale software is not intended to be open source. However, 3scale works well with Red Hat software and the latter is open source. Pricing starts at $750/month for the Pro plan . For Enterprise plan pricing, you need to contact the 3scale team.
Frequently asked Questions
What are API Management Tools?
These are tools that allow companies to securely control, monetize, and track APIs (Application Program Interfaces). They help administrators monitor security, traffic, errors, and connection integrity for published APIs.
How does API management work?
API Management allows companies to track and control the visibility of APIs that connect data and applications in the cloud or on the enterprise. It allows them to enforce API usage policies, publish web APIs, develop a subscriber community, collect and analyze usage statistics, control access, and generate performance reports .
What is the best API testing tool on the market?
Some of the best API testing tools include:
5. Apigee API Management
How to do API testing ?
Follow these steps when conducting API testing:
- Start by defining the requirements and scope of testing. Clarify issues such as the purpose of the API, target consumers, features and functions of the API, aspects of testing, etc.
- Create a test environment by setting up databases, servers, and all resources that interact with the API.
- Run a test call to make sure the API is working and has no broken features.
- Define input parameters. Efficiently authenticate results and determine that the API works as you expect by planning for possible combinations of input parameters.
- Creation of test cases. Write, execute, and compare actual test results with expected ones. You can use API testing tools or write code to help you run tests. However, it is recommended to automate this process.
Why do you need API Management?
Reasons why API management is critical:
- API analysis results enable data-driven decision making.
- It protects you from API security threats.
- It provides centralized visibility into all your API connections and makes it easy to identify gaps that need to be fixed, reduce duplicate APIs, and reduce security vulnerabilities .
- Allows you to offer API consumers a positive experience.
- Increases the flexibility of the API, allowing you to quickly create digital assets.
- It will help you create an agile, innovative and adaptable ecosystem that enables seamless interaction between technologies, processes and people.
What is the difference between API Management and API Gateway?
API gateways are unified proxy servers that provide a central location for routing, securing, and administering your APIs and services. They perform functions such as rate limiting, authentication, data validation, caching, API analytics, canary API versioning, etc. API gateways can be either on-premises or cloud-based. API Management defines the overall solution applied to API management in production. It allows you to perform functions such as versioning the API, modifying open data, defining metrics to track, understanding the business value of the API, and so on.
What metrics are most important for monitoring API performance?
The most important API performance monitoring metrics include:
- Working hours
- Request per minute
- Memory usage
- Average and maximum delay
- CPU Usage
- Saving the API
- Errors per minute
- SDK and Version Acceptance
- Unique API Clients
- Time for the first hello of the world
- Calls per business transaction
- Rise in API usage
- API Consumer Usage
What is the best API management tool?
In this post, you learned about the top 14 API management tools, their key features, and pricing plans. Which one is better depends on the specific needs of your organization. Have you used any of these API management tools for software development in your organization? Or do you know of any other API management tools that you think deserve a place on this list? Please share your experience and thoughts in the comments below.