API tools and services are fueling revenue growth

As more companies recognize APIs as the building blocks of modern software, API tools and services are evolving to meet their needs, according to Postman.

API-first approach

Adopting an API-first approach

“More companies are adopting an API-first approach to software development, and for the second year in a row, outperforming organizations that haven’t. Beyond the technical advantages, organizations are also seeing a direct impact on their bottom line, reporting their APIs as revenue generators. This outlook, combined with the rising use of AI tools, is fundamentally changing our relationship to software and the way we build it — and APIs are at the center of this shift,” said Abhinav Asthana, CEO of Postman.

Almost two-thirds of respondents say their APIs generate revenue. Of those respondents, 43% said their APIs generate over a quarter of company revenue.

In the financial services and advertising sectors, revenue was especially important. It was judged the No. 2 measure of public API success, just after usage.

When deciding whether to integrate with an API, 47% of respondents said price is a top consideration. That’s up from 41% in each of the past two years. While other factors ranked higher than pricing, this finding may reflect a more cost-conscious API consumer in the wake of tech’s economic contraction.

Most API professionals are using AI to help code

60% of API professionals say they’re using generative AI. More than half of those use it to find bugs in their code, and over a third are relying on AI to generate code. When asked what type of project excites developers in the coming year, the top answer was building AI-powered apps.

92% of respondents say investments in APIs will rise or stay the same over the next 12 months, which is up from 89% last year. This increase may reflect a sense in some quarters that the worst of tech’s economic contraction has passed. At the same time, fewer respondents expect to cut API investments this year.

API security improved for most respondents, with the frequency of incidents down in 2023. But some sectors fared worse than others. Automotive, education, and retail were sectors where survey-takers said monthly incidents occurred at higher rates than average.

11% of respondents defined themselves as API-first leaders, up from 8% in each of the previous two years. This elite group excels in almost every metric, including how fast it can produce APIs and how quickly it can recover when an API goes down.

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