Announcing the UGAL API
October 19, 2010
We are very happy to announce today the release of the UGAL API.
The API opens UGAL to outside applications and this first release focuses on e-commerce: it allows other applications to read and update product and order data on your website.
What is an API?
API stands for Application Programming Interface. It allows software like UGAL to exchange data with other software. For example, when an order is placed on your website, the API can be used to import the order information into your accounting software. Or your inventory management software can tell your website via its API that inventory for an item has changed. The communication goes 2 ways.
Why an API for UGAL?
The main purpose of an API is to make your life easier by "synchronizing" data between the different software you use to run your business. UGAL is good at managing your website and at taking orders on the web. Your accounting software is good at counting the beans. With an API both software can finally talk together, and bridge the functional gap between them.
What can the UGAL API do?
The UGAL API is made of applications, each application focusing on particular objects of your website. We have 4 applications to start with:
- Catalogs to read your product catalog data.
- Products to read your product data.
- Items to read and update your items (prices and inventories).
- Orders to read and update the orders placed on your website.
Those applications have been designed to specifically address the needs of e-commerce websites because that is where we see the most need. It is however a start, the API will evolve over time, and might end up addressing other aspects of your website as new applications are added.
How does it work?
The UGAL API is designed to be as simple as possible for other developers to work with. It uses a modern software architecture (called REST) that works particularly well on the web. UGAL is able to send data in XML or JSON (two standard data formats) and can receive data from other applications in XML.
For more information on the API, have a look at the API documentation.