April 26, 2023
Magento 2 API: 8 Practical Use Cases to Utilize

Magento 2 API is a powerful tool that helps you connect your online store with third-party software. It can handle large volumes of data and lets you build cost-effective integrations without middleware tools.

The most common use cases for the Magento API include building headless websites and progressive web applications.

But here’s the thing: you can use it in other ways to streamline operations across your organization and boost productivity at the same time.

Curious to learn how? Read the rest of our guide to discover eight ways to use the Magento 2 API to improve business efficiency.

8 use cases for the Magento 2 API

The Magento 2 API allows you to interact with your store data programmatically. Here are eight unique ways to use it.

1. Real-time integrations with third-party software and services

Magento 2 API enables real-time data synchronization between Magento 2 and other systems and applications. It ensures changes made on your website — or inside any other integrated system — update across all systems instantly.

The Magento 2 API supports integrations with software like:

  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems.
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software.
  • Product Information Management (PIM) tools.
  • Marketing automation systems.

It also allows bi-directional data synchronization, which is critical to smooth operations. Here’s why.

Let’s say you sell across multiple channels like your website, Amazon, Walmart, and an offline store. When a customer places an order at any of your sales channels, the order, inventory, and customer information will update across all channels in real time.

You won’t need to worry about over or underselling products, and can ensure a seamless shopping experience for all customers.

Get fully managed Magento hosting

Accelerate your store's potential, without the tedious maintenance

Browse Magento hosting plans

2. Streamline product management

The Magento 2 API can help streamline your product management process by automating tasks like adding new products and updating existing ones without accessing the admin panel. That saves you time and minimizes errors that can happen with manual data entry.

The Magento 2 API also enables you to customize the product management process. For example, let’s say you want to handle custom attributes for products with expiration dates. You can easily achieve that by using the Magento API in the following way:

  1. First, you create a custom attribute for the expiration date by making a POST request to the /V1/products/attributes endpoint.
  2. Next, you modify the product import process to include the expiration date by making a PUT request to the /V1/products/{sku} endpoint for each product.
  3. And finally, you display the product expiration date on your website, internal systems, and across integrated sales channels by making a GET request to the /V1/products/attributes endpoint.

Other useful applications of the Magento 2 API include implementing custom product pricing rules and creating a custom reviews system.

3. Improve inventory management

Adobe introduced the Inventory Management module, previously known as Multi-Source Inventory, with Magento version 2.3. The new module added multiple features to Magento, such as:

  • Shipment matching algorithms.
  • Different configurations for inventory originating from single and multiple sources.
  • Concurrent checkout protection.
  • Stocks to track available aggregated quantities from assigned sources.

Combined with the inventory-specific Magento API services and endpoints, those features support workflow automation for:

  1. Managing sources and stocks.
  2. Creating stocks and assigning sources to them.
  3. Assigning products to a source and searching for source items.
  4. Checking whether a product from a specific stock is salable.
  5. Listing pickup locations and notifying customers when their order is ready for pickup.

4. Enhance website search functionality

Magento’s Elasticsearch-powered search functionality is extremely powerful. But the Magento API helps you take it up a notch by integrating with AI-powered search engines like Algolia. Additionally, using the API instead of an extension offers other benefits, such as:

  • Eliminates the need for extension updates.
  • Provides the flexibility to switch to a new search engine by modifying the API integration.
  • Simplifies speed optimizations for Magento 2.

5. Customize the Magento checkout

Baymard’s analysis of over 37,200 checkout site elements revealed that 51% of all sites have a mediocre checkout user experience (UX), while 11% have a poor checkout UX. The good news is that you can avoid bad checkout experiences with the Magento 2 API.

The Magento 2 API allows you to build a custom checkout page with additional fields and custom payment methods that integrate securely with your payment provider. It also lets you implement live inline validation, which can significantly improve the buyer’s error recovery experience.

6. Streamline order management

Beyond the checkout, the Magento API can help you set up custom order management workflows for scenarios that aren’t covered by the Magento order management system.

For example, here’s how you could use the Magento API to set up a custom workflow for personalized products that require mockups and approval before production.

  1. Create a custom module that integrates with the Magento order management system and other systems used to personalize the products.
  2. When you receive an order for personalized products, the API will set a custom order status as “Pending approval” and notify the production team to send a mockup to the customer.
  3. Once the customer approves the order, the order status will update to “In production” as the production team begins working on the order.
  4. When the order is ready, the production team will set the order status as “Ready to ship,” which will trigger a notification to the shipping team via the API.
  5. Based on the selected Magento 2 shipping method, the shipping team will generate labels using the integration with your shipping provider’s systems. When the labels are ready, the API will update the order status to “Awaiting pickup.”
  6. Finally, when the carrier collects the order from your warehouse, the Magento API will update the order status to “Shipped” and trigger a tracking email to the customer.

7. Simplify accounting

If you dislike reconciling transactions manually, here’s some good news — the Magento 2 API can help eliminate manual data entry for good.

Magento’s API integrates with popular accounting software like Xero and QuickBooks to ensure every last bit of financial data is synchronized correctly and always up to date. You can even configure it to cater to your business needs in different ways, such as:

  • Syncing custom data fields.
  • Using custom rules to handle location-based tax calculations and discounts.
  • Running syncs on a predefined schedule.

Apart from simplifying your accounting process, the Magento API also helps minimize accounting errors and provides real-time insights into transactions across different sales channels.

8. Save time with bulk actions

The Magento API offers Bulk API endpoints that are different from regular API endpoints because they can execute multiple requests at once by putting them into an array. That means you need fewer API calls, which significantly improves data processing efficiency.

Let’s consider a scenario where you want to update the prices of your products based on a percentage. You could do that manually if you have a few hundred products. But when you have thousands or tens of thousands, manual data entry will be time-consuming and tedious.

A better way to update product pricing would be to use the Magento API. Here’s how that could work:

  1. You connect to the Magento 2 API and fetch a list of all the products in your store.
  2. Go through the products and calculate the updated price for each product based on the percentage increase or decrease.
  3. Send a request to the Bulk API endpoint with an array of product IDs and updated prices.

The Magento API can handle hundreds of thousands of requests easily. The latest Magento version, Magento 2.4.6, adds a new REST API endpoint that lets you import up to 100,000 records per minute.

Magento 2 hosting from Nexcess

The demand for API-powered workflows is on the rise. A 2022 report by RapidAPI found that 72% of organizations with 1 to 50 employees reported using up to 10 external APIs. More importantly, they found that the use of APIs increases based on the organization’s size.

Nexcess Magento hosting provides performance-optimized hosting with API access to the Client Portal. You can integrate your hosting account with your business systems and manage your hosted applications without logging in to the Client Portal.

That streamlines your workflow and helps secure your Magento site simultaneously.

Magento 2 API 101: what it is and how to use it

The Magento 2 API is a set of web services that allow you to integrate Magento 2 with different software inside and outside your organization. It supports REST, SOAP, and GraphQL protocols.

The Magento API enables a variety of actions, including creating and updating products, managing orders, and accessing customer data. Although you don’t need Magento 2 certification or advanced PHP skills to set up an integration, you do need some experience with the following:

  • Magento’s Web APIs.
  • Web API authentication.
  • OAuth-based authentication.

Luckily, Adobe provides Magento 2 API documentation to help you set things up correctly. The documentation also explains how to troubleshoot errors.

How to connect to the Magento 2 API: a high-level overview

Before you connect to the Magento 2 API, make sure you:

Then, follow these steps to connect to the Magento 2 API:

  1. Create a custom module: Create a custom module with an etc/integration/api.xml file that defines the API resources the integration can access.
  2. Install the module module: Install your module and verify integration in the Magento admin under System > Extensions > Integrations.
  3. Activate the integration: Configure the integration in the Magento admin by specifying the callback URL and an identity link URL.
  4. Send the API request: Send the API request to the Magento 2 server using an HTTP client, such as cURL, or a tool, such as Postman.
  5. Verify the result: Verify the API response. In case of an error, use the Magento API error code and message to diagnose and resolve the issue.

The bottom line: Magento 2 API use cases

The Magento 2 API supports automation that streamlines operations and improves efficiency. But using the Magento API can increase the demand on your server. That’s why it’s important to choose a host that provides Magento-specific resources and specialized support.

Nexcess Magento hosting gives you 24/7/365 access to technical support from Magento experts and performance-optimized hosting environments to ensure your store can handle demand easily. All plans include instant auto scaling and daily backups with 1-click restore.

Browse our managed Magento hosting plans to get started today.

Indraneil Khedekar
Indraneil Khedekar

Indraneil Khedekar is a Magento and WordPress expert and the founder of Content Scribers, a B2B tech content agency. He has a bachelor's degree in physiotherapy from Maharashtra University of Health Sciences, Nashik and is an ecommerce expert with over a decade of hands-on experience working with technologies such as Magento, WordPress, and Shopify. He's also the founder of Content Scribers, a content agency for B2B brands, and a strong supporter of community-driven, open source software.

We use cookies to understand how you interact with our site, to personalize and streamline your experience, and to tailor advertising. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies and accept our Privacy Policy.