Open API powers most software use in our daily lives and often offers the convenience of integrating multiple software programs. APIs determine how different software will communicate with each other. Without APIs, two applications can’t talk to each other.
APIs, also known as Software intermediaries, allows programmers to write less code from the software side, making the program less complex. This minimizes code-related errors. In addition, software developers can develop unique and functional software applications.
Although the API concept is complex, knowing some of its basic features offers several advantages in call center integration. By understanding the operational structure of the API and how it adds value to your business, you understand why it’s an essential component for call centers.
What is API?
API, an acronym for Application Program Interface, is a set of functions that allows two or more software programs to interact. An example is when an agent answers a customer’s call and gets fed with the caller’s details from your CRM instantly. That’s an API helping your call center software interact with the CRM.
What is Open API?
There are Open API and Private API. Open API differs from standard API in some ways. Private API is used only by the software developer or the company that created it. Hence, it is not possible to make an external connection with the remote API.
In the Open API, different software developers can freely access the API. There are no restrictions on access. Software developers can achieve this access using the internet.
Thanks to the open structure, the software program has universal access. A software developer anywhere in the world can access the API and perform the desired integration. Thus, companies that use specific software in their daily operations can easily integrate it into their systems. In addition, software developers get the chance to benefit from the software’s features by coding less.
How Open API Works
Although the technical background is complex, we will explain it more simply, providing step-by-step information about the API working principle using the call center example.
Call centers that provide excellent customer service use APIs. Generally, sales-oriented call centers and customer service call centers use similar APIs. However, depending on the call center’s area explicitly, it may require additional API.
Sales-oriented call centers are call centers designed to increase customer experience and sales. The aim here is to close the deal as soon as possible by shortening the sales cycles. Another objective is to increase the company’s profitability and complete the most efficient sale as quickly as possible.
Considering all these purposes, Open APIs can present several opportunities for sales-oriented call centers.
Open API Workflow
- A customer representative or call center employee sends marketing content to see how interested potential customers are in the product.
- Customers indicate whether they are interested in the product based on marketing content.
- CRM integration creates tickets and records for potential customers interested in the product.
- Customer representatives working in the call center receive notifications about interested customers thanks to the CRM integration with the API.
- The customer representative pulls the customer details from the database using CRM.
- Thanks to Open API, the customer representative can have customer details through the cloud-based call center system without leaving the CRM system.
- The agent automatically performs the call using the click-to-call feature or other features.
- If the potential customer is not interested when the call comes in, the customer representative marks a follow-up activity on the system to contact again at a convenient time.
- If the customer representative makes a sale due to the search, he sends the necessary information to the potential customer using software to receive the product payment.
- After the sales process is complete, the customer receives a satisfaction survey through the system.
As can be seen from the example above, software integration is an indispensable feature for call centers. In many cases, call center operations to consist of interconnected processes and software. If integration with the API is unavailable, connecting these processes becomes complex. Call centers need APIs for sales or customer service processes to run smoothly and harmoniously.
What are the Benefits of Open APIs?
Open API integrations benefit businesses in many ways. Today, many companies continue their operations based on data. Data becomes even more critical when it comes to calling center operations. The more information about customers, the better service agents can provide.
According to a study by Harvard Business Review, Salesforce.com generates 50% of its revenue through APIs, while Expedia.com generates 90% and eBay generates 60% via APIs. It is obvious to see how much value APIs can add to businesses.
In addition to helping with revenue generation, below are more benefits of APIs in other areas:
- APIs allow searching for leads across different platforms and devices, allowing to reach more customers.
- Thanks to easy integration, they can be ready for use in a short time.
- Its cloud-based structure allows use anywhere with internet access.
- Provides product information by linking information in the global database to provide more detailed information to potential customers during the sale.
- Allows the marketing department to provide more support to the call center department.
- It facilitates processes by genuinely integrating them into workflows.
- You can adjust APIs according to the specific workflows to improve the customer experience.
- You can use them on any device anywhere in the world.
- It offers greater visibility into what is happening in the call center.
How to Protect Open API?
Although Open APIs have many benefits, security is one of the crucial issues for these structures. Like all devices and software with Internet access, APIs need protection against external attacks.
Using Open API is a time-consuming process. In addition, it brings problems such as lack of connectivity between components, reliability issues, and too many services connecting. However, it is possible to avoid these problems by following some steps for API management.
- Create a central point for creating and enforcing API policies.
- Create contracts to ensure APIs are reusable and consistent.
- Prepare style guides for all APIs to ensure consistency.
- Adopt reusable structures in design.
- Create an automation system for API contracts and documents.
- When creating new API versions, apply the versioning structure that removes the old API versions.
- Set policies to keep different API versions under control and inform software developers.
- Please keep track of where the APIs are used, by whom, and their use.
- Implement API discovery options that make it easy to search and discover implemented APIs and tools used.
Properly configured API management allows all APIs to work consistently. In addition, the reuse of the components in the APIs is possible with a well-designed management system. API standards and API guidelines provide benefits for API creation, implementation, and development.
Open API, VoIP Integration, and Contact Center operations
Call centers have undergone a lot of change in the past ten years. The call center systems we use today have several features from the designs used in the past, which are gradually taking their place in the dusty pages of history. Call centers established and implemented over the cloud are now present in almost all industries.
Cloud contact center software and VoIP integrations have led to significant changes in call center workflows. Cloud systems, which allow to take calls from anywhere, enable businesses to manage their operations more efficiently. However, when it comes to cloud systems, it is essential that the software work together. These developments and changes, including API integration, allow call centers to work more efficiently and effectively.
Contact centers, which connect multiple software on a single screen through API, benefit from technology and provide customer representatives with all the tools they need. Open API facilitates the processes of customer representatives.
Call Center Studio Open API Integrations
Call Center Studio, a cloud-native call center software, offers a comprehensive customer service experience using Open API integrations. Customer representatives can make calls with just a few clicks, thanks to features such as click-to-call. All these features are possible due to API integrations. Some APIs used by Call Center Studio are listed below:
- SAP CRM: Thanks to the Click-to-call integration, the calls made can be quickly reported by considering the data in SAP.
- Next4Biz: Thanks to its click-to-call and CallerID features, this API provides all the information needed to the customer representatives.
- Salesforce: Integration showing caller information stands out as the software with the most powerful features among Open APIs.
- Microsoft Dynamics: Click-to-call feature and CallerID information are displayed in a single panel, providing an integrated call center experience.
- MyBasicCRM: Incoming and outgoing call details are visible on a single screen. With the integration of the CRM database.
- Hubspot: Click-to-call feature and CallerID information are displayed in a single panel, providing an integrated call center experience.
In addition to the ones listed above, Call Center Studio continues to implement new API integrations every day. You can click the link for all Call Center Studio APIs.
The Open API development process offers significant benefits in many areas, including call center services. As these APIs become more widespread, call centers will continue to provide more integrated services.
Integrations such as CRM help to improve the customer experience by providing all the information that customer representatives need in one place. In addition, VoIP integration and other open API integrations allow an increase in the efficiency and profitability of call centers.