As APIs grow in strategic importance to banks, focus turns to modern API monitoring tools

Banks are putting a fresh set of eyes on how they are using APIs to drive better business outcomes and deliver more value to their customers. This is a relatively new departure toward adopting digital transformation of key operations.

Financial organizations are traditionally known for favoring conservative business models that often resist modernizing complex legacy systems or rapid change in product and service offerings. This has been changing rapidly as APIs become more prevalent .

Banks are seeing APIs as vehicles for growth

If there is any question as to the importance of APIs to businesses, consider the numbers. The API economy is surging. There are some 200 million public and private APIs in use in the global digital economy.

Although the number of public banking APIs is proportionately small, a recent  report found that 75% of the top 100 banks globally have made public APIs available. It also indicated that 70% of developers expect to use even more APIs in 2023 than last year. Perhaps even more interesting is that API monetization is on the rise.

Whereas the objective of API efforts for banks were initially rooted in compliance regarding electronic payment systems, for example, a shift towards cost-savings, increasing revenues and driving innovation has taken center stage. And the number of organizations developing strategies to monetize APIs is up 5% in general but up 16% in the financial sector.

Banks and other financial services organizations are realizing the power APIs have with regards to expanding their pool of products and services to a new digitally advanced generation of users – who prefer to conduct transactions and other services via a variety of devices.

Why API monitoring is critical

This all brings into question how APIs are monitored for performance, availability, and functionality. Does the API monitoring platform return value to the financial organization in the form of useful data supporting growth? Or is it simply an advanced alerting system?

Whether the APIs are internally facing, public facing, partner APIs, or third-party APIs, they must be constantly monitored around the clock to ensure that they are functioning as expected.

API monitoring is critical for answering many questions about API availability, functionality and other behaviors fueling modern applications. Simply put, if your APIs fail, your applications will fail and impair the end user experience.

API monitoring also provides important performance data for developers and operations teams that can be used to improve the delivery of services to customers. This is why it’s imperative to choose an API monitoring solution that can provide actionable data that can be used to increase ROI and further strategic business goals.

Here are key functionalities to look for in a modern purpose-built API monitoring platform:

Adaptability-Seamless integration with other tools and processes you use is vital and cost-effective.

Configurable Alerts-Notifications should be configurable, contextual and deliverable to the right team member  to reduce MTTR.

Intuitive-User interfaces and dashboards should be easy to understand in hours, not days or weeks.

Multi-step capable– Comprehensive API testing via multiple HTTP requests is necessary so that data from each request can be used to perform tasks in other steps.

Verify API functionality-Test redirects, authentication, perform CRUD, or any other API interaction. Monitor for result codes, and check if your API returns expected content.

Multiple checkpoints-End users are not confined to one location. The ability to monitor simultaneously from hundreds of global checkpoints is key to knowing if APIs are working in specific locations.

Financial services firms are rapidly restructuring their business processes and adopting digital-first API strategies to address real-time business situations enabling them to better serve customer needs now and into the future.

Learn more about how API monitoring supports better business outcomes.