Shopware has set new standards in e-commerce with its current version 6 and its API-First architecture as well as the Headless Commerce concept, paving the way for further innovations. In this article, we would like to take a closer look at what API-First and Headless Commerce mean for Shopware and the entire e-commerce sector and how they are linked. We will also show in this article what advantages you as a user and your customers gain from the combination of both factors.
What does API-First mean for a store system?
With the help of the API-First approach, it has never been easier for store operators to connect third-party systems to their own store and build a complete platform according to their own wishes. This also includes customizing their own storefront, using various sales channels or outsourcing the administration of the online store and its products to a third-party system. Functions such as ERP, product management or sales channels are largely supplied by Shopware itself, but can also be controlled via third-party systems using an API, i.e. the appropriate interface.
Before the great hour of API-First began, each system and each service required a specially developed API, which had to be elaborately developed further with each update. Thus, the appearance, management and control of the online store were only possible under rather rigid framework conditions. With the API-first approach, this is no longer a problem, because all interfaces are automatically available under Shopware 6.
Your advantage: You use Shopware 6 as the technological basis for your online business and equip your store platform with the systems and services you need for success via the appropriate interfaces. Flexibility and creative freedom are the virtues with which Shopware 6 works and provides you. The time-to-market as well as the development time for function extensions and restructuring are noticeably shortened and your online store corresponds exactly to your own needs and those of your customers.
What API's does Shopware 6 come with?
Shopware 6 includes three Rest API's (Representational State Transfer), each of which performs its own function. These are API's that are integrated into the Shopware architecture and run on the HTTP protocol. The three Rest API's are:
- Admin API
- Sync API
- Sales-Channel-API (in future Store API)
What is the Admin API for?
The Admin API's sole purpose is to manage your online store. All options for administration and setting of the store can be controlled via the Admin API. This allows you to outsource all administrative tasks and functions, such as monitoring pending orders, to third-party systems via appropriate interfaces.
What does the Sync API do?
As a component of the Admin API, the Sync API brings with it the ability to import and export large volumes of data in addition to all admin functions. In numbers, this means that up to 300 products can be imported into Shopware 6 per second. This makes it easier, above all, to connect and use a PIM system in combination with Shopware 6.
What can the Sales Channel API do?
With the help of the Sales Channel API in Shopware 6, all storefront features can be used as desired. For example, you can use a storefront that is not necessarily penned by Shopware itself. In addition, this opens up all sales channels via third-party systems to you, such as Facebook or even Instagram.
Overall, Shopware 6's API forest architecture saves you a lot of maintenance and development work. Use any compatible system and simply connect it to your online store. This makes online commerce even more flexible and efficient for you as a store owner. You can track down possible errors and their sources even faster, because they are immediately identified in the respective module in the course of data transfer. Even though Shopware 6 brings a lot of new features, the performance of your store does not suffer. Various benchmarks certify the store system an excellent performance record, with which the integration of further systems will run absolutely smoothly.
API-First and Headless E-Commerce: Together practically unbeatable
We have already been able to show you here and in other places what Shopware 6 has to offer in terms of advantages for you as a merchant. The API-first approach may seem complex, but it can be explained perfectly using the example of headless commerce.
This is because the headless e-commerce principle uses the sales channel API function. Other current store systems usually rely on the frontend and backend being strictly connected. What you enter in the backend is displayed directly and without detours in the frontend. Shopware 6 separates these two components and in this way allows you to decide quite flexibly and individually which storefront you want to use for your online store.
A standard online store also requires individual developments for an individual storefront, which must be elaborately integrated into the existing system. This not only costs time and money, but in many cases does not work as desired. This, in turn, entails laborious adjustments and even more costs. Shopware 6 puts a stop to this potential frustration and builds on headless e-commerce.
How does headless e-commerce work?
A system based on headless commerce finds its foundations in the API-first architecture. Here, various extensions and third-party systems are linked together to form a unique and flexible commerce platform via API. You can replace one specific checkout API with another at will, without changing anything in the appearance of the storefront for the customer. By the way, the extensions and third-party systems are much easier to develop and customize for Shopware 6, as its source code is open-source and therefore quite easy to access.
The headless commerce principle of Shopware 6 also offers enormous advantages in the opposite case. You want to change the appearance, i.e. the storefront of your store, or at least adapt it in places? Then this is possible without further adjustments in the backend, as it is decoupled from the frontend. In addition, you have the option to tailor the frontend to customer groups defined by you and thus use several layouts simultaneously. By the way, the same applies to the products that you compile in the backend for your customer groups. However, all customer groups access the identical payment and shipping system when shopping. This saves you unnecessary effort. We remember the previous procedure, in which a separate payment and shipping process would have had to be provided for each front end. A mess.
With Shopware 6, you can not only equip your online store with the features and third-party systems that really get you ahead. You additionally get the possibility to use different designs for multiple customer groups and these designs don't even necessarily come from Shopware. Put all the features together in a way that's conducive to your success and look forward to the e-commerce of the future. Because Shopware is far from done with its development and will continue to bring numerous new features to life for Shopware 6 in the coming years. Why is this so easy? Because the new developments will only take place in the one corresponding module and no longer in the entire system. So the updates will not only come faster, but will also work immediately.
You would like to use the advantages of Shopware 6 for your success and get to know the numerous features? Then feel free to contact our consultants. Together, we will take a look at your online store and your individual goals and develop a concept that is perfectly tailored to your business model and requirements.