Unparalleled suite of productivity-boosting Web APIs & cloud-based micro-service applications for developers and companies of any size.

API

The 5 Types of API Marketplaces

Types of API marketplaces

APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) are pretty common these days. Thousands of web apps rely on APIs to integrate specific functionality or data. An API basically allows two software applications or systems to communicate and interact with each other. Today, numerous different types of APIs are available, from currency conversion and weather to IP geolocation and web scraping APIs. Moreover, APIs can be internal or public, depending on their intended use. Depending on the type and purpose of APIs, they can be listed on API marketplaces to make them more accessible to the target users. 

This article will discuss five types of API marketplaces and explore their features and characteristics. This will make it easier for you to decide which type of API marketplace  is right for your API/APIs. 

What is an API marketplace?

API marketplaces: an illustration of API usage

An API marketplace is basically an online platform consisting of a range of APIs in one place. These APIs are available as a complete digital product with detailed documentation and sample codes to make integration quick and easy for other developers. 

API marketplaces are often confused with developer/API portals.  An API portal is one of the key components of the marketplace, but the marketplace itself consists of various components. An API portal is a platform provided by a single API provider where they expose their API to consumers. On the other hand, An API marketplace is a digital platform that consists of APIs developed by different parties. 

Listing APIs in API marketplaces makes it easier for the intended audience to find all the required APIs in one place. Moreover, developers can earn by selling public APIs in an API marketplace. Organizations can also list their internal APIs in an API marketplace to make it easier for their teams to find and access the required APIs. However, there are different types of marketplaces for different APIs. For instance, we cannot list public and internal APIs in the same marketplace. 

What Are the Different Types of API Marketplaces?

Here are the five main types of API marketplaces:

Internal Marketplace

An internal marketplace consists of internal APIs developed for use within a specific organization. Thus, this type of marketplace is specifically designed for a single organization.  

The API providers or publishers in an internal marketplace can be:

  • Different business units
  • Departments
  • Teams that own and manage these APIs

The API consumers can also be different teams, internal units, or even external partners. All the APIs in an internal marketplace are available on a shared developer portal.

The purpose of an internal API marketplace is to enable various teams and units within an organization to find and access required APIs in one common place and reuse them. This, in turn, facilitates collaboration and seamless data sharing across the organization. However, this type of marketplace isn’t designed to generate any revenue. This is because a single organization owns all the APIs, and these APIs are meant to be used within the organization. 

Also read: How to perform API testing with Postman.

Partner API Marketplace

This type of marketplace is quite similar to an internal marketplace, but there is a slight difference. Like an internal marketplace, various internal teams and business units of a specific organization publish APIs on a partner marketplace. However, partner companies can also publish their APIs intended for use by the same consumers to generate more value. 

Thus, the consumers of a partner marketplace can be:

  • Internal units and teams of the parent organization 
  • Internal units and teams of the partner organizations. 

A partner API marketplace enables all the teams and units (whether of the parent organization or partner organization) to access all the required APIs in one place.

Closed Group API Marketplace

This type of marketplace is also designed for use by organizations, but it’s not limited to one organization. Rather, multiple organizations with a common purpose or goal can be a part of a closed group marketplace. For instance, organizations belonging to the same industry or striving to achieve a common objective can join the marketplace. However, not every organization can join it, and a governing authority usually decides which organizations can be a part of this closed group. 

All organizations publish their APIs in a common developer portal in a closed group marketplace. However, each company has its own security components and gateway.

Learn the difference between API marketplaces and API directories.

Public Marketplace

An illustration of public API Marketplaces

In a public marketplace, any developer or organization can publish and sell their popular APIs. However, for an API to be accepted on a public marketplace, it should meet the standards of the marketplace. 

Public API marketplaces work just like an e-commerce marketplace, such as Amazon, where sellers worldwide list their products and consumers from across the globe can purchase them. Similarly, API developers worldwide can list their products in a public marketplace, and anyone can buy and use them. 

Public API Marketplace Example

An example of a reliable public API marketplace is the APILayer marketplace, which consists of over 75 public APIs from various sellers. 

APILayer - one of the leading public API marketplaces offering free APIs

Here are the main characteristics of the APILayer API marketplace:

  • With thousands of consumers trusting the marketplace, it provides API sellers access to a global audience.
  • The marketplace accepts almost all types of APIs in any category, given they meet their quality and other standards. For instance, APIs should have detailed documentation with sample codes to ease integration. 
  • The marketplace currently consists of over 75 APIs in various categories, such as scraping, geo, finance, weather, etc.
  • APILayer acts as a proxy for your APIs.
  • APILayer lets sellers decide the pricing of their subscription plans. 
  • The marketplace manages customer acquisition, key management, memberships, rate limits,  and payment collection processes for API sellers.
  • APILayer only charges 15% of the revenue, whereas many major marketplaces charge 20%.
  • All the API services in the APILayer marketplace are scalable and highly secure. Moreover, they come with a free plan.

List your APIs on the APILayer marketplace today and share them with a global audience!

Try some of the most popular APIs from APILayer Marketplace:

Aggregator Marketplace

In this marketplace, API sellers list their APIs on a platform, and these APIs or part of the APIs are then converted into products. Then, these products are sold as value bundles. Hence, in an aggregator marketplace, a single product consists of components provided by multiple parties. 

Types of API Marketplaces: Quick Comparison

Internal Marketplace
  • Consists of internal APIs developed for use within a specific organization
  • Specifically for a single organization
Partner API Marketplace
  • Various internal teams and business units of a company publish APIs on the marketplace.
  • Partner companies can also publish their APIs intended for use by the same consumers to generate more value.
Closed Group API Marketplace
  • Multiple organizations with a common purpose or goal can be a part of a closed group marketplace.
  • Not limited to only one organization
Public Marketplace
  • Any developer or organization can publish and sell their APIs.
  • Depending on the platform, developers can list and sell any type of public API.
Aggregator Marketplace
  • APIs or part of the APIs are converted into products and are sold as value bundles.

How to Choose an API Marketplace?

First, you need to learn the difference between different types of API marketplaces. This will allow you to understand which marketplace is best suited for your API. For example, you’d list and sell your API in a public API marketplace as an individual developer.

There are various options available when it comes to public API marketplaces. Leading platforms include APILayer, Rapid API marketplace, Zapier, and Abstract APIs. Comparing top API marketplaces will help you choose the best marketplace to sell your API. For example, APILayer can be a good option if you want the platform to handle and manage customer acquisition, memberships, key management, rate limits,  and payment collection processes for you. Additionally, the API marketplace gives you access to a global audience, improving your revenue.

Conclusion

An API marketplace is an online platform consisting of various APIs developed by different parties. Depending on the type of marketplace, these different parties can be individual third-party developers or different teams, units, and departments of a single or multiple organizations. There are five main types of API marketplaces:

  • Internal marketplace
  • Partner API marketplace
  • Closed group API marketplace
  • Public marketplace
  • Aggregator marketplace

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is an API marketplace?

An API marketplace is a platform where various API providers can list their APIs on a common platform, and consumers can find and access all the required APIs from one platform. 

What is the best API marketplace?

APILayer is a leading public API marketplace trusted by several API sellers and thousands of consumers worldwide. The marketplace offers over 75 APIs in different categories, such as text processing, finance, currency, geo, weather, etc.

What is the largest API website?

APILayer is one of the largest API marketplaces, consisting of over 75 public APIs by different sellers/developers. All the APIs on the APILayer marketplace come with a free plan to enable users to try and test the API features.

How do I sell my API?

You can sell your API (Application Programming Interface)on one of the leading API marketplaces, such as APILayer. APILayer only charges 15% of the revenue instead of the 20% charged by many other major marketplaces. Comparing top API marketplace platforms will help you choose the right one for your API.

What are the benefits of Using API Marketplaces?

These marketplaces offer several benefits, such as:

  • Access to a global audience
  • Monetization
  • Easy API management
Related posts
API

YouTube API Key | How Do You Get It in 2024? Tutorial + Examples

APIAutomation

Cron Job Monitoring | The Perfect Way to Do it in 2024

APIAutomation

Background Removal API | Automate the Image Editing Process

API

Current Weather API | A Complete Beginner's Guide in 2024

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *