In recent years, the SAAS (Software as a Service) model has become very popular with many businesses, this is simply because it allows businesses to focus on their core business activities eliminating the constant demand to manage and maintain crucial infrastructure. In essence, SAAS is the preferred solution for businesses intending to slash IT responsibilities and costs. Many SAAS providers have APIs (Application Programmable Interfaces) that makes it easier for businesses to connect and leverage on their platform.
In this article, we created a list of the Top 10 Best SAAS APIs currently being used. In coming up with this list, we ranked the APIs based on the following criteria
- API Features: We evaluated the various features that make the APIs appealing for businesses, developers and users
- Popularity: We consider the number of daily, weekly or monthly users
- Prices: We reviewed the cost of integrating the API into our application
Eventually, we came up with the following list of Top 10 Best SAAS APIs
- MailChimp API
- Slack API
- Shopify API
- Twilio API
- Salesforce API
- HubSpot API
- Xero API
- Zendesk API
- Box API
- Asana API
TL;DR: Here’s a table summarizing our findings.
|API||API Features||Popularity (2019)||Price|
|MailChimp API||MailChimp allows users to sync email activity and campaign stats with their database, manage lists, view and control Automation workflows||MailChimp approximately 14 million users and 250,000 API users||Paid|
|Slack API||Using Slack API users can send messages, join or leave channels, track mentions, create files||Slack has approximately 8 million monthly active users||Free and paid plans from $6.67 per active user per month|
|Shopify API||Allow developers to create tools that easily integrate third-party applications directly with Shopify||Shopify has approximately 1 million active monthly users||Free|
|Twilio API||Developers can integrate features like Shortcodes, smart content handling, text message delivery intelligence||57,350 customer accounts||$0.0075 per inbound or outbound SMS (U.S.)|
|Salesforce API||Saleforce API provides programmatic access to company/organisation information using a simple, powerful, and secure application programming interface||150,000 customer accounts||Free|
|HubSpot API||Hubspot API allows developers to easily create and integrate functional features into their applications.||56,500 customer accounts||Free|
|Xero API||Majorly used by accounting firms Xero API allows users to access to bank transactions, invoices and reports through the internet or mobile devices||1.386 million subscribers||Paid|
|Zendesk API||This API allows developers to integrate chat, help centre, talk and sell functionalities into their applications||125,000 paid customer accounts||Paid|
|Box API||Allows developers to manage and interact with files stored in Box and use Box as a content management layer in their applications||41 million users and 85,000 businesses||$5.80 monthly starter plan for 100 GB (minimum of 3 users maximum of 5 users)|
|Asana API||Asana API allows developers to programmatically access and modify user data on the platform some API functionalities include managing users, creating and managing tasks, and accessing projects and workspaces.||Over 2 million active users||Paid|
Top 10 Best SAAS APIs
Founded in 2001, MailChimp is a marketing automation platform that helps business share email and ad campaigns with customers
API Features: MailChimp allows users to sync email activity and campaign stats with their database, manage lists, view and control Automation workflows. MailChimp API is a RESTful web service and uses two authentication protocols (HTTP Basic authentication and OAuth2) to authenticate 3rd party applications.
Popularity: MailChimp approximately 14 million users and 250,000 API users
Price: MailChimp offers three pricing plans: Forever Free (This plan is free however there are restrictions in the number of emails that can be sent per month.). Monthly payment and Pay As You Go.
MailChimp Pro, on the other hand, requires a flat fee of $199.00 (USD) and this allows users to access a suite of advanced features you can add to any MailChimp account.
2. Slack API
Slack is a messaging application that is mainly used for managing communications between teams.
API Features: Using Slack API users can send messages, join or leave channels, track mentions, create files. Slack APIs also supports integrations with an extensive range of third-party applications and services, such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and GitHub.
Popularity: Slack has approximately 8 million monthly active users
Price: Free and paid plans from $6.67 per active user per month
3. Shopify API
Based in Ottawa Canada, Shopify is an eCommerce platform that offers retailers (wholesalers) an online platform to sell their products or services “including payments, marketing, shipping and customer engagement tools. It helps simplify the process of running an online store for merchants.
API Features: With the Shopify API merchants can create their own custom storefronts that let them sell anywhere, even outside of Shopify. It allows developers to offer enhanced solutions to your Shopify clients. The APIs iOS or Android Buy SDK offers developers an easy way to embed a Shopify store’s products and checkout into your mobile apps.
Popularity: Shopify has approximately 1 million active monthly users
4. Twilio API
Twilio is a widely used platform that lets developers to integrate communication capabilities into their web and mobile applications. Apart from sending and receiving text messages, the Twilio API enables you to programmatically carry out phone conversations and accomplish other communication tasks.
API Features: Twilio API allows developers to integrate features like Shortcodes, smart content handling, text message delivery intelligence into third-party applications. It employs an API Key authentication model, with a RESTful architecture.
Popularity: Twilio has approximately 57,350 customer accounts
Price: Twilio employs a pay-as-you-go SMS pricing model, which varies depending on the country. In the United States, it cost $0.0075 per message.
Salesforce is a cloud-based CRM solution that offers an option that helps both enterprises and small businesses develop a consistent e-commerce customer experience and collaborate on campaigns.
API Features: Saleforce API provides programmatic access to company/organisation information using a simple, powerful, and secure application programming interface. Saleforce API is made up of REST API, SOAP API, Bulk API, and Streaming API all together they make the Salesforce DATA API. Compared to other APIs this API allows you to do things like customize page layouts or build custom development tools. Saleforce API allows developers to manipulate subsets of your Salesforce data.
Popularity: Shopify has approximately 150,000 customer accounts
6. HubSpot API
Founded by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah in 2006. Hubspot is a developer and marketer of software products for inbound marketing and sales
API Features: Hubspot API allows developers to easily create and integrate functional features into their applications. Hubspot API is a single purpose API, with two means of authentication, OAuth and API keys. It supports XML, JSON response formats and URI Query String/CRUD request format.
Popularity: Hubspot has approximately 56,500 customer accounts
7. Xero API
Based in New Zealand, Xero is a cloud-based accounting software for small and medium-sized businesses.
API Features: Majorly used by accounting firms Xero API allows users to access to bank transactions, invoices and reports through the internet or mobile devices. It employs an OAuth 1 authentication protocol to authenticate third-party applications.
Popularity: Xero has approximately 1.386 million subscribers
- Minute Limit: 60 calls in a rolling 60-second window
- Daily Limit: 5000 calls in a rolling 24-hour window
- Stater: $ 20 per month
- Standard $30 per month
- Premium $40 per month
8. Zendesk API
Zendesk is a customer service and engagement company available in over 160 countries
API Features: This API allows developers to integrate chat, help centre, talk and sell functionalities into their applications. It requires two means of authentication, Shared Secret, Token.
Popularity: Zendesk has approximately 125,000 paid customer accounts
Price: Paid (Interested users should contact the support team)
9. Box API
Box is a cloud content management and file sharing service for businesses. Based in Redwood City, California, Box was founded in 2005 by Aaron Levie who conceptualized the idea while he was a student at the University of Southern California in 2004. Box has grown to be used by more than 41 million users and 85,000 businesses.
API Features: BOX offers an open platform with APIs and SDKs, known as the Box Platform, that developers can use for a variety of purposes. Box API allows developers to manage and interact with files stored in Box and use Box as a content management layer in their applications.
Popularity: Approximately 41 million users and 85,000 businesses use BOX
- Starter ($5.80 per month for 100 GB secure storage; 2 GB file upload; Minimum 3 users; max 10 users; 25,000 API calls per month)
- Business ($17.30 per month for Unlimited storage; 5 GB file upload; Minimum 3 users, no maximum; 50,000 API calls per month)
- Business Plus($28.70 per month for Unlimited storage; 5 GB file upload; Minimum 3 users, no maximum; 100,000 API calls per month)
10. Asana API
Based in San Fransisco California, Asana is a web and mobile application designed to help teams organise, track, and manage their work.
API Features: Asana API allows developers to programmatically access and modify user data on the platform some API functionalities include managing users, creating and managing tasks, and accessing projects and workspaces. It employs the OAuth 2.0 protocol authentication model and is a single purpose API, with a RESTful architecture.
Popularity: Asana has approximately over 2 million active users
That’s Rakuten RapidAPI’s list of Top 10 best SAAS APIs. We hope you’ll find an API that you can integrate into your application.
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