What is OCAPI?
The Salesforce Commerce Cloud Open Commerce API (OCAPI) is an API that allows other applications to securely access the platform’s resources externally from the platform itself. An API, or Application Programming Interface, is the preferred method for two applications to communicate in real-time. Simply stated, an API allows a server to return or accept information that is requested or sent by another application. The calling application can then interpret the received data and present it to the user.
Two applications “talking” through an API can be a very powerful combination as it allows our clients to integrate Salesforce Commerce Cloud solutions with their internal systems such as inventory or supply chain management.
How Is OCAPI Used?
The OCAPI interface grants other applications access to Salesforce Commerce Cloud resources such as baskets, customers, orders, and products. While these resources are usually consumed through the client site storefront that customers see, the interface provides access to those resources for other applications to read, create, or update through service calls.
This approach allows the client to, for example, securely place an order on behalf of a customer, apply gift certificates to orders, or update customer account information. The API essentially lets the client interact with SFCC resources to automate parts of the process to complete a customer order.
How Does OCAPI Enhance Your Experience?
The Open Commerce API can be utilized in many ways to the benefit of the retailers. It enables partners such as LYONSCG to customize and extend SFCC’s core capabilities in accordance with a business’s needs.
For example, a retailer may want to use an internal system to consume SFCC resources such as order information or account information. OCAPI allows the user to retrieve that data and use it in their internal systems, delivering the ability to integrate their internal systems with SFCC’s platform. Furthermore, companies may want to use OCAPI with a different mobile app or in conjunction with services like loyalty programs.
How Have We Seen OCAPI Used?
Many of our Salesforce Commerce Cloud clients are currently utilizing the robust functionality of OCAPI.
E.l.f. Cosmetics leverages the API to send customer data to Smile.io, a third party service for managing loyalty points. The company, through their internal system, sends a request through the API to retrieve customer loyalty account information and order data, which is then passed along to Smile.io to update customer accounts.
We have used OCAPI in many other client implementations in a variety of ways, and it continues to be a beneficial tool to tailor Commerce Cloud’s core functionality to a client’s needs.
If you are interested in learning more about OCAPI and Salesforce Commerce Cloud can do for your digital experience, feel free to drop us a line and get in touch!