Yes and no.
For those of you who do not know, API stands for Application Programming Interface and it enables two completely different IT systems to ‘talk’ to one another. We developed our own API so any online retailer can connect seamlessly to our systems and benefit from real-time 2-way data exchange, thus harnessing the real power of our online fulfilment system regardless of the software used in developing their cart. Clients’ customers can interrogate their orders, track their parcels, check if an item is in stock etc from within the shopping cart where they placed the order (which is how it should be), because your shopping cart “calls” our systems in the background via the API to get the very latest information. Clients benefit too by being able access ALL their fulfilment and inventory information via their cart AND set up automated emails to their clients from their cart, when certain events occur e.g. order despatched.
The thing is that there are thousands (literally) of shopping carts out there, and the simplicity of connecting to our API will vary depending on the shopping cart in question. The bottom line is that, in order to complete an integration with myWarehouse, your cart will need to be told to exchange data with our API when certain critical events occur, e.g. new order placed, or a stock level checked, etc.. Although adding this sort of functionality is not usually a lengthy process (our clients tell us that it’s taking them a couple of days of programming on average), it does require some technical programming experience.
You may well find, therefore, that when you send our API reference documents (available on request) to the designers or agency you’ve been working with who have helped you create your beautiful shopping cart, they might not be able to jump into the “behind the scenes” code and make the necessary additions. This is totally normal, so don’t panic! The skillsets are really quite different – designers and agencies usually specialise in adding images, logos and text to an off-the-shelf shopping cart system, and usually have little need to jump in at such a detailed technical level.
If this is the case, ask them whether they can recommend a “developer” (programmer) who can help plug your cart into our API, or, if they can’t help you, try Googling “xxxxxx programming developer”, where “xxxxxx” is the name of your shopping cart, and contacting some of the many companies or freelancers who will doubtless specialise in extending the capabilities of your shopping cart of choice. Connecting to third party APIs is a very common job for developers these days, so they’ll know what you’re talking about straight away (if they don’t, they’re not the right people to use!) and should be able to give you an idea of cost.
As we say, there are an awful lot of shopping carts out there using all sorts of programming languages, so you’ll understand why we can’t just “give you a solution” that will work with your very specific set of needs. However, we are of course very happy to assist any developers in connecting to our API if they have any specific questions about the information in the documentation we supply, and we will also create them a test login so they can play in our “sandbox” area, placing orders, viewing tracking data etc., all in a safe, simulated environment.
This might all seem a bit of a faff. But we promise that once you’re connected via API, you’ll see that the bit of effort required was well worth it, as you watch the orders flow into your cart and out of our warehouse seamlessly and inform your customers of the latest status without lifting a finger!
For those of you that would prefer to use a shopping cart that is already integrated into our system, we have a number of pre-integrated shopping carts