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When working with APIs, it is essential to have proper documentation in place. API documentation outlines what services an API offers and how to use it. Since this is the most referenced document for anyone implementing your API, it can make all the difference for developers to have a positive API experience. Developers need to understand how to use your API, and therefore rely on API documentation to accurately and effectively do so.
API documentation should contain detailed instructions on how to integrate with an API. This concise reference manual usually consists of text and maintenance tools, and is often supported by tutorials and examples. API documentation should include functions, classes, arguments and return types.
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Why is API documentation important?
Among all the phases in the API lifecycle, documentation is one of the most important. API documentation not only enables consumer satisfaction, but also allows your API adoption to increase. When something goes wrong during development, fixing the problem without detailed documentation can become a frustrating and time-consuming process. Your API’s main consumer, the third-party developer, is often busy solving complex programming challenges and needs to find answers quickly. Technical users are looking to integrate as quickly as possible, so API documentation[CS3] [JM4] offers them an immediate way to understand the value and usage of your API.
New developers or those not as familiar with your technology, may face a steep learning curve implementing your API. Proper API documentation can make the learning process. With API documentation in place, you may see improved user adoption, increased awareness, easier maintenance, and less support time and costs.
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Promote APIs and increase the adoption and value that your APIs deliver with Axway API Management.