A Chat API is an Application Program Interface which can be used to provide real-time chat features to a website as well as an application.
Chat APIs can be easily integrated to a website or an application by following a few simple steps as per the API documentation or by using a Chat SDK (Software Development Kit).
With the increasing demand and the need of getting connected with people on a real-time basis, chat applications have become a requisite for most of the businesses to provide timely service to their users
Whether you need to assist communication between user to user, vendor to customer, vendor to vendor or service provider to the consumer, these Chat APIs can help you create exciting chat features in minimum time and help you with the required customization that fit well with your business.
If you consider developing a chat application for your website yourself, you will require hiring a technical team and invest a considerable amount of time and efforts. You will also require a great planning which might incur a huge cost for you.
Using a ready-to-use API reduces such time and effort as it can be integrated with your website easily. This is easy, effective and affordable.
What you need to know about a Chat API
Chat APIs power conversations. These are used for implementing chat and messaging features on websites, and other service providing web and mobile applications. These are great tools for marketing purpose!
Chat APIs allow you to create multiple communication channels on the website or application. You can create the most appropriate communication channel as per your business requirements and boost your business growth.
1. Communication between users:
Whether you own a socializing or a dating app, team building or a messenger app and wish to create a communication channel between users in the app; these Chat APIs can help you create a real-time communication channel between users by adding this exciting feature to your web or mobile app.
2. Communication between buyers and sellers:
If your chat and messaging requirements are not limited to users only and include business entities in a marketplace platform, these Chat APIs can make real-time communication possible between buyers and sellers.
This helps you to boost a smooth and effective conversation between different entities of business, making the Marketplace more satisfactory for customers.
3. Communication between service providers and users:
The increase of web-based service providing businesses also known as on-demand service platforms, has brought in a high-level of ease for people with a busy schedule. On-demand service providers like UrbanClap, Uber, Airbnb, and Housejoy lets consumers connect with service providers through chat to discuss their requirements, pricing etc.
Then there are on-demand consultation providers like Practo, which lets patients connect with their Doctors (service providers) for consultation.
What you can achieve with Chat API
One of the most challenging tasks for businesses these days is to survive cut-throat competition.
Service providers need to continuously provide the best services to users along with providing a high-quality user interface to ensure a solid customer experience.
This in return, will ensure that the service application stays installed on users’ smartphone and attracts repeat visits by them.
Chat applications help your users interact with each other on your platform. This in a way builds user engagement and helps with retention, without actually needing a lot of resources from your business.
Customers, rather end users are involved in providing each other with the necessary information they seeks via an instant messaging system. This saves them a lot of time and helps build your goodwill.
Choosing a perfect Chat API
Before you opt for a Chat API integration with your business website or mobile app, it is important to check whether it satisfies your business’ technical and non-technical requirements.
Let’s check what aspects you should consider before opting for Chat API that best suits your business.
Is it compatible with the platform you use?
The first thing to check with a Chat API is its compatibility with your web or mobile application. Compatibility of an API depends on which platform your business application is built on and how smoothly it can incorporate third-party apps without demanding major technical changes and updates.
It should help customers use the chat application without any interruption and should give them the best user experience.
Choose a Chat API depending on the required communication channel for your business
As we discussed above, many businesses these days need to leverage user-to-user communication channel.
One-to-one conversation between users helps in building trust between both the parties and promotes your goodwill. To facilitate this, a Chat API integration is required.
Let us have a look at the important things one must consider while choosing a Chat API depending upon the required communication channel for your business.
1. Check if the chosen Chat API offers all the required features:
Initializing a chat between users is not enough these days — customers prefer enhanced features for sharing important files, documents, media etc. to make their conversation more interesting and engaging.
Before you choose a Chat API, check whether it satisfies all the current user demands and whether it has space for incorporating new features as and when required with easy updates.
2. Understanding the Level of customization with your Chat API:
Not every feature with your Chat API is customizable. It is always advisable to check the level of customization possible with the application you integrate.
This will help you to avoid user disappointments later. Other than changing the UI, theme color, adding and hiding certain features as per requirements; the customization level depends on the platform on which the Chat API is going to be integrated to.
3. Administrative features with Chat API:
Once the Chat API is embedded in your website or mobile app, it should help you manage various aspects of the chat application such as monitoring different chat rooms and user conversations.
Not every Chat API provides such features. These back-end administration tools are important to manage all the users for providing the best services and hence, must be included in the Chat API.
Industries where Chat APIs are used
Chat APIs have become an important part of most business websites. They are used by various industries like Social Networking, Healthcare, Marketplace, Banking, Dating apps and other service providing websites and mobile apps.
In the healthcare industry such as Practo, a patient can have doctor’s consultation through chat along with file sharing such as medical diagnosis reports. A patient can also book an appointment through chat with a suitable doctor.
In a marketplace scenario, buyer-seller website like OLX provides better customer experience by allowing the buyer and the seller to directly chat with each other regarding the product in question.
This helps the transaction go in a much smoother and faster manner. It further builds a trust in the minds of both parties, that OLX is a great platform for selling or buying products.
Kotak Mahindra Bank has introduced video communication solution where an investor can directly communicate with an advisor. This allows for a more spontaneous and authentic communication experience between them and further instills confidence in the minds of the investor for Kotak Mahindra Bank.
Dating app such as Tinder uses this system wholeheartedly to keep its users engaged with one another.
Chat applications used by such websites result in better customer satisfaction and helps businesses provide better customer service in a way, without being directly involved in the chat or support process.
CometChat API: Chat API for mobile and web apps
If you wish to enable communication within your website or product to promote your business growth, CometChat can provide the best communication solution for your business websites or mobile applications.
CometChat has been providing innovative, high-quality communication solutions through Text, Voice and Video chat options to various industries for the past 9 years, helping them create an effective communication channel.
With the ready-to-use integrations, you can add CometChat to your website or app in just a few minutes. It can be integrated easily with 92+ platforms. Moreover, you can opt for cloud deployment, where the program would be hosted and run on the CometChat server.
You will have customization and control which can be easily managed by your team.
This will help your site users to share pictures, collaborate through whiteboards, broadcast videos, play games and a whole lot of exciting features while maintaining their privacy.
You can also have ChatBot integration where users can send a GIF, check the weather report, request PayPal payment, and more, all within a secure environment.
CometChat SDK is designed in such a way that it can be integrated and used with your existing application. Integration is easy because of an intuitive flow in the Chat API, which makes it hassle-free.
Integrate CometChat easily with your Mobile App and Desktop equivalent and let your users enjoy high-quality communication.
If you want to create a revolutionizing communication platform for your users, CometChat is the destination for you. It is easy to integrate and use, and is extremely customizable too. It is highly secure and robust.
It offers exciting features for communication and collaboration, that can be easily integrated, with different mobile and web apps. The CometChat SDK makes it extremely convenient to add these features to any app or website.
Given the ease of integration and a user-friendly UI, CometChat can be an asset in a variety of industries like health, IT, real estate, etc. CometChat is a one-stop chat solution for your user to user communication requirements and can engage them with your business at its best.