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How To Avoid Using APIs On A Client’s Website

Finally, someone said it. It just so happens that the person who said it is me, Brenden The Marketer. 

 

I have been coding websites since I was 11, it was my hobby. No I wasn’t popular in school, Why do you ask? 

 

Anyways, coding can be amazing, but what is more amazing is WordPress and using pre-made templates to achieve beautifully designed websites. 

 

The less I have to code, the better. However; sometimes with client’s requests I have to add certain functionalities to the websites I develop to meet the business’ requirements. 

 

This step in the project always happens without fail, so much so, that I began accounting for headaches before the project begins.

 

Does this sound like you? You run into a roadblock with your client’s website, spend 5-6 hours trying to research a fix or a workaround. Then you give up and start again the next day, and are able to fix it or create the functionality you need within the first hour? Sound familiar? 

 

Well I can almost always count on running into issues and I can also almost always count on being able to solve those issues eventually. It always happens, never have I ever not been able to deliver a website project exactly to the client’s specifications. 

 

“Brenden get to the point”. I know, I know, I’m getting there. The common denominator in these complications are usually APIs. A coder’s worst nightmare. Before my career is over I am going to burn down all the APIs and everything is going back to the basics. 

 

Just kidding! But I wanted to share some tips I found for workarounds from APIs. Ways to achieve the same functionalities but without APIs. 

  • Draw out the process of the functionality you are trying to achieve
  • Research third-party applications that can help you achieve the desired functionality 
  • Clear your head and revisit the project later 
  • Consult with a developer colleague who may have ran into a similar issue 
  • If none of these work for you, it’s time to man up and start coding! 
  • Draw out the process of the functionality you are trying to achieve

Sometimes for me, if I visually see the steps the website needs to take to achieve the desired functionality, I can uncover several alternate options to do the same thing. I just need to step back and look at the flowchart to realized I have been looking too closely at it and stuck on an API. 

 

  • Research third-party applications that can help you achieve the desired functionality 

Another really quick solution is to break up the functionality into steps and researching for third party applications to help you achieve each step. Depending on how many steps there are, it may be worth it to just figure out the API code. 

 

  • Clear your head and revisit the project later 

Sometimes, we are just burnt out and going in circles. I can’t say how many times I quit on a project because I was frustrated, then revisited the next day with a clear head and was able to fix the problem within an hour. This should be an action step you take instead of googling or YouTubing more videos, trying to find a fix. If you do step 1 and 2, then put everything down for the day and revisit the next day, I guarantee you will be closer to a solution for your client. 

 

  • Consult with a developer colleague who may have ran into a similar issue 

When in doubt, reach out. Are you the only developer you know? I sure hope not. Try to reach out to your network to see if anyone has encountered a similar issue and can point you in the right direction. There are great Facebook groups you can join that are communities of developers answering other developers’ questions. This is a great resource and can help either identify a solution or find a contractor to fix it for you. 

 

  • If none of these work for you, it’s time to man up and start coding! 

Okay so APIs were clearly invented for a reason and they work well. There comes a point to where you just need to take a deep breath and start coding the API. It will be confusing but as most developers know, most code in 2020 has already been written and you just need to know what and where to copy and paste. If the project is taking too much time it may be worth it to hire a separate developer to just add the APIs functionality. 

 

So there you have it. I know this article wasn’t much help solving the issue but most of our clients don’t care about the nitty-gritty backend efforts, just the finished project. There is usually a workaround with APIs but the sad truth is sometimes there is not and you have to include the API on your website. 

 

Let me know if this article helped you! I wrote it hoping the next time a developer is stuck on a project this may shed some light on how to overcome the obstacle. 

 

My name is Brenden The Marketer, I am based out of St. Pete Florida and I sell your products so you don’t have to. If you need help with your sales, reach out, and let’s continue the conversation!

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