As written in one of our previous articles, Developer Experience is a basic prerequisite for the success of digital products. Now, let’s take a closer look at external DX and its role in how quickly a product gets adopted by third-party developers. In addition, you’ll also find out why you should definitely care.
In terms of external DX, you should be concerned with the level of the developer portal (clarity and ease of use), API documentation and other documents (quality and comprehensibility), tools and their operation (clarity, meaningfulness, ease of use, time-saving), or the speed at which a developer’s product can be integrated into another product.
What specifically does external DX mean for your product? Without a doubt, what you want is for others to use it. But if the developer portal is incomprehensible, the documentation is poor, and integration is generally difficult, developers switch to your competitors who offer more friendly DX. This applies not only to developer portals but to virtually any product with an API or the goal of succeeding in today’s digital world.
When creating a product, keep in mind that it is intended for developers who constitute a very demanding user group. Ask yourself the following questions.
- Is it clear how it benefits the developers? Don’t hesitate to provide examples.
- How fast can they try it out or see an example of usage? Developers want to know what the product can do before they even attempt to download or integrate it.
- How fast and easy is the adoption/integration of the product? Ideally, you want as few steps as possible.
- Speed of API key generation via developer portals.
- How easy it is to get through the initial Getting Started instructions.
- Is registration required to try it out?
- Are the application options (e.g., configuration) clear enough?
- Good documentation, readme, explained possibilities (technical writing).
- Do you have an API for your digital product so that third parties can integrate your product and support your business?
- Do you have libraries (SDK) for your API to facilitate ease of use?
- Do you have good documentation, ideally including examples for better comprehensibility?
- Are changes in your API/documentation communicated correctly (e.g., versioning)?
Do you have a digital product (banks and PSD2, any API services)? Then the speed of integration is truly extremely important to you. Before deciding which product to use, the developer does a preliminary survey to find out what they can use and then tries different solutions. Afterward, they come to their superior with a proposal. Their priority is to make sure the product is quick and easy to use. Therefore, this is key for both you and your clients’ higher conversion rate.
IT support also plays an important role. If you provide an API or a similar service, quick support is crucial for the client in case of a problem.
Do you want to find out how well your development portal is running or get a few pointers on improving your external DX? Get in touch with us, and together we’ll figure out how we can help you.