Programmable Voice API: What It Is & Why Businesses Need It

Posted on March 13, 2024

The modern business landscape demands flexible and convenient voice solutions for internal and external user communications. In-app voice integrations are a primary way telecom businesses are making it easy for users and customers to interact. 97% of U.S. consumers own a mobile phone, with a majority owning a smartphone.

More consumers can communicate through a mobile business app than ever before, making in-app voice solutions a clear choice for businesses seeking to enhance the user experience. As a developer, the easiest way to integrate voice features is through a programmable voice API. An application programming interface (API) is a simple solution that enables two pieces of software to communicate. 

A voice API specifically adds internet calling features to whichever applications you choose. The simplicity allows you to implement voice into your company or client’s systems in a few lines of code. Often, a voice API is ready in minutes, saving you hours of coding and testing. When you partner with a modern Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) solution, your organization’s critical voice applications can deliver continuous performance and handle high call capacities.

Why More Businesses Are Choosing Programmable Voice APIs

Businesses and developers are adopting voice APIs to build communication applications and create more productive and customer-focused experiences. As a developer, you can create a voice solution for your client or company using an API, integrating calling into the organization’s existing software and creating voice applications to enhance business communications.

A voice API from a reputable CPaaS partner offers reliable calling and enterprise-level solutions, improving the user experience and reducing resources spent. Working with a cloud-based VoIP platform provides companies with scalability, flexibility, and mobility. With the addition of automated processes, such as interactive voice response (IVR) and virtual assistants, businesses can enhance operations.

With many organizations adopting a distributed workforce, CPaaS can deliver the mobility and flexibility needed for remote and onsite workers to communicate and collaborate. You can ensure your company or client has the call capacity it needs, providing a user-friendly and seamless experience.

A Voice API Makes Integration Simple For Developers

Developing an API from scratch can take days or weeks of coding and testing to deliver a working solution. A programmable voice API easily integrates into your current applications in a few lines of code, and most can be up and running in minutes.

APIs from reputable providers offer resources like software development kits (SDKs), quickstarts, use cases, and examples. These resources can streamline configuration using your preferred programming languages like Python, .NET, and PHP. 

Build Business-Enhancing Solutions with a Voice API

An API can enhance a business’s existing software by incorporating new features, saving them time and the expense of adopting entirely new systems. The following are some common voice applications and integrations developers can build for their clients.

CRM Integration

Integrating voice into a CRM allows live representatives to receive and make calls through their familiar platform. When an inbound call is received, the agent can take the call using a telephony device or PC and record call information within the CRM, storing the customer’s information to create a unique profile. When a representative calls the customer back, they can find their data in the CRM and seamlessly call from the same platform, giving a solid boost to productivity.

Voice-Enabled Apps and Websites

You can integrate a click-to-call feature into your client’s app or website, allowing users and customers to contact the business quickly and conveniently. Various organizations use click-to-call features, including e-commerce and support websites and applications like ride-sharing and delivery apps. You can ensure that callers reach their intended recipients by making use of direct inward dialing (DID), enhancing the customer experience. The app can also mask user phone numbers to ensure privacy when calling a driver or delivery person.

Automated Answering and IVRs

A programmable voice API allows you to make a tailored automated answering or IVR experience. Companies with higher call volumes depend on answering systems to ensure callers don’t have to wait in long queues to complete simple transactions, ask questions, or speak with a live representative.

Related: How to Integrate Voice Seamlessly with Voice API for Developers

For instance, a financial institution can allow users to check their balance, lock a debit or credit card, or dispute a charge without speaking to a live representative. It can save the institution time and money, reducing call volumes and resolving common tasks efficiently.

Advantages of Voice APIs for Business

While an API can deliver simple implementation for developers, it can also provide several business-enhancing advantages. Using a programmable voice API enables your organization to accomplish the following and more:

  • Deploy containerized voice instances to improve business efficiency and security.
  • Integrate click-to-call integration into an app, website, or CRM to deliver convenience and productivity.
  • Gain worldwide mobility outside of the office with VoIP-enabled mobile devices and remote call forwarding to ensure business continuity.
  • Make calls with carrier-grade reliability and uptime maintained by a world-class cloud-based provider.
  • Access collaborative business features like conference calling.
  • Track and record calls for analysis and quality assurance.
  • Keep current devices, carriers, and phone numbers for a seamless addition of voice features.
  • Mask names and phone numbers with relevant business identifiers for greater privacy.

When you partner with a reputable communication provider for your programmable voice API, your client or organization can leverage the reliability and scalability of the cloud at a cost-effective price. An easy-to-implement API from an excellent provider can also save time integrating voice with your organization’s desired features.

Selecting the Right Voice API Provider for Your Business

When deciding on a voice API to integrate, finding an excellent provider is essential to reducing stress on IT professionals and allowing the end users to communicate seamlessly through the software. According to research, over 84% of business leaders say partnerships with API providers are vital to their organization. A reputable partner can streamline your implementation, saving time and money. Consider the following aspects when searching for the right partner.

Cost-Effective Pricing

Many voice providers charge a monthly or annual fee for unlimited or a set number of calls. This structure is fine for companies with consistent and predictable levels of voice traffic. However, a metered payment plan allows your company to pay for the minutes consumed during calls. Metered payment plans can help a corporation save money by preventing overcharging for call time it doesn’t need. It can also limit overage fees when unexpected boosts in call volumes occur.

A metered plan can provide your company with the required capacity, even during peak seasons. The business can scale up and down without unexpected financial consequences. From a developer’s perspective, flexible metered payment options allow you to evaluate the service before committing to a significant upfront investment.

Programmable voice API providers may also charge for features like business phone numbers, custom or vanity phone numbers, local calling, and toll-free calls. If specific calling features are necessary for your company’s app, consider a voice API provider that allows you to integrate these features affordably. 

For example, toll-free calling can help your organization avoid carrier-specific fees that may result in higher costs. A custom phone number may also be essential for geographically dispersed companies to integrate a recognizable number for customers.

Simplicity of Implementation

As discussed above, implementing voice into software from scratch can consume valuable developer resources and may require an in-house business phone system and infrastructure. An API is a cost- and time-efficient choice, but it helps to consider how well it will integrate into your software.

Communication APIs written in representational state transfer (REST) architecture consume fewer bandwidth resources, work with most programming languages, and use simple, uniform HTTP commands. REST APIs are preferred for web communication because they’re lightweight and compatible with popular data types like JSON and HTML.

A programmable voice API can be implemented into existing software using a few lines of code, but documentation can be helpful. Look for an API provider that offers developer resources to help you get your voice-enabled app up and running using your preferred programming language. The platform may also offer microservices in Docker containers for easy integration.

Security-Focused Features

An API can be a simple method of providing a streamlined solution to your company or client. However, since APIs face the public internet, cyber security threats are a primary concern. Protecting business and user data is a priority, so finding a cloud-based voice provider that ensures the security of your API and microservices is essential.

Related: Custom Voice Solutions: The Role of Voice API for Developers

Gartner predicts that by 2025, nearly half of data breaches could be the result of attacks on unsecured APIs. Updating APIs and microservices regularly can help your client or organization prevent cyberattacks. An ideal cloud-based voice partner will keep their software updated and maintained using version-controlled Docker containers or GitHub repositories.

Scalability for Growth

A voice API provider should have the resources to support your company and its voice-enabled features as it grows. With a reputable cloud-based VoIP provider, your voice application can dynamically scale with the volume of inbound calls. An administrator can quickly and easily adjust phone numbers and users from a simple web portal.

Your voice API provider should offer unified communications integration in an API solution for adding email, SMS, voice, and video to your company’s system. A platform with a worldwide network will ensure that callers receive a consistent and high-quality voice experience, regardless of their location.

Superior Network Reliability

Reliability is a primary concern for business continuity, requiring minimal downtime and 24/7 availability. When you choose a programmable voice API, the provider should be backed by a reliable and resilient voice network. 

Industry-leading voice API platforms offer dynamic failover features to ensure inbound calls are routed to another physical network during interruptions. A resilient network combined with the inherent mobility of a cloud-based voice solution provides enhanced business continuity

For example, a cloud-based voice service can allow your client to switch to a remote work environment if a natural disaster forces employees out of the office. VoIP solutions require only a telephony device, such as a mobile phone, and a stable internet connection to make and receive calls from the voice application.

A reliable voice API platform also provides security, such as toll-fraud protection, real-time monitoring, and rate limiting. You or an administrator can allow or deny specific destinations and inbound sources from a simple web portal.

Innovative Features

When considering a voice API provider, look for a carrier-grade experience. The voice service provider should offer the features your organization desires. Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) is a feature that allows your VoIP traffic, chat, messages, and video to share a SIP trunk for nearly unlimited simultaneous communication channels. It’s ideal for organizations that require flexibility and low-cost communications.

You can enhance your client or company’s productivity with call tracking capabilities and access to caller information through the call detail record (CDR). Remote call forwarding can ensure no calls are missed, automatically forwarding inbound calls to another device, such as a mobile phone or voicemail, to ensure calls reach the intended recipient.

An ideal programmable voice API provider lets you quickly port in numbers and choose a custom business phone number from a simple web portal. Voice platforms with CNAM allow the business to change the name and number displayed on the user’s caller ID to identify the company.

Deliver Communication Solutions with a Powerful Programmable Voice API

Programmable voice APIs are valuable tools to help developers streamline the process of building solutions for their organization. The best way to build scalable, reliable, and cost-effective apps is to find the right voice platform.

When you partner with Flowroute, you can deliver a seamless voice solution to your client or company. Voice communications are supported by our resilient HyperNetwork™, ensuring dynamic physical failover and high call capacity. You can easily implement voice solutions with the features your business desires in your preferred programming language using our API resources. Get started with a cloud-based voice solution from Flowroute.

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