Introduction to the Vend API

Vend’s API can be used to extend Vend’s functionality, and to integrate with other software in the retail ecosystem. Please use this document as a starting point for exploring the API.

We recommend following the Quick Start tutorial to get up and running.

What is an API?

An API can be thought of as a defined way for different software systems to interact. In the case of Vend’s API, one of those pieces of software is Vend itself.

Vend’s API provides a secured means for other software systems to work with Vend items such as sales and products, on behalf of a Vend retailer account. At Vend we take retailer data security very seriously, so these features are only accessible with retailers’ consent.

Vend also offers some ‘browser integration’ APIs - see below.

Two ways to access to the Vend API

There are two ways to work with Vend’s API - Personal Tokens and Add-ons.

  • Personal Tokens are for use by individual retailers, to connect to their Vend account.
  • Add-ons are registered independently by Developers, and can be connected to multiple retailers.

Authorization works differently for these two types of API access. Please use the Quick Start tutorial to explore these options, and head over to Authorization for a detailed guide.

Using the Vend API

The Vend API is a web API using JSON over HTTP, using secure sockets and token-based authentication. These guides deal with some common concerns and recommendations for API usage:

Communication

There are a few ways for developers to keep in touch with Vend:

  • Register to receive the developer newsletter, and create Vend addons.
  • Email API support - if you have any further questions that you can’t find the answer to, please get in touch with us.

The API Specifications

The API specifications should be used as a reference for the Vend API contract, describing precisely how to interact with the Vend API.

Vend’s API currently has 2 major versions - v0.9 and v2.0.

API Version 2.0

Version 2.0 is being actively developed. Where possible, we advise you use v2.0.

The v2.0 initiative was designed with specific improvements in mind:

  • Performance: The v2 APIs are generally lighter than v0, returning less auxiliary data than their v0 counterparts. For many of these endpoints, the performance is improved and more resilient to high load on the system.
  • Versioning: The v2 APIs use an auto-incrementing object version number. This allows for more precise pagination and for synchronisation to external systems. Before v2, you would need to rely on timestamps, which are not necessarily a unique value.

Version 0.9

Version 0.9 is the original version of Vend’s API. Several of these endpoints are marked as deprecated.

However, at this stage some endpoints are only available on v0.9 - for example, the creation of sales.

Subject Matter Guides

We have a number of guides on using the API to work with specific Vend features.

Selling and Payments

Inventory and Products

Webhooks

Browser Integration APIs

Besides the main HTTP + JSON API, there are 3 other ways to interact with Vend:

  • The Payments API provides a way to integrate payment providers into the Vend Sell Screen.
  • The Redirect API allows you to redirect someone from your app into a Vend Sell Screen
  • The Client API provides some javascript functions for browser extensions to interact with sales.