What is a webhook?
A webhook is a software mechanism allowing instant communication between two apps or software systems.
It’s an event-driven or triggered communication between two computer systems, allowing apps to send automated messages or data to other apps by sending and receiving HTTP requests. Unlike traditional APIs, where one app makes an explicit request of another, webhooks allow an app to automatically send data to another app when a certain event occurs.
For example, eCommerce platforms use webhooks to automatically notify a third-party shipping service when a new order is placed. The system of the shipping service receives the webhook message, processes the order data (also called the payload), and initiates the shipping process without any manual effort required.
Use cases for webhooks
Real-time notifications: Webhooks allow message senders to see when their message has been successfully delivered and read, or to receive push notifications for in-channel activity.
Data synchronization: Webhooks can trigger updates or data exchanges between systems to sync messages and notifications across platforms.
Integration: Webhooks can integrate with chatbots, notification services, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, and more to enable real-time service and data exchanges.
Moderation: Webhooks allow social networks and communities to get notifications about dubious content so it can be reviewed before it becomes visible.
Community polling: Webhooks can update the results for in-app polls and surveys in real time to enhance user engagement.
Automatic updates and reminders: Webhooks can be used to automatically notify users about important feature updates, policy changes, or scheduled events and appointments that are approaching.
User engagement tracking: Webhooks help marketing and sales teams to track user engagement by notifying the analytics system in the event of specific user actions such as clicking a link or a new sign-up.
Webhooks are a type of event-driven or triggered communication between two computer systems. They’re a flexible, efficient way to integrate and communicate between different apps and systems that eliminate the need for continuous manual data requests.
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