This month we are celebrating the one year anniversary of our partnership with Apigee. One year in, after we worked on more than 20 developer portals, we are also celebrating that we successfully specialised our Drupal company on API documentation.

After a lot of reading and thinking about developer portals, research into API documentation components and over 10 API events, I’ve gained a few new perspectives on API documentation that I think could be valuable for API architects and product owners. I synthesized the ideas and frameworks we developed in a presentation for Apigee’s API forum (Paris, Amsterdam, and London) and for the London APIdays. I felt my presentation at the API forum in Amsterdam was the best paced, and the most complete, that is why I’ve published it on Youtube.

Video recording:


In my talk (presented at Apigee’s API Tech Forum in Amsterdam on November 10, 2016), I explore 7 thought frameworks that will help you build better Developer Portals for your APIs:

The importance of Developer Portals

Portals should drive adoption and reduce support costs: without proper documentation, an API team will spend countless hours on workshops, trainings and support. Developer portals are also a trust signal.

the developer portal as a trust signal

The Developer Portal as a trust signal

Developer Portal Stakeholders

Sales, Product, Marketing and Support areas should be in balance. I discuss the role of Developer evangelists and API documentarians.

dev portal stakeholders

Developer Portal stakeholders

The Developer’s Journey

A developer portal can help creating viral loops and can turn consumers into product advocates. I discuss the function of marketing, try out areas, tutorials, conceptual documentation and integration galleries.

developer's journey

The Developer's journey

The site owner’s jobs to be done

A developer portal helps you to inspire, educate and authorise developers.

site owner's jobs

The site owner's jobs

Types of Portal architecture

What are the architectural API archetypes? What are their characteristics?

catalogue of APIs type

Architectural type: Catalogue of APIs

Technology choice

What choices are there to be made. I highlight API specification formats, documentation formats, and Portal technology.

portal technology

Portal technology

Conclusion and Learn more

Would you like to take part in our research, read our blog posts, get recordings of presentations? Then subscribe to our newsletter!

conclusions anatomy of a developer portal

7 frameworks to help you build a better developer portal



Get the slides here!

Subscribe to our Developer Portals mailing list, where we send notifications when we publish similar content!

About the author

Kristof van Tomme

CEO, Co-founder

Kristof is a Drupal strategist and architect with a degree in bioengineering. He started his career as a technology manager. At Pronovix, the company he co-founded, he’s been focussing on Drupal since 4.7. Recently his interest in DITA and reusable, single source documentation have culminated in the WalkHub.net project, an open source project that aims to become the GitHub of website documentation.

He initiated and later became the co-organizer of an introductory Drupal course at the University of Szeged (Hungary). As a permanent member of the Drupal Association, he was at some point the lead for the selection task force for European Drupalcons and of the inaugural Nomination Committee. Among others, he was the initiator and (co-)lead of Drupalcon Szeged (2008), DrupalCXO Brussels (2010), Drupal Developer Days Brussels (2011) and Drupal Government Days (2011). Currently he is involved in the organization of the Write the docs unconference in Berlin (2014 July).