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4 Ways Safaricom Can Improve Their MPESA Daraja APIs

Safaricom last year launched their much lauded new APIs that were aimed at making integrations faster and exposing additional endpoints to enable businesses to do more with MPESA services. I’ve interacted quit a bit with it and I can bet my Facebook data on its impact.

Getting started involved just signing up and filling some riff raff data and in a few minutes you could be running test in the sandbox environment. Of course paybill applications is different issue but the API integration is not the dragged out process it used to be with monstrous MS Word documentations and unfriendly XMLs.

It’s almost all sunshine and rainbows, but not quite. Here is a couple of things I think would greatly add to this progress:

  1. Retrieve Transactions: There should be a way for users to retrieve C2B and B2C transactions and filter by by date among other parameters. At the moment the only way to access historical records is by manually going to the MPESA portal and viewing/downloading CSVs.
  2. Retry Callbacks: What happens when a C2B or B2C callback doesn’t get to you? At the moment, apparently nothing. A simple retry mechanism when the third party is not available or hasn’t properly acknowledged a callback would go a long in ensuring business complete their transactions in time.
  3. Name Verification: It would be great to be able to the name under which a phone number is registered. This could be particularly helpful for doing B2C transactions where you want to confirm that you are paying the right person before the completing the transaction.
  4. Other minor comments are possible use of better chat support channels. What is there at the moment doesn’t live up to Daraja’s standards. Connection timeouts mean starting all over again, entering your info, query and probably getting a random support person. There’s no chat history. Something like Slack or Intercom would work very well, and ensure everyone’s happiness for many more chat support sessions to come.

Otherwise, Daraja is an amazing set of APIs and among the best APIs in the FinTech space that I’ve worked with.

 4 Ways Safaricom Can Improve Their MPESA Daraja APIs