What are webhooks in Magento 2?

Webhooks are a mechanism that enables communication and data exchange between different applications. They allow applications to push information to each other automatically, without the need for manual requests.
It’s important to know, that by default, webhooks are not available in Magento 2, however, you can build them on your own.

But why to invest time on building webhooks, when Magento 2 has its own API, flexible enough to enable any synchronization? It may seem counterintuitive, but in some cases, Magento webhook integration is both more cost-effective and less time-consuming than creating APIs.
If the APIs that you need to create are complicated and require more individual specifications, creating Magento 2 webhooks is a significantly cheaper automation option compared to APIs.

When Magento 2 webhooks are better option than APIs?

Magento 2 API give you information only when you make a query. You need to send requests to obtain the data you want, and this process can use more resources than necessary. With frequent queries, the system can get tired. APIs can be suitable for tasks that don't require constant updates, but they are not very efficient for continuous data exchanges. This is where Magento 2 webhooks come into play. Unlike APIs, webhooks don't need you to make a query. Instead, they inform you when something changes proactively. For constant data exchanges  Magento webhook integration can be more efficient.

How to make Magento 2 webhooks?

Magento 2 itself doesn't have a native implementation of webhooks. However, you can implement webhook-like functionality using Magento 2 events and observers.

Events: At different points in its code execution Magento 2 provides various events. When within the system something significant happens, a new order being placed, a customer account being created, or a product being updated - you can think of these events as points

Observers: When you need to “listen” for specific events, you can create PHP classes that are called observers. Your observer class's code is executed when the observed event is triggered.

This is how you can achieve webhook-like behavior using events and observers in Magento 2:

  1. You should identify the events that correspond to the actions you want to trigger webhooks for (e.g., account creation, order placement, customer registration).
  2. Create PHP observer classes that “listen” to these events.
  3. Implement the logic that needs to be executed when the event occurs in the observer classes,  This could include sending data to external systems or APIs, effectively mimicking the behavior of a webhook.

As you see, Magento 2 doesn't have a dedicated "webhook" feature, but to achieve similar outcomes, you can leverage its events and observers mechanism.
Another more user-friendly option is using third-party extensions. Extensions provide easy-to-use Magento webhook integration, without overloading your Magento 2 website.This allows data to be sent only when specific conditions are met, optimizing the utilization of system resources efficiently. This controlled approach is particularly beneficial for high-traffic websites, ensuring that all data is transferred in a fully managed manner.

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