API vs. Widgets

If you’re evaluating whether to use the Localist API or Localist Widgets to spread event content outside of Localist, first ask yourself 2 questions:

  1. Are you looking to integrate Localist content into another system’s internal interface? If yes, then you will need to use the API.
  2. Do you have the technical expertise or resources to build and implement a tool that displays JSON data on a web page? If no, then you will need to use a widget.

Outside of these two scenarios, the choice between the API and widget depends on your preferences. That said, we recommend always using the widget builder if you are only looking to display content on other pages as it’s quicker and generates styled data.

Key Differences


  • Requires technical knowledge of JSON
  • Raw JSON data
  • Customer is responsible for building and implementing a tool that displays API data
  • Customer is responsible for building and implementing the HTML (etc.) presentation
  • Designed to show impeccably up-to-date data with slower, cached load times
  • Can be used to integrate internally with other systems (i.e, importing data into a CMS)
  • Flexible querying: http://www.localist.com/doc/api
  • Long time commitment


  • Requires only a very basic understanding of editing web pages in a CMS
  • Formatted data
  • Prebuilt component that is added to a page with Localist provided embed codes
  • Localist provided HTML presentation available
  • Designed to load quickly, but does not show exact up-to-date data
  • Can only be used for displaying content on a page (i.e, displaying data on a CMS page)
  • Limited parameters: http://support.localist.com/article/output-parameters/
  • Short time commitment