Lesson 6. How to make an API request

In this lesson, you will learn:

  1. What you need to make an API request
  2. What are the formats for interacting with the Yandex Direct API?
  3. Where do I send requests
  4. Which HTTP headers are used
  5. What do I use to make requests
  6. Make the first request
  7. What's next
  8. Useful links
  9. Questions

What you need to make an API request

In this lesson, you will see formats of interaction with the Yandex Direct API and learn how to make your first request.

Having completed the previous lessons, you have already met all the conditions to be able to make API requests:

  1. You have a Yandex Direct account and have accepted the user agreement in the API section of the Yandex Direct web interface.
  2. You have registered your app with Yandex OAuth.
  3. You have requested API access and got your request approved.
  4. You have got an OAuth token.
  5. You have enabled Sandbox.
    Attention. Since you have requested trial access, you can only work with Sandbox and test data.

What are the formats for interacting with the Yandex Direct API?

The app accesses the Yandex Direct API server via the HTTPS network protocol, sending POST requests. Each POST request must meet a specific format. The API server will return a response in the same format.

The Yandex Direct API supports two formats:

  • JSON ( JavaScript Object Notation) — a text format for data exchange
  • SOAP ( Simple Object Access Protocol) — a protocol for exchanging structured messages in the XML format.

Where do I send requests

The URL for sending requests to Sandbox depends on the format selected:

  • For JSON requests — https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/json/v5/{service}
  • For SOAP requests — https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/v5/{service}
  • A WSDL description is available at URL: https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/v5/{service}?wsdl

Here {service} is the name of the service you want to access. Each service is intended for use with a particular class of objects. For example, to manage ad campaigns you can use the Campaigns service, sending requests to this service by the following URLs:

  • https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/json/v5/campaigns — JSON requests
  • https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/v5/campaigns — SOAP requests.

The URL used in the requests is case-sensitive: you must specify all characters in lowercase, including the name of the service, otherwise an error will occur.

Attention. The URLs to access the real ad data differ from the Sandbox URLs: they start with https://api.direct.yandex.com.

Which HTTP headers are used

The API request must contain the Authorization HTTP header with the OAuth token of the user who makes the request:

Authorization: Bearer TOKEN
  • Authorization is the HTTP header name.
  • Bearer is an OAuth constant (mandatory parameter).
  • TOKEN is the token itself.

We discussed how to get a token in a previous lesson.

Note. There are several types of accounts in Yandex Direct: accounts of the direct advertisers and their representatives; accounts of the advertising agencies and their representatives; and accounts of the agency clients. Different account types have different permissions. When accessing the Yandex Direct API, your app will only have the features and permissions granted to the user account that the OAuth token was obtained for.

The request may also contain other HTTP headers:

  • Client-Login — the username of the advertising agency's client. This header is mandatory when you are making a request on behalf of an agency.
  • Accept-Language — response message language.

Your app must be able to process the following response headers:

  • RequestId — a unique identifier of your request.
  • Units — information about restrictions. You will learn about restrictions in a following lesson.

What do I use to make requests

You can develop your API request app in any programming language. For learning purposes, you can use any program to send POST requests: for example, you can use a browser plugin or the cURL command line utility.

Make the first request

The examples shown here and below are suitable for the cURL utility. You can adjust the proposed code to your app written in any programming language.

The format of the Windows-based samples is different: the JSON code is enclosed in double quotes, while all the double quotes within the code are escaped. For example:

-d "{\"method\":\"get\",\"params\"...
Attention. Don't forget to replace the token and object IDs used in the sample code with your own data.

Let's see what test campaigns have been created in Sandbox. Please note the key request parameters:

  • Request is sent to the Campaigns service at the following Sandbox address:


  • The OAuth token has been passed in the Authorization header.
  • The get method has been called to get the campaigns.
curl -k -H "Authorization: Bearer TOKEN" -d '{"method":"get","params":{"SelectionCriteria":{},"FieldNames":["Id","Name"]}}' https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/json/v5/campaigns
cURL for Windows
curl -k -H "Authorization: Bearer TOKEN" -d "{\"method\":\"get\",\"params\":{\"SelectionCriteria\":{},\"FieldNames\":[\"Id\",\"Name\"]}}" https://api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com/json/v5/campaigns
POST /json/v5/campaigns/ HTTP/1.1
Host: api-sandbox.direct.yandex.com
Authorization: Bearer TOKEN
Accept-Language: ru 
Client-Login: CLIENT_LOGIN
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8

  "method": "get",
  "params": {
    "SelectionCriteria": {},
    "FieldNames": ["Id", "Name"]
HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date:Fri, 28 Jun 2016 17:07:02 GMT
RequestId: 1111111111111111112
Units: 10/20828/64000

  "result": {
    "Campaigns": [{
      "Name": "Test API Sandbox campaign 1",
      "Id": 1234567
    }, {
      "Name": "Test API Sandbox campaign 2",
      "Id": 1234578
    }, {
      "Name": "Test API Sandbox campaign 3",
      "Id": 1234589

What's next

So you have made your first request to the Yandex Direct API. In the next lesson, you will learn more about the principles of data access via the API and see somewhat more sophisticated code samples.


  1. How an app can interact with the Yandex Direct API?
  2. What HTTP header is required in the query to the Yandex Direct API server?
  3. How does the Yandex Direct API server differentiates test data requests from real data requests?