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Considerations when building a no code application

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If you’re anything like a majority of folks, you have great ideas and you’re probably thinking about the best way to go about building it. Is a no-code application right for you? Read on.

1. Consider why you’re building it. 

No code applications are GREAT for static applications. By static I mean, the app isn’t data intensive, there’s not much complexity, and the site is largely informational. So a landing page for example – is GREAT when building a no-code app. On the other hand, if you’re building a complex application that will heavily manipulate data, you may want to go another route.

2. Consider the speed. 

If you need an app up tomorrow, use the no-code application. No code applications are great for the speed and ability to quickly test out ideas. If you have a prototype for an app that you want to validate with your target customer base, a no-code application is a great way to do so. 

3. Consider the cost.

No code apps are expensive! If you’re first starting out / have little funding, it will look attractive to try to DIY your application. Look, if it’s a complex app – you will end up in plugin hell. Plugins are bits of code that you can plug in to your app. They are typically low cost (can be as low as a $1 / month). However, if you’ve got a ton of plugins – the cost can slowly creep up on you. In addition, the cost of hosting these apps can run you as much as $500/month (this is WAY too expensive for an app that doesn’t even have 10 users – in my opinion). 

4. You’ll probably end up hiring a developer anyway. 

Continueing on the subject of cost – building a no code app is attractive because they’re marketed as something you can build yourself. AND YOU CAN. But oh my, if you don’t have a background in development it could look overwhelming. For example, in an app I worked on, we built a pretty complicated workflow in the no code platform. It was extremely slow and didn’t always behave as expected. The problem? The no code platform couldn’t handle the complexity of the job. Our solution was to build a custom API as a workaround – leaving the no-code platform altogether. 

5. Consider the performance.

No code platforms are slow, sorry. They are great for static apps, but add a gif to a page and it’ll slow down the initial page load – leading to a poor user experience. In addition, if you have a database (as all websites do), you’ll need to build an optimized database for speed and easy querying. And this is the most important part of an application build, in my opinion. However, if you’ve never defined a database schema before – this is hard. And time consuming. 

Ultimately, no-code platforms have a ton of gotchas. If you aren’t a pro, you may inadvertently build a slow application.. and end up outsourcing the work any way.  

 

 

 

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