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No-Code Development: A Simple Guide to the No-Code Programming

18 November, 2022

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No-code development, as you may have guessed, is a type of web development that allows non-programmers and programmers to create software using a graphical user interface, instead of writing code. Today, almost all we do in our lives are powered by code. Whether we are liking a picture on socials, or executing a money transfer via our bank app, it’s all coding, dear friend. 

For those, who want to build a website or an app, and have no idea about the whole coding process, this article is gonna give you hope and happiness. Stay tuned!

Before we check some no-coding essentials, a question may arise: if no coding, then what? What is the method used instead? Well, let me tell you a secret. When you build on a no-code platform, you are building with code, you simply don’t have to do any coding manually. It is done through methods such as drag-and-drop, adding application components to create a complete application. Those no-code platforms have pre-built drag-and-drop elements that have been coded for reuse and scale. 

Essential features of no-code development

1. Drag-and-drop Interface

This is one of the main features that simplifies no-code development. It allows you to simply drag and drop the feature you need to create for your application. It lets you do the work very quickly.

2. Data Connections

Most no-code application development platforms either come pre-configured with database and server-side software or provide a simple user interface to connect with the database of your choice.

A good no-code platform is helping you both—to build the user-facing visuals and the data management and processing capabilities that run behind the scenes to help you complete your business workflows.

3. Integrations

Most no-code platforms offer a variety of integrations with other software to enable your connection to your data and processing without the need to duplicate or do manual work.

Using API integrations, you can easily integrate the apps that you build via a no-code platform. You can easily integrate with all kinds of web applications such as YouTube, Slack, Twitter, etc.

4. UI Builder and Visual Modeling

Most no-code platforms come with some sort of user interface builder which allows users to quickly put together pre-configured elements to put a website and application together.

In no-code platforms, you just have to drag and drop and arrange components in a logical sequence to create functionality. No coding is required!

Pros and Cons of No-Coding Development

Pros: 

1. More Agility

As mentioned above, most of the development through the no-code method is done with the help of the drag-and-drop feature by using already-built modules. It fastens the speed of building applications. Even the testing is automated which helps in cutting down the total development time.

2. Reduced Cost

Another important factor is the cost. No-code platforms help you reduce the total cost of building and maintaining applications. The cost benefits of building applications on no-code technology are broad because, firstly, you do not need to rely on highly technically skilled people (aka developers) to build and maintain your applications. Second of all, thanks to the modular nature of building apps on no-code platforms, the total time and effort are significantly lower compared to traditional coding. Which means you both save time and money. You get more done with less!

3. Increased productivity

The two-point above lead us to the 3rd advantage, which is the increase in productivity and progress. Since the speed of making an application or a website increases and even becomes easy, the IT department is not going to be snowed under with requests now and then. Voila! The work that used to take months is done within hours or days.

4. Easily changeable

The problem with traditional coding is that it becomes difficult to change a functionality especially if the code is in a language that is foreign to you. With no-code development, you can easily change the functionality within hours. Plus, no code refactoring is needed.

Cons

1. Rigid templates' limitation 

There is a limitation in customizing applications in no-code platforms. In other words, to meet the capabilities of the no-code platform, you will have to change your business processes instead.

2. Security issues 

Writing a code means you can rely on it further, as you know you wrote it yourself. However, during the no-code development, you don’t have complete control. That’s a risk. This can be an open invitation to security contravention because if your no-code platform gets hacked, it can immediately make your application also vulnerable.

Low-code vs no-code development platforms: What are the differences?

Low-code and no-code systems offer the same fundamental benefits. The difference between these two methods of app development is indicated in their names.

Low-code development requires some level of coding, much less than is required with traditional application development. Senior developers and programmers use the low-code to quickly deliver applications and simplify their tasks by shifting between saving time on easier tasks and then moving on to more complex assignments.

No-code is typically used to create tactical apps to handle simple functions. Low-code can be used in those cases as well, but additionally to create apps that run processes that are critical to a business and the core systems, such as certain integrations.

The Future of No-code Development

The no-code movement made a revolution in the development field, but it won’t replace developers, for sure. This is because, as previously stated, the no-code movement is still limited compared to traditional app development. The no-code movement is here to supplement rather than replace app development. Software vendors will add more functions, that will increase the complexity of the tools, while developers will learn how to use these tools and begin offering these services. 

What type of business no-code suits best for?

Businesses and platforms that put agility, speed, and simplicity over other factors are best-suited users for no-code websites/platforms. They can start creating new applications in minutes with minimal or zero customization to get their work done.

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