Low-code/no-code development tools allow anyone with a product idea to build scalable applications within a few hours or days – basically providing a magic wand for small businesses to innovate or larger businesses to cut down costs. So, what is low-code development, and how much code do you actually need to know for no-code development?
In essence, the low-code/no-code movement has made web and mobile app development accessible to any business, even if there is no in-house dev team.
Even without the knowledge of complicated programming languages, small business teams can now build new applications, augment existing products and digitize more business processes easier and faster than ever before.
Unlike conventional custom coding techniques that require high levels of expertise in programming languages, through low-code/no-code tools non-technical professionals can build and improve existing applications and products with few or no lines of code.
By using visual design systems with drag and drop features, small businesses can:
- Develop new products and applications easily
- Shorten idea-to-market processes by accelerating project execution and delivery
- Enhance collaboration and increase efficiency by connecting non-tech business experts with uncomplicated tools
- Build upon existing no-code;low-code infrastructure rather than creating new environments
In these ways, low code/no-code tools eliminate the need for huge teams, massive budgets, and numerous testing and iterations for product execution.
With a few clicks, workflow automation and innovation can become reality for even traditionally non-tech small businesses.
Today, no-code and low-code tools have even gotten the attention of big business. By 2024, Gartner projects that 75% of large enterprises will deploy at least four low-code tools in their development stack.
This demand will likely keep increasing as no-code and low-code tools become proven sources for driving business growth.
In this article, we’ll give you comprehensively overview of the low-code/no-code movement and its benefits for business development by covering:
- What is low-code and no-code development?
- Main features of low-code/no-code development platforms
- Key benefits of low-code/no-code development tools
- Who can use low-code/no-code development tools
- Examples of low-code/no-code development platforms
[Are you looking to implement LC/NC tools to build your business? Reloadly provides numerous plug-and-play tools that have helped small businesses create new revenue streams with gift cards, airtime, data bundles, crypto exchange and other services. Contact our support team, and we’ll provide free consultation on how you can use LC/NC tools in your industry.]
1. What is Low-Code/No-Code Development?
Put simply, low-code and no-code development platforms are visual software design systems that easily facilitate application development, automation, innovation, and integration with drop and drag features.
With no-code platforms, people of all backgrounds and with no programming experience can easily create functional programs speedily and affordably, thus completely dropping the barriers to entry for digital transformation in small businesses.
So, what is low-code development then? Logically, low-code platforms then allow for the creation of what is commonly called “citizen developers” – that is, developers without an educational background in programming.
Today, low-code;no-code development has become a revolutionary movement that is democratizing how businesses across all industries access new tech.
However, the term “low-code” is not new, and indeed was first coined by Forrester, a research institute, back in 2014 to depict an emerging trend in visual programming.
Over the years, low-code has increasingly grown to become a mainstay in the programming world, propelling the creation and expansion of highly valued companies such as DoorDash, Spotify, and many others.
The revenue of low-code, no-code development platforms has grown in tandem, and it is expected to be worth $65 billion by 2027, exponentially up from its predicted value of $12.85 billion in 2025.
Numerous factors make no-code/low code development appealing to startups, with speed and ease of development at the epicenter.
According to a 2021 survey published on Statista, 58% of respondents report that low-code development is 41% to 100% faster than traditional development.
2. Main Features of Low-code/No-code Development Platforms
Generally speaking, most low-code/no-code development platforms enable development through systems that have several mainstay features.
These features are specifically designed to make the process of web and mobile development accessible to most people, and usually include:
Drag and drop interfaces
Low-code/no-code tools allow for the easy design of user interfaces, such as through drag and drop features that replace having to write lines of code.
Components required in an application can also be dragged from the platform interface and dropped in an app being created, thus enabling efficient and seamless development.
Using no-code or low-code tools rarely requires high-level system requirements. As they are accessible on most devices with minimal operational prerequisites, they can be built and used on most devices.
No-code and low-code tools present data and analytics in visual models, so information is presented through visuals that can be interpreted by most people.
Applications built with low-code tools can be rapidly grown and expanded to fulfill new business models.
New web or mobile applications can be built and launched in a matter of days, or the capabilities of existing capabilities expanded easily to meet new business needs.
No-code/low-code platforms often have pre-built functionalities that eliminate the need to build additional core modules for apps from scratch. Key modules, such as data management, sales process management, and more are pre-integrated into some tools.
3. Key Benefits of Low-Code/No-Code Development Tools
Low-code and no-code development has numerous advantages over custom code development processes.
Some of the benefits propelling the use of low-code/no-code tools are:
No-code/low-code tools reduce development costs by as much as 80%, according to Creatio.
With the ability to create democratized applications – that is, making them usable by more citizen developers – the cost and time of hiring developers are minimized.
No-code and low-code tools help build and innovate faster.
Since the time and processes required in building applications are cut extensively, businesses can rapidly adapt to changes in the business scape and innovate to meet new challenges.
Additionally, with automated workflows, team members can collaborate optimally on product development.
Improved Security and Risk Management
With security functionalities often pre-built into no-code tools, applications built are generally secure and easy to manage for risks.
Increased Focus on Customer Experience
With technical complexities mitigated by low-code tools, business developers can focus better on creating an optimal customer experience by researching their needs, strategizing how to deliver them, and creating an excellent customer experience overall.
Maintaining apps built with low-code tools is easier.
Unlike complicated processes required with maintaining custom code applications, no-code applications are easier to maintain and tend to have much lower incidences of downtime.
4. Who Can Use Low-Code/No-code Development Tools
Low-code development tools can empower professional developers and citizen developers alike, while no-code tools are easily accessible to anyone.
Professional developers can scale up existing solutions and accelerate development with the help of full-stack visual programming that low-code platforms provide, as well as help them better collaborate with non-technical team members more easily.
Low-code and no-code tools are ideal for citizen developers as well.
Citizen developers can be business professionals such as financial analysts, sales teams, managers, and administrative personnel who need to learn key software to improve performance, yet have probably never formally studied any programming language.
Rather than consult software developers who are in acute shortage, they can create applications and products that increase their efficiency with the help of low-code tools.
With more business professionals equipped to undergo IT duties, the burden on developers becomes reduced, disencumbering them to focus on heavyweight IT duties and mission-critical enterprise applications that require high-level programming expertise.
Thus, it’s no surprise that more teams in an office are expected to comprise both professional and citizen developers, with Gartner projecting that over 50% of medium and large enterprises will adopt low-code/no-code development tools by 2023.
5. Examples of Low-code/No-code Development Platforms
Numerous low-code and no-code tools exist today, and many more are set to emerge over the coming years.
These tools can serve different needs, such as web design, automation, data visualization, and product development.
Some top examples of low-code and no-code platforms you can use include:
Bubble empowers people to develop Minimum Viable Products and applications without any programming languages.
From Software as a Service (SaaS) products to Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools, users can build functional applications with drag-and-drop features and no need to write code.
Salesforce is an industry-leading Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool.
Salesforce allows the creation of applications that are deployable across different types of devices to enhance customer interaction and community.
With drag-and-drop tools, users can develop software for marketing, sales, commerce, and more.
Airtable integrated spreadsheets and databases, and then simplified them all. With Airtable, users can interact with data, translate it and manage it without using any formulas or lines of code.
Airtable helps automate workflow processes, increase collaboration and enhance productivity. It can be used for project management, content calendars, campaign management, event planning, and more.
Zapier connects applications, automates workflows, and expedites project execution.
With an entire constellation of applications emerging in the tech industry, businesses have become inundated by the amount of apps they use.
Zapier eases the management and connectivity of all of these apps through automation and synchronization.
Reloadly enables businesses to create numerous digital products and services attached to applications in the finance and telecommunications industries with just a few lines of code.
With Reloadly, businesses can create new revenue streams in a few hours without having to sign a lengthy contract.
Using Reloadly, businesses can integrate new offers on their website, mobile applications, or even social media profiles like WhatsApp.
With just a bit of coding, businesses can explore the benefits of developer-first APIs to create new business offers through numerous use cases, such as:
- Airtime selling: Airtime is money in many parts of the world, and with surging demand for airtime and data bundles, more businesses are serving large market gaps by adding airtime services to their business platforms via an airtime API
- Social media rewards: Increasing social engagement builds loyal communities and generates high ROI. With airtime and gift card incentives, businesses can use social media rewards to boost their marketing.
- Selling gift cards: The demand for gift cards has skyrocketed, and sustainably so. A mainstay during holidays and as marketing incentives, businesses can tap into profits by simply integrating a gift card API.
- Enabling utility bill payments: Paying for utilities is a herculean task in many parts of the world, and by offering utility payment services, more brands can build a profitable add-on service.
- Survey responses incentives: Nonprofit and research institutes can use airtime and gift cards as survey incentives.
Today, rapid development and innovation are increasingly facilitated by now-code and low-code tools, and businesses large and small looking to build quickly, efficiently, and affordably will benefit from using these development platforms.
Whether businesses want to automate their workflow processes or integrate new business offerings, no-code, low-code/no-code tools can get them where they are going quickly.