No-code: What is it -- and when can it pay off?

So-called no-code solutions have received a solid boost in recent years. Here we explain what it is, what advantages and disadvantages exist — and who it is suitable for.

Dennis Janzso

What exactly is no-code?

Simply explained, no-code is about tools that allow you to build services — from simple websites to larger ecommerce solutions — without (or with minimal) use of code.

These are tools that are largely visual, and they have easy-to-use features like drag-and-drop. You might call it the PowerPoint of web development,” explains UX designer Audun Støren.

Faster and cheaper

Audun is one of Increo's house experts on the no-code tool Webflow, which allows the designer to take the lead in development projects. He believes it has some great benefits.

“The most important thing is that we save ourselves a lot of extra rounds with the developers. The more we designers can fix ourselves, the less table tennis there will be between us and those who sit on the key to functionality. If, for example, new screen sizes or a new type of content appear, we can make these micro-selections ourselves.

Ultimately, lower time consumption means that the customer can get the solution both faster and cheaper.

“But no-code solutions are not a B-commodity for that reason. They work top notch for a variety of purposes, and for many businesses it's simply more important to prioritize more of their budget on user insight, strategy and advice.

UX-designer Audun Støren i kontorstolen ved sitt skrivebord.
Audun, UX designer at Increo, explains what are the advantages of choosing a no-code solution when you are going to have a new website.

More leeway

Another advantage is that the solution can be easily managed by companies that do not have their own developers.

There are so many great people in marketing departments out there. They are not necessarily developers, but may have experience with design tools such as Figma or Illustrator. For them, it will be relatively easy to take over the operation of a Webflow project.

In a job market where it is difficult to get good developers, there will be a particularly great need for such solutions, Audun believes.

This gives the customer more leeway. If they want to space star a bit themselves, they can do quite a bit on their own. Webflow comes with many possibilities out of the box, but it can also be augmented with its own code and tailored functionality. If you want to get more out of the solution, we in Increo can help you move from no-code to low-code.

These should consider no-code

According to Dennis Janzso, a developer at Increo, a no-code solution would be particularly relevant for at least three types of businesses.

1. Small or medium-sized businesses that just “need a website”

“Here we are talking about simple pages where functionality is of little importance. It contains perhaps some key information about who the business is and what they do, and that's it. Then no-code is absolutely perfect, explains Dennis.

2. SaaS company that needs a new product or service page

These companies already have a digital platform and their own developers. But then they also have a marketing department tasked with selling a specific product or service.

“It could be very useful to separate it from the rest of the universe. This allows customers to avoid unnecessary complexity, while allowing marketers to throw themselves around and have full control over the content.

3. Big companies that need to test things quickly

In this case, it's about getting a prototype up as quickly as possible. Through it, they can gather insights in anticipation of market clarification.

This can be done, for example, in connection with a design sprint, while the goal is to later build a more comprehensive variant. There is a lot of technical excitement going on here. Webflow works to let you bring the components into a React Project, so that the prototype also becomes the foundation, says the developer, adding:

“Such a variant can also work to “buy you time”. For example, let's say that you are going to organize a big festival, but have not finished with the main solution. Then a no-code variant could fit as a temporary landing page where people can report their interest.

Utvikler Dennis som står i åpent kontorlandskap
Find out what your needs are when developing a new solution and you can choose the technology then recommends Dennis, developer at Increo.

Some disadvantages

In other words, a no-code solution can be both a smart and cost-effective way to go. But simplicity does not come wholly free of charge.

The only problem is that we have no control over the source code. It is Webflow that hosts the website, and they are free to do this where and how they wish. For the vast majority, this will not be a problem. Webflow offers a very robust and secure hosting through Amazon's cloud service. If, on the other hand, you have extraordinary privacy and security requirements, a more thorough assessment may be necessary before choosing such a solution,” Dennis explains.

The second is that you are “locked” in the WebFlow universe, which places limitations on what is possible.

“If you're just going to create an online store with 13 out of a dozen, this doesn't have to be a problem. But is the plan to build up a business system with integrations and advanced access control, don't start messing yourself into no-code.

A future without code?

For Audun, Dennis and the rest of Increo, it's all about choosing the technology that best meets the needs there and then. Maybe it's no-code -- maybe not.

Sometimes scalability is the most important thing. At other times, maybe the project is so insecure that if you are going to fail at first, you should fail quickly. Then no-code is brilliant. You know that expensive graduation suit you plan to grow into, but which becomes outdated before you get big enough? No-code is the opposite of that. You get something that fits perfectly in the here and now.

As for the future of Webflow and other no-code tools, UX designer Audun is optimistic. He believes these tools will replace ever more complex developer projects.

“As the accumulated needs of so many people are brought together in these tools, it's going to move from idea to finished front-end at lightning speed. Developers are going to work more on tailored functionality and complex systems, while designers like me are going to work more on developing new services and good user experiences,” he says, concluding:

After all, graphics are only a small part of what design is all about. The fundamental thing is to create something to be understood and used by people.

Are you curious about the solutions we have developed with Webflow?
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What can we help you with?

Sebastian Krohn
Sebastian Krohn
Agency Manager, Consulting
988 00 306
Morten M Wikstrøm
Morten M Wikstrøm
CEO, Consulting
976 90 017

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