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The question

What if you could turn your ideas into real projects and build tools for automating work without needing to know how to code?

Questions

What is no-code?

Since the very  dawn of the web, people have invented new ways to interface with computers using what is known as computer programming. These “languages” allow humans to interact with computers in a common script that helps us tell them what to do for us. But with every passing year, this ability has been become more abstracted from it’s original “1's and 0's” and into more human, readable formats. Fast forward to today, and the programming language itself can be entirely hidden and only easy interfaces like the apps and websites we’re used to using remain.

Now anyone can program computers using interfaces and applications that are easy to understand and use with no prior experience in computer programming.

Yes, you don’t have to be a developer to program computers.
Thanks to tools like Bubble, Webflow, Adalo and more, people at all levels of experiences are building websites, apps, businesses and projects built off of these democratized and inexpensive tools.

No-Code is like programming, but for everyone.

What are the limits?

Building in the no-code space is a creative endeavor just like anything else, and therefore can be approached as a part-art-part-science. What’s most exciting is that the tools and applications are growing each day, meaning there are new possible use cases emerging all of the time, as the industry is anything but static. Makerpad attempts to explore the edges of what’s possible without code, with tutorials and education to help you understand what your options are. You can also jump into the Forum or Slack to dig deeper into what others are building using todays existing tools and templates.

You can build tools that easily support thousands of users (Makerpad does).

People often run before they walk. Worrying about what may happen with 1 million users is probably not a useful exercise. We'd recommend building with no-code and validate with paying users ASAP.

Lambda School had thousands of users and raised a $30M series B and they used no-code tools (Airtable, Zapier) to run their business with 3,000 concurrent students.

Code vs no-code

We believe that this new set of no code tools doesn’t displace development directly, rather it shifts where developers time is focused and the type of tasks that are worked on. It also changes how a variety of other roles within a company spend there time. It’s now possible to have members of your team spend a large portion of their time working directly with no-code tools or even being hired because of their proficiency in them. We believe that no-code opens the door to build for those who weren’t educated in traditional programming.

What are the possibilities

Every day at Makerpad our members are discussing projects and products they have created using no-code tools. We believe we’re just at the early start of a large shift in the way products are built and companies are created. We believe that the speed at which ideas will be produced will increase rapidly as development time and cost drastically decrease. We believe that we will see companies growing to hundreds of employees with their main tech stack being built on no-code tools, and we believe that no-code tools will continue to proliferate in fill in gaps in the market creating ever more components and solutions to the market of those building without code.

Lambda School (also mentioned above) built their admissions process on Typeform and moved their marketing site to Webflow. They use Zapier for data cleaning automations. This has saved 100s of hours of manual work.

Crash built a lead-gen tool, power user profiles and test new payment tiers easily with Typeform. Airtable powers their job board and Carrd/Webflow are used for landing page tests. Crash enabled custom job recommendations 30x faster than building their own version. They've been able to creating and publish landing pages without involving engineering.

RolePoint used to spend at least an hour a day running and tweaking spreadsheets plus many other menial tasks. Using no-code they solved all of their lead management problems and it helped avoid any human error. It automated daily workflows and gave them more time to further iterate on their lead preparation process.

The mix of no-code tools here have enabled Scribly to automate their process almost completely; a customer buys a package then submits a brief, a writer is assigned and their tasks are set with a dynamic document for them to begin their work. Their integrations have literally saved their founder countless hours each week.
Case Study
The reference

Mark noticed a tweet on a Sunday evening and decided to help!

idea

“Help A Mom” allows any Mom to post a request for help. Then the app generates help requests that community helpers can then respond to instantly.
To build an app that allows overwhelmed mothers to ask for help.

Tools

Functionality for this app:
- A database for helpers and mums to create profiles.
- A User login
- List functions for posts and responses
- Image uploads in the UI.

build

The ‘Help a Mum’ app uses Google Sheets. The sheets are set out to auto add and do a little work to create a “helper” when a new helper signs up. By connecting this sheet to Glide it can create an instant and functioning web-app in minutes.

Publish

You build a product to solve a problem, now you want it in the hands of the people who need it most. We featured Mark’s build story (along with others he’s built for others to learn from. Read a feature story for the 'Help a Mum' app here https://www.makerpad.co/stories/mark-smillie-quickly-building-3-mobile-apps-without-code

View other stories

Basic Tutorials to dive into

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