As a non-technical founder building their first no-code app, deciding whether to use a no-code template can be a big decision. There are benefits to both using templates or starting from scratch. Let's explore both options for your no-code app.
No-code Template Options
When exploring the option of using a template for your no-code app, you should first take a look to see if there are templates that fit your business idea and app.
For Bubble, you can view available free and paid no-code templates here. Remember that with Bubble, templates will function with built-in workflows and a ready-made database.
For Webflow, you can view available free and paid no-code templates at here. With Webflow, templates may or may not have built-in CMS and e-commerce checkout capabilities. Before you decide on using a no-code template or not, make sure you view the respective template stores to see if there's one that you like and one that aligns similarly to your business idea.
If you are curious about the differences and advantages between Bubble and Webflow, we have an in-depth Bubble vs. Webflow post here.
Using Bubble.io No-Code Templates
As a beginner in Bubble, application development may seem like a tough up-hill battle. The learning curve is high, yes, which is why many people go down the route of no-code templates to build applications. But is using a no-code template the right decision?
When deciding on using a template, there are some considerations you should factor in:
- Does the template align well with your no-code app and idea?
- How much will you have to alter the template?
- Will you need to change the database and workflows dramatically?
- How much time will you save using the template vs. starting off from scratch?
You should consider all the above factors and weigh them carefully when making your decision. No-code development is much faster to build applications and businesses. You want to make sure you work forwards, not backwards. While using a no-code ready-made template might sound like a good idea, you might find yourself working backwards.
No-code Template Alignment
The first and most important factor in deciding to use a no-code template is does the template align with your business idea? If you're building a meal delivery web app, you should not be using a social network template. Of course, this is an obvious point but it's one we must mention. Make sure the no-code template you have your eyes on aligns well with your business idea.
While selecting a no-code template that aligns with your business or project is the most important factor, others come into play as well.
Since you're building a web app, databases and workflows also play a role in template selection. Purchasing a template does not just bring in the UI. Data tables, workflows, elements, and other aspects of bubble's no-code solutions will be brought in, too.
Let's take the meal delivery web app as an example again. Within the no-code template, some data tables will be brought in that handle transactions, delivery agents, restaurants, menus, and more. In addition, workflows will be present for creating, updating, and managing these data tables will be present as well. If you don't need these data tables or workflows in your no-code web app, you'll have to work backwards by deleting them.
By using a no-code template, there are many advantages including kickstarting landing pages, integrated data security, fully-created workflows and databases, and more. On the other hand, you may have to work backwards by deleting many of these no-code solutions.
No-code Development Process with Templates
As a non-technical user/founder building a no-code web app, you can use both free and paid templates to your advantage by leveraging developers and freelancers.
Let's say you ultimately decide on a no-code template to use for your business. Let's break down the process you should use to quickly launch your no-code app, website, or business.
App Development with No-code Templates
First and foremost, select a template with our above guidelines and suggestions. After you install the template, take a look at the platform and see what changes are needed.
If you're non-technical and don't want to put in the time necessary to learning Bubble and the no-code development platform, we suggest hiring a freelancer or developer who can help you alter the template. It's a low-cost way to quickly launch your business and get valuable market feedback.
Here's our recommendation on what to do:
- Note down all the changes needed for the UI, database, workflows, and pages of your no-code app
- Hire a no-code freelancer from either the Bubble forum or other services such as UpWork
- Create a plan with the no-code freelancer to make the necessary changes
- Launch your no-code app!
While this is a very basic and rudimentary process for launching your no-code app or business, at a high level this is the process you should use as a founder building on a no-code platform.
Building Your No-Code App From Scratch
While most non-programmers don't like to hear this, we always suggest building your no-code app or business by yourself without the use of templates or freelancers.
You'll gain valuable experience learning how to build on the most powerful no-code development platform, Bubble. By building yourself, you won't need any coding skills, code tools or custom software. Everything you need is provided to you off-the-shelf by Bubble in a rapid application development environment. By using simple drag and drop, you'll be able to bring your business idea to life and build applications rapidly.
Bubble offers you everything you need, while other no-code development platforms require you to integrate other third party services and no-code tools. For example, with Webflow, you'd need to integrate no-code platforms such as Memberstack, Zapier, and Airtable. With Bubble, you have full authority to build both web and mobile apps all under one easy to use no-code platform.
By learning Bubble and no-code app development, you'll learn how to implement important business strategy, address specific needs, and add content to your app or website all with no-code. When you're ready, you can learn how to write code to add more functionality into your no-code app. Use technology and software to build your apps and company.
While you don't necessarily need to, implementing other software and new tools is quick and easy in Bubble. They offer a powerful API connector where you can easily integrate other software and tools right into your no-code app. As a no-code founder and business owner, you'll handle all aspects of your business such as the selection of no-code tools, business processes, project management, and any new technology that you'd like to implement in your app.
If you ultimately decide to go the route of learning from scratch, we're happy to help by offering our self-guided courses and independent 1-on-1 expert sessions.
Bottom Line, No-Code Template or Not?
Selecting a template for your no-code app or website comes down to the following question:
Do you have the time to learn no-code development or do you need to get your company launched as soon as possible?
If you have the time, learning no-code development platforms such as Bubble and Webflow will return a high ROI in the long term.
On the other hand, purchasing a free or paid no-code template and using developers will allow you to launch your company much faster than learning no-code. When you're building apps and ultimately decide to use templates, make sure you hire quality developers who understand your vision and project needs. No-code/low code platforms nowadays are extremely powerful, but hiring the wrong developers can drastically decrease your time to market. If you're using Bubble as your no-code platform, make sure you eliminate security breaches by using the collaboration feature when working with developers.
One more point about Bubble as a no-code platform and working with developers, Bubble has a great agency option that allows you to hire agencies instead of freelancers.
Check them out as well as you begin your freelancer/agency hiring journey. We're also happy to provide assistance, guidance, and freelancer recommendations in a 1-on-1 call with you.