Busting Myths and Building Apps: Low-Code Style
As your business grows, the diversity of your needs grows with it. Spreadsheets are good for managing these needs, as are database tools and packaged software… if your aim is to conform to your competition. But to be a notch above, you need to be unique — not just in what your business does, but in its process management as well. To develop a customized solution for your business process, you need a low-code app development platform that’s easy, fast, and inexpensive.
It’s not uncommon to have doubts about new methods, but these doubts can grow into myths that really don’t reflect reality. To get a better idea of what’s actually possible, let’s debunk some of the myths that surround low-code development methodology.
Myth 1: Programming is rocket science.
So is withdrawing money from the bank — when you do it for the first time. If you have a concrete idea of what you want to achieve, it’s only a matter of time before you figure out how to go about it. These days, the “programming languages” used in low-code platforms are so easy to understand that most parts of them resemble English. And my bet is that this is going to get even simpler, maybe resulting in something like a chat/talk with the platform to develop your automated system.
Quick fact: Out of the 1 million plus users who have developed apps on Zoho Creator, our low-code platform, more than 85% are non-programmers.
If this fact doesn’t put the myth to rest, nothing will.
Myth 2: Spreadsheets can do it all when it comes to business.
If you only intend to store data and to analyze it occasionally, then spreadsheets would make do. But to build a competitive business entity, you need an automated workflow. It should take care of all the mundane tasks, like generating term reports of sales or production, notifying the warehouse about a purchase, etc., while you focus on closing deals or planning the next move.
Low-code platforms let you create tailored apps that can automate workflows, quickly and easily.
So, no, spreadsheets can’t do it all — not if you “mean business” with your business.
Myth 3: Buying a business app is easier than building one.
This one comes in the wake of the spreadsheet myth. There’s plenty of ready-made software to manage your customer relations, your employees, and so on. Why should you make your own app?
The answer is adaptability. A business is an ever-changing entity. How well you adapt to the changes around you determines your success. Your business software also has to be flexible enough to cope with these changes.
For example, a trade law might come into effect one day, requiring you to change your process or modules accordingly. With packaged software, you’d have to wait for the next update or move to a more “compliant” program — wasting time and money. But with low-code custom apps, you just design a module with a few drag-and-drop actions, do a little bit of coding, and your app is up-to-date.
Still thinking about buying packaged software? I hope not.
Myth 4: Low-code apps can solve only some of my problems.
No matter what app you build, it has to be a solid partner that can scale with your business growth. Only then can you compete and emerge successful. Even though a lot of low-code app development tools promise endless possibilities, they often don’t scale as you do. That’s where platforms like Zoho Creator outrun the herd.
Not only can you create an app to check your daily sales figures, you can also expand it to include your marketing and budgeting plans — complete with a periodic reporting system.
Myth 5: Maintaining a spreadsheet is easier than maintaining an app.
Not at all. Once your app is set up, the hardware and maintenance cost is virtually zero — one of the many advantages of using a cloud-based platform like Zoho Creator.
On the software side, the maintenance is limited to when a new feature is added to your application or an existing one has to be refined. As I have made obvious under Myth 1, this is going to be a cakewalk once you get a hold of the platform.
Myth 6: It is difficult to teach employees to use a new app.
In an age where even toddlers play with mobile apps, this is an insult to your employees.
Anyone adept at using a smartphone app is qualified enough to use an app developed on a low-code platform.
Since low-code apps put the design in your hands, you can customize the interface to be as simple as you want.
Myth 7: I’ll lose my existing data.
Almost all the low-code platforms in the market have at least one migration tool built in. Take the case of Zoho Creator: You can convert a spreadsheet to an app in just a few clicks, and with your data intact. We also have migration tools for MS Access and even some of the other low-code platforms. So there‘s no question of losing existing data with a system upgrade.
These are just a few of the most common myths we have heard. Busting them was, as always, a pleasure. Know any more myths about low-code apps? Tell us in the comments and we’ll hit them right out of the park.
This blog was originally posted on the Zoho blog. Hit the ❤ if you liked this piece, and follow us for more updates.