What is low code? Plus 3 tools to get you started in 2023
Let’s be honest: Keeping up with new technologies can be difficult. For example, if you googled “what is low-code”, you are not alone. When you add the fast pace of this industry to the intricate nature of coding, embarking on a new approach like this can feel overwhelming.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. Low-code can be a remarkably simple solution with significant benefits. Once you understand this concept and the top services it offers, you’ll be well placed to step up your development game.
In this article, we’ll start by answering the question “What is low-code?”. Then we’ll cover some of its benefits so you can decide if it’s right for you. Finally, we’ll walk you through three of our favorite low-code platforms. Let’s get in right away!
What is low code?
So what is low code? You probably already know what traditional code is: a system of written instructions that tell a computer program how to behave. There are a multitude of different programming languages and almost unlimited ways to use them. As such, code is essential to most modern technology.
Despite its potential, programming isn’t necessarily a popular skill. A lot can be done without it these days. For example, you only need to know a little bit of code here and there to customize your WordPress site.
However, sometimes you need more than this basic knowledge. For example, you may want to build an application from scratch. This will almost certainly require you to create large amounts of well-written code.
Unfortunately, getting started can be intimidating. Traditional code is very complex and requires a lot of skill to use properly. Even small pieces can be extremely complicated, as shown in this piece of WordPress block editor code:
If the thought of writing all of this yourself has been dizzying to you, don’t worry – there is another solution. Low code is a programming approach that avoids overly complicated syntax.
Instead, it prefers a visual approach to software development. Therefore, you don’t have to spend hours learning multiple languages to create a single app.
In most cases, Low Code operates on a drag-and-drop interface. Coding components are represented by small, easy-to-read units—not walls of text. For example, here is an example of a low-code builder interface:
With a more intuitive design, you might find it easier to get started if you’re new to coding. However, this method is not just for beginners. Even if you consider yourself a development expert, the lightweight nature of low code has the potential to streamline your work.
The answer to “What is low code?” is simple – it’s a way to build applications using drag-and-drop and visual interfaces, rather than writing the code from scratch.
Why you should use low-code
Low-code, in particular, offers impressive performance without the need for complicated programming. While any type of code tends to be at least a little complex, low code removes many hurdles. The streamlined approach offers a simpler experience with less effort in countless different ways.
One challenge most programmers face, for example, is closing parentheses consistently. Parentheses are critical to the code as they separate different commands. But that also means that a single misplaced character could disrupt an entire project. The low-code solution to this is simple: fewer brackets, fewer problems.
Low-code also reduces the need to learn multiple programming languages. You can use pre-coded blocks with clear functions instead. Additionally, adding and connecting is easier thanks to the visually focused interface.
However, this streamlined process does not come at the expense of performance. You can still create complex projects with a low-code tool. Even industry giants like it audible rely on low-code for parts of their business.
There are also many entry options. Many companies offer their own answers to the question “What is low code?”. through dedicated solutions. In fact, one study predicts that the global low-code development technology market will grow by 23% this year.
As more companies develop low-code solutions, quality is likely to increase rapidly. In turn, programmers should start adopting it more frequently, making it an important skill for developers as they progress.
Finally, low code also has a relatively low barrier to entry. There are many high-quality solutions with different strengths to choose from. As such, this may be the perfect time to start transitioning your business to a low-code future.
The Best Low-Code Platforms in 2023
Now let’s take a look at some of the platforms we just mentioned. Each option has its own strengths and weaknesses, so we encourage you to research each one carefully. You may also want to take advantage of free trials where available.
1. Plan an app
Plant an App has many strengths worth considering. From a large library of pre-built components to enterprise-class security measures, it offers many helpful resources for every step of your project.
So it is difficult to find many errors in this solution. However, if you have a coding need that Plant an App doesn’t currently meet, rest assured you won’t have to go without.
You are free to add custom code if the pre-built options don’t work for you. Additionally, any setting changes in the builder are automatically pushed to GitHub for future development purposes.
- An all-encompassing search feature to help you find content in any folder, page, or module
- A visual API editor to reduce creation to just three steps
- Form building capabilities that can be used to create anything from simple dropdown menus to permission grid controls
In many ways, this wide range of features makes Plant an App the jack of all trades in the low-code industry right now. So it might be a wise choice for you if you’re just starting to wonder, “What is low-code?”
In addition, this solution could also be perfect if you want to collaborate with others. Features like integration with Google Drive and Salesforce make it easy to centralize your data. Additionally, you can use the robust version control settings to undo unauthorized changes.
💵 Pricing: If you’re ready to join a waiting list, you can start with a free basic plan. If you want to get started right away, you can choose the Harvest plan for $640 per month.
2. Zoho Creator
For a different take on low-code, see Zoho Creator. This solution does not run on conventional programming languages. Instead, it uses its own proprietary script called Deluge.
Therefore, there is a slight learning curve for beginners and experts alike. Nevertheless, Deluge is extremely user-friendly, flexible and powerful. It’s also built with low-code in mind, so using Zoho Creator is a seamless experience from start to finish.
- A huge range of possible integrations, e.g. B. with QuickBooks, Zapier and PayPal
- Complex user role capabilities to restrict sensitive data to those who need access
- Several different report formats
All of these features make this a remarkably flexible platform. If you need to be granular with your coding controls, Zoho Creator gives you more than enough options to do so.
In addition, Zoho Creator offers strict security standards. You can access audit logs to stay informed about the status of your project. In addition, the automatic threat assessment feature can help you to continuously protect your code.
💵 Pricing: You can start for as little as $25 per month and enjoy a free trial. The ultimate plan with more features is available for $400 per month.
Popularity isn’t the only factor to consider when choosing a low-code platform — but it probably doesn’t hurt. For a well-used and popular option, check out Caspio.
If you’ve browsed resources to answer the question “what is low-code,” you’ve probably come across this service. That’s because Caspio offers an adaptable platform that caters to a seemingly endless number of niches.
- Operations running on AWS and SQL Server for best-in-class security and performance
- Strict accessibility compliance to ensure maximum usability
- Impressive global support for multiple languages and currencies
Most notably, Caspio doesn’t require a single line of code. Everything works on a point-and-click basis, which makes it perfect for you if you’re a beginner who isn’t interested in learning to code.
For the same reason, Caspio offers many tech support options. 24/7 support teams, free online training, and comprehensive onboarding can be valuable resources when you need guidance to get you started.
However, it’s also a strong contender if you’re working at an international level. Ease of use and global support means you can work with almost anyone, regardless of location or skill level.
💵 Pricing: Caspio works a little differently than other solutions: it doesn’t take your user count into account. Rather, plans focus on features like white labeling, file storage, and automation capabilities. Hence, it is also a wise choice if you have a large organization.
You can choose to start with the limited free plan. For paid options, you can choose the $100 per month Explore plan or upgrade to the $400 per month Grow plan. You can also request a company-level quote.
Try Low Code today
Keeping up to date with new and developing technologies can be a real challenge. So don’t feel bad if you’ve been wondering what low-code is. Luckily, understanding the concept is easy enough and will help you choose the best platform for your next project.
- Plan an appa well-rounded solution with high customizability.
- Zoho Creatora platform with impressively flexible features and pricing.
- caspioa no-code option perfect for large organizations.
Or if you’re just looking for a no-code way to build a website (instead of a custom application), you might prefer a simpler website builder.