My team at No Code Weekly, our weekly newsletter covering No Code, reached out to 17 of the smartest people involved in No Code to find out what trends they see happening within the space over the next 12 months. Here’s what they had to say:
I see two key trends for the remainder of this year. Firstly, remote work has created an expectation of “show, not tell.” People are experiencing Zoom fatigue and can’t sit through yet another slide deck presentation. With remote teams, it has become critical to showcase tangible ideas, rather than sitting through a meeting of hypotheticals or participating in a never-ending Slack thread. NoCode is here to kill the PowerPoint ideation process by making ideas tangible.
The second trend is the rise of creative entrepreneurship using NoCode tools. People have been stuck in their bubbles for the past year, fleshing out their ideas and building them. These ideas will soon blossom into business plans and side-hustles enabled by NoCode platforms.
No-code is going to go from a cool trend for people who follow technology to a household name. Within the next 12 months, people who are not part of the tech world will know that they can build things without typing code, and that nothing prevents them from getting their idea off the ground and launch their product or company!
I think most VCs will embrace the no-code approach to building products. They will most likely start to require startups that they back to use no-code tools where feasible, because it’s a more reasonable use of investors’ money. Similarly, accelerators and incubators will start pushing and promoting the technology to their cohorts. Web development companies will also adopt the innovation and will start to use it for delivering projects to their clients. At the same time lots of small and medium-sized companies will set up their own digital innovation teams as it’s nowadays much easier.
I feel nocode is dogged by doubters. “You can’t build nice looking apps (mobile and web) in them”. “You can’t scale it” “it’s so slow” etc etc …
I don’t buy this.
For me proof that this is rubbish, will come when we have “tech” startups fully running off these nocode platforms with high ranking (top 10k global sites) + doing £1m+ year.
I feel like there needs to be a club of these types of organisations before people stop doubting it. Over the next year I think a few will emerge. (We’re ~ half way there on the revenue, further on the web traffic).
We’ll see more no-code platforms introduce code-exports and open-source repositories that are compatible with their tooling.
I think we will see a lot more apps built for Airtable which will be game changing. There are already quite a few good ones that have been published like Datafetcher, but I anticipate a few more that will be very useful to makers using the AWZ stack.
I also think we will just see a wider variety of tools in the No Code space. There are a lot of people launching things now and I think that is due to 2020 being the year where lots of people discovered No Code. 2021 will be a fun year for No Code for sure.
I can see a T-shaped 2 directional trend:
First in terms of breath, NoCode solutions will enter mainstream and being adopted by many different type of companies. Especially those industries mostly impacted by COVID19 and are desperately trying to go online.
Secondly in terms of depth, NoCode solutions will start covering deeper level of the tech stack handling more complex processes than building websites or apps. For example there will be solutions to cover sophisticated workflow automation with security and privacy management.
The top trend we see in 2021 is an increasing need for tools that allow people to make data-informed decisions without having to learn SQL.
We see this across the whole data stack: data access, portability, centralization, querying, modeling, and data collaboration; each of which will see a proliferation of new tools to cater to the needs of business users who don’t want to learn how to code. (Nor should they have to!)
Obviously, since Sourcetable is a spreadsheet company, we expect spreadsheets are going to be a core part of this transition of the data stack to NoCode. The most subtle but important shift here is the transition from working with static CSV data, towards working with live data in spreadsheets.
Increase in adoption of nocode by local businesses like fitness studios, restaurants, tutors etc who want to build a digital presence, promote their events and provide online classes.
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I think the biggest trend that we’re going to start to see in 2021 is more & more existing businesses start to hop on the no-code bandwagon. Right now, a lot of no-code makers are creating new businesses & startups with no-code and I think that will continue in 2021. In fact a lot of those startups will really start to take off and scale. But I think a lot of businesses are going to start saying ‘Hey we’re doing this somewhat manual process with spreadsheets and email and docs, why don’t we just do this with no-code?
What’s cool about this is that this is going to happen to every business regardless of how big they are. We’re already starting to see small businesses completely revolutionize their entire business by creating an app to better connect with their customers, clients, & community. And while most enterprises have had developers in house for awhile, no-code is going to allow the ability for any employee with an idea to quickly create something new to replace an existing process and better connect with their community using no-code.
As a part of this trend, I think freelancers & agencies that embrace no-code are really going to take off. Think about what’s happened over the last 10 years with websites. Before that it was pretty expensive for businesses to have their own websites, but then came the rise of templatized website builders and ‘Boom!’ every business had beautiful & fairly robust websites. This happened because freelancers & agencies started to embrace those tools. The same exact thing is already starting to happen with apps. The more freelancers & agencies start to combine code and no-code, the more successful it’s going to be for everyone!
Expecting more tools and plugins coming to the market that speed up design to front-end reducing the need for manual coding to a minimum. I dream about for example Webflow import to Figma. The Figma import is already very efficient and works great in Bravo Studio if you prepare your Figma files correctly. Apart from front-end and web design I am hoping to be able to test the new features coming from new and existing providers like Adalo, Glide and Bubble – expecting a range of new functionalities. The area of No-Code AI tools will be very interesting too. So all in all – every aspect of the mobile and web app development will see a big change I think.
NoCode development will be evolving through greater reuse of shared logic and UI components. Developers will be able to publish their work so it can be incorporated and reused by the community. That work may be in the form of UI components, themes/styles, UI page/screen templates, backend API services or complete “blueprint” apps. This vision is materialized through Backendless marketplace, but we see other nocode vendors making similar advancements.
I am bullish on the convergence of both NoCode and software development cultures.
There will be an effort to improve the reliability and transparency of NoCode workflows by adopting features that would be seen as being only necessary in the world of code. For example, version control, testing and production environments, automated testing etc. Each of these features (and more) exist in the world of code, and they each have a purpose: You want the system you’re building to be reliable and be approachable when multiple people are developing it.
There are currently NoCode solutions with these features, but they are for the enterprise. This year we’ll see some of those features be adopted by consumer-focussed NoCode tools.
No Code functionality and applications will become more and more powerful and unlock more ability for all of us – but especially entrepreneurs and small businesses.
– High demand on no-code talents as senior no-code builders/developers or consultants/mentors
– Building custom polished web and mobile applications
– Building decentralized applications using no-code tools that connects with the blockchain
– No-code VCs or funds will give more attention to experience no-code startup founders.
– More widgets, add-ons, plugins will be built to expand the no-code platforms’ capabilities
– Integrating video and audio capabilities in a no-code platform to help founders build more solutions for remote teams
– Embed AI services with no-code applications
As the novelty of no-code starts to settle and the risks are going down, we should see a bigger adoption from big brands to adopt no-code development on more departments, and eventually company-wide.
With the remote work going mainstream, there will be more businesses structuring their data, improving processes, setting up automations and educating themselves in building custom tools to manage their work effectively. Unbundling of spreadsheets is already happening, and we’ll just see it accelerate in 2021 & beyond.
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