Every business wants to offer an Amazon-like mobile shopping experience, but they want to do it now. Going for custom mobile app development means investing a lot of time and money on developing and launching, which is not feasible. Thanks to modern technology, it’s now possible to develop a native app without coding.
But the question remains the same – how to build an app without coding from scratch? There are several ways to develop one.
- Use a popular app builder such as Magento 2 mobile app builder
- Create PWA (progressive web app) with a PWA builder
- Build Native App with the help of a developer
- Use form templates to develop an app
This article is the ultimate guide to a no-code app. It covers everything you need to know about developing an app quickly and without any technical skills.
What You Will Learn Here
#1. Reasons to Choose No-Code Approach over Custom Development
The low barrier to entry is the major reason to go for no-code app development. Here are some upsides to developing an app without coding:
- Reduced Cost. While the traditional approach requires a lot of time and effort to develop an app, no-code platforms provide a pre-developed framework that reduces the cost by upto 74 percent.
- Better Adaptability. Businesses are dynamic. It might be difficult to change the development code mid-way with a traditional approach, but with a no-code app maker, you can easily enable/disable the features.
- Stronger Collaboration. Traditional approaches create silos, whereas the no-code approach brings everyone together, empowering users and internal developers to create apps based on their requirements.
- Easier Learning Curve. No code development platform doesn’t require any language expertise. With simple drag and drop, one can build an intuitive app.
- Higher ROI. As features and frameworks are taken care of by a no-code platform, the in-house team of developers and experts can focus on other pressing issues, avoiding mistakes and increasing the ROI of the business.
#2. Potential Use-Cases of No Code App
Tools like Magento 2 mobile app builders are not only useful for people without technical skills, they also help reduce developers’ burden. They can turn the users’ app ideas into reality.
The use cases of it are endless. Here are some examples of businesses who can benefit from it:
- Small and medium businesses who want to launch their app
- Ecommerce stores to enhance their customers’ shopping experience
- Restaurants that need an app for mobile menus, bookings, delivery, and customer loyalty
- On-demand delivery for convenient ordering and tracking delivery status
- Schools and universities to manage students and faculty
- Gyms to manage schedules, personal trainers, instructors, sessions, and clients
- Health professionals to keep up with their schedule and patients
- Entertainment industry to improve shows and events and reach a wider audience.
- White label resellers who want to create an app for their clients
Everyone who has an online presence and wants to expand their business can benefit from a no-coding approach.
#3. How to Launch an App with No-Code Tool
Ready to build a mobile marketing sales channel for your businesses? Follow the five steps mentioned below. These are ideal for beginners and hands-on experience. Let’s get started.
[H4] Decide the Approach
As we saw earlier, there are different ways to develop an app without coding. Hence, the first step is to select the developing approach. Evaluate and pick the one that works for you. Don’t go for a Magento 2 native app or an app builder randomly because not every approach is similar and nor would be suitable to your requirements.
Fortunately, PWA is not the only option. You can also create a native app using Magento 2 mobile app builder.
Here are some tips for evaluating the approach.
- Budget – Decide your budget and see if the solution fits in it. If the price is too high, you can eliminate it from your list.
- Interface – Ask for a demo and take advantage of the trials, if any. This way, you can know if the interface is easy to navigate and visually appealing.
- Features – Look at whether the mobile app builder offers features like dynamic layout, one-page checkout, multi language support, and payment gateway support. Other features such as offer management, countdown sale timer, data sync, barcode scanner would be an added advantage. Make sure the app provides all the must-have features.
- Reviews – Go through customer ratings and reviews. Look for testimonials and case studies. See the types of apps built with the platform and choose the one with no red flags.
- Customizations – Choosing a no-code platform doesn’t mean you must go with the defined set of features. If you have specific requirements, you should be able to add those features.
- Support and Updates – See if the app builder offers post-launch support to guide you. And how frequent the updates are.
All these tips may not be applicable for a simple app. However, if you need a feature-rich app, evaluate the flexibility of the app builder before settling in.
1. Choose a Template
Building a Magento app from scratch can be challenging. An app template simplifies it by providing a steady foundation. That’s another benefit of choosing a Magento 2 mobile app builder. An app builder provides businesses with templates that match their app requirements with ready-to-source code. The template features may differ depending on the industry to benefit you in the best possible ways. As a business owner, you can select the one that aligns with your business and your requirements.
- The grocery delivery app template provides customers with in-store pickup and multiple delivery options. It also helps them track their delivery status.
- The restaurant and cafe house app template consists of loyalty programs and the ability for customers to book, pre-order, and pay online.
- The retail store app template allows customers to browse through hundreds of products and purchase with one-step checkout. It also provides various marketing features such as a countdown timer and offers management.
- The beauty salon template simplifies the booking process. It also highlights the gallery for clients to check their work – haircuts, hairstyles, and more.
- The gym app template has features for classes and instructor schedules.
The good thing is that you can customize the templates. If certain features are missing, you can easily add them. In case the sample template doesn’t go with your business, you can create a custom template using the drag and drop builder.
Here are some things to consider while selecting the template for your business.
- Select a theme appropriate for your business rather than a random, visually appealing template.
- Research which template suits you now and which will benefit you most in the future.
- Make sure it’s flexible enough to change the elements of your website.
- Always choose a mobile-friendly template.
- Get SEO-friendly templates. It will help you with ranking and traction.
2. Design your App
After laying the groundwork with templates, it’s time to build it, i.e., change the font, color scheme, position of buttons and icons, etc. For that, a Magneto 2 mobile app builder offers a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor. So that whatever changes you make on your editor, you can see the result in real-time.
The design section of the app lets you customize your app layout without any hassle. With easy drag and drop, you can change banners, headers, styles, categories, grids, text icons, loading screens, preset themes, and more.
The configuration options are really helpful. You don’t have to design and contrast everything from scratch. The app builder offers default color combinations and font that contrast with the theme. But still, you have full control over the design if you’re not satisfied with the default options/settings.
3. Add and Edit Content
The templates you choose come with preloaded content. However, you will have to change it to suit your business.
For example, edit the About Us, Contact Us page details or product descriptions.
Hence, the next step after designing is to focus on the content. Go through the descriptions and edit them. Change the images, if required.
Fortunately, you won’t have to write from scratch. A Magento 2 app builder converts your store into a Magento 2 native app, which means the products and their descriptions are automatically synced to your app. If you want to keep the description of other pages like About Us and Contact Us the same, you can easily add the description to your menu. Apart from the website pages, if you want extra tabs, you can add that too and customize its text and images.
Tip: Keep the content relevant and up-to-date. For example, contact information should be valid. The description of the products should be as per the product. Images should be of high quality and optimized. Try to use relevant keywords in the product description. That’s one of the SEO tricks.
4. Setup App Backend
Once the frontend is all set, it’s time to focus on the actual functioning of the app. Check the features of the app and customize it. For example, if you don’t want to offer a loyalty program, disable that option. Similarly, if you want to include a custom feature, say, zip code validation, integrate it with your app.
The best part about an app builder is that you don’t have to worry about custom features. A Magento 2 app builder, for example, integrates the third-party integrations of your website to your Magento 2 native app, allowing you to use that functionality on your app. For other features, you just have to adjust the settings to receive a notification when a customer places an order.
5. Publish your App
After setting up the inside out of the app, it’s time to launch it. Make it available for the public by uploading it to the app stores. You will have to add several sections before the app goes live. First, you need to ensure that there are no content data breach warnings from any of the stores.
Then fill in the details mentioned in the app listing, including:
- App Title
- App Name
Lastly, create a developer account on Google Play Store and Apple Store and publish your apps.
With app builder, it’s easy to do. You can directly push your apps on Google Play Store and Apple’ App Store by signing in to your developer account. You can even ask your Magento 2 mobile app builder provider to help you with publishing. They will do it for you.
In 2022 and ahead, being a developer or learning code for development is not necessary. With an app builder, even retail store owners can build their own app in their unique style. All you have to do is to find the right tool, include features, and customize the look and feel of your app according to your brand. With an app builder, even retail store owners can build their own app in their unique style.
With an app builder, it’s easy and quick to develop a native app. Just follow the steps mentioned above, and you’re there. If you don’t want to go through this process, you can ask the app builder provider to help you. They can help you with customization and launch.
So, what are you waiting for? Go and develop your app today! The future belongs to no coding tools.