The software development industry has undergone many changes in the last few decades. The need for faster time-to-market and higher conversion rates has produced new methodologies and philosophies.
It’s also seen the creation of agile approaches and the beginning and development of new professions. Some of these are UX/UI designers, cloud engineers, data scientists, and AI developers.
In this context, there is a tool that can make app building much faster and less costly. This tool is no-code and low-code technology.
What is No-code or Low-code?
The low-code or no-code approach allows developers to produce software with little coding. Users can ‘drag and drop’ various items into the platform.
The next step is to connect these items according to the objectives. Thus, it’s possible to create a functioning app quite quickly and easily.
While, in theory, no-code software exists, most platforms need at least some coding. Hence, this technology is most often referred to as ‘low-code’.
According to Forbes, low-code may be the future of software development. Some studies indicate that 61% of organizations either have or are planning initiatives in this field.
But why is low-code such a popular approach?
Advantages of Low-Code Development
A low-code project enjoys a faster initial development. It’s also easier to track and leverage users’ feedback.
This makes it the ideal option for starting projects and MVPs.
You can build software without setting up the database, the development environment, and other requirements. Quick development is possible thanks to direct feedback from users.
With this approach, the app is released quite soon. So, you can test your application in a real-life environment with few costs.
This feeds into the next advantage.
Setting up a low-code app requires less effort, hence, fewer expenses. Project owners don’t need to hire many developers and can save money on license costs.
If the software’s requirements are low, this approach enables fast product deployment.
It’s possible to save money on quality control too. Since the platform works with drag-and-drop elements, you can test them on the spot.
Also, these options usually include integration testing capabilities.
Although it may have limitations, some businesses can benefit from low-code development. It’s a great option to test an idea without much cost or effort.
Challenges of Low-Code Development
In terms of scalability and flexibility, low-code approaches present many challenges.
Project owners that want to scale their software will find low-code limiting. Especially, when it comes to performance, features, and market reach.
The limitation level will depend on the type of product and particular case.
Low-code applications are built for generic use. Therefore, they lack flexibility in terms of features, design, and user experience.
If the owner wants to implement advanced characteristics, they’ll need a traditional approach. This allows them to change strategy fast, providing a better response to the market’s demand.
This increases the software’s capabilities and provides a wider competitive edge.
Benefits of Custom Software Development
What is Custom Software Development?
This is a process that focuses on a business’s needs. By building an approach on a case-by-case basis, it’s possible to achieve better results.
This translates into budget optimisation, streamlining, and effective deployment.
Such an approach goes beyond the ‘low-code vs traditional’ question. Instead, it combines the necessary tools for the project at each stage.
Advantages of Custom Software Development
Purchasing off-the-shelf software is not the best option for most businesses. Modern times require a mixture of functionality, creativity, and responsiveness when it comes to SaaS.
A custom procedure helps to tackle specific challenges. It does so according to the project’s goals and weaknesses.
Thus, milestones, time frames, and resources can be put to work, bringing the most value to the company.
In time, long-term projects need to grow. If the software doesn’t support this, then the original investment was pointless.
With custom development, services are adjusted to the product and not the other way around.
It helps if we compare this with parenthood. A couple who are about to have a baby know what they need to buy.
They’ll need items such as diapers, formula, feeding bottles, a cradle, and a bassinette. Yet, they cannot predict what their child will need/want ten years from now.
This is how custom software development works. It adapts and provides what the product needs throughout its lifetime.
Custom development helps to integrate other software. It reduces the chances of experiencing bugs and compatibility issues.
The development team will know the project and its elements very well. Hence, they can conduct a seamless integration.
Your custom development team is in charge of optimizing your project. This includes expenses.
Buying off-the-shelf software usually means the company needs to acquire special hardware. That adds a significant sum to the monthly bill.
A dedicated team will consider the company’s already available resources. They adapt them to the project, and not the other way around.
When you sign an agreement with a development team, you are making a long-term commitment. Applications and websites need constant analysis, updates, and maintenance.
In this regard, off-the-shelf products have a big downside.
What would happen if the company goes bankrupt or they propose terms that you cannot meet? Then the owner would be under great pressure to find a new developer that can deliver.
This new team will have a hard time jumping into an advanced project. They’ll need to figure out how the software was developed in order to make amendments, updates, etc.
Low-code development is a technology that allows you to build applications with ease. It employs a simple interface.
There is almost no need for coding. Further, it requires fewer resources than traditional methods.
This is a great alternative for prototypes, MPVs, and simple software. Yet it has some limitations.
Long-term projects demand a level of flexibility that isn’t obtainable from low-code development. At least for now.
All in all, the best option for complex SaaS and tech startups is to hire a custom development team. This is the best way to ensure cost optimization, scalability, flexibility, and deployment.