Low Code Platforms and its Pros & Cons

Introduction

Low-code platforms like Bubble have empowered millions of businesses to create production-ready web applications in no time. Using such platforms, even individuals with zero coding skills can create amazing web applications that are future-focused and scalable.

Even giant enterprises and web professionals have started reaping the rewards of low-code platforms to automate and expedite the development process. In this blog, we will understand what low-code platforms are, their pros and cons, and how you can use them to speed up your development process.

Let’s get going.

What Are Low-code Platforms?

To put it simply, low-code platforms enable users to build interactive web applications without writing a single line of code. How, you ask? Low-code platforms like Bubble come with a drag-and-drop interface that allows users to visually build applications without getting into the intricacies of coding.

You can build and deploy applications that can be scaled easily as and when needed. Low-code platforms are cloud-based — that means you don’t have to worry about setting up the back-end, and you will be able to access them from anywhere.

Marketshare

Low code is fast becoming the preferred method of software development in IT, according to the Gartner’s 2020 Magic Quadrant for Low Code Application Platforms: “By 2024, 75% of large enterprises will be using at least four low-code development tools for both IT application development and citizen development initiatives.”

That’s not all. The low code market is expected to increase from its $10.3 billion market value back in 2019 to $187 billion by 2030 as more companies see the benefits of adopting the platform for their business needs. That’s a CAGR of 31.1%.

Having said that, it is safe to say that low-code development is here to stay for a long time and holds great potential.

Pros & Cons of Low-code Platforms

Benefits of low-code platforms are immense. However, they also have a few limitations. Let’s look at both pros and cons of low-code platforms.

Pros:

Shallow Learning Curve, Lower Cost & Deployment Time:

Learning low-code development is fairly easy and self-explanatory. Anyone with little technical knowledge can learn it in limited time and with minimal effort. What’s more, low-code development is cheaper and will cost you less number of development hours as compared to traditional development.

Lower Maintenance

Low-code development platforms are usually monitored and managed by the service provider itself. This means, you won’t have to spend anything on maintenance of the platform. That’s not all. The app you build with low-code platforms will also require little to no maintenance as most of the components used in developing it will be standardized and ready-made.

Increased Productivity

Because low-code development enables organizations to develop more apps in less time, what used to take months can now be developed in just a few weeks…even days. This fosters innovation and boosts productivity.

Improved Agility

Apps developed by using low-code platforms make organizations more agile in the long run. That’s not all, visual design can accelerate the speed of development. This means less coding and automated testing.

Cons

Limited Customization Options

With the modular components of low-code platforms, you can only go so far in customizing your app. Thus, you may have to change your business processes to keep up with the low-code platform.

Lack of 3rd-party Integrations

With low-code, you won’t be able to integrate your other business tools to your application. Thus, scaling up wouldn’t be that easy. You will have to compromise some of the integrations if you’re seeking to develop a low-code application.

You Get Stuck with One Platform

Most of the low-code development platforms will tie with their cloud-based offerings. Thus, you won’t be able to switch platforms frequently. Moreover, hiring software engineers working with that platform can be tricky.

API Development

With low-code development, you won’t be able to develop a proper API. This means if you are seeking to develop an enterprise-class application with intricate features, you must consider other development methods instead of low-code development.

Top 3 low-code Platforms

While there are a lot of low-code development platforms, here are top 3 platforms that stand out from the crowd for their capabilities.

#1 – Bubble

With a thriving community of over 1.3 million users, Bubble is a powerful low-code platform that can help you build production-ready web applications. You can create everything from interactive, multi-user applications for both desktop and mobile browsers. The apps you build can be hosted on Bubble itself – this means you won’t have to worry about managing server and paying recurring hosting charges. Last but not the least, Bubble has a huge ecosystem of extensions that can help you extend the platform as per your needs.

#2 – OutSystems

OutSystems is one of the most promising low-code platforms that can help you create amazing apps swiftly and without much technical know-how. It comes with amazing features like a WYSIWYG editor, drag-and-drop features to build your apps visually, process and workflow mapping, an app marketplace to choose pre-built apps and templates from, and more. While it may take you some time to get accustomed with the system – but once you know how it works, building apps with it can be super fun.

#3 – Appian

Certainly one of the leading low-code development platforms, Appian comes with all the features you’d expect – coupled with a few useful ones. It offers a drag-and-drop visual interface, seamless third-party app integrations and many more. You can also use pre-built apps for creating your own app with minimal changes.

Final Words

Low-code platforms are leading the digital front by bringing in amazing features, unparalleled time-to-value, agility, and scalability. Furthermore, you don’t need to have any technical skills to build applications on low-code platforms.

In case you need help in deciding which low-code platform will be ideal for you, or want us to develop applications for you, let us know. We have been working with low-code development platforms and can help you turn your amazing idea into a clickable reality with minimal time and efforts.

To know more about iView Labs, kindly log on to our website www.iviewlabs.com and to get in touch with us with your queries and needs just write us an email on info@iviewlabs.com and sales@iviewlabs.comDownload the latest portfolio to see our work.

10 Steps for Managing Your Software Product after its Launch

A product is an embodiment of your brand values and your customers’ faith. Launching a software product is not enough to make it successful. Tracking its performance, understanding user behavior, their needs, and channeling the changes through an iterative cycle with the right strategies to create engagement and drive value for the customer is critical. Re-strategizing product features as per the evolving user behavior must ensure your software product’s stickiness. A software product should be seen as a continuous process of improvement. 

It cannot end at a product launch. Product lifecycle management, user behavior & user engagement with exemplary marketing efforts to find the right product-market fit for your software product is key that needs to be unlocked post-launch.

Why is Post-Launch Software Product Management Important?

Post-launch product management is crucial for many reasons.

  • Digital users have near to zero tolerance. Imperfections, bugs, clumsiness, lags could dishearten the users of your software product.  
  • Setting the ship on the sail is not enough. Knowing its coordinates and directions is more important. Meaning you need to understand and track your user’s journey and behaviour of users using your software product. 
  • Post-launch, monitoring your software product’s performance is very important to see that there are no lags, performance issues created due to an increase in daily active users.
  • The various parameters that define user behavior are tracked and studied, for example, the click rate, the acquisition rate, bounce rate, and conversion rate. This improves your understanding of  users and can redefine strategies around it.
  • Depending upon the overall user metrics, adjustments in marketing strategies improve product performance in the market.

How to Manage a Product Post-launch & find out whether you have a market for your product?

Step 1: Understand the importance of data analysis 

World-class marketing strategies are not enough to make a product successful in the digital space. One should also have an analytical mindset required to track the customers’ end-to-end experience. If you have all your tracking mechanisms in place, the parameters which will help you to gauge if the product is a perfect market fit or not are: 

– Click rate

– Acquisition rate 

– Engagement rate 

– Retention rate

Step 2: Take proper customer feedback 

We’ll see that ensuring customer satisfaction with the new product is more than a mere formality. Send messages, call, shoot emails …

– Check with them how they feel about the product?

– Ask them if the product met their expectations?

– Try to gauge if they are feeling under-rewarded for their excitement and confidence in your brand.

– Emphasize the features and benefits of the products they may be missing putting to use. Train them for product use if required. 

– Keep a measure of Customer Support Ticket issued for future analysis. Encourage them to post reviews, testimonials, and feedback

Step 3: Checking for imperfections, bugs, problems, shortcomings, etc.

This is where serious work begins. You may receive some less positive news while checking customer satisfaction. However, checking for lags, bugs, defects, and reasons for dissatisfaction should be a separate managerial exercise as well. QA testing should be continued even after the product is launched because there is always a scope for improvement. Gathering positive and negative feedback should be done separately, if not from different sets of buyers. The sooner you begin gathering negative feedback, the better as you improve faster.

Step 4: Planning to address the shortcomings

It has to be a quick, competent, and prompt process; else your product might lose the fizz. It can be done in the following ways.

– Making strategies for minimizing the harm to the customer relationship.

– Sending the details of severe flaws to the senior management so that timely steps can be taken to address the issues. This will minimize the harm.

– Pre-determining the possible market underperformance of the product and making adjustments.

– Even if the customers are satisfied with the product, try to push them to get fruitful feedback for attaining perfection in the next model or version.

Step 5: Find out your Product-Market Fit

Preparing a Product-Market Fit report can also give actionable insights to optimize the post-launch strategies. To check the product-market fit, you will need the following:

  • Customer satisfaction data
  • Customers’ understanding of the unique value proposition of your product in the market. How many of them understand why your product is unique and different from your competitors?
  • How likely are the customers of your competitors to try your product after learning about its benefits?
  • How likely is the user-generated content to influence those who are yet to make their mind for buying your product?
  • How many new users have your product won by building the positive image with the initial buyers and through their feedback and testimonials?

Besides these, you’ll need many other metrics for correct decision-making.

  • Comparative data around the cost of acquisition, adoption, and conversion of leads into customers. 
  • Customer lifetime value: CLV the most important calculation you can make if you are into SaaS. It helps in re-orienting marketing and development tasks according to the broader strategy of the organization. Keeping a smaller set of loyal customers happy could be more profitable than acquiring new ones and losing them in a short time. 
  • Churn Rate: This gives you an idea of the proportion of customers you are losing. To reduce it, you’ll have to keep a wider variety of users happy. You would not want to do it if acquiring and trying new users is cheaper than keeping everyone satisfied.
  • Promoter Score: It’s about the number or proportion of users recommending your product to others. This can be measured either from the total or against the number of users making no contribution to expanding your market.

Step 6: Gathering User Generated Content

Positive reviews, testimonials, and feedback are a dividend for the hard-work gone into product design and launch. These can be in the form of raw data, videos, audio or text. These dividends have to be re-invested. Pump them into your marketing strategy. Let the world know how your product is performing in the initial stages.

There’s nothing better than the prospective customers getting to know about it in the words of those who have already fallen in love with it. User-generated content is amongst the top digital marketing content strategies for 2021. It’s original, diverse, carries passion, honesty, and impeccable power to attract.

Step 7: Strike the Right Balance between In-bound and Out-bound Marketing Efforts

Many managers ignore balancing the in-bound and outbound marketing if the product is doing well. They don’t realize that post-launch product management is not just about the current product. It’s equally as much about the future coming model/version of the similar product, other products, and the brand overall. Here are a few examples of adjustments you can make:

  • Case 1- There are serious issues worth addressing: They may be hindering the market performance. Buyers could be getting doubtful about your product. Push the positive reviews and feedback into the outbound channels. Try to divert or slow the purchase path from in-bound channels until the next batch arrives.
  • Case 2 – Huge inflow of positive feedback, and inbound traffic. Use this opportunity to build relationships. Start planning for the future without losing sight of the present. Try to build a strategy to promote the brand overall. Announce schemes to clear underperforming products.
  • Case 3 – Everything seems in balance. This situation can be used to focus on the competitors and the external market. With timely improvisations and adjustments in emphasis on inbound/outbound efforts, you can try to gain a competitive advantage by eating into the rival product’s market.

Step 8: Customer Retention Strategy

After a few rounds of Product Performance Reports, you will have a fair idea of how the product is performing. Before planning ahead, make sure to draw a strategy to ensure customer retention.

If the product carries the scope of the repeated purchase, inaugurate offers.

Lay emphasis on converting the first-time buyers into loyal customers through loyalty marketing efforts. Design discount offers, reward-points schemes, etc.

Step 9: Drawing the In-market Product Life Cycle for Better Decision Making

In-market Product Life Cycle curve is graphed around:

  • Profit and revenue
  • Percentage of sales from the existing stock
  • Bookings and orders placed

A freshly launched product would give a rising curve. The declining curve means that the product is losing popularity. A flat curve calls for extra marketing efforts. It allows a dynamic picture of how the product is actually doing in the market.Sometimes it can provide seasonal insights as well, besides the quarterly performance reviews. Overall, it hastens smart post-launch product management decision making.

 
Step 10: Create the Financial Scorecard

For whatever actions and improvements the post-launch campaigns call for, funds are needed. Every company allocates funds for R&D, Marketing, Sales, and Management, etc. much before the launch. However, as the actual performance of the product unfolds, these funds have to be relocated. It depends upon the immediate measures decided and the adjustments in the long-term strategy in the product life cycle.

The post-launch Financial Scorecard should include weekly, monthly, and quarterly analysis of gross profit, profit percentage, sales figures, post-launch marketing campaign related statistics etc. Variance from planned outcomes, performance insights, customer data, and key business indicators, allow extracting the future opportunity plans.

We are sure that with these steps you will not be in dark, and drive your products towards great in-market performance. Do you have any more questions? Leave them in the comments below. We will get back to you with the answers soon.

To know more about iView Labs, kindly log on to our website www.iviewlabs.com and to get in touch with us with your queries and needs just write us an email on info@iviewlabs.com and sales@iviewlabs.com.

Download the latest portfolio to see our work.