This post will introduce the best no-code app builder platforms on the market today.
These tools offer startups and entrepreneurs the ability to build and go to market with iOS apps, Android apps and web apps, while requiring very little technical ability.
Instead of keeping a team of developers on staff or hiring costly agencies, you can get your idea for an app built and launched at a fraction of the time and cost it would otherwise take.
Our curated list of no-code platforms covers a range of different use cases. Whether you already have a functioning web app and you want to create apps for Android and iOS, or you want to create mobile apps or web apps from scratch, there’s a best no code app builder to do the job for you.
Read on to learn more about no-code mobile app development platforms.
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What is a No-Code App Builder?
No-code app builders are platforms that allow someone to create functional software and apps without actually writing code.
Usually, to create an app, you would need to be proficient in coding, in a coding language like Python, Java or C. When you see a simple and clean interface when you use an app, there are actually thousands of lines of code working under the surface to show you that interface, and to make specific actions happen when you click a button, or perform some other action on the app.
No-code tools let you do all this without writing the code yourself. The code is already built into the platform. All you need to do is choose which elements to use, and how you want your app to look.
How Do No-Code App Builders Work?
Each no-code platform might work a little differently. But the core idea is the same – to let people with zero coding skills build functional apps.
Most no-code app builders give you a visual editor with drag-and-drop elements you can use to put your app together.
These elements are pre-coded for you. When you pick an element, you’re selecting a block of pre-written code to add to your app.
For example, say you wanted to place a button that launches a video, or a form. The functionality of this would be already coded for you.
You’ll have all the requisite code for your app to work just like a regular app built from scratch. However, you only need to worry about the visual design, workflow and how your app should work on the front end.
The Benefits of No-Code App Builders
Coding represents a huge barrier of entry for people who have an app idea and want to get it developed. No-code app builders remove that barrier, and allow a much larger group of people to build real, working, custom apps.
To build an app without these platforms, you would need to be competent in mobile app development or software development yourself (which takes years to learn). Or you’d need to hire a developer, or a team of developers.
That’s not cheap. And it provides a whole host of other challenges, such as communicating to your developer(s) how you want the app to look and work.
Even if you do know how to code an app, no-code platforms offer some big benefits, including:
- Faster time to launch. You can create custom apps in a fraction of the time, letting you work out sooner whether your app has product-market fit.
- Lower cost. Developers are not cheap. A no-code app builder will cost you significantly less than paying people to build your app from scratch.
- Reduced communication barriers. Non-technical people can build and iterate on their ideas without having to explain exactly what they want to a developer.
- Easier to test new ideas. It’s easier to try a new app idea, without needing to invest as much time and resources.
The payoff for using a no-code app builder, compared to building from scratch, is generally a small sacrifice in flexibility and customization. However, with the no-code platforms that are available today, the benefits largely outweigh any downsides.
The Best No-Code App Builders for 2022
If you’re a non-coder and want to build web apps, custom mobile apps for Android and/or iOS, or complex automated workflows, it’s probably easier than you think with these app building tools.
Some will be better fits than others depending on what you’re looking to do. Such as building a mobile app from scratch, or taking an existing app and rebuilding it on another platform. So be sure to check out the description to figure out which one is right for you.
Here’s a curated list of ten platforms you can use to build apps with no code in 2022.
If you already have a functional web-based app or tool, MobiLoud is the #1 solution to turn your app into a native mobile app.
With MobiLoud, you can turn any website into functional mobile apps without writing any code.
Everything on your site will work just as it does on the web. Your theme, plugins, design and any other features remain the same.
You can add mobile-specific elements to your mobile apps as well, such as push notifications and a native tab menu and navigation.
Generally, if you were to convert your web app to a mobile app, it’s not as easy as tweaking the design a little for mobile.
You’d need to rebuild it from scratch, in a new coding language. This means a huge investment to get the app built and shipped.
At the end, you’re left with two separate code bases to maintain, and inconsistent functionality across your two platforms.
That’s why MobiLoud is so powerful. You can get into the Apple App Store and Google Play and onto users’ home screens faster than any other option, at minimal cost. And when you go live, you’ll have only one app to maintain. No need to keep separate developers on call to manage your web, Android and iOS apps separately.
Pricing: starting $200/mo (plus App Store submission fee).
Best features: fastest time to launch, simplicity, and the ability to retain your existing app’s functionality as a native mobile app.
Suitable for: existing websites or web apps, looking to create apps for iOS and Android.
Bubble is a name that’s become synonymous with the no-code movement. It allows you to build web apps from the ground up, with no coding knowledge and a minimum of time and money invested.
Bubble features a simple drag-and-drop interface you can use to add interactive elements to your app. Once you put your UI together, you can set up workflows to control the functionality of your app.
For example, your workflow might be set up to trigger when a user logs in, or when they click on a specific element. You can do this easily with Bubble, without needing to know anything about coding.
It also offers a wide range of plugins you can install, for particular elements or integrations you might need.
All this happens without writing one line of code. Bubble allows you to do some pretty powerful things as a non-developer.
The one thing we should mention is that Bubble is just for web-based apps. You can build out powerful apps designed for mobile, but they need to be accessed via the mobile browser. You can’t develop mobile apps, unfortunately (though you could always build your app in Bubble and create native mobile apps using MobiLoud).
Pricing: free for private use, or from $29/mo for a live app.
Best features: its intuitive UI builder, and active community of builders.
Suitable for: building responsive web apps and landing pages.
Softr is a tool dedicated to building web-based apps without coding. These could be standard websites or landing pages, two-sided marketplaces, member-only communities, resource directories, courses, and more.
The differentiating feature about Softr, compared to other no-code platforms, is how it lets you take data and workflows from Airtable and display them as elements on your web app.
You’ll keep and maintain your data in Airtable, while using Softr to build a customer-facing interface and interactive app.
This is perfect if your app relies on a lot of data that constantly needs to be updated, such as a membership site, or marketplaces like Upwork or AirBnb.
You can add payment gateways to your site, set up paid or free memberships and member-only content, and much more with a wide range of integrations, templates and pre-built blocks.
Softr truly is an intuitive no-code app builder. Like Bubble, it is only for web-based apps. So, again, you’ll need another solution if you want to create a native mobile app.
Pricing: free, or from $29/mo for white label (no Softr branding)
Best features: Airtable integration, intuitive builder.
Suitable for: building responsive web apps, using Airtable as a database.
Unlike the previous two platforms, Thunkable is a drag-and-drop no-code app builder designed specifically for mobile apps.
Thunkable offers full creative freedom when building custom native apps for iOS and Android. You don’t start with restrictive templates, and the options you have to customize the look and feel of your app are extensive.
You start with a blank canvas. From here you can build out your app with blocks, modules and integrations with other platforms.
After putting together your UI, you can set up “Advanced Logic Modules” to handle the functionality of your app. Meaning, which actions are going to be taken based on different user inputs.
They also assist with publishing your app in the iOS App Store and Google Play. An app store presence is a huge advantage of native apps, as opposed to responsive web apps or hybrid solutions like progressive web apps.
Pricing: free plan with limited storage capacity and download limits. From $45/mo for unlimited downloads.
Best features: drag-and-drop editor and advanced logic workflow builder.
Suitable for: building native mobile apps from scratch with no code.
Glide is extremely easy to use, and one of the best no-code platforms for building simple web and mobile apps.
Like Softr, Glide utilizes spreadsheets (such as Airtable, Google Sheets or Excel) as your app’s database. You just need to update the spreadsheet and the data shown in your app will change too.
The platform provides a range of pre-built templates, for both web apps and mobile apps, that help you launch your app extremely quickly.
The list of templates covers apps for a wide range of use cases, such as CRMs, landing pages, eCommerce apps, delivery apps, city guides, personal planners, and much more.
You can customize your app further with a drag-and-drop editor, as well.
There may be certain limitations you run into, compared to what you can do with more complex app builders. But the payoff is one of the simplest and most intuitive app building tools on this list.
Pricing: free plan with limited storage and users, or from $25/mo for paid plans.
Best features: template library, intuitive builder.
Suitable for: building simple mobile or web apps.
Google’s AppSheet offers a powerful way to build apps and workflows, with a robust Google Workspace integration, and no coding skills required.
You’ll start by connecting a data source, such as Google Sheets, Google Forms, or external integrations to apps like Dropbox, Office 365 or Salesforce.
From here, you can edit the UI of your app, set up different views, and create workflows, bots and automations that really give your app its power.
A large collection of templates speed up the time it takes to get your app off the ground.
The one thing that’s worth mentioning is that it’s geared more towards building apps for internal company use, than consumer-focused apps. There’s a bit of a learning curve, the editor is not quite as intuitive, and it’s not set up to deploy on App Stores.
You’re not going to build the next Uber or AirBnb with AppSheet. It’s more for apps you plan to use yourself, such as a custom CRM or project management tool. But for that purpose, it’s a really powerful app building platform.
Pricing: from $5 per user per month.
Best features: robust workflows and database integrations.
Suitable for: internal company apps and workflows, for people with a degree of technical ability.
Quickbase is a no-code development platform designed to help businesses build complex apps and powerful workflows for internal use.
It allows you to build complex systems, customizable at every step, with robust, real-time handling of your business data.
Quickbase offers solutions for a range of different professional use cases and industries, and lets you deploy high-level platforms with no-code (or low-code) development.
Quickbase is definitely not for everyone. It’s not an app builder you’d use for creating a shopping app, or an app for your news site, for example.
It’s complex, and it’s expensive – very expensive. It starts at $600 per month (paid annually) for the lowest plan. And the next tier up is $2,000 per month. So it’s clearly catered towards enterprise-level users, rather than personal use.
Pricing: starting from $600/mo (paid annually).
Best features: power and flexibility.
Suitable for: high-end enterprise applications.
Retool is a no-code app builder made for developers.
That might sound strange – why does a developer need a no-code platform? Can’t they just write the code themselves?
The idea of Retool is to cut down the time it takes to build and deploy a functional app. Sure, you can write each line of code yourself. But it’s exponentially quicker and less effort to build an app with something like Retool, which lets you drag and drop different components in your app, pre-built and pre-coded for you.
There’s an impressive collection of templates you can use to start with. These templates cover elements such as admin panels, dashboards, software integrations and much more.
It also requires at least a basic understanding of how code works in order to get your head around the platform. So for someone coming in with zero coding background whatsoever, it’s not the best option.
It is, however, a great choice for developers who want to build an app for internal use, but don’t want to dedicate months towards building something from scratch.
Pricing: free plan available for private use – from $10 per user per month for active use.
Best features: flexibility, and range of pre-built templates and modules.
Suitable for: developers building internal tools.
Ninox is another tool geared towards internal business use, rather than customer-facing apps for the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.
You’ll start by using a simple and intuitive drag-and-drop editor to set up and customize your UI.
Once your UI is set up, you can build out smart workflows and automations to help your business run more smoothly.
Their templates give you an idea of what you can build with Ninox (as well as helping you build it quicker). It does show you, however, that the platform is centered around collecting and displaying data on tables, and doesn’t do a lot more than this.
In this respect, it’s a little like a powered-up version of Google Sheets or Airtable. For some use cases, this is perfect. Think accounting, CRM, inventory management. But if you’re looking to build more visual-based or interactive apps, you should probably look at one of the other options on this list.
Pricing: from $12/mo (paid annually).
Best features: streamlined UI and workflow builder.
Suitable for: creating powerful spreadsheet-based tables and automations.
Betty Blocks is made for enterprise use, and building enterprise-grade applications fast, and without coding.
The name suggests it would be a block-based builder, and it doesn’t disappoint in that regard. The platform is really simple and intuitive. You’re given a drag-and-drop editor to build your UI with, as well as blocks for specific APIs.
That means it’s super easy to integrate your app with a range of external platforms – from Slack, to Trello, to Google Maps. Just install the relevant API block and place it where you want it.
It also provides a visual interface for building out advanced features in your application, such as workflows, automations and user roles.
It’s a truly “no-code” platform. You don’t need any coding ability at all, even to set up API calls.
Betty Blocks isn’t suitable for B2C applications. It’s honed in on use for enterprise apps, designed to take away the need for large companies to keep an expensive IT department, or IT contractors on staff.
The pricing model also reflects that it’s not for personal use. You’ll need to contact them directly to get pricing, and it appears to only be available with a long-term contract.
Pricing: need to contact for pricing.
Best features: no-code UI builder and API blocks, high-level security and stability.
Suitable for: enterprise-level, internal software applications.
How to Choose the Best No-Code App Builder For You
We introduced ten of the best no-code and low-code development platforms in this post. They all offer something a little different, with unique feature sets and value propositions. So how do you know which is the best no-code app builder for you?
First, you should have an idea of what kind of app you want to build.
Is it a mobile app? A web app? An app for internal use behind the scenes in your business?
Do you already have a web-based app, and want to create native apps for iOS and Android?
Bubble and Softr are good options for building web apps, Thunkable for mobile apps, while Glide is great for both web and mobile apps.
AppSheet and Ninox are good if you want to set up simple, spreadsheet-based internal apps, while Betty Blocks and Quickbase are good for large companies with more complex needs (and the budget to fit).
For those with a functioning web app who want to launch on mobile, MobiLoud is the clear winner. It offers the fastest path to market, for the lowest cost, when you take into account the cost of development time as well.
To sum up, no-code development platforms are a powerful tool for today’s businesses. They cut down the barrier of entry when it comes to building apps for web and mobile, empowering people today to execute on their ideas, no matter their coding knowledge or access to developers.
When deciding on no-code app development platform, consider what level of functionality you need, and what you’re building the app for.
If you want to play around and create an MVP for your app idea in a day, you’ll want a flexible no-code app builder, with pre-built templates and blocks.
On the other hand, if you need a powerful app for use inside your business, choose a platform that’s made specifically for this use case.
Finally, give MobiLoud a try if you want to quickly and easily create mobile apps for your existing website or web app.