11 Best no code tools for small businesses 2021

Daniel Ndukwu

June 3, 2021

When we talk about no code tools, it about much more than being able to build a simple application without needing to hire a developer. We refer to it as the entire ecosystem which allows you to accomplish business goals without needing to write code.

That’s a broad definition by design and includes everything from payment processors to email marketing tools that allow someone with little technical experience to build an entire online business.

This guide will explore no-code tools but it’ll go well beyond app builders. It touches on no-code tools in multiple categories. You’ll be able to stitch them together to build websites, collect payments, do customer support, and even build applications.

Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases. However, this does not impact our comparisons and recommendations. We try our best to keep things fair and balanced, in order to help you make the best choice for you.

Best no code tools in 2021

1.    Leadpages

Leadpages homepage

Leadpages is an older player in the website building and no code tools space. You’re unable to create a web app but you can make solid landing pages and even a fully-fledged website with a simple drag-and-drop builder. It started out with conversions in mind and remains true to that focus until now.

Leadpages has countless integrations with third-party tools including Stripe. Instead of having to code an integration with the payments app, you can create products with a few button clicks. It also has direct integrations with Facebook Ads which allow you to import elements from your landing pages to create super-relevant ads.

In addition to the core features, you’re able to set up popups, email capture forms, and alert bars to boost your conversions even further. It stands out by providing a large collection of templates that can be customized to fit your needs without, you guessed it, knowing how to code. With that being said, there’s still an option to add simple code to further customize the appearance.  You can read the full review here.

Key features

  • Landing page builder
  • Website builder
  • Integration with Stripe
  • Can create products directly from the interface
  • Alert bars
  • Popups
  • Integration with Facebook Ads
  • Huge collection of site templates
  • Clear analytics
  • Integrations with hundreds of third party marketing tools
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • Host and deliver digital files
  • SEO friendly pages
  • SMS opt-in campaigns
  • Split testing pages
  • Etc.

Cons

  • Though it’s a drag-and-drop editor, you can only add elements inside predetermined section blocks
  • While generally easy to use, some of the finer customization options will need trial and error to get right

Pricing

Leadpages can be purchased monthly and yearly. Discounts are available for longer purchase plans. The monthly plans cost:

  • Standard $37/m
  • Pro $79/m
  • Advanced $321/m

2.    Wix

wix homepage

Wix is another popular website builder that lets you accomplish a lot without writing a line of code. It has something for you whether you’re building a large eCommerce store or a personal blog. There is a free plan that lets you test out most of the features and get a feel for whether or not it’s right for you.

It has countless features for building a website which I couldn’t hope to name in a single post. The ones I find most interesting are the huge collection of templates (over 500), the app market, and the true drag-and-drop editor. I call it a true drag and drop editor because you can place elements exactly where you want instead of them snapping into place.

Wix also has an artificial intelligence tool that will help you build a full website from scratch. After it creates the initial layout, you’re able to edit almost everything to match your brand. As a website builder, you also get things like email boxes, custom domain names, hosting, SSL certificates, and analytics. As I mentioned, Wix has too many features to name them all but here are a few to take note of:

Key features

  • True drag-and-drop editor
  • AI website builder
  • Large collection of fonts
  • Direct payment processor integrations (dozens)
  • Hundreds of templates
  • Large app marketplace and integration ecosystem
  • Mobile optimized and SEO friendly
  • Contact management
  • Built-in analytics
  •  eCommerce storefront
  • Coupon codes
  • Booking management

Cons

  • Cannot change templates after the website is live
  • With the cheapest pricing plan, you still see Wix branding on the front end

Pricing

Wix has multiple pricing plans which are largely divided based on eCommerce features and website building features.

  • Connect domain $4.50/m (comes with WIX ads)
  • Combo $8.50/m
  • Unlimited $12.50/m
  • VIP $24.50/m
  • Business basic $17/m
  • Business unlimited $25/m
  • Business VIP $35/m

3.    Bubble

When people think of the no code tool movement, they often have an app builder in mind. Bubble fits that bill and makes it possible for people with zero technical experience to build apps without writing a line of code.

Whether you want to build a fully functional accounting app or a website with all the bells and whistles then you can get it done. Bubble uses a drag and drop editor that allows you to place elements but it also makes it possible to set up event workflows. For example, if you have a button, you can determine what happens after someone clicks the button by building out a workflow.

Of course, everything is hosted on Bubble’s infrastructure so you don’t have to worry about scalability when you achieve success. A strong integration ecosystem rounds out what Bubble offers and makes it one of the best no code platforms available.

Key features

  • Drag and drop editor
  • Large number of integrations
  • Simple starting templates
  • Payment integrations with Stripe and Braintree
  • Support for multiple collaborators and real-time changes
  • Create user accounts and manage with popular authentication tools
  • Dynamic content
  • Version control
  • In-built analytics

Cons

  • Bubble does a lot and is complex to use – especially for those new to app/site building
  • It’s often slower than coded apps because every feature is a separate plugin or integration

Pricing

Bubble is free to get started (which has helped it grow to nearly 1,000,000 users) then it charges monthly or annually.

  • Personal $29/m
  • Professional $129/m
  • Production $529/m

4.    Notion

Notion bills itself as an all-in-one workspace. To stop there would be doing it a disservice. Depending on how creative you are it can serve as everything from a portfolio website to an internal wiki for the team.

It’s on the list of no code tools because it’s versatile and only limited by what you want it to do. You can access tables, Kanban boards, list views, calendars, create documentation (both internal and public facing), and integrations with countless tools.

Notion excels because it’s easy to use. Unlike Bubble which has countless features and is easy to get lost within, Notion strips away the clutter and lets you focus on what you’re trying to accomplish.

Key features

  • File upload
  • Real time collaboration
  • Team wiki and document creation
  • File versioning
  • Multiple guest users
  • Dozens of templates
  • Shareable content
  • Multiple views such as table, list, Kanban, etc.

Cons

  • Doesn’t have robust search features 
  • It can take time to get set up because of the data needed to make it useful

Pricing

It’s free to get started with Notion then you get into personal and team pricing.

  • Personal pro $5/m
  • Team $10/m/user
  • Enterprise has custom pricing

5.    ActiveCampaign

activecampaign email marketing service homepage image

ActiveCampaign is our go-to email marketing tool that’s designed for those of us that haven’t learned to code. It pioneered a new category it calls customer experience automation which allows you to use machine learning to automate the entire customer experience. A lot of buzz words – I know.

In essence, it’s a complete toolkit for sales, customer support, and email marketing. In addition to the core email features, it has landing pages, popups, chat widgets, etc. You’re able to build powerful email automation workflows that are triggered based on different factors such as cart value, site behavior, time/date, etc.

There are few email marketing tools that can compete with ActiveCampaign and it’s always adding new features. You can read the full review here.

Key features

  • Email automation
  • Conditional logic
  • Popup forms
  • Landing pages
  • Built-in CRM
  • Website chat widget
  • Social media integrations
  • Site personalization
  • Text messaging
  • Drag-and-drop email builder
  • Dynamic text replacement

Cons

  • The platform can be slow at times
  • Beyond the basic features, it can get complex

Pricing

Pricing can vary widely based on how many subscribers you have and the features you need. Plans start with 500 contacts at:

  • Lite  $15/m
  • Plus $70/m
  • Professional $159/m
  • Enterprise $279/m

6.    Gumroad

Gumroad is a payment collection and product hosting application that’s geared towards creators who may not have technical experience. We’ve used it (and still use it) to quickly launch products and services that we wanted to test without building out a complex backend.

Gumroad does a few simple things well. You’re able to build out a basic website to showcase your products and gain followers, access analytics on product pages, and publish content. Of course, you’re able to process payments and send downloadable links to followers. It can’t compete with a platform like Stripe when it comes to features but it can help you push out a product quickly.

Key features

  • Sell in multiple currencies
  • Sell software and generate license keys
  • Create coupon codes
  • Let people pay what they want and set a reserve price
  • Hosted and embedded checkout
  • Set up memberships
  • Supports physical product sales with basic features
  • Useful analytics to optimize your sales efforts

Cons

  • High fees
  • Limited customization of the checkout experience

Pricing

Free plan with an 8.5% +$0.30 charge per transaction with and a monthly plan that charges $10/m plus 3.5% + $0.30 per transaction.

7.    Podia

podia

Podia is transforming into an all-in-one platform that allows creators to host digital products – specifically courses and access the tools needed to market them. It has inexpensive pricing, an interface that’s easy to learn, and many features that you’d usually only find in standalone tools.

Downloadable products, courses, membership programs, and webinars can all be sold through the platform – or given away for free. It enables this by connecting with payment processors such as Stripe which in turns allows you to set up an affiliate program. Podia provides the tools to build a simple website, and even email marketing tools.

Key features

  • Create payment plans for customers
  • Memberships
  • Easily upsell products
  • Email newsletters and email automation
  •  Email segmentation
  • Integrations with payment processors
  • Host videos and documents for online courses
  • Build simple websites
  • Host webinars (free and paid)
  • Zero transaction fees from Podia
  • Bundle products together
  • Messaging

Cons

  • The site customization is basic
  • The email marketing, though effective, can’t compete with dedicated email tools

Pricing

It only has three pricing plans

  • Mover $39/m
  • Shaker $79/m
  • Earthquaker $179/m

8.    Zapier

Zapier is one of the most popular no code tools on the market. It’s different from others in that it doesn’t try to be a platform for you to build on. Instead, it works to connect the tools you’re already using and automate tasks.

It uses what’s known as ZAPs which allow you to automate a single task or multiple tasks without input from a human. Currently, it integrates with well over 3,000 other tools – many of which can be connected.

At its core, Zapier is a simple tool and that’s by design. It has a few features that work extremely well to unlock efficiencies in your processes.

Pricing

Pricing is based on how many tasks Zapier will automate for you every month and the complexity of those tasks.

  • Free
  • Starter – $29.99/m
  • Professional $73.5/m
  • Team $448.5/m
  • Company $898.5/m

9.    Userguiding

Have you ever signed up for an application and it has a bunch of helpful tours, tooltips, etc. to help you get up to speed? It improves customer satisfaction and adoption of products. When you need something that will walk your users through onboarding in your application or website, Userguiding is the tool for the job.

Beyond adding onboarding tools, it helps you analyze how people are interacting with your application so you can make informed decisions.

Key features

  • Built in analytics and user stats
  • User segmentation
  • NPS surveys
  • Simple or complex onboarding checklists
  • Gamification and goal settings
  • Tool tips and info boxes within your app or website
  • In-product messaging
  • Integrations with important analytics tools

Cons

  • Basic analytics that probably need to be paired with another data source
  • Limited integrations options beyond analytics tools

Pricing

It has two public pricing plans then an enterprise plan that’s based on custom quotes. Its value metric is the number of monthly active users interacting with your site. It also offers discounts for startups.

Basic – $199/m

Premium $399/m

10.                       Airtable

Airtable is a mix between Excel, Trello, and database tools. I’m simplifying it of course, but it packs a bunch of power into a relatively simple interface. You can do everything from organizing projects to collecting information through forms.

It can also serve as a searchable database that stores important information that can be shared within your organization or outside of it. Airtable integrates with many other tools to pull data in and organize it for you or serves as the information center that can power other platforms. Remember those things about databases? And, of course, it has automations.

Key features

  • Create databases with as much or as little information as needed
  • Grid view
  • Calendar view
  • Kanban board view
  • Gallery view
  • Over 50 prebuilt apps to extend functionality
  • Multi-step automations
  • Multiple integrations
  • Team collaboration and chat

Cons

  • There’s only basic communication options
  • It does take a considerable amount of time to learn the platform fully

Pricing

Free

Plus – $10/seat/month

Pro – $20/seat/month

Enterprise – custom quotes

11.                       Google analytics

Google Analytics is one of the most popular site analytics tools on the market. Most people use it for simple visitor site statistics and tracking but it can do so much more. If you’re an enterprise user then there is a fee to use it and get even more powerful insights.

You can ask questions, filter data based on event or time frame, view conversion paths, and get insights sent to you about key changes on pages. It also integrates with Google Search Console and Google Ads to pull data while providing deeper reports. The challenge with Google Analytics is that it’s not the most user-friendly application.

Key features

  • User attribution
  • Integration with Google Search Console and Google Analytics
  • Goal and event tracking
  • Funnel visualization
  • Strong filtering capabilities
  • Custom dashboard
  • Keyword filtering
  • Demographic data (basic)

Cons

  • It’s rather difficult to use  

Pricing

Google analytics is free for most users but has paid enterprise plans.

Conclusion

As you can see from this collection of no code tools, there are many ways to put together a working online business system without writing a line of code. There is no single “best” no code tool. Rather, they all serve a specific function that’ll help you build an effective system.

If we were forced to choose, we’d go with LeadPages for your website, ActiveCampaign for your email marketing, Podia for product creation and sales, and Zapier to string together any other third-party tools without any direct integration. In the end, it’s up to you to decide which setup works best for you.

Daniel Ndukwu is the CoFounder of Growth Boost and the Founder of KyLeads. He brings extensive digital marketing experience to the table and enjoys helping people on their entrepreneurial journey. When not creating internet-first brands, he spends as much time as he can with his family.

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