To Code or not to Code

To Code or not to Code

Let’s compare what is better for a small business — NoCode or classic programming. As an example, we'll look at the stories of two entrepreneurs from the same industry, photography.

Two photographers, Arthur and Boris, have similar stories. At first photography was just a hobby, but it has developed into a profession. Now they travel on expeditions, launch drones into the air to take pictures of architectural sites, and photograph industrial design objects. Each of them became an entrepreneur and opened his own photo studio.

The heroes of the story: photographers Arthur and Boris

The crux of the problem. The number of orders is growing. In the process of taking pictures, it is inconvenient to be distracted by calls. On the opposite end of awkward situations is the loss of communication during outings in nature. Each of the photographers concluded that he needs an automated system for processing requests and tracking orders.

The idea of an automated system. Arthur and Boris see the system in the following way:

  1. The client sends a request, specifying the place and the desired time interval.

  2. The system, as a result of comparing the request time and the photographer's schedule, sends to the client a message with an approximate waiting time.

  3. The photographer checks the system once a day, approves or denies requests, and updates the schedule accordingly.

  4. If the photographer needs to clarify the details, he calls the client using the contact left in the request.

Due to the request management system, photographers and clients are contacted when it is convenient for everyone.

Website fits the role of an automated assistant and solves three business problems:

  • demonstrates examples of work,
  • collects photography request forms,
  • and processes the requests.

The heroes of story have different approaches to problem-solving. Arthur is used to solving problems quickly and economically, so he chooses NoCode technologies. Boris is inclined to trust the work to professionals and sends an order to a web studio. Below we will compare the two strategies in terms of money spent, time spent, and staying motivated.

Boris goes on the development path

Boris found a web studio. He described the task and asked for an estimate of the costs involved. Below is an abridged version of a lengthy dialogue between Boris (B) and the studio manager (M).

Manager: So you need a CRM system with a website and payment gateway. Right?

Boris: Yes, something like that.

M.: Do you already have a domain and hosting?

B.: Not yet.

M.: Do you know the approximate number of visitors?

B.: We have 50k followers on Instagram.

M.: Will you design the site and application system yourself or will you need a designer's help?

B.: Let's put the design in the estimate.

M.: To deal with personal data, you need to have a data processing policy. Our lawyers can do that.

B.: OK. Let's take it into account.

M.: Now smth about development. You will need a backend: a language, a framework and a database — to process the request queries. For example, we use PHP, Go and Python as languages. Do you have a preference?

B.: Unfortunately, I don't know anything about it. I would choose something that would keep the site running reliably. The rest is unimportant.

M.: I understand. Then we'll pick it up ourselves, based on the workload of our specialists.

B.: I trust you.

M.: It's a deal. It's going to take us some time to check the estimates with the developers. 

Although the manager was asking questions about the case, Boris felt like he was losing control of the situation.

The discussion didn't end there. Since development is an interaction of several departments, the manager clarified other details daily. The specialists tried to solve the problem in the best possible way. Boris was exhausted by these discussions, but a week after the start he received a final bill.

Estimate compiled by Web-development studio as a result of discussions with Boris:


Cost, $

Web site design 


Designing the internal application system


The layout of the site pages


Adapting the layout for mobile devices


Developing a site management system


Development of a filing system


Legal services for website privacy policy development


Website hosting for 1 year


Registration of a domain in the COM zone for 1 year


Additional service "Search Engine Optimization"




While Boris was working on the site problem, Arthur had already received his first order through his site made with NoCode tools. Let's switch to his story.

Arthur gets results right away

Website. Arthur didn't waste time on the design but compared several website builders. He chose Quarkly, which has a free plan for small projects. The template is adaptive, so it looks good on smartphones, tablets, and computers.

The Quarkly constructor already has a template for creating websites. Any page can be modified to the task.

Arthur generated the request form in the JotForm builder. On the free plan, the platform processes up to 100 requests per month, which is perfectly enough for the current tasks of Arthur’s photo studio. He has specified the interval of working hours, lunch break, duration of session and other parameters. The result was exported as HTML-code to be inserted in the web-page.

Personal information. The site has a data collection form, so a privacy policy is needed. To avoid going to lawyers, Arthur used the Free Privacy Policy Generator. He substituted the necessary information about his company and saved the result in pdf.

Bottom line. At this stage, the photographer has already made a website with a form and he can receive orders by mail. To test the result, Arthur shared the site link with his friends and some of his followers.

The service was ready in three evenings:

  1. Introduction to NoCode and website launch.
  2. Filling the site with examples of work.
  3. Adding a form to receive a request.

Arthur immediately received positive feedback from friends and three inquiries from clients. Thus the project has already partially paid off the time invested. This motivated the photographer to improve the system.

Arthur polishes the system

Requests sent by clients came to the email. It is possible to answer clients immediately, but not everyone responds to emails promptly.

Notifications about new requests. It is more convenient for Arthur to receive requests not only by email, but also in a separate Telegram chat. In this way he can get in touch more quickly with the phone number left in the request. All the information he needs for the photography session can be stored in the same private chat.

Scheduling. Client’s time interval from the form can be instantly added to the Google calendar. So it will be easier to compare different requests and make arrangements when he calls.

To connect several tools, Arthur added the Integromat service to the chain. The service allows users to configure triggers for sending requests to other web tools. So, submitting a request to JotForm triggers requests to Telegram and Google Calendar.

Writing a script in Integromat's NoCode service aggregator: when the form is received, the results are immediately recorded in Google Calendar and Telegram.
A system built by Arthur using NoCode solutions: a client looks at examples of work on the studio's website and sends a request. Information about the request goes to Google Calendar, Telegram chat, and Arthur's email. When the photographer has time, he contacts the client and clarifies the details by checking the information on Google calendar.

Arthur checked the system on a test order and was satisfied. To look more solid, he bought a domain and attached it to his site. Since he registered the domain himself, he didn't have to overpay.

Arthur plans to spend the money he saves on an advertising campaign to attract new customers.

Arthur's costs for the development of the website and application system:



Cost, $

Site builder + hosting, application form



Form Builder



Personal data processing policy builder

Privacy Policy Generator


Receiving applications by photographer

Email, Google Calendar, Telegram Bot API, Integromat


Registration of a domain in the COM zone for 1 year






While Boris was coordinating the plan with the developers, Arthur's first clients had already transferred money. Arthur's main advantage over Boris is that he immediately saw various options for solving a problem and chose the most suitable among them.

Comparison of Arthur's NoCode solution and Boris's traditional approach. Boris's approach is more thorough and gives an advantage in large projects, but Arthur chose a flexible solution: the entrepreneur quickly and cheaply tests the idea using NoCode tools, and understands whether the concept is interesting for the market or not.

Arthur spent a little more time, but he built a working system and mastered the sequence of actions to implement the project. Boris's time was spent on the approval process with the web studio.

The main advantage of Boris is the reserve of opportunities for the future site to work with a large number of clients and relative independence from third-party products. Arthur's NoCode solution is simpler, but it won't reach the limit for a long time.