I spent 1,000+ hours talking with 150+ No-code Founders, who have generated millions of dollars with their businesses without actually writing code.
How are they doing it?
I spent years researching and building on what they do. I wrote The Lean Side Project so you can build and launch your product.
Swipe Files is a curated library of marketing and copywriting examples with detailed teardowns of what makes them great.
Corey provides a free tutorial of how he created this:
1. No-code tool feature: Webflow is primarily focused on helping anyone, especially designers a way to build a professional custom website with using a visual builder. It's powerful because it seamlessly connects to Webflow's CMS and allows you to display, sort and paginate content from your CMS. Webflow is not a beginner no-code tool. Unless you have a technical background or design background. The best comparison I have for it is it reminds me of Adobe Photoshop. Which is a tool for professionals. And professionals are not beginners.
You can use Webflow if you are looking to create some of the best designed sites, because their template library is extensive but also expensive. I would recommend that if you are starting out with your no-code project, using Webflow to graduate into once you have validated your concept.
An example of that would be roasterlist.com, the original Maker is Noah Brinker who created this using Sheet2site first. Then once he validated demand for it, he invested his time to create a better designed and customized site using Webflow. After he designed the site into something that was professional looking he found a buyer for it and sold the web product that he created.
Webflow does have a generous free plan up until you launch, although to get started with a template to save you time will cost money. I would recommend that you start with this tool only once you have some real validation for your concept by launching a simpler v1 of your product or you already have extensive tach background and/or experience with Webflow.
2. No-code tool feature: Rewardful - This is a tool to allow for companies to setup an affiliate and referral program with Stripe.
Depending on the type of product that you are creating, an affiliate or referral model may not work. But this tool is one of the best that I have come across that works efficiently and is easy to implement. I've seen a lot of makers use this to implement to help get distribution for their SaaS or other applications.
At the end of the day, I think that most people are open and okay with affiliates if you are open and direct with saying that there are affiliates and it helps you generate revenue it supports you as an independent creator. And at the end of the day, that is something that you should not feel bad about leveraging. It's really hard to become an independent Maker. It's okay to mention, and say, hey your help supports me as an independent Maker. Think of independent Makers like supporting local small businesses.
3. Product Strategy: Webflow, Memberstack tools used in this app. This is a membership app, which means that Corey is using Memberstack to control and manage when a user pays through Stripe, a user id is created. This user id is then given permission to access authorized pages of content within Webflow. All of those pages are created within Webflow.
In this app, it does not appear that there is any type of backend being used like Airtable to house the information. It appears that all of the content is within the Webflow CMS.
Additionally, this means that the data appears to be displaying static. And that any time Corey adds information he does so through Webflow CMS.
Based on this there is no user profile information saved once someone becomes a member. Think about the controls that you need in place to manage a members email, or any profile information that you may want to include. If you wanted to have the ability for a member to add information like profile or save information to their profile, you can do that through adding Airtable and Zapier to this stack. The Makerpad app is created using this stack and has the ability to save information to your profile using Airtable and Zapier.
This is a bit more extensive and I have not seen how this is easily done to have actions read and write member data from the UI in Webflow back to Airtable base.
If you are looking for a way to allow for membership profile data to be saved and stored on the user account, I would use a tool like Bubble. Bubble has all of this capability within its app so that you do not need to configure saving user data into a separate database. For example, when you create a text box for input, its a configuration within the Bubble workflow to save that as user data. It avoids more complex backend work that can be difficult to do.
Here is an inteview I did with Chris Maker of Jetboost.io. I found this helpful in learning about if you are using Webflow how Jetboost.io may be helpful for you.
TL;DR – Chris created Jetboost to solve a real problem for nocode makers like me and you. He made a beautiful and insanely useful real-time, on-page search for a list like a job list. What’s so great about this? Well, I couldn’t put it any better than what Chris said: “Currently, without Jetboost, someone would have to either hire a developer or write the code themselves if they wanted this functionality on their site.“
Maker: Chirs Best Place to Find Him: Twitter Information about Jetboost can be found here.
1. What did you make?
CS: In October I launched Jetboost.io, an add-on tool for Webflow. It allows users to easily add advanced features to their Webflow sites, such as real-time, on-page search, without having to write any custom code. Currently, without Jetboost, someone would have to either hire a developer or write the code themselves if they wanted this functionality on their site.
2. What problems were you trying to solve, your motivation, what is your why for this?
CS: This all came about when a friend of mine, Corey Haines, created a job board using Webflow, Hey Marketers. The site looked great and had a ton of awesome job postings, but I wished I could easily search the postings. He told me that unfortunately that wasn’t natively possible in Webflow, and he didn’t know how to write the code to do it. I ended up writing the code for him, and over the next several months, I had more and more people reach out to me wanting to add a similar search filter to their site. Eventually, I decided to shelve the previous product I was working on, and focus on making it possible for any Webflow creator to add features like real-time search to their sites, without having to hire me or another developer.
3. What different tools did you use to make it? (Or can talk about how users/customers use jetboost to make something)
CS: To create Jetboost, I went with my default tech stack that I use to launch products, which is Node + GraphQL + React. And of course I also use Webflow as well, both for the integration with Jetboost, and the Jetboost marketing site itself.
4. Can you talk specifically about why you chose those tools? And how did you figure out to use those tools? Were there any others you considered or failed with at first?
CS: Out of all the nocode tools, I chose specifically to work with Webflow as I really believe in their team, their mission, and their CEO. In my opinion, they already have the best in class website designer. They’ve stated that eventually Webflow will enable anyone to build not only websites, but web applications as well. Some people have actually already begun doing this today using Webflow, and with Jetboost I hope to provide ways to make this even easier until the Webflow team completes their full vision.
5. What is the most interesting no code stack that you made or anything interesting you’d like to share? CS: I’ve been amazed this past year and all the incredible products that have been built using no code tools. Three Jetboost customer sites that I’ve been really impressed with are, the previously mentioned Hey Marketers by Corey Haines, Unicorn Factory a New Zealand freelancer database by Connor Finlayson, and of course the amazing resource that is Makerpad by Ben Tossell.
Some developers have been quite dismissive of the nocode movement, doubting that these tools can be used to create “real” products. I think this is mainly out of fear or gate-keeping, but in my opinion it’s great that more and more people are becoming creators now, without having to learn to code. At many companies I’ve previously worked at, we had to use a ton of developer time building out internal tools for operations, customer service, marketing, and other teams. This work was inevitably deprioritized compared to work on the main product. Yet, now with nocode tools, a lot of these teams have become able to create the internal tools that they need, without having to wait on developer availability. I think this is great for everyone involved!
6. What would you do differently building it or something valuable you learned you’d like to share with other makers?
CS: The biggest lesson so far for me with Jetboost, is to first find a pain point or problem that people are looking to have solved, and only then start building the solution. Previously I’d launched products with only a vague idea of who they were for and because of this the products struggled to gain any traction.
Seth Godin says it best in his book, This is Marketing:
“It doesn’t make any sense to make a key and then run around looking for a lock to open. The only productive solution is to find a lock and then fashion a key. It’s easier to make products and services for the customer you seek to serve than it is to find customers for your products and services.”
These are wise words whether you build products with code or using nocode tools.
7. Please provide what links to your project website, your twitter, where can people return the love?
8. Is there anything else you would like to share or some feedback/request/action that you’d like to ask the Side Project Stack Audience to do for you?
CS: If you’ve built a fun/unique/interesting site using Webflow, please share it with me via Twitter or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) as I love seeing and promoting awesome sites that people are creating with Webflow!
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