Building a Website without coding a Website

Hey guy (and gals),

I wanted to hear your input on an idea I’ve been playing around for a while and on the feasibility of making said idea come to life. So I want to build a website that initially serves as a marketing platform for small businesses. From a technical perspective, the website wouldn´t be much more than a bunch of flat pages with a working database on the back that allows for search queries AND maybe analytics for each of the web pages. For its MVP, it shouldn´t need to be too complex.

That said, if the idea takes off I would want to eventually rebuild the website to include a log-in for the businesses and a system to automatically populate the website with a business´ info through a fillable form available only by the people that log-in. I would also love to automate the whole payment into a subscription model, as to minimize the need for personnel and keep fixed costs low. On a third phase id love to create an app of the website

So my question to you guys is the following: considering my MVP is fairly simple from a technical perspective, and considering I have essentially no knowledge of hosting/backend languages/javascript, would you recommend I use one of those website building services available online? If so, which service do you recommend? I read some of the threads where these services were being discussed and while you guys teared them all to shreds it seemed the main criticism was they only allowed for making very simple websites, however I understand the website I'm trying to make isn't too complex so maybe I could use one of these services?

Thank you very much for the input

Startups | 👁 1176 | Posted 2018-03-09 | Share on Facebook | Twitter | Google+

| Modified: 2018-03-09 | Author:


egm03 2 years ago

thanks for the input! did you use Squarespace and WordPress to build both the backend and the front end or only the frontend? Thanks!

rawrdesign 2 years ago

First phase I would use Squarespace. Second phase, I would go with WordPress. People will poopoo both, but they have personally worked for me.

Mfarasatkhan 2 years ago

Well as far as the back end data base is concerned you surely will need someone experienced. Getting to setup a website with a theme, domain and hosting is an easy process. Even a layman like me or you can setup. But if you are thinking for long term you will still need some one who is well versed with the coding and programming part. So it will be better off to have someone on board from the start who would be into your business's website.

userexperienceguy 2 years ago

As someone who worked in digital marketing for 5 years, background as a designer and now working as a UX/UI/Front-end guy I must say that the future is marketing automation. Also, this is a market that there are lots of stuff including free open source solutions like Mautic (https://www.mautic.org). If you want to start something, try something more leading the edge that will become big in 3-5 years. Maybe a CMS or marketing automation for VR . Someone mentioned about a graphically driven wordpress there is one already, which was built by one of the most famous web designers (Tobias Van Schneider): https://www.semplice.com/semplice4

Moon999999 2 years ago

bubble.is might be good for you. But you should find out it fits your idea.

egm03 2 years ago

I actually saw that recommended in another thread. Currently checking it out! Thanks for the recommendation!

egm03 2 years ago

Isn't Wix the website service version of Satan dancing over a bunch of dead puppies, from what I've gathered?

egm03 2 years ago

Not quite, sorry if I expressed myself incorrectly. When I referred to flat pages I literally meant html docs. The website is actually a fairly simple concept, I just happen to be living in a small market so there's ample opportunity to exploit simple, more obvious ideas (hopefully!).

el_ganso 2 years ago

I don't have any experience using it personally, but you poke around Wix Database Collections, which seems to give you some drag/drop + configuration for light back end stuff. fwiw

jordancoleNA 2 years ago

I recommend using a tool called bubble.is ... It's visual programming tool that allows you to build websites and applications with no coding. There is a but of a learning curve (definitely not as steep as proper coding) and it's still in early beta so it has some bugs, but once you get the hang of it it becomes a powerful way to build MVPs. People have built like decent clones of linkin, insta, Airbnb, etc.

chee5e5andwich 2 years ago

So you want to build a squarespace competitor? They've proven there is a market and competition is no bad thing - the trouble is you're going to have to do something better or cheaper to compete, their marketing is literally everywhere online, they're a Goliath in the industry. Best of luck :)

WadeToGoMan 2 years ago

As far as I know, generally speaking, the website builder platforms out there dont generally do anything for you database wise. You can design the front end but youd probably need a developer for the database on the backend. I could be wrong but thats the experience Ive had with my clients. I would also design the database with your future features In mind as you probably dont want to have to mess around with changing databases, its a bit of a tricky topic. My advice would be to seek competent developers // companies and get an idea of prices between them and see if thats possible with your budget. That being said what youre asking for can be achieved easily with WordPress so perhaps buy a WordPress theme that is graphically driven and not code driven and you can easily include a search function in that. However I find that the default WordPress search option doesnt always work perfectly. Analytics is also extremely easy to add. If you want to chat about it more drop me a PM, I run a web and software development agency and we could perhaps schedule a phone call to give you some free advice. Hope this has been somewhat helpful, good luck :)

schilpr 2 years ago

I've send you a PM, my product, currently in scale-up is for exactly this use case.

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