Last Updated: June 15, 2023
No-Code/Low-Code vs. Custom Development
Published On: June 07, 2023

Are you a seasoned business person looking for a perfect solution for your business needs? You can go for custom software development. Not that good with coding, but have no problem writing a few lines with a low-code platform to develop your app. Not knowing to code at all, worry not; GUI feature rich No coding platform will let you easily create an application for your business. 

In business, at some point, you need to have an application, which is an indication of business growth and customer convenience. There are several solutions in the market available for software solutions. One is low code/no code in which little to no coding is required whereas the custom software solution offers all the features according to your business needs.

The size of the global market for custom software development was estimated at USD 24.46 billion in 2021, and it is anticipated to increase at a CAGR of 22.3% from 2022 to 2030.

The graph depicts the expected total U.S Market CAGR, for the year 2022-2030 is 19.4%. 

Recent data from Gartner predicts that by 2025, 70% of new apps developed by businesses will employ low-code or no-code technologies, up from 25% in 2020.

U.S Market CAGR

Here we have discussed the pros and cons of software development solutions like No code/Low-code Vs. Custom development and understanding how IT digitization is progressing with these quick fixes to help you make an informed decision when selecting one for your future project.

Let’s dive into the good and bad of each of them in detail:

Parameters No code Low code Custom Software
Coding None A little Totally coding based
Ease of Development No coding hence easy to develop  A few coding lines  Coding based depends on business needs
Control on coding errors None  Just a little control Full control over coding
Knowledge of coding None needed A little knowledge is required Expertise in programming
Security None, since no access to the source code None, no access to source code Totally secure as have access to the source code
Citizen developers Yes Yes if knowledge of coding For coders and programmers

What is No-Code Development?

No-code development is also a RAD methodology like Low code. While using low code, some developer assistance is necessary to write code or scripting. However, no code is entirely hands-off and is enriched with visual tools. It is suitable for quickly building standalone apps, simple UIs, and simple automation.

No code development platform (NCDP) is also known as a Citizen automation development platform(CADP), with citizen developers as nontechnical developers. As no code is implemented, the graphical interface facilities like drag and drop or point and click interfaces which need no software development skill, do justice to the name citizen developers.

Advantages of No-Code Application Development

1. Highly Cost-Effective

No code development means no developers are needed. You save the cost of software developers effectively. Hence the cost difference is significantly high compared to custom software development and Low code software development. It directly impacts the ROI, making the releases faster and more agile. When opting for custom development yes it may cost you higher but every penny spent is worth it.

2. Faster Time to Market

Fewer resources and no coding are required in no-code development, which speeds up the process. The testing time is also less; these factors lead to quickly putting up the market version product in the market. The project deadlines and bottlenecks are cut down from months to days.

3. Quickly Support and Update

The visual interface is implemented in no code development. With simple drag-and-drop plugins, any app changes or updates become a piece of cake.

4. Making tech for everyone

It is democratizing technology for all. No code software development enables nontechnical or citizen developers, business minds who are tech savvy, to create an app with a little help easily.

Disadvantages of No-Code Application Development

1. You get what you are offered

The customization alternate eliminates while working on No-code or Low code platforms. Platform dependent is one of the most significant drawbacks of LCNC (Low Code, No Code) platforms.

2. Rigid Templates

There is a platform limitation of templates. You can only utilize the templates provided by the platform. This limitation directly affects business operations, and they are altered accordingly.

3. Security Concerns

Since no code doesn’t give you access to the source code, the security is dependable on the platform. Any vulnerability in source code may lead to app exploitation and exposure to threat actors.

Types of Applications Suited for No-Code Development

  • Self-service apps for businesses like student self-service, employee self-service
  • Mobile and Web Applications
  • Content Management Systems(CMS)
  • CI/CD Data pipeline builders
  • Calendar planning apps
  • BI reporting apps

No-code development platform vendors

  • Appsheet
  • AppGyver
  • Bubble
  • AWS Honeycode
  • Shopify
  • Stripe and many others

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What is Low Code Development?

Low code software development or Low code development platform(LCDP) works on the rapid application development (RAD) concept. A technique for developing software with a minimal amount of coding. Literally like a few lines of coding for the LCDP. Developers’ use of specialist tools enables the creation of apps with GUI-based drag-and-drop functions, spreadsheet imports, and others.

When low-code development originally emerged, it was to make the task of experienced software engineers easier. Developers could construct and scale their apps more quickly and integrate third-party apps and services because of pre-built app templates and user-friendly interfaces. Low-code development is now available in a variety of forms, enabling even non-programmers to construct websites and mobile applications.

However, users must have a certain level of coding expertise to construct low-code web apps. Additionally, because they increase developers’ productivity and agility, most low-code platforms are befitting for companies with in-house developers.

Advantages of Low-Code Application Development

1. Higher Return on Investment (ROI) with Lower Risks

You need to pay for access to the low-code development platform in order to use its capabilities. You can save a lot of money by not hiring a development team to create your app.

2. Faster Time to Market

Since the software requires minimal coding, the processing time is reduced twice as compared to custom development. With low code, you can easily create an MVP of your software, put it on the market, and see how it works.

Businesses may introduce innovative and profitable business ideas to the market by increasing the effectiveness and productivity of their development personnel. By doing this, organizations profit financially from those projects months sooner than they would have under more conventional development methods.

3. Saves Money and Resources

Low-code platforms enable businesses to accelerate internal activities that increase organizational agility and efficiency while cutting the time required for development projects. Tools used in these endeavors to replace manual and time-consuming tasks will save $6.7 million in costs.

4. Continuous Deployment

Unlike traditional software development, the low-code application development method aids teams in resolving any flaws and unanticipated problems after release. With just one click, you can rapidly undo changes to return to a stable version and address possible problems before they arise.

5. Integrating seamlessly and supporting the lifecycle

Low-code development platforms (LCDP) allow CI/CD pipelines as well as the full software development lifecycle (SLDC). Tools for quality assurance testing and project management are a few of the external connectors that low-code application builders provide.

Disadvantages of Low-Code Application Development

1. Requires a Technical Background

Consider designing a low-code application yourself since, with all the marketing you thought, it requires much less coding. Yes, true. Significantly less coding is needed, but it takes a chef to know how much salt is not too much salt. It would help if you had expertise while treading this path.

2. Business Logic Complications

Automation technologies are used in low-code application development to simplify operations and hasten the prototype stage. However, business logic becomes more intricate once you move past the prototype stage.

Business users get stuck at this stage and need help from a technical team that knows to finish the project. It’s wise to rely on something other than low-code development platforms because they are far from faultless. Companies risk the entire project when they decide on a low-code development approach alone.

3. Limited Functionality and limited customization

Low-code development offers few opportunities for customization because you must use pre-made technologies to create your app or website. For instance, it’s likely you will fail to develop sophisticated, multifunctional enterprise software.

Even though low-code development tools are a quick way to design commercial applications, they have limited capabilities. You have no choice but to work within the constraints of the low-code development tool while developing commercial apps.

Businesses must collaborate with professional software developers to create specialized code and realize cutting-edge firm concepts when drag-and-drop functionality needs to be improved.

4. Security Limitations

Since you have less control over data security, low-code solutions give a different level of security than those requiring bespoke development. You are also unaware of any potential bugs and weaknesses in the programming because you lack access to the source code. Low code indeed gives a rapid development approach but not a look at the source code. When facing a security issue, it becomes a limitation.

Types of apps most suitable for low code development

  • Mobile and Web Apps
  • Employee engagement Applications
  • Automation tools for businesses like marketing, payrolls, etc.
  • Enterprise IT business applications
  • Back office Apps

Low-code development platform vendors

  • Google AppSheet
  • Skyve
  • Salesforce
  • Microsoft Power Apps
  • Zoho Creator
  • Outsystems and many more

What is Custom Software Development?

Custom the word is self-explanatory, i.e., something you want according to your specific needs. One way to meet your demands and those of your clientele while advancing your business is through the creation of custom software development.

Custom software development in the initial phases includes developing and implementing the software. Maintaining the software in the later phase for companies, business users, and others. Contrary to commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) software, custom software development offers various solutions while aiming to suit the business’s specified objectives. Since COTS fulfills various requirements, it may be supplied, packaged, and properly advertised.

Some widely known COTS software are Microsoft Office, Windows 10 operating system, Adobe Photoshop, SAP, Oracle, and others. They satisfy the typical requirements of workplace efficiency and website development.

One drawback of COTS software is that you can’t have it if you want to make it work according to your business requirements, like handling ‘n’ numbers of clients or some maintenance program. 

For that, you’ll have to switch to custom software development. It is very much similar to “Building a House.” If you want to build the home of your dreams, you need to customize it to every need, contrary to the readymade apartments in which you can’t choose much.

COTS software is like ready apartments. 

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Advantages of Custom Application Development

1. Get Exactly What You Want

Essentially the reason for which you switch to custom software development. This is what you pay for because “you get exactly what you want.” Yes, custom software development costs more because one size doesn’t fit all, and the convenience of getting things done as required.

Customization is the key advantage of bespoke development. No-code or low-code software development platforms are not so easy when it comes to customization. Customization becomes a tiresome and time-consuming operation, which has an adverse effect on these platforms’ affordability. In addition to speed and integration issues, LCNC platforms frequently have limitations on how much they may be altered.

Contrasting sharply with custom development, which allows you to construct anything you desire (assuming you have the necessary developer talent to do so), is the need for more freedom and control. This demonstrates that sophisticated and specialized applications are produced far more effectively through custom development. 

2. Add/Remove Functions and Features as Needed

When your business grows, the first thing needed is scaling your app or web development project. And this is provided by traditional development. You can ask developers to add/delete some features or design features. 

3. Robust Security

Your program will be as secure as possible if you choose custom development. It is the most visible advantage of traditional software development. You can ask the developers to take a good look at the source code to make it more resistant to cyberattacks. A very little chance of threat actors attacking as the code is kept private.

On the other hand, low-code and no-code platforms’ security varies depending on the service provider, and many of these platforms have security problems. This means that using no-code and low-code platforms for anything that involves sensitive data is not a good idea. 

It’s vital to read the TOS (Terms of Service) for low-code and no-code platforms since, in some circumstances, there might be some issues with data collection from the platform and privacy.

4. Service and Support You Can Rely On

When a business partners with a reliable source of software development services, it can rely on consistent support throughout the Software Development Lifecycle. By asking your software support team for help, you may update, correct errors, and add new features to your software with ease. Your personalized digital product will always be updated with the latest trends.

You may rely on knowledgeable and skilled service and support whenever you need them during the duration of your long-term engagement with the software development partner.

5. Scalability

When complicated apps with specialized solutions are created, scalability is easy. The only limitations you might run into in this scenario are a need for more funding and a shortage of software engineering talent. However, they are easy to address and fix if a reliable technology partner guides you along your bespoke development journey. To help you save money, a great partner will always offer the best tech stack and engagement strategies.

A trustworthy IT partner will also have access to talent pools of qualified people allowing you to cut costs and time on hiring, onboarding, and project ramp-up.

Disadvantages of Custom Application Development

1. Higher Costs

Custom software development costs much more than no-code/low-code development. Furthermore, project expenses are constantly fluctuating, particularly as new product requirements appear.

As a result, it is expensive because it depends on hourly rates and the knowledge of a business or dedicated developer. Automated software development cannot modify specific Functionality to meet customer needs or resolve complex coding issues. Therefore, rather than using a no-code strategy, an IT company’s advertised pricing is justified by its range of services.

2. Time and Resource Intensive

It takes time to paint a painting from scratch and no time to purchase a digitally printed artwork. Custom development is time and resource intensive since everything is done according to the business design and requirements. This takes more time than readymade software.

According to your business requirement, software developers write the codes, build a software development plan, build the application, and test-retest phase before going live with the program.

If you have never worked on a project requiring unique programming, it will also take some time to articulate your requirements accurately. There might be a situation in which, after several iterations, you find some mistakes during the development process and intend to alter your requirements. If you wish to prevent this potential issue, it is advised that you work with a qualified application development partner who can guide you through the process.

Types of Applications Best Suited for Custom Software Development

A custom software development strategy is appropriate for developing flexible, feature-rich, complicated apps as well. Custom development is the way to go if you need a unique, scalable solution that meets your and your customers’ needs.

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Which Approach is Best for Your Business?

While evaluating the choice for software development solutions, you should ponder upon these questions as well.

  • How complex is the application?
  • What level of customization is needed?
  • What are the resources available? 
  • How much coding control is needed? 
  • What are the security threats involved in each case?

The creation of low-code software has sparked a lot of interest among non-tech professionals and companies that are undergoing digital transformation. Despite being a quick and affordable development approach, it has significant flaws that obstruct the expansion of your firm in the future.

Given that custom development provides one-of-a-kind software, it is without a doubt our present and future. There is a rumor that programming jobs are being eliminated by low-code development. However, in practice, it just modifies them. Skilled developers can accomplish considerably more with low-code platforms by focusing on the trickiest areas of their code to create unique applications.

Custom development proves to be “the best solution” when choosing from the different categories.


Connecting a few disjointed business processes allows you to relocate staff to more critical activities or free up expensive IT resources. You can quickly design solutions to address your business’s difficulties if you can stay within the constraints of no-code/low-code platforms.

When selecting the best alternative, you should examine your options. When it comes to developing and deploying software solutions, we have assisted innumerable firms in making decisions. Moon Technolabs specializes in custom software solutions; get in touch with us if custom development is precisely what your company requires or if you have any questions before deciding. 


In all honesty, comparing these two solutions is useless. Low code or no code works when you want to deliver rapid applications with visual interfaces. However, choose a custom development approach if you wish for a fantastic application with complete control and customized operatives.

Shifting from one solution to another is tricky as low code and custom development utilize different approaches. This difference in approach makes it difficult to change the application. It is advisable to decide beforehand which approach you want to follow.

The tendencies are shifting towards low code; with enhanced custom features and a sophisticated look, it might take over custom solutions in the future.
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Jayanti Katariya

Jayanti Katariya is the CEO of Moon Technolabs, a fast-growing IT solutions provider, with 18+ years of experience in the industry. Passionate about developing creative apps from a young age, he pursued an engineering degree to further this interest. Under his leadership, Moon Technolabs has helped numerous brands establish their online presence and he has also launched an invoicing software that assists businesses to streamline their financial operations.

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