What is a Bubble agency?
If you're in the startup world, you've likely heard of the term 'no-code'. It's a way to build software applications without writing traditional code.
Bubble is a popular no-code platform that allows businesses to build fully-functional web and mobile applications without coding knowledge. Bubble agencies specialise in building MVPs for startups using the Bubble platform, making it affordable and accessible for founders.
They offer fast turnaround times, deep technical expertise, and affordable pricing.
How do they differ from a traditional agency?
For startups, the major difference between no-code and traditional agencies is the barrier to entry.
Traditional agencies often have higher entry costs due to the need for specialised skills and resources, limiting the number of startups who can work with them.
On the other hand, no-code agencies can work with anyone from any industry, regardless of coding skills, thanks to visual programming tools and platforms requiring no coding experience.
While traditional agencies rely on developers to create custom solutions from scratch, no-code agencies utilise visual programming tools and platforms to build apps faster and at lower costs. It is because no-code agencies don't rely on writing code, resulting in quicker turnaround times for your MVP.
Related: Building with Bubble
What are the advantages of using a Bubble agency to create your startup's MVP?
Some of the advantages of using a Bubble agency to create your startup's MVP are:
- You can save time and money by avoiding hiring expensive developers and learning how to code.
- You can get a functional product with enough features to satisfy your early users and test your assumptions.
- You can leverage the expertise and guidance of a Bubble agency with experience building successful products with Bubble.
- You can benefit from the scalability, flexibility and customisation of Bubble as a no-code platform that allows you to create any web app you can imagine.
- You can get real-time feedback and testing from your users and make changes and updates easily with Bubble's visual editor.
- With visual programming tools and pre-built templates, Bubble agencies can develop your MVP in a fraction of the time of traditional agencies.
- No-code agencies can adjust to your needs and changes quickly due to visual programming, making it easier to pivot and adapt to real-time feedback from users.
What services are offered by Bubble agencies?
Now that it's clear why you can have an edge by hiring a Bubble agency let's see some of the areas a Bubble agency can help you.
You can use Bubble to design your website's layout, content, and style without writing any HTML or CSS code. You can also use Bubble's responsive engine to make your website look great on any device and screen size. You can add dynamic elements such as forms, buttons, sliders, maps, videos, and more to make your website interactive and engaging. For example, goodgigs is a website built with Bubble that features mission-driven companies hiring for social impact jobs.
You can use Bubble to create complex business logic and integrations without writing code. You can create custom data types and fields, define relationships between them, and perform CRUD (create, read, update, delete) operations. You can also store and manipulate your data without writing any SQL code. For example, Codemap is a marketplace built with Bubble that matches no-code experts and teams with founders, startups, and SMEs.
You can use Bubble's API connector to integrate your app with external services and platforms without writing backend code. You can also use Bubble's plugin library to access hundreds of pre-built integrations and functionalities that extend your app's capabilities. For example, Qoins is an app built with Bubble that automates debt repayment by rounding up purchases and applying the spare change to users' debts.
Dashboard and analytics
You can use Bubble's chart element to display your data in various formats, such as pie charts, bar charts, line charts, etc. You can also use Bubble's repeating group element to display data lists in a grid or table layout. For example, Dividend Finance is an app built with Bubble that provides financing solutions for solar energy projects.
These are just some things you can build with Bubble - endless possibilities!
How quickly can a Bubble agency bring my ideas to life?
According to McKinsey, there is a 90% reduction in development time due to no-code tools. Bubble and other no-code tools are all about speed. A typical MVP timeline is about 4-6 weeks.
If you're building a complex solution, it can go beyond this, but at that point, you need to ask yourself a question. Are you making an MVP for market validation or building a pre-validated product?
If you want to validate demand, you shouldn't spend months building the MVP. The MVP should be functional yet quick to make.
What is the cost advantage?
Traditional agencies rely on specialised and expensive developers to build products. It increases the budget you need to develop a good product. On the other hand, a Bubble agency can use visual programming to develop the product. This means that no-code agencies can save you time and money.
Visual programming tools like Bubble make it easier to create your product. They can help you focus on other critical aspects of your startup besides product development. You don't need a background in coding, so you don't waste time and resources hiring developers or trying to learn how to code yourself.
Apart from the apparent cost advantage of a traditional developer, you also need to factor in the opportunity cost. The more time you spend developing, the more you delay market validation. And if we were to believe McKinsey, there is a 2x increase in deployment speed reported by ~60% of developers,
Are there any limitations to using Bubble for MVP?
Bubble is a powerful no-code platform that can help you create almost any app. However, like any tool, it has limitations depending on your use case and expectations.
- Bubble may need help handling complex calculations or logic requiring custom code or algorithms. For example, if you need to build a machine-learning model or a blockchain application, there may be better options than Bubble.
- Bubble is unsuitable for stocking trading, video chat (Zoom) apps and video editors.
- Bubble cannot support very high traffic or performance demands beyond its capacity. For example, if you expect your web app to have millions of concurrent users or process vast amounts of data, Bubble may need to compromise on speed and reliability.
- Bubble doesn't allow you to export the source code of your app. Although, you have complete ownership of your app's database and can migrate anytime.
These limitations may not hinder your experience with Bubble. Only a small number of people need the above features. However, being aware of them and evaluating whether they are critical for you is crucial.
What types of startups are best suited for Bubble?
If you're an early-stage startup with limited technical expertise or bootstrapping your venture, then Bubble provides a strong foundation for your MVP. But what types of startups are best suited for working with Bubble?
Startups with a clear product vision
Bubble is an excellent tool for founders who know what they want and have a clear product vision. A Bubble agency can help you quickly create MVP, validate your ideas, and iterate until you find product-market fit.
Startups with limited budget
Working with a Bubble agency is much more cost-effective than hiring a development team. It is a cost-effective solution for early-stage startups that must be mindful of their budget.
Startups that prioritise speed to market
Bubble is a great choice for startups that need to get to market quickly. With Bubble's drag-and-drop interface, founders can create an MVP in weeks rather than months or years, helping you validate your idea and start generating revenue.
Can a Bubble agency help me after the launch of MVP?
Once the product has been handed over to you by your Bubble agency, the support you can expect from them differs based on your partnership with them.
Most established agencies offer maintenance to keep your project up-to-date and functioning smoothly. It can include updates, bug fixes, and other technical support to ensure your project stays operational long after its initial completion.
It is ideal for startups who want to wait for market validation before adding new features.
Depending on your project, your agency may offer training for your team to use Bubble. It can be crucial if you want your team to handle the product after the handover.
This differs from the above model because the agency would train your team about the app structure, workflows, API integrations etc. After the handover, your team of experienced Bubble developers will maintain and run the app.
Some agencies offer ongoing support services, such as new features for subsequent versions and improvements. It can help you improve your product with user feedback.
This is ideal for agile startups and would need a team of specialists available at the drop of a hat to make things happen.
How to choose a Bubble agency?
Choosing the right Bubble agency is a challenging task. You need to evaluate the right partner carefully.
Look for Bubble agencies with a solid portfolio. The agency should have a couple of projects and, ideally, a testimonial from the company.
It's not the number of projects you're looking for, as they do not represent the experience. You're looking for an agency with experience working with businesses like yours.
Budget is an essential factor in making the decision. It's not the sole factor and should never be the deciding factor.
A figure to keep in mind is that traditional agencies charge between $40,000 - $90,000 for an average software development project. And your customers don't care whether you used code or no code to build the platform.
So don't be surprised if an experienced and established Bubble agency quotes $25,000 - $40,000. There will be many who charge less and a few who charge more.
Most software projects fail not because of budget, technology stack or expertise but because of a lack of communication. You must communicate your requirements so that the agency understands them.
And a significant role in communication is the process adopted by the agency.
At NocodeAssistant, after the discovery call, we begin creating user journey documents that serve as the wireframes' foundation. It helps us understand the requirements in detail and avoid any confusion.
Any Bubble agency that agrees to work with you after receiving only a high-level document is a red flag. Always ask the agency team about their understanding of the requirements and give them feedback.
Related: Writing user stories for Bubble apps.
Working with a Bubble agency like ours for your startup's MVP can be a game-changer. Not only can it save you valuable time, money, and resources, but it can also bring your ideas to life quickly. From our team's experience, we have seen the benefits of building a no-code MVP first before investing heavily in custom code.
Everyone deserves a chance to see their ideas come to fruition, and we're here to make that happen for you. Please book a consultation with us today and give your startup the boost it deserves!
Further reading: How to Collaborate with a Bubble Agency