The following is a guest post by Drew Thomas, a no-code pioneer and consultant, who has authored this piece as part of our Data Champions program. If you’re interested in contributing to or learning about Data Champions, please get in touch.
No-code is growing quickly. More and more people from all roles and departments are using a wide range of new tools and apps to build and experiment without fighting for engineering resources. This creates amazing opportunities for growth, but it also means data teams have to integrate data from ever-more sources to get a full picture of their business’s operations.
As a no-code advocate and the curator of the No Code List, I want to address that concern head-on. With 230 no-code tools in 45 categories on my list alone, I believe we can do everything most businesses need without writing any code. So how will we handle the disparate and one-off data sets produced by so many tools?
Fivetran is not only a great solution for teams with ongoing data and analytics needs but is also great for handling data produced by no-code tools. The benefits of Fivetran and no-code are business-wide: Businesses can facilitate experimentation and empower non-engineers because they don't need to manage APIs and integrations. Here are some examples of no-code tools that powerfully complement Fivetran.
Airtable and custom spreadsheet data
Every business, department and person has different needs, so we'll always need an open-ended tool like the spreadsheet. Spreadsheets are literally the lifeblood of many businesses, and with no-code, they're now powering (and capturing data from) microsites, native apps, surveys, forms, directories and more.
Airtable combines the best characteristics of spreadsheets, databases and cloud-based collaboration for users. This is empowering, but siloed experiments create inaccessible data. Without the help of an additional tool, there's no visibility into the data and no way to connect it to data from the rest of the business.
By using the Fivetran Airtable connector to integrate spreadsheet data, non-engineers can take advantage of no-code-friendly spreadsheet platforms without creating siloed data or thinking about data infrastructure.
When someone from marketing, for example, sees that a no-code survey tool can store entries in Airtable, they know the data will be accessible to the rest of the business. They're free to do their job without waiting for anyone's permission.
SendGrid and transactional emails
SendGrid, Mandrill and other email marketing providers are no-code tools that can also be used to create landing pages, microsites, surveys, courses, email-gated content, intranets and more.
Most importantly, they make it easy to automatically send emails, which is perfect for no-coders who work in marketing. However, these tools don’t, by default, support data collection or analysis, leaving data teams with zero visibility into them.
Fivetran, however, supports connectors for SendGrid, Mandrill, and other transactional email providers. Once a platform is connected through Fivetran, data teams can see data from any one-off no-code campaigns that use that platform, including errors, open rates and clicks.
People in marketing, business development and every other department are completely free to experiment without sacrificing data and feedback. At the same time, the teams that depend on good data still get it.
Stripe and other payment services
New business models such as pre-selling software or account features, upselling private communities, and charging subscriptions for premium content are becoming popular. These endeavors can be great for awareness and growth, and experimenting with non-traditional avenues to generate revenue or validate ideas (through people's wallets) makes business sense.
With no-code, spinning up paid experiments, communities, courses and more is relatively trivial if you have a Stripe API key. However, integrating new data sets, especially as they relate to business income, is not trivial.
Using Fivetran connectors for Stripe and other payment services, data from one-off campaigns can be seen in the context of everything else, which means beyond sales and money data, purchases and subscriptions can be tied to other customer data and understood in the broader context of the business.
Departments within large businesses can act more like agile startups. Initiatives like pre-selling and paywalling become easier to spin up and spin down.
Let others code
Ultimately, the advantages of no-code are too great to ignore.
Allowing a shortage of engineers to limit the potential of a business will soon be a thing of the past. Data reporting concerns, as well as other sensitive business needs, are being met now as bigger and more mature companies continue to adopt no-code tools and practices.
Fivetran is a smart piece of the no-code stack. By integrating data and analytics around a single hub on the backend, the doors get opened on the front end for no-code and all the benefits that come with it.