So, I'm currently in the process of creating my latest project NoCode.Tech, a curated (tried and tested) list of tools and resources for all non-techies out there who want to create an online presents without the need to get a developer or designer involved. This could be for a hobby, a business that you have always wanted to start, blog, portfolio, university project or bringing your current small business online, the list is endless.
Mockup of homepage
I personally feel not enough people know about the plethora of resources and tools out there that don’t require any prior knowledge of design or coding.
I want to show people the tools that can lower the barriers to entrepreneurship and help them build amazing websites and businesses without a gigantic budget or years of technical expertise. I believe website creation should be for the many, not just the few.
I've personally been using drag and drop websites (and a whole host of free online resources) for the last 5 years creating my own personal online businesses and websites for other small businesses. My background and university degree couldn't be further from a computer science degree but, with various new tools and software launching everyday aimed at people with no background in code or design, I’ve rarely come to a point where I have required these skills.
DISCLAIMER: I'm not saying by any means web designers and developers are redundant, that couldn't be further for the truth. However, for the vast majority of people looking to create an online presence this is certainly the case.
Just recently I created Design[io] a personal one to one website tuition service based in London. I wanted to personally show people in London how easy it is to create a fantastic modern looking responsive website in a matter of hours. Through this teaching I have struggled to keep track of the multitude of resources and tools I have recommended that I personally use to create my websites. I typically kept all my resources and tools as bookmarks on Safari or Evernote and would email my clients links. However, recently I decided in an effort to share my hacks, tips and resources with others I’ve decided to create an online directory.
I'm a huge user of Product Hunt. For all those who haven’t heard of Product Hunt (PH), it’s a website curating all the best new websites, mobile apps and technology the world has to offer. However, what makes PH unique is its incredible community of like minded designers, developers, creators etc. discussing and helping early stage entrepreneurs, offering them tips and advice through the comments sections of the website.
Anyway, PH is how I discovered website stacks. These curated lists of tools and resources, range from dedicated marketing, growth hacking, newsletters, web design, widgets - you name it. An inspiring story regarding website stacks I closely followed is Bram Kanstein’s Startup Stash, who nailed it on PH and is still today the most voted product on PH of all time. I would encourage everyone who is looking to launch something on PH to check out his post on Medium, I intend to use his strategy for my launch.
Another incredibly inspiring story I instantly related to was written by Ben Tossell who also comes from a non-tech background and wrote about how he landed a job at Product Hunt. This story propelled me to not use my lack of coding or design skills as an excuse. Ben went on to launch a Marketing Stack which again smashed it on Product Hunt receiving over 1200 votes that day.
Iv’e started various small business and tested ideas usually launching my MVP somewhat prematurely as I cant wait to share it with everyone, but this time I'm going to attempt do it properly and launch a slightly polished product in the next two months (starting from now).
I set myself a few initial objectives for NoCode to achieve:
Over the last two weeks I have come up with a name, bought a domain and designed the logo. The twitter page is up and running and I have a landing page chucked together with an email grabber whilst I continue building the site.
Splash Page for early interest
Currently I’m working on each of my categories and gathering all the information about each featured tool or resource. This is taking much longer than I anticipated but as previously mentioned I don't want to rush the launch and effect the quality of the website.
A month before I anticipate the launch of the site I will initiate Bram’s marketing strategy as it seemed to work very well for him, providing some crucial feedback from my early subscribers. I have also been contacting some twitter contacts and people in various PH Slack channels to get some early testers on-board.
If you are interested in helping me out and providing some feedback pre-launch please get in touch I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or tweet me @thisdickie. Make sure to follow @nocodetech on twitter for launch updates.