Low Code

Low-Code vs Traditional Software Development

Low Code vs Traditional Software Development_og

The confusion circulating around low code vs traditional methods of development is understandable.As a decision-maker, you need to create a decisive comparison between these methods to make a choice.

But, where do you start?

To assist you with your decision-making process, we will demystify the key differences between the two approaches to help you make the right choice. Read on to find out the solution you must lean into.


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Low Code vs Traditional Software Development – Quick Comparison

Traditional app development platforms involve heavy coding and have a complex configuration set-up, while low-code app development platforms provide an intuitive, drag-and-drag interface that requires minimal coding to develop and launch apps.



Traditional Software Development 


Low-code development is a visual approach to building apps using tools such as drag-and-drop modellers that can be used by citizen developers.

Examples of low-code solutions include WordPress, Bendigo Bank, Optum (UnitedHealth Group), and The Salvation Army. 

Traditional or custom software development is creating apps through manual coding. 


Rapid application development tools such as Kissflow Low-Code are used. 

Web frameworks and programming languages such as Python, Java, PHP, and C# are used. 

Coding Knowledge

Basic coding knowledge is sufficient. 

Advanced coding skills are required. 

Speed of development

A working app can be created in less than a month. 

It may take a minimum of 6 months to 1 year to fully develop an app. 


Although low-code tools offer limited customization options, there are solutions such as Kissflow Low-Code which gives the option to add custom UI components. 

Highly customizable and the app can be tailored to specific requirements.


More agile as changes can be made quickly. Apps can be released fast, new features can be added easily, and even errors can be fixed smoothly. 

Changes will be time-consuming and frequent modifications will result in losing the project scope. 


Fast delivery as apps can be created through minimal coding. 

Longer as apps are created from scratch.


Extensive integration, standard performance, and live-debugging options will keep the app error-free. 

Highly scalable and great performance. However, testing and debugging will be time-consuming. 


Easy to maintain as the low-code platform does the heavy lifting in terms of security, maintenance, and upgrades. 

Need a dedicated team to regularly update and maintain the app. 

Technical support

Less technical support.

More technical support. 

Template availability

Lots of pre-built templates.

None since it can only be built from scratch.


Starts at $3000/month.

The average cost ranges between $20,000 and $50,000/app.


Low-code platforms have taken a front seat in terms of scalability as they can handle variable workloads (eg - adding more users as the organisation grows) easily.  

Difficult to enable scalability without the help of experienced software developers. 


Most solutions will come with ISO 2007 and SOC2 and comply with other important data protection regulations. 

Full dependency on the software development team to implement security measures will take time and in the meantime negatively affect the quality of the software.  


Apps can work on mobile, web, and cloud. 

Choose between native or cross-platform development methods to make the app work on multiple platforms. 


Highest levels of ROI, in some cases above 80%. ROI is measured based on  development costs, and maintenance. 

Very low compared to low-code solutions. Typically falls between the 15-17% range. 



A Forrester research document indicated that “84%" of firms with highest enterprise requirements use low-code development and see return-on-investment. 

Planning Steps Involved in a Low-Code Development vs  Traditional Approach

Low-Code Development Process 

Below is the low-code development phase that is generally in practice. This may vary based on the nature of the project. 

  • Need Analysis - Describe what is required and demonstrate how to achieve it.
  • Planning - Create a work schedule to identify the activities and execution times.
  • Application Design - The design team will work with the screens and forms.
  • Software Development - The development team will begin its work. 
  • Testing - Verify if the application works according to the established specifications.
  • Final Version - App will be transferred to the production environment where documentation instructions will be given. 
  • Maintenance - Technical support will be provided to solve incidents that may arise. 

Traditional Software Development Process 

Below are the 5 best software development processes based on goals and project size. 

  • Waterfall - Teams with inflexible structure and documentation needs. 
  • Agile & Scrum - Teams that need continuous updates to products. 
  • Incremental & Iterative - Teams that need more flexibility. 
  • V-Shaped - Teams with smaller projects with a tight scope. 
  • Spiral - Teams working on large projects with high risk.

Rajesh Kandaswamy, research vice president at Gartner says. “Growth in digital data, low-code development tools and artificial intelligence (AI)-assisted development are among the many factors that enable the democratization of technology development beyond IT professionals."

Advantages vs Disadvantages of Low-Code Development 


Parameters to Consider

Low-Code Advantages 

Traditional Development Advantages 

Resource Saving

Resource saving - Save time and company’s resources by getting things done quickly and at a lower cost. 

Relatively poor because you need to constantly look out for highly experienced developers who might charge unrealistically.


Low risk & high ROI - Platform is backed by best industry and security practices (cross-platform support, data integration, and current security algorithms) which will ensure your workflow is thoroughly protected and customized.

Relatively less as compared to the low-code method as traditional development involves resource, development and maintenance costs involved.

Finding proper talent

Finding proper talent - No Need to find the right developers and testers who specialise in the framework to build the desired app. 

Hard to scout the talent with right experience and knowledge


Decent for an internal or customer facing app if you want to build it in a few days

High quality - Dedicated team of developers can determine if business needs are met thus ensuring quality outcomes. 



53.80% of the participant software development companies concurred that adapting and meeting these changing client requirements poses the biggest challenge for the developer team. 

Key Features of Low-Code Platforms

When choosing the best low-code development platform, look out for these features.

  • Drag-and-drop interfaces - Visually create applications resulting in a faster launch.
  • Fast mobility - Applications can be deployed anywhere with no extra effort, coding, and resources.
  • Security & scalability - The right low-code development platform will have all the necessary security in place with enterprise-level coding grades.
  • Automation - Critical everyday manual processes can be automated digitally.
  • DevOps - Great agility and end-to-end testing options. Easily mitigate the difficulty associated with future changes or additions thus speeding up development time.  
  • Case management - Take up service requests and resolve tickets from a central hub.
  • Date integration - Store data from various sources through native or REST APIs.

In Which Situations Do Low-Code/No-Code Platforms Work Best?

Low-code/no-code platforms are the right option for any startups, SMBs, mid-market, and enterprise in the following situations.

  • Require quick MVP (Minimum Viable Products) to try innovative ideas but, don't want to waste resources or wait for months to try things.
  • Need a static website or web app within 5-10 hours.
  • Build microservices-based apps.
  • Create a consistent omnichannel experience.
  • Reduce dependency and enable a collaboration-driven work environment. 

How Can Low-Code and Traditional Development be Combined to Get Great Results?

In the battle between low-code vs traditional development, there’s no winner. 

The verdict is, “it depends.” 

With all the innovations and fast delivery, low-code solutions seem to take the throne. 

Nonetheless, traditional programming should not be easily dismissed. This way of software development still offers unmatched freedom and flexibility. 

So, a truce can be called to combine traditional programming and low-code platforms. Blending beneficial practices of low code into a traditional development life cycle will facilitate faster time-to-market and process optimization.

The combination of the best of both worlds will also allow the creation of high-quality enterprise-grade application solutions. For example, low-code can be used to develop the core functionality and the programming team can come in later to develop complex and tailored functions. Overall, they’re a great pair and can bring significant business value. 

Still, confused about which one to choose?

Get technical advice from experts at Kissflow to find out the best solution. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.


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