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While Airtable is one of the most popular no-code tools, it has two big limitations that users often run into:
- It doesn’t have options for setting collaborator permissions at the table, record, and field levels. As a result, anyone who has access to your Airtable base can see all the data within it. This is a problem when you want to share a base with collaborators, but also prevent them from accessing specific information (e.g., personal data about other users).
- It has limited layout customization options. While there are many Airtable layout templates, you can’t fully tailor them to your needs. (For example, by adding or removing buttons.)
Due to these limitations, many teams use Airtable in combination with other tools to build useful no-code apps, portals, websites, and more. In this post, we’re going to look at four tools that are a great addition to Airtable, with a focus on their features and use cases.
The four best Airtable no-code tools:
- Stacker: Our tool for building apps powered by your data (from 60+ data sources, including Airtable), without any coding.
- Webflow: A visual editor platform for designing and building no-code websites.
- Bubble: A drag-and-drop app builder with highly customizable design settings.
- Zapier: A tool for connecting 5,000+ apps (including Airtable) and automating manual processes.
If you want to build a useful web app without coding today, start your free 30-day Stacker trial. Our tool can sync to your Airtable base and automatically build a working app for you.
Stacker apps can be powered by Airtable data, or by data from 60+ other data sources. The no-code apps built with our tool are also fully customizable, so you can:
- Tailor the user interface (UI) to your needs by adding or removing buttons, changing colors, and much more.
- Set granular permissions at the table, record, and field levels and create different user roles.
Here are some examples of the apps our customers have built with Stacker and Airtable:
- Zapier’s internal app for tracking employee budgets. Zapier’s accounting team kept employee budget data organized in Airtable. However, they ran into one of the limitations we mentioned — Airtable’s limited permission settings. This meant they couldn’t share the base with employees, as that would mean everyone would have access to everyone else’s data. With Stacker, Zapier’s accounting team built a no-code app, so employees can use a secure login to access only their budget data. Besides being useful for employees, this app saves the accounting team tons of time manually finding and pulling data for each employee.
- Growth Collective’s workflow app for facilitating tasks among freelancers, clients, and partners. Growth Collective helps businesses hire pre-vetted marketing experts. While they used Airtable to store their business data, they lacked an interface that let clients and freelancers only access information relevant to them. To resolve this issue, they built a Stacker portal for their clients, allowing them to view and schedule time with freelancers. Additionally, they also built a portal for freelancers, where they can edit their profiles and view their matches.
- Segment’s client portal, used by over 15,000 startups. Segment is one of the most widely-used customer data platforms. Outside of their core business, they also run a program that helps startups get software deals, resources, and credits. They kept all of the data in Airtable but also wanted to give founders a logged-in experience, with a visually appealing UI. That’s why they built a Stacker portal, which gives program members a way to log in, track and redeem deals, and access a vast resource library.
In the next sections, we’ll show you exactly how to build a similar no-code app for your business.
Stacker Can Connect to 60+ Data Sources or Act as Your Database
When you first start building a Stacker app, you’ll need to select where its data will live.
Stacker can sync to your Airtable base (or Google Sheets data) and automatically create a working app for you. Then, you can customize the app’s UI and permission settings (as you’ll see below).
Once the app is created, any changes made on the front end are reflected in your Airtable or Google Sheet, removing the need for you to manually update entries. For example, say you use Stacker as a project management tool on top of your Airtable base. When someone moves a task from “Not Started” to “In Progress” in Stacker, that change is automatically reflected in your Airtable base.
While many of our customers use Airtable or Google Sheets as their data source, there are also two other options:
- Use Stacker Tables as your database. This option lets you house your data directly in Stacker, so you only have to use one tool for your app’s front end and back end. This simplifies your workflow and reduces the number of paid tools you’re using.
- Bring in data from 60+ different sources. Stacker supports many read-only data sources, like HubSpot, Salesforce, Asana, Jira, MySQL, MongoDB, QuickBooks, Square, and more (Enterprise Plans only). You can also import data from an Excel spreadsheet by uploading a CSV file to Stacker. Note: Because these sources are read-only, any changes made on the front end won’t be automatically reflected on the back end, i.e., on the original data source.
Stacker Lets You Customize Your App’s Layout (Without Needing Any Design Skills)
Once you’ve connected to a data source, you can customize how your app looks.
Stacker offers tons of ways to make your app unique and visually appealing, without adjusting pixels, aspect ratios, or dealing with other design and front end development issues.
Here are a few ideas:
- You can start by presenting the app's user interface (UI) as cards, in rows, as a kanban board, calendar, table, inbox, or one record only. For example, a kanban board view is useful for tracking projects, deals, and other events, as it organizes items by category. The screenshot below shows a deal tracker, which organizes potential deals by their pipeline stage — new lead, contact made, offer sent, etc.
- Then, you can make it easier to navigate different app pages by creating nested views for your tables. For example, you can have All Deals > Enterprise Deals > Closed Enterprise Deals.
- Lastly, you can add buttons for important functions like “claim deal”, “send update”, “edit”, “save”, etc.
Besides these customizations, you can also change your app's color, add your logo (or your clients’ logos), and much more.
If you’re using a different data source than Airtable or Google Sheets, you can also choose from different templates when creating your app (e.g., customer portal, product, directory, and CRM).
Regardless of whether you choose a template or decide to start from scratch, you can use all the customizations mentioned above to tailor your app’s front end.
Stacker Lets You Set Permissions for Who Can Access Your Data
Stacker lets you create highly specific permission rules that apply at the table, record, or field levels, as shown in the screenshot below.
This is a massive advantage over Airtable’s limited permission settings, because you get full control over what each user can see and edit without having to share all of your data.
You can also create different “User Roles” and assign permission rules to them.
For example, say you have a deal tracker app, which your Sales and Marketing teams both use. Employees in each department, as well as their managers, can have individual User Roles with different permissions. For example, employees can have permissions to see and update only their tasks, while managers can be allowed to see, update, and reassign tasks for everyone on their team.
Lastly, Stacker also makes it easy to add users to your app by:
- Entering their email addresses.
- Connecting a user table from your data source.
- Using Open Signup to create a link that allows anyone to register and gain access to your app.
Start your free 30-day Stacker trial and build useful, fully customizable apps for your businesses — without needing any coding or design skills.
Webflow is a no-code platform for building websites. It’s an advanced design tool that lets you build your sites in real-time by adding buttons, images, animations, and other elements.
Webflow has a native Airtable integration, which you can use to embed Airtable forms in your site, allowing you to collect data and save it to a base. Additionally, you can use Zapier to integrate Webflow and Airtable, as we’ll discuss further down.
In terms of features, Webflow comes with an advanced design editor, content management system (CMS), eCommerce capabilities, and various search engine optimization (SEO) settings. While the design editor opens tons of customization possibilities, it has a steeper learning curve compared to other popular website builders.
Webflow offers four different site plans:
- Starter: Free and comes with enough space for 50 CMS records and 1GB of bandwidth.
- Basic: $15/month and lets you build a site with a unique domain that can handle up to 25k unique visitors a month. This plan doesn’t include any CMS items.
- CMS: $20/month and gets you a custom domain, up to 2,000 CMS items, 200GB of bandwidth, and editor access for 3 users.
- Business: $45/month and comes with 10,000 CMS items, 400GB of bandwidth, 10 guest editors, and additional features.
Webflow also offers custom enterprise plans and three eCommerce plans, starting at $29/month for 500 items and up to $50,000 annual sales volume.
Bubble is a no-code development platform for building custom apps without coding. It has a drag-and-drop design editor for building layouts and creating dynamic content. Plus, it supports a marketplace with extensive templates and plugins.
There’s an official Airtable plugin for Bubble, which lets users integrate both tools. The plugin allows you to read from and write to an Airtable base using an interface or workflow built with Bubble.
Bubble offers four different plans:
- Free: Comes with the most basic features and Bubble branding in your app.
- Personal: $29/month when paid monthly and $25/month when paid annually. This plan provides access to the core platform, API, email support, and more.
- Professional: $129/month when paid monthly and $115/month when paid annually. This plan comes with additional resources — three units of server capacity, two app editors, two development versions, and 20GB of file storage.
- Production: $529/month when paid monthly and $475/month when paid annually. This plan has 10 units of server capacity, 15 app editors, 20 development versions, and 50GB of file storage.
Zapier is a widely-used SaaS tool for connecting over 5,000 apps (including Stacker!) and automating manual tasks. You can use it to connect Airtable to other apps or contact certified Zapier Experts to help you create automated workflows.
While it’s not a no-code app builder like our previous entries, Zapier lets you connect your Airtable data to tons of apps — including Webflow, Mailchimp, Facebook, Salesforce, Jira, and Stripe — which can help you streamline and automate crucial processes.
For example, with these integrations, Zapier can:
- Automatically update an Airtable record when a Webflow store receives an order.
- Create new records in an Airtable base for each new email subscriber in Mailchimp.
- Add new Stripe sales to an Airtable base.
Zapier offers five different plans:
- Free: Includes five Zaps (connections to other apps) and a 15-minute update time for 100 tasks (every time Zapier moves data or takes an action).
- Starter: $19.99/month when billed annually or $29.99/month when billed monthly for 750 tasks. It includes 10 Zaps and a 15-minute update time.
- Professional: $49/month when billed annually or $73.50/month when billed monthly for 2000 tasks. It has unlimited Zaps, a 2-minute update time, and advanced features like custom logic paths.
- Team: $299/month when billed annually or $448.50/month when billed monthly for 50,000 tasks. Besides unlimited Zaps and a 1-minute update time, this plan has unlimited users, shared workspaces, premium support, and other advanced features.
- Company: $599/month when billed annually or $895.50/month when billed monthly for 100,000 tasks. It includes everything from the Team plan, plus single sign-on (SSO), advanced permissions, custom data retention, and other additional features.
Build Fully Customizable No-Code Apps Powered by Your Data with Stacker Today
If you want to build a front end for your Airtable data or create all sorts of useful apps without writing a single line of code, start your free 30-day Stacker trial.
Our tool can quickly sync to your Airtable base and automatically build a working, fully customizable web app for you. You can also connect to 60+ other data sources, like Google Sheets, Salesforce, Jira, MySQL, and many more.