Whenever there’s a talk about no-code web development, the Webflow vs Bubble debate is sure to come up. Both platforms let you create websites in a visual way without having to write a single line of code, but they sure are aimed at different needs and skill levels. So, which one should you choose?
Well, Webflow is mainly known for its responsive design capabilities and CSS-based animation effects. On the other hand, Bubble is more focused on advanced web-based application building with streamlined workflows, integration, and database management.
But there are definitely other things to think about, too, when deciding what fits your project best. So let's take a deeper look at the main differences between Webflow and Bubble and see how they stack up.
What is Webflow?
Webflow is a design-focused platform that makes creating really polished, customized sites super easy. It's really popular with people who love to translate their digital ideas into pixels perfectly.
The platform combines aspects of traditional design tools with content management systems (CMS). This lets you visually build, style, and launch fully responsive websites without compromising on your vision.
You can add slick interactions and animations without writing any code too, which makes the user experience on the sites you create super smooth. After all, it allows you to get as intricate as you want with your designs without dealing with code.
And the CMS functionality means your sites can evolve easily over time without relying on a developer. Besides, Webflow also offers hosting and an online marketplace for templates.
It basically gives you all the benefits of a tool like Photoshop combined with a backend for managing content. And the level of customization and polish you can achieve is tremendously high.
What is Bubble?
Bubble is more like a visual programming platform for non-technical people to build interactive, multi-user applications for desktop and mobile web browsers. Like Webflow, it lets users create fully customizable and complex web apps without traditional coding.
But the difference is that Bubble focuses more on the application logic and back-end development capabilities. It offers quite a full-fledged development toolkit that includes user authentication, seamless integration with various APIs, and comprehensive data storage solutions.
As it puts more emphasis on database-driven functionalities and dynamic content, Bubble can create web applications that might need to handle complex, scalable user interactions.
You can use its visual elements and drag-and-drop features to design the front end while handling the back end with logic-based workflows. And as you don’t need to worry about how you manage the server, you’ll love its over-simplified development process all the more.
Webflow vs Bubble: At a Glance
Web design and development
Designers, beginners, experienced developers
Visual design, e-commerce, hosting
Data handling, complex logic, no-code
Limited custom code, built-in elements
Powerful workflows, user accounts, seamless API integrations
High priority, visual editor
Less emphasis, customizable but prioritizes functionality
Let’s now dig into the key differences between Webflow and Bubble to help you decide which platform is right for you.
Flexibility in Design
Flexibility in design is definitely Webflow's strongest suit. It’s totally geared towards designers since you get some advanced styling options and can fully control grids and flexbox layouts. You have a ton of control over how things look visually so you can truly make some unique and attractive sites.
Bubble also allows flexibility in design, but sometimes, it's not as intuitive if you only care about aesthetics. The interface seems to focus more on building out how the app works functionally and optimizing the overall user experience rather than tiny design details.
You can sure make things look good, but it might not be as seamless as Webflow if visuals are your top priority. Both give freedom in design, just in slightly different ways depending on your goals for the project. Besides, Webflow makes things far easier for everyone with its rich template marketplace.
Scalability, Functionality, and Integrability
Bubble really shines when it comes to how much your project can grow and expand. Being able to make connections between different kinds of info, set customized user permissions, and program complex processes right in the platform means Bubble builds can scale up easily as more people use them.
Plus, their backend capabilities let you link up all sorts of external tools and APIs. This opens up a ton of functionality so you can create virtually any kind of app - like marketplaces, social networks, you name it.
Webflow is good at handling complex designs too, but isn't necessarily the best for building apps that require manipulating a lot of internal data or backend logic. For example, if you’re looking to build a content-rich website or a portfolio with a blog, Webflow is fantastic due to its robust CMS.
However, for a complex SaaS application with multiple user types and interactions, Bubble would likely be the better option. You’ll find tons of Reddit threads like this supporting the point. Its ability to model and manage data lends itself to complex application development where interactivity is key.
Templates and Apps
When it comes to templates, Webflow totally has the upper hand over Bubble. Webflow’s template marketplace has such a huge selection of professionally designed templates and apps (including free ones) that you can use as is or customize however you like.
From blogs, portfolios, e-commerce, project management, or directories, these curated templates can seriously save designers a ton of time by giving them a great visual base to work from for a new project.
On the other hand, Bubble's templates focus more on helping you build out functional apps quicker. A lot include prepared workflows and database structures already integrated.
So they're better if you need to get the back-end stuff sorted fast for complex programs. But the Bubble templates may not have quite the same level of polish and visual appeal as Webflow.
Plus, if you check forums like this Reddit discussion, you'll see people aren't quite satisfied with what Bubble templates have to offer technically. This is mostly because:
Most templates are bloated with unnecessary features and workflows that can slow down the application.
They often have a steep learning curve for those new to developing.
Customizing them to suit specific needs can require a deep dive into both the design and the workflows, making it potentially intimidating for non-developers.
They mostly use an old responsive engine, which can make the design process feel clunky and outdated for those used to more modern responsive design philosophies.
User Experience and Learning Curve
With Webflow, the user experience is pretty straightforward since it focuses so much on design usability. New people can pick it up quickly and get their visual ideas done with not that much time spent learning.
Bubble's interface may have a slightly steeper initial learning curve because it's more about functionality and processes under the hood. But they really aim to make building apps as intuitive as they can.
Sure, it may take some dedication to fully get the hang of Bubble compared to Webflow. But there’s no denying that it’s worth it once you do. Not only can you create super functional web apps, but you also get way more control over customization than you would from regular coding.
If you're willing to put in the time at the start, the payoff is huge because Bubble opens so many doors for what you can make.
Suitability to Different Projects
As mentioned at the beginning, Bubble is better suited for those looking to create complex, data-driven web applications. It has features baked in to handle things like user signups and profiles, user-generated content, and pulling from and updating databases.
Webflow on the other hand is perfect if you're like a designer or creative who wants to make your visual ideas a reality without worrying about backend stuff. It works great for static sites, portfolios, blogs, business sites, e-commerce, and basically anything where design is key.
Deployment and Hosting: What You Get
Taking a look at how Webflow and Bubble handle deployment and hosting, brings out some clear differences. Webflow makes it easy with hosting included in their plans, so your sites will load fast globally with their content delivery network.
This simplifies things majorly for designers and devs since they can build, launch, and manage sites all in one spot. Things like SSL certificates, daily backups, and other site maintenance are seamlessly taken care of too.
On the other hand, Bubble takes a different angle by focusing more on enabling really robust apps rather than just the hosting side. There's nothing to worry about, though, since they offer hosting solutions too. But their specialty lies in building applications that require powerful server stuff running behind the scenes.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
When it comes to SEO support right from the platform, there's no question that Webflow is ahead of the game. It generates super clean, semantic code that search engines love.
On top of that, you get full control over SEO basics like meta tags, alt text, CDN hosting, 301 redirects, and responsive design - all things that directly impact your search results. Hence, with Webflow, SEO is mostly handled without much extra effort.
Bubble has SEO tools too, but they aren't as in-depth or user-friendly compared to Webflow. Besides, you’ll always need to do some extra tweaking or add additional plugins to get the same SEO functionality.
So, if search rankings are really important for your site or business, Webflow gives you an obvious edge straight out of the box.
Webflow and Bubble definitely have different pricing models that affect long-term costs. Webflow has tiered plans ranging from basic to enterprise level depending on your needs - these sometimes include hosting but add-ons could drive up the price.
Webflow Pricing (for General Sites)
$14 per month
$23 per month
$39 per month
Monthly form submissions
Webflow Pricing (for E-Commerce)
Annual sales volume
CMS plan features
Business plan features
Bubble gives you a free option to start building and learning coding, which is great since you can try it out with no upfront costs. Their paid plans scale up based on how advanced your app capabilities and customization requirements are.
$25 per month
$115 per month
$475 per month
Core platform features
2 development tickets
20 development tickets
It's really important to thoroughly check out the pricing structures for both since they diverge in what's included and how costs are structured. You want to make sure your budget properly accounts for any hosting fees, extra features, or growth over time. So here’s a detailed breakdown.
Both Webflow and Bubble are yet to fully integrate AI tools directly into their platforms, but it's probably only a matter of time with how big AI is getting in web dev. For now, you can add in third-party AI APIs to help out both.
These types of tools can assist with personalized user experiences, automated workflows, and data-driven design choices. Basically, they aim to make the whole development process even smoother on both platforms.
For example, AI chatbots could be implemented on sites made with Webflow or Bubble. Using machine learning, the bots can get better over time at responding accurately to users' questions from what they've learned. This enhances engagement and provides immediate customer support.
Who knows - in the future, we may see Webflow and Bubble roll out their own built-in AI features too.
Resources to Level Up Your Skills
Whether you're just starting out or want to take your abilities up a notch, both Webflow and Bubble have tons of ways to improve your skills. Tutorials, online courses, or forums - there’s a wealth of resources out there.
Webflow University is super helpful with its video library, from design basics to advanced interactions. It's quite the goldmine to fully get Webflow down. Bubble Academy also provides an in-depth manual and courses to understand visual coding inside and out.
The communities for each platform are super active too. Both Webflow and Bubble see how important having a strong user base is. They frequently host events led by the community like hackathons and challenges to encourage learning and innovation among members.
Besides, experienced users constantly share tips, tricks, and best practices on both official and third-party forums, which can seriously up your game. And your participation can open up support, feedback opportunities, and maybe even collab chances down the line.
Both Webflow and Bubble have solid support systems set up to help users out no matter your skill level.
On top of utilizing the community forums, Webflow also offers customer service through different avenues like email and live chat. This way you've always got backup if you get stuck. Bubble takes a more streamlined approach with documentation, a forum community, and the option for dedicated success support.
Most notably, you can take up Bubble's paid one-on-one support sessions if you feel like you need some focused, personal help with your projects. So if you run into complex issues or want help optimizing performance, you've got people to turn to for assistance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you still have queries regarding the differences between Webflow and Bubble? Here, we’ve answered a few commonly asked questions that might help.
Can you use custom coding on Bubble?
How does Webflow handle SEO?
Webflow has a full set of SEO tools for easily editing and managing meta titles, descriptions, alt tags, and more, right from the designer interface. You can also set 301 redirects, optimize page load speed, and use auto-generated sitemaps to boost SEO. Plus, its semantic code structure helps the SERP crawl your site effectively.
Can you use Bubble and Webflow for the same project?
You can’t quite use Bubble and Webflow for the exact same project because they serve somewhat different purposes. Yet, some users might choose one platform over the other based on the project's requirements or might use both together for different aspects of a larger ecosystem, relying on each platform's strengths.
After looking at how Webflow and Bubble compare, the choice really comes down to your individual needs and goals for the project. You can use Bubble if you're creating a dynamic web app with complex data and user flows. And go with Webflow if you're developing a website that prioritizes visual design, templating, and interactivity without coding.
You'll also want to consider your own coding knowledge and comfort level. So, whether you're building an app or a traditional website, weigh the platforms accordingly to see what makes the most sense for you.
At Flowzai we craft beautiful, modern and easy to use Webflow templates & UI Kits.