Retool – Your Handy Assistant for Application Building

Posted September 20th, 2021 in Web Development. Tagged: , , .

Every business, large or small, needs applications. Naturally, to keep up with this need, application designers and developers need to stay on their toes with app creation. But building applications is no piece of cake; developers need to stay abreast with the latest designing trends, tech know-how, and hands-on app testing experience, not to mention, possess incredible working speed.

Needless to say, doing everything within a time span of a few weeks is often quite challenging. More often than not, businesses don’t have the time to wait around for the process to complete. Automated app building tools fill this gap to handle several core tasks while you focus on building important app components. Retool is one such brilliant automated app building tool.

Retool

Retool is a low-code platform that allows you to link pre-built UI components to backend functions through an easy to use drag-and-drop editor. It takes over the headache of managing the security and logic creation, which gives you ample time to redirect your attention to the core app features.

Retool – The ultimate helping hand

Retool enables you to focus on matters of more concern when creating professional applications. The platform enables you to generate a fully functioning, fresh off-the-shelf app using no to low code, that’s targeted for use on multiple environments ranging from tablets to phones. With this software in your hands, you can focus on core tasks like including more features in the app, rather than spending your time and effort on backend aspects like data sources, access controls, and UI libraries.

Retool has a diverse volume of integrations with numerous databases and platforms making it ideal for conducting operations which require data connections. The tool also offers you the feature of testing an API query before saving it. Its drag-and-drop editor comes handy when one has to select the UI components as well as adjust and rearrange them frequently.

Retool has a host of features, a few of which are:

  • It grants you access to a complete set of powerful building blocks like tables, charts, lists and forms.
  • The tool has numerous pre-built components ready for you to engage with.
  • It offers seamless connections with multiple data sources at one place, along with integrations with various databases making it convenient to link data if required.
  • If you can write JavaScript code and APIs, you can easily use them in Retool to build reusable blocks for manipulating data.
  • You also get the option to host retool through your VPN or in your own VPC.
  • You can easily upload the apps built with Retool to GIT repository so as to administer them as shared code snippets.

Retool also provides you with autonomous control of what the users can access. It fetches you the query of what they did once they’ve used the applications via the audit logs. Moreover, the tool is very customizable, which means you are never bound by only the features that you see.

Retool is pretty easy to configure as well. The framework is very useful which makes it easy to be adopted by any company looking to create tools for processes. The platform also has a diverse library of UI components. Retool’s API connector is very handy since it can be used with any other API with any kind of authentication.

The tool also has tremendous dev cycle speed. This means that you can have changes deployed within minutes after the users have submitted the request of a particular feature.

Retool - screenshot

How does it work?

Below mentioned are a few steps that you can follow to start using Retool effectively:

  1. Firstly, you need to create an account. For this you can either use any valid email address or your Google account credentials. When signing up, you’d have to fill in your company URL and a description of how you want your app to be built.
  2. Once you’re logged in, you can see the dashboard along with a prompt to connect to a resource. This will let you connect to your database or API.
  3. In the dashboard, on the top you have dedicated options to view your apps, edit or create any new apps, or query/add/delete any data source of your choice. Remember, you can connect numerous data sources to the platform.
  4. The dashboard will also give you an option to watch a tutorial, or go through a couple of sample apps if you’re new to the whole app building arena. Towards the bottom right, it will provide you with a button to “Create new” app, which when you click will lead you to a few choices – generate a blank app, create an app from a template, generate an app from data, or import an app for editing. You can select one of those options to be redirected to the app editor.
  5. The app editor is what you will use to actually create your app. The editor is drag-and-drop based and has numerous options which will make your process of app creation even simpler. You can even handle key functions like app security and authorization details from pre-built code snippets here.
  6. After completing the app, you will be able to see a play button at the top right hand corner which will enable you to get a complete preview of your final product.

Retool 3-minute demo video:

Evaluating Retool

Retool has certain downfalls and upsides to its name like every tool out there. A few of these are listed below.

Advantages

  • Easy and quick database integration.
  • Superfast creation and start-to-end automated application building.
  • JavaScript queries add functionality.
  • Quickly link desired components to generate results.

Disadvantages

  • Average staging environment.
  • UX of component interaction can be improved.
  • Tutorials for novice developers can be helpful.
  • The easiest automated app builder you’ll ever use – @retool retool.com/ via @supermonitoring

    Tweet this

Final Verdict

Retool is quite a useful tool for designing and creating apps, especially admin tools. The platform has the ability to configure several data source and API’s while acting as a one-stop shop for all your data storage. It’s very diverse and encompasses all the crucial features that you require while building an application.

Retool is very efficient in building frontends using the given data within a few clicks. Since the tool supports JavaScript it makes it very adaptable and easy for developers to go about. The software also supports quick iterations.

Leave a response:

  • Browse Categories


  • Super Monitoring

    Superhero-powered monitoring of website or web application availability & performance


    Try it out for free

    or learn more
This website uses cookie files to improve user experience. If you don't approve, please turn off the cookie usage in your browser settings. close