#4 Bubble Makers: Spend 5 more minutes designing your database

Bubble tips for no-code makers

Hi Bubble Makers,

It’s been three weeks since I started writing this newsletter and it’s been an awesome experience so far.

The best part is the conversations that stem from each newsletter, so this week I have added 4 questions, one in each section.

DM me on Twitter or reply to this email if you want to chat about any of them :-)

As usual, this newsletter issue includes:

  1. One section for Bubble beginners

  2. One section for more experienced Bubble makers

  3. One cool app built with Bubble

  4. One tweet related to Bubble that I found inspiring and helpful.

Feel free to skip to the section you think you’ll enjoy the most!

The Beginners Bubble

Every good Bubble app starts with a good database design. It should come before everything else. Before choosing your colours, deciding if your app has multiple pages or what the name of your app will be.

Time spent structuring your database will save you (a lot more) time later on, when building the app.

My advice for beginners is to open Google Sheets and design your database there before actually creating it in Bubble.

Here is a short video I recorded explaining how I like to approach this. Jump to minute 3:40 for the two quick tips.

Quick question: How do you design your databases? Do you also use Google Sheets?

The Makers Bubble

Since we’re talking about databases, this week I want to share a resource I came across when I googled “how to structure a database” a few months ago.

This website called Vertabelo has a ton of database examples for all kind of apps: SaaS, marketplaces, fitness apps, delivery apps, board games…

Even though their articles are not oriented towards Bubble users, I find them quite useful. I haven’t used their tool because I don’t really need to but I still get a lot of value from their explanations.

Quick question: Did you know about Vertabelo? Do you have any other useful database resources you can share?

App of the Week

This week I found an app that amazed me because of its complexity.

Equina is a SaaS that helps businesses create and manage employee schedules. I can see this being very useful for hospitals, where doctors have trouble organizing their shifts since a lot of different conditions have to be met at the same time.

This SaaS automatically generates a whole shifts calendar based on X hard rules (i.e. days off requested by each employee).

They uploaded a video showing how they schedule 500 shifts with a set of hard rules in 6 minutes.

Anyone who has experimented with calendars in Bubble knows how tricky this can get. Seeing other users’ calendars, scheduling calls based on conditions or even defining your own availabilities for others to interact with you can get complicated very easily. I can’t imagine how hard it must have been to create something like this!

Quick question: Have you had trouble defining time slots or playing with calendars in Bubble? (I definitely have)

Tweet of the Week

This tweet by KP made me think about how the no-code world will evolve in 2021.

I personally find Zapier very easy to use, but as KP says:

The truth is that most people who surround me in my daily life would have trouble implementing Zapier workflows, even though it is very simple once you know how to use the tool. There might be an opportunity for teaching these tools from the ground up to completely non-technical people.

Quick question: Do you think we’ll see an “easier-to-use” Bubble? Or is it its complexity what makes it irreplaceable?

I hope you enjoyed reading this issue as much as I enjoyed sharing what I’m learning. If you want to talk a bit more about one of those questions, you can DM me on Twitter or reply to this email. Thanks for reading and happy holidays!