How To Build Angular CRM App With App Builder

Katie Mikova / Tuesday, August 15, 2023

It's a myth that low-code platforms cannot produce full-featured, responsive, and modern apps now. About ten or more years ago, they could only help developers define limited interfaces and even more so limited functionalities through graphical menus, while generating dreaded spaghetti code and somehow neglecting code maintainability. As of 2023, the evolution and the actual value of low-code/no-code technology have become more apparent than ever. And one of the most significant advancements and advantages when it comes to enterprise web development is the ability of low-code/no-code tools to ensure a head-start for new projects by working with sample apps, providing ready-made templates, and generating clean, production-ready code that meets standard coding guidelines.

In this blog post, then, we will use our WYSIWYG App Builder™ to build a customized Angular CRM app using a sample and a low-code development approach that makes the process x8 faster.

Article highlights:

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In Brief, What Is a CRM App & Why Use an Angular Example App for Your Project?

A CRM app (Customer Relationship Management) is a software application designed to help businesses manage their interactions and relationships with customers and prospects. Such software solutions typically provide tools and features that enable organizations to track, analyze, and optimize customer interactions efficiently.

As to why you should start with a sample app, especially if it is your first project:

  • It provides a head start.
  • It's a hands-on experience.
  • It eliminates common development tasks.
  • It is easy to modify and customize.
  • It is agile, scalable, and easy to maintain.
  • There's a real-time code preview.

Details here: 3 Angular App Examples You Can Use Right Away

How To Build Angular CRM Sample App With App Builder & Make It Your Own

When creating an app UI with our low-code platform, you take advantage of various predefined layouts, ready-to-use components, robust handling of any REST API, and rich configuration capabilities that boost your efficiency and skills. There is a WYSIWYG design surface while leveraging feature-packed Angular components at the same time. This saves you time by eliminating the need to hand-code layouts and components. It allows you to get feedback sooner and iterate faster based on the feedback. This no-code approach also extends to data binding and navigation workflows. If you want to download the code and add on top of it, load your Angular CRM app and extend the design via App Builder based on your needs. Even though it is a predefined application, it is still editable. You can add views, components and extend the design as you wish.

What you see here is a master-detail style app for managing customer details inspired by HubSpot. It includes responsive views for the Overview dashboard and customer details with multiple tabs. Components used: Components used: AccordionAvatarButtonIcon ButtonCategory ChartCheckboxDialog WindowDrop DownExpansion PanelData GridIconInput GroupListNavigation BarNavigation DrawerSelectTab Layout.

You can also check out the CRM app sample and preview the code.

Let's move on to the steps of using the sample in App Builder and fine-tune it in a way that works for your project requirements and business goals.

Step 1: Open App Builder & Navigate To Sample Apps

Open App Builder and select "Create New Application." Then, navigate to the "Sample Apps" section and choose the CRM app as the base design for your project. For the purpose of our project, we built the application with responsiveness in mind, showing as much data as possible thanks to the Grid, List, and Chart components. These controls have robust handling of big data and features to access it as desired. The Navigation Drawer component (with fly-out/in behavior) handles the cross-view navigation and the SPA look and feel.

The Flex Layout containers, on the other hand, allow us to modify the position of any nested UI element. The other noteworthy properties are related to fluid resizing and wrapping.

From there, you can extend and customize the design to suit your specific needs.

Step 2: Connect API

Manually connecting your API is unnecessary, as this is done directly in the App Builder by specifying a public or localhost URL. From there, you get two options:

  • To add a Swagger definition
  • Or to use JSON URL

For our purposes, we will utilize the Swagger approach and add the URL.

After that, specify a name for the datasource and proceed to the next step. Identify which endpoints you want to include. Once the authorization is set, proceed with Select Data, ensure all fields are selected, and click Done.

Then, when the datasource is successfully uploaded, you can connect the grid on the dashboard page.

To do it, select the grid and update the datasource from the Data field. From there, you can add update and delete operations that will be linked to the endpoints in the API, allowing for live modification of data through interactions with the grid.

Once all pages have been created, you can preview the application by selecting the green button located in the top right corner. To facilitate further customization, download your Angular CRM app.

Step 3: Customize & Apply Themes

You can create a custom app theme to match your brand. You do this by creating a new theme and picking one of the base themes as the starting point. The color palettes are automatically generated based on the primary and secondary color you pick. As far as typography is concerned, for now, we have a set of fonts built in, but we plan to add more creative control in future versions. Once you are done editing, save the app theme to apply the changes.

Step 4: Preview Code

This allows you to interact with your design as if it's a running app and see the HTML, CSS, and TS separately. To see your app in action and inspect the code, just tap on the Code View action button in the upper right corner.

Step 5: Generate App

Use the Platform picker dropdown in the navigation bar next to Publish to GitHub and Preview action buttons. Choose the Blazor Server/Blazor Web Assembly option to generate code for Blazor or Angular to see a preview of the generated app and code. Web Components option is also available.

The Benefits of Using App Builder

We've discussed the pros of using low code in app design and development at length many times. Still, in general, the WYSIWYG App Builder provides tooltips, intuitive UI and ready-to-use UI parts that are required for any web app - like components, outline tree view, built-in app layouts, and different properties to cover your needs, theming, external data source handling, app preview (while you are still building it), collaboration capabilities via workspaces, app share, GitHub publish, tracking of changes and more.

Other highlights of the benefits of using App Building:

  • Low-code platforms provide a visual interface and pre-built components that reduce the need for manual coding in Angular, making it easier for developers with varying levels of expertise to build applications.
  • You can get right to work by looking at the Views of the different pages, clicking around to see the properties for each one of the components used, and further exploring the app without doing any development yourself.
  • They allow for rapid prototyping and iteration and ensure faster and more intuitive development with a full drag-and-drop app building experience, while using pre-built Angular components. You can drag anything from the UI toolbox and drop it onto the screen and it will be seated within the screen's layout.
  • There is faster integration of Angular apps to backend services and APIs, which makes it easier to fetch and manage data without writing extensive code.
  • The provided components' reusability is priceless as different Angular controls can be customized and reused not just in this CRM app but across other Angular projects too, promoting design consistencies.
  • App Builder gives you all the capabilities you need to apply built-in and custom theming features. Your pre-built theme options are Material, Bootstrap, or Fluent UI. But you can also create your own Fluent, Bootstrap, or Material-based theme by modifying the typography, colors, roundness, and elevation, and choose from a light or dark mode.
  • Angular code generation with a framework-agnostic approach is another benefit of using App Builder for Angular projects. Besides generating clean Angular code in a click that adheres to best practices and industry standards, our low-code tool creates framework-agnostic apps. You can easily switch from Angular to another framework supported by the low-code tool - Blazor and Web Components. All this in a single click.

You can read more about how the use of low-code App Builder streamlines the design-to-code process in these articles:

Reduce Complexity of Mission Critical Enterprise Software with Low-Code Tools

Choosing the Best Low-Code Tool For Your Business in 2023

How Can Low-Code Tools Reduce Cost During Recession

App Builder benefits