I'm new to BC and it looks like it will handle most of my needs. I know you can create webapps but I have no experience with them. I will have some clients that will have databases of members they need to maintain from an admin area and the members themselves will need to be able to search for other members using a search form. Is this something that is poassible with WebApps?
Yes web apps would be ideal for this set-up for directory type set-ups.
For help with web app set-ups please review this article.