Ghost vs WordPress .com: Which Blogging Platform To Choose for 2021?

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Do you want to skip the read and get right to my winner? WordPress.com is the winner in this WordPress vs Ghost comparison platform test.


Introduction: Why would you consider Ghost vs WordPress .com?

Ghost vs WordPress .com? Which content management system (CMS) is better?

It’s no secret that WordPress has been the dominant player in the blogging scene for years, even with the rise of so many other possible platforms that users can consider. However, many of these have fizzled out over time – except for Ghost.

So, let's begin this Ghost CMS vs WordPress head-to-head.


Pros and Cons for WordPress vs Ghost:

If you want to get a more in-depth understanding of the showdown between WordPress vs Ghost, you can click on these articles:


Overview:

Before we delve into our comparison proper, here's a summary of WordPress vs Ghost:

Ghost:

Ghost has been around since 2013 and is built upon an open-source Javascript framework. Like WordPress, it has since built a following among bloggers worldwide and is now on version 4.0 (released Q1 – 2021).

WordPress.com:

While not the original open-source blogging platform, WordPress was certainly among the first. Built upon a PHP framework, it has provided bloggers with an easy enough to use platform with all the bells and whistles you need to make a viable online presence for yourself or your organization.

So, how will the Ghost CMS vs WordPress debate go? Read on to find out.


Ease of Use:

Let's take a look at which platform is easier to use – Ghost CMS vs WordPress?

Ghost:

Ghost has evolved since its initial, difficult-to-use iteration. V4.0 is incredibly flexible, and also, because it’s technically a headless CMS editor, it enables your site to load much faster.

WordPress.com:

Right out of the gate, WordPress continues to wow users with its overall flexibility: from a straight-up blog to a more elaborate eCommerce website. You have everything you need at your fingertips.

Winner – Ghost! within our ‘Ease of Use' Ghost vs WordPress comparison.

Features and Flexibility:

Out-of-the-box:

Ghost:

One word: minimalist. Comparing Ghost WordPress UI, Ghost’s UI is as bare-bones as you can get. To be fair, though, everything is within reach on the left side of the interface, allowing users to just point, click, and start working.

WordPress.com:

It has evolved over time, but long-time users like us can’t really say that it’s improved. To be fair, though, the UI/CMS editor pretty much behaves like a standard word processing software, so you can easily dive in and start working.

Themes and Templates:

In fairness, both Ghost WordPress platforms offer an extensive range of both free and premium themes and templates ranging from ultra-basic themes for straight-up blogs to more elaborate selections for more specialized websites.

Customisation Tools:

Ghost:

Ghost.org 4.0 Ghost platform offers a templating app built on the Handlebars templating language to create custom templates. Running your template through this Handlebars-driven app also enables pages to load a lot faster.

WordPress.com:

In this case, the words “there’s an app for that” apply, as WordPress users can customize their blogs to spec using an array of third-party programs and applications.

3rd Party Integrations:

Ghost:

Ghost editor users can easily maximise the use of nearly 100 third-party applications to give blog visitors a more meaningful user experience, including social media integrations, marketing tools, and communication tools like Slack.

WordPress.com:

Comparing Ghost CMS vs WordPress, WordPress can easily work with several third-party apps to enhance productivity and marketability, including integration platform Zapier, Toolset, and Aweber.

Hosting:

Ghost:

If you’re availing of the Ghost 14-day free subscription, the open-source nature of the platform means you can self-host it via its preferred service Digital Ocean – and you can continue to do so even when you decide to shift to a paid subscription.

WordPress.com:

When putting Ghost WordPress side by side, WordPress offers free hosting for those on its free WordPress.com blogs.  Also, those on premium subscriptions can choose to host their blogs elsewhere. However, the platform recommends Bluehost as its hosting partner of choice.

Backups:

Ghost:

Ghost performs better when you compare WordPress vs Ghost on backups. Server maintenance and regular backups are included across all of Ghost’s subscription plans.

WordPress.com:

Backups depend on the services offered by your third-party hosting platform, though you can install a variety of plugins that can help you backup your data regularly.

Migration:

Ghost:

Comparing Ghost vs WordPress, free basic site migration is available with Ghost but can only be accessed by those on premium subscriptions. To be fair, though, Ghost’s team will take the guesswork out of migration by moving your site for you.

WordPress.com:

Technically, WordPress does not offer its own native migration service. Instead, it recommends third-party plugins like Serv Mask’s All in One WP Migration widget to help you move your blog from one host to another.

Winner – WordPress! within our ‘Features and Flexibility' Ghost vs WordPress comparison. Both Ghost WordPress offer various useful features. Yet while WordPress does not have built-in apps, it can integrate with just about any app to make your website fully functional.

SEO and Mobility:

SEO:

Ghost:

Both Ghost WordPress offers SEO tools to help your site rank. Ghost offers native SEO functionality, making it a whole lot easier to put any of its sites in the first 10 or 20 search engine results.

WordPress.com:

If we're comparing Ghost vs WordPress, we have this to say: the latter can be considered fussy for newbies. You will need to load up and plug in a third-party widget like Yoast but once installed it is superior in many ways.

Mobile:

Ghost:

Since 2016, Ghost.org has used Google AMP technology to help optimize its blogs for mobile devices. It is also in the process of rolling out an Android-only mobile app to enable users to edit their work on the fly.

WordPress.com:

WordPress has a leg up on Ghost here: it has a working app for Android, iOS, and Windows Mobile that allows users to manage and edit their blogs whilst on the go.

Pagespeed:

Ghost:

We’re calling this a draw between Ghost vs WordPress, as the test side for Ghost loaded in three seconds. But remember: Ghost has additional bells and whistles in its code that help sites load faster.

WordPress.com:

WordPress blogs clock in at a respectable 3 seconds, but this also depends on how much media has been laid out on the page.

Winner – WordPress! within our ‘SEO and Mobility' Ghost vs WordPress comparison. 

eCommerce Tools:

Ghost:

eCommerce integrations for Ghost.org include online and social media marketing tools such as MailChimp and integrations with payment portals like Stripe. Ghost can integrate with eCommerce platforms Shopify and BigCommerce to help transform your blog into an online store with buy buttons.

WordPress.com:

WordPress has its own proprietary eCommerce plugin WooCommerce, an open-source program that enables users to transform their blogs into full functional online stores. It’s essentially free, but you need to pay extra if you want to enhance its functionality.

Winner – WordPress! within our ‘eCommerce Tools' Ghost vs WordPress comparison.

Support and Resources:

It's important to get help when you need it. Which offers better support – Ghost CMS vs WordPress?

Ghost:

Technical support is available for all subscription packages. Resources are also extensive with tutorials that show you the different nuances and functions of the Ghost blogging platform and even a walkthrough of Node.js, the Javascript framework upon which Ghost is built.

WordPress.com:

WordPress.org’s support page offers numerous guides which can easily walk you through different aspects of the platform.

Winner – Draw! within our ‘Support and Resources' Ghost CMS vs WordPress comparison. 

Pricing:

Which offers better value for the price – Ghost CMS vs WordPress?

Ghost:

Ghost’s most basic subscription is priced at $9 a month, while the top-end subscription will cost you $199 monthly. You can have anywhere between one to 15 staff users at any given time and between 1,000 to 8,000 users online, depending on your subscription. All these include managed hosting and a whole roster of tools and integrations for a stellar blog.

ghost-pricing
ghost-pricing

 

WordPress.com:

Like Ghost vs WordPress, WordPress subscriptions are surprisingly cheap, ranging from $3.30 monthly for the Personal plan to $35.00 for the eCommerce plan. However, we can’t help but feel let down by the prices because the bulk of the support and functionality is only available for the two top-tier plans.

wordpress-com-plans-pricing
wordpress-com-plans-pricing
Winner – Ghost! within our ‘Pricing' WordPress vs Ghost comparison. Both Ghost WordPress are open-source platforms, but we think Ghost offers greater value.

Comparison Winner: WordPress vs Ghost

We’ll be honest: this looked like it would be a draw at this Ghost CMS vs WordPress .com showdown. Admittedly, both Ghost WordPress are robust blogging platforms but we are giving this verdict in WordPress.com as comparison winner.

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Conclusion and Recommendation:

To wrap our Ghost CMS v WordPress .com platform comparison;

What is Ghost best for?

Ghost is a simplified version of WordPress.com It is definitely a blogging and online publication platform, so it works best for writers, authors, and journalists. Ghost has more native functionality and a host of other benefits, and therefore, it definitely delivers bang for your buck. However, if you want to build a stunning-looking website, you should consider Ghost vs Squarespace.

What is WordPress.com best for?

WordPress.com is a highly flexible and scalable blogging platform. While it has proven its strength as a CMS,  it is certainly coming into its own as a force to contend with when it comes to eCommerce with the WooCommerce plugin.

Final Word:

While we have given our unbiased opinion regarding the best possible blogging platform between WordPress vs Ghost, we suggest that you do some shopping around. There may be other platforms that are more in keeping with your specific site or blog building needs.


That’s all for now:

If you've read our WordPress vs Ghost comparison up to here, we are grateful. Remember to always keep abreast of the latest developments on website builders, eCommerce, and other Ghost WordPress alternative comparison articles, such as the ones below;

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