If you are looking for a WordPress alternative that is more focused on writing and membership websites then Ghost can be a good alternative.
This article will check some of the differences between WordPress and Ghost so you can choose your blogging platform.
WordPress is powering more than 35% percent of the Web so as you imagine it has a lot of support and needs to be flexible to accommodate everyone. Some in the community are feeling that it become quite cluttered and are looking around for some good alternatives.
Ghost can be the platform for some that don’t want to worry a lot about adding fancy things to their website and just write.
The first thing someone should look at when choosing any platform is where it is hosted. Hosting plays an important role in impacting visitors and security.
WordPress can be hosted everywhere, you can even host it for free with some services and you don’t need any special skill. Some of the most know hosting companies is SiteGround but you can host WordPress on VPS thru Hetzner or DigitalOcean you can check CloudPanel Install and Hetzner Review articles to find out more.
Ghost doesn’t have a big community and there aren’t many hosting providers that can help with hosting out of the box. The most used hosting is directly on Ghost.org where they are offering hosting plans starting with $9 so if you want to just start writing that will be the way to go. Another option to go with is self-hosted on VPS services like Hetzner or DigitalOcean. For this you need to be technical is not for everyone.
The place where you will spend most of the time is the Admin UI to write articles in general.
WordPress is coming with a more cluttered UI than Ghost and you will need to get familiarized with it. Below is a picture of the standard WordPress UI:
Ghost is having a more easy-to-use UI with fewer features and options. For new users will be easier to be used. After you do the basic configs you just need to worry about posting.
For complete cooperation on the UI side and how the posting experience is different on both check the video.
WordPress can be extended with plugins and doesn’t come with everything you need by default. For instance, if you want to have a better SEO you need to install a plugin on WordPress, Gost is having this by default. Another thing by default that exists in Ghost is caching, in WordPress, you need to install a plugin.
Newsletter and Memberships are default features that are offered directly in the installation. With WordPress, you need to choose the plugin and configure it to have these features enabled.
Maybe in the beginning you only need a few things but with the time that could change. With Ghost, you don’t have a lot of flexibility you have the default setting and you don’t have the option to extend it easily via plugins.
For instance, maybe in the future, you want to add advertising or affiliate links to your blog to earn some money. With WordPress, you can do all of these things easily with plugins or maybe the theme has already built-in advertising features. With Ghost, you don’t have this option and you will get stuck with what you have.
Themes are the most basic ones when it comes to Ghost and you can’t make advanced configurations.
Most in the Ghost community are praising the performance that Ghost has as it comes with a good performance out of the box. Ghost is built with nodejs which is fast by default and you don’t need to do any changes.
WordPress is built with PHP and you need to make some changes so it may be fast, you need to install caching plugins and be selective with the theme you have or plugins you install.
Bellow are the 2 tested done on one Ghost website with only 1 post and Wpdoze.com website that has all the WordPress performance configurations and CDN. Both are routed thru Cloudflare and hosted on same server:
The results for WordPress are much better but I needed to optimize it for performance, but you need to keep in mind that the website in WordPress have a few plugins and all it needs + 150+ posts, Ghost it has 1 post with a webp image.
I am not impressed at all of Ghost performance, and most of WordPress websites with no optimization have that speed.
WordPress has an option (with WP Rocket) to not load an Youtube video and in Ghost you don’t have that, if you add a vide and run the performance test the bellow will happen:
I hope this article helped you make a decision of what to choose and you made the decision that best suits your needs. I am WordPress fan and this will not going to change any time soon. WordPress is moving to right direction from my point of view.