Some months ago I tried Ghost for a side blog where I talk about videogames in Spanish. Since the needs for that blog are pretty basic, I thought Ghost would be a good fit.
The setup was not easy. I needed to install nodejs and configure ghost as a service. This required some manual setup to start it whenever the server restarts. Then I struggled with ports, being a substantial time I spent in the process. Once everything was configured, I started the wizard. This part was easy.
Using the admin panel was great. It’s minimalistic, maybe too much for my taste. I would have preferred a more complete editor, with more control over the content, such as a right align tool.
The default theme is very good. It reminds me to Medium. It has good features built in, like the related posts. It is very intuitive and effective in my opinion. The bad side is that child themes are not supported, and this was a big negative point because I wanted to share the design with my main blog, with minor tweaks. This would oblige me to maintain two themes that are almost identical.
The last thing I disliked is obvious: it doesn’t have enough plugins. While being quite fast, I come from a static website generator (Middleman), resulting in a very fast website. I don’t want to spend too much in the server for this blog, so I need it to be as fast as possible, and that is provided by a cache plugin.
In the end the choice was easy: switch to WordPress. And that’s the platform I’m using currently, with a custom-made theme and a bunch of plugins that save me lots of work.
What I liked
- Easy to use admin panel
- Good default theme
- Fast to load
What I disliked
- Hard to setup
- Too basic editor
- Lack of support for child themes
- Plugins ecosystem is still small
I think Ghost is a good option for novice bloggers that don’t need too much, but just a software to write some articles with a good default theme. The setup process should be easier, but at least they provide a hosted solution, just like WordPress.
It’s a very young software, with still a long way to go, but I’m sure it will be a solid alternative to WordPress once he gets a good support for plugins and themes.