Flatpress vs. Gatsby: Choosing the Right CMS for Your Organization

Flatpress vs. Gatsby: Choosing the Right CMS for Your Organization


Welcome to our comprehensive comparison of two popular Content Management Systems (CMS) - Flatpress and Gatsby. As digital leaders and decision-makers, you understand the importance of choosing the right CMS that suits your organization's needs. In this guide, we will explore the key features and functionalities of both Flatpress and Gatsby, helping you make an informed decision. Let's dive in!

Foundations of CMS

Flatpress is a lightweight and simple CMS that takes a minimalist approach. It is built using PHP and relies on a flat-file database system, meaning it doesn't require a database server like MySQL. This makes Flatpress easy to set up and maintain, making it an ideal solution for small to medium-sized websites.

On the other hand, Gatsby is a modern CMS that leverages the power of the React framework. It follows a static site generation approach, where content is pre-compiled into static HTML files. This results in incredibly fast websites with excellent performance and scalability. Gatsby also offers a vast ecosystem of plugins and themes to extend its capabilities.

In terms of foundations, Flatpress provides a straightforward and lightweight solution, while Gatsby offers a modern and powerful framework for building high-performance websites.

Now, let's move on to the next section and explore the design and user experience aspects of both CMS.

Design & User Experience

Design and user experience are critical factors in determining the success of a CMS. Flatpress provides a simple and intuitive user interface, allowing users to easily manage their content and website. It offers a basic theme system, allowing users to customize the look and feel of their site through CSS modifications. However, the design options are limited compared to other CMS options.

Gatsby, on the other hand, offers a highly flexible and customizable design system. Thanks to its integration with React, it enables developers to create dynamic and interactive user interfaces. Gatsby also provides a wide range of pre-built themes and templates, making it easier for users to get started with their website design. Additionally, Gatsby's rich plugin ecosystem allows users to easily enhance their site's design and functionality.

If you value simplicity and ease of use, Flatpress could be a suitable choice. However, if you seek extensive design flexibility and modern user experiences, Gatsby should be on your radar.

Next, we will evaluate the content management capabilities of both Flatpress and Gatsby.

Content Management

Content management is at the core of a CMS, and both Flatpress and Gatsby offer unique approaches. Flatpress provides a basic content creation and editing interface, allowing users to easily write and publish their articles. It supports multiple authors, categories, tags, and even has a built-in commenting system.

Gatsby, on the other hand, provides a more sophisticated content management system. It can source content from various data sources, including headless CMSs like WordPress or Sanity. Gatsby's GraphQL-based data layer allows developers to query content and build complex data relationships easily. This provides more flexibility and dynamic content possibilities for your website.

If you are looking for a lightweight CMS with simple content management capabilities, Flatpress can meet your requirements. However, if you need advanced content management features and the ability to pull data from various sources, Gatsby offers a more robust solution.

Now, let's move on to the next section and explore the collaboration and user management features of both CMS.

Collaboration & User Management

Collaboration and user management are crucial aspects of a CMS, especially for larger organizations with multiple content contributors. Flatpress includes basic user management functionalities, allowing you to create user accounts with different roles and permissions. However, it lacks advanced collaboration features such as workflow management, content versioning, and editorial calendars.

Gatsby, on the other hand, can integrate with headless CMSs that offer robust collaboration features. By connecting Gatsby with a headless CMS like Sanity or Contentful, you can leverage their powerful collaboration and editorial workflow capabilities. This integration allows multiple users to work on content simultaneously, track changes, and manage content approval processes effectively.

If you require advanced collaboration and workflow management features, Gatsby's integration with headless CMSs provides a more comprehensive solution. However, for simpler collaboration needs, Flatpress may suffice.

Performance, Scalability, & Hosting

When it comes to performance, scalability, and hosting, Gatsby has a significant advantage over Flatpress. Gatsby's static site generation approach generates highly optimized websites that load quickly, providing an excellent user experience. Since Gatsby sites are served as static files, they can handle high levels of traffic without putting undue strain on the server.

Flatpress, being a lightweight PHP-based CMS, also offers decent performance. However, it may not be as scalable as Gatsby due to its reliance on a flat-file database. If your website requires frequent updates or experiences high traffic volumes, Flatpress may struggle to deliver the same level of performance and scalability as Gatsby.

When it comes to hosting options, Flatpress can be hosted on almost any PHP-compatible server, making it easy to find suitable hosting providers. Gatsby, being a static site generator, can be hosted on various platforms, including static hosting providers like Netlify or cloud services like AWS or Google Cloud.

If performance, scalability, and flexible hosting options are crucial for your website, Gatsby is the clear winner compared to Flatpress.

Customization, Extensions, & Ecosystem

Customization and extensibility are essential factors to consider when choosing a CMS. Flatpress offers a straightforward theme system, allowing users to modify the appearance of their site through CSS. However, Flatpress lacks a vast ecosystem of pre-built themes and plugins, resulting in limited customization options.

On the other hand, Gatsby shines in terms of customization and extensibility. Its large and active community has developed a wide range of themes and plugins that can be easily integrated into your Gatsby site. The Gatsby ecosystem offers solutions for almost any use case, whether you need additional functionality or a unique design.

Gatsby's flexibility also comes from its integration with various data sources, allowing you to pull in content from diverse systems like WordPress, CMSs, or APIs. This versatility enables you to build complex and customized websites tailored to your specific needs.

If you prioritize extensive customization options and a thriving ecosystem, Gatsby is the better choice over Flatpress.

SEO, Marketing, & Monetization

Search Engine Optimization (SEO), marketing, and monetization are essential aspects of any CMS. Flatpress offers basic SEO features, such as customizable meta tags and clean URL structures. However, it lacks advanced SEO functionalities and built-in marketing tools.

Gatsby, meanwhile, provides excellent SEO capabilities out of the box due to its static site generation approach, resulting in faster page load times and better search engine rankings. Gatsby also offers various plugins and integrations for advanced SEO optimization and marketing automation. Additionally, Gatsby's flexibility allows easy integration with monetization platforms like Google AdSense or e-commerce solutions.

If you want to prioritize SEO, marketing, and monetization features, Gatsby provides a more comprehensive solution compared to Flatpress.

Security & Compliance

Ensuring the security and compliance of your website is of utmost importance. Flatpress has a decent security track record due to its lightweight and minimalist nature. However, it lacks advanced security features and may require additional plugins or customization to enhance security.

Gatsby, being a static site generator, offers inherent security benefits. Since there is no database or server-side processing, the attack surface for potential vulnerabilities is significantly reduced. Additionally, Gatsby benefits from the robust security features of the hosting platform it is deployed on.

Both Flatpress and Gatsby require regular updates to their core and plugins/themes to ensure security patches are applied promptly. Furthermore, depending on your specific compliance requirements, you may need to evaluate additional measures when using either CMS.

In terms of security and compliance, Gatsby provides a more secure foundation compared to Flatpress. However, implementing best practices and adhering to security measures is crucial regardless of the CMS you choose.

Migration, Support, & Maintenance

When considering a CMS, it's essential to evaluate the ease of migration, available support options, and maintenance requirements.

Flatpress, being a lightweight CMS, offers a relatively straightforward migration process. However, since it relies on a specific file structure, migrating from Flatpress to another CMS may require manual data transfer and significant effort.

Gatsby, on the other hand, can be more complex to migrate due to its reliance on the React framework and a more sophisticated development environment. However, the Gatsby community provides extensive documentation and resources, making the migration process smoother. Additionally, Gatsby's rich ecosystem ensures a wide range of community support and developer expertise.

Regarding maintenance, Flatpress typically requires less maintenance due to its simplicity. However, regular updates and security patches should still be applied. Gatsby, being a more complex framework, may require more frequent updates and a deeper understanding of the underlying technologies.

Considering migration, support, and maintenance, both Flatpress and Gatsby have their considerations. It's important to assess your organization's resources and technical capabilities to make an informed choice.


In conclusion, both Flatpress and Gatsby offer unique features and capabilities. Flatpress excels in simplicity, ease of use, and lightweight performance, making it suitable for small to medium-sized websites. On the other hand, Gatsby provides a modern, scalable, and highly customizable CMS solution, suitable for larger organizations with more complex requirements.

If you value simplicity, lightweight performance, and straightforward content management, Flatpress can be a viable choice. However, if you seek extensive customization options, modern design possibilities, robust content management features, and a thriving ecosystem, Gatsby should be your CMS of choice.

Ultimately, the decision between Flatpress and Gatsby depends on your specific needs and priorities. We hope this comprehensive comparison guide has provided valuable insights to help you make an informed decision for your organization's content management system.


Martin Dejnicki
Martin Dejnicki

Martin is a digital product innovator and pioneer who built and optimized his first website back in 1996 when he was 16 years old. Since then, he has helped many companies win in the digital space, including Walmart, IBM, Rogers, Canada Post, TMX Group and TD Securities. Recently, he worked with the Deploi team to build an elegant publishing platform for creative writers and a novel algorithmic trading platform.