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Best Headless CMS for React in 2024

Comparison of the best headless CMS options available on the market, including the best use cases and pricing models for each.

Best Headless CMS for React in 2024

What is a Headless CMS?

A headless CMS is a backend-only CMS built as a content repository that makes content accessible via an API for display on any device. Unlike traditional CMSs, which are tightly coupled with the way the content is presented, a headless CMS allows developers to use their tools and frameworks to create a user interface.


In the fast-evolving world of web development, React remains a cornerstone for building dynamic and scalable applications. To complement its capabilities, many developers turn to headless CMS.

A headless CMS provides a way to manage content separately from the user interface, making it an excellent partner for React based projects. Additionally, when integrated into JAMstack projects headless CMS can significantly enhance performance, security, and scalability. This architecture allows for faster load times, better security from server-side vulnerabilities, and more flexibility in scaling as project demands grow.

Top Headless CMS Options for React

In this article we will be evaluating best headless CMS platforms across a series of critical features. Our assessments will be informed by data from G2, ensuring a comprehensive analysis. Below is the list of features we will be considering:

  • Content
  • Design
  • Platform
  • File Management
  • Workflow
  • Analytics
  • Content Management
  • Design and Development
  • Functionality
  • Support
  • Management
  • Publishing
  • Development

Additionally, if you're interested in the current market overview of headless CMS platforms, G2 has compiled a chart of the best headless CMS options available now. To explore the most recent rankings and reviews, visit the G2 Headless CMS Grid.

Here are some of the best headless CMS that integrate seamlessly with React applications:

1. Sanity CMS

Sanity logo is a powerful open-source CMS with a strong community and extensive plugins. It's highly customizable and scalable, ideal for developers, but can be complex for beginners. Despite some missing basic features, its continuous updates and partnerships highlight its potential for growth.

  • Flexibility and Customization: Sanity offers a highly customizable platform with a real-time editing environment. Its open-source editor, customizable with React, allows developers to tailor the content structure to their needs.
  • Structured Content: Uses Portable Text, a JSON-based approach for content that ensures flexibility and portability.
  • Scalability: Provides robust APIs that handle queries efficiently, making it suitable for enterprise-level applications.
  • Developer Experience: Features an active community and comprehensive documentation which significantly enhance developer engagement and learning.

Sanity interface

Sanity pricing

  • Free
  • Growth: $15/month per user
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

Sanity Pricing

File Management7.9
Content Management8.6
Design and Development8.8

Ideal project for Sanity

Given its flexibility and expandability, Sanity is well-suited for any project, especially those that require experienced developers ready to develop custom solutions.

2. Storyblok

Storyblok logo

Storyblok excels with its intuitive interface and user-friendly design, offering ready-to-use solutions that streamline content management and localization. It's scalable and easily adaptable with custom plugins, keeping up-to-date with regular feature updates. While it has minimal weaknesses, some users might find it less flexible compared to other CMS platforms like Sanity, emphasizing the need for project-specific assessments to determine the best fit.

  • Visual Editor: Storyblok features a unique visual editor that provides a live preview of the changes, making it intuitive for content creators and developers alike.
  • Component-based System: Allows developers to build content blocks as individual React components that can be reused across projects.
  • API-driven: Offers full RESTful and GraphQL APIs, supporting complex integrations and boosting front-end performance.
  • Plugins and Extensions: A rich marketplace of plugins extends functionality, enhancing its adaptability to varied project requirements.

Storyblok interface

Storyblok pricing

  • Community Plan: Free
  • Entry Plan: €99/month
  • Enterprise: €3299/month
  • Enterprise Plus: Custom pricing

Storyblok pricing

File Management8.9
Content Management9.0
Design and Development8.8

Ideal project for Storyblok

Storyblok is ideal for marketing projects that require streamlined content management, from blogs and news sites to extensive article-heavy websites, and can integrate with platforms like Shopify for e-commerce solutions.

3. Contentful

Contentful logo

Contentful stands out with its ready-to-use tools suitable for medium-complexity projects and broad integrations. It supports newcomers through an extensive repository of case studies and maintains high reliability and stability for all users. Despite its age, it stays relevant by integrating modern AI features. However, it may not offer the flexibility that some advanced users require, and its user experience has been surpassed by other platforms.

  • Rich Text Editor: Provides a powerful and flexible rich text editor for managing complex textual content.
  • Multi-language Support: Ideal for global applications, offering extensive options for localization and internationalization.
  • Integrations: Extensive integration capabilities with other tools and services, enhancing workflow automation.
  • APIs: Strong delivery APIs, which are fast and cache-friendly, suited for high-performance environments.

Contentful interface

Contentful pricing

  • Free
  • Basic: $300/month
  • Premium: Custom pricing

Conentful pricing


Ideal project for Contentful

Contentful is an excellent choice for medium-complexity projects that need a quick launch, such as event websites or marketing programs for small businesses.

4. Strapi

Strapi logo

Strapi, as a headless CMS, offers robust flexibility and customization, allowing developers to tailor it to diverse project requirements. It supports a wide range of plugins and integrations, enhancing its functionality. Known for its developer-friendly environment, Strapi facilitates easy content management and API generation. However, its complexity can be a barrier for beginners, and it may require additional configuration to achieve optimal performance. Despite these challenges, Strapi remains a popular choice for those seeking a customizable and scalable CMS solution

  • Open Source: One of the few fully open-source options available, giving developers complete control over their CMS.
  • Self-hosting Capability: Can be self-hosted, providing full control over the hosting environment and security aspects.
  • Customizable UI: Offers a customizable admin panel built with React, making it a natural choice for React developers.
  • Community and Plugins: A vibrant community and a wide range of plugins available for extended functionalities.

Strapi interface

Strapi pricing

  • Community: Free
  • Developer: $29/month
  • Pro: $99/month
  • Team: $499/month
  • Enterprise: Custom

Strapi pricing

Content Management8.6

Ideal Project for Strapi

Strapi is ideal for custom web applications, e-commerce platforms, and multimedia content management where flexibility and scalability are crucial. Its ability to integrate seamlessly with various technologies makes it a top choice for developers needing a customizable and dynamic content management system.

5. Prismic

Prismic logo

Prismic is a CMS known for its user-friendly interface and powerful content modeling features that make it suitable for marketers and developers alike. It offers a simple integration process with modern web technologies, ensuring a smooth workflow for website and app development. Prismic's custom type builder allows for easy content structuring without extensive backend knowledge. While its simplicity is a major advantage, it may lack some of the deeper customization options available in more developer-focused CMSes. Nevertheless, Prismic is widely appreciated for its straightforward setup and maintenance, making it an ideal choice for projects that require rapid development and deployment.

  • Slices Feature: Allows you to define reusable custom content types that can be composed into dynamic web pages.
  • Webhooks and Integration Fields: Supports building complex integrations with other digital tools.
  • Preview Capabilities: Provides robust content preview features to see changes in real-time.
  • Documentation and Support: Extensive documentation and community support are available.

Prismic interface

Prismic pricing

  • Free:
  • Starter: $10/month
  • Small: $25/month
  • Medium: $150/month
  • Platinum: $675/month
  • Enterprise: Custom

Prismic pricing

Automated Publishing8.3
File Management7.9

Ideal project for Prismic

Prismic is perfect for marketing sites, campaign microsites, and brochure sites where ease of content updates and straightforward integrations with existing systems are priorities. Its streamlined content management capabilities make it highly effective for projects that need quick turnarounds and regular content updates without deep technical intervention.

6. Ghost CMS

Ghost logo

Ghost is a headless CMS focused primarily on publishing and blogging, known for its clean, user-friendly interface and fast performance. It specializes in SEO optimization and social media integration, making it an excellent choice for content creators and marketers. Ghost offers a rich editor and a built-in membership and subscription system, which can be advantageous for monetizing content. While its focus is strongly on blogging, this might limit its applicability for more complex websites or applications that require extensive customization.

  • SEO Optimization: Offers built-in SEO features like sitemap generation, meta tags, and canonical tags.
  • Modern Technology Stack: Uses a modern technology stack including Node.js, which is familiar to many React developers.
  • Lightweight and Fast: Designed to be lightweight with a focus on speed and performance.
  • Membership and Subscriptions: Supports membership and subscription features out-of-the-box, ideal for monetization.

Ghost CMS interface

Ghost CMS pricing

  • Starter: from $10/month
  • Creator: $25/month
  • Team: $50/month
  • Business: $199/month

Ghost CMS pricing

User Community8.3

Ideal project for Ghost CMS

Ghost is ideal for blogs, online magazines, and content-driven websites where ease of content creation, management, and SEO are critical. Its streamlined publishing features support a smooth workflow for writers and editors, making it a top choice for projects focused on regular, high-quality content output.

7. Kentico Kontent

Kentico Kontent logo

Kentico Kontent is a headless CMS that emphasizes flexibility, scalability, and collaboration, making it suitable for large teams and enterprise-level projects. It offers rich text and custom elements to tailor content for various outputs, with strong workflow management tools to support content approval processes. Kentico Kontent also integrates well with modern technologies and provides robust API options for seamless multi-channel content delivery. Although it may come with a steeper learning curve and higher cost, its comprehensive feature set and strong support structure make it highly effective for complex digital experiences.

  • Workflow Management: Strong workflow management tools that help larger teams collaborate effectively.
  • Content Modeling: Offers robust content modeling tools to structure content appropriately.
  • API Capabilities: Provides comprehensive API options for pulling data in and out of the CMS.
  • Multi-channel Delivery: Ensures content can be used across different platforms and devices seamlessly.

Kentiko Kontent interface

Kentico Kontent pricing

  • Contact to get a quote
File Management7.9
Content Management8.4
Design and Development8.5

Ideal project for is perfect for enterprise websites, intranets, and digital hubs where collaboration, content governance, and multi-channel distribution are key. Its capabilities are well-suited to organizations that need to maintain consistent branding and quality across large-scale digital platforms.

8. Hygraph (formerly GraphCMS)

Hygraph logo

Hygraph is a headless CMS known for its powerful GraphQL-based content management, which allows for highly flexible and efficient data querying. It supports a multi-model approach to content architecture, enabling users to manage diverse content structures easily. Hygraph excels in delivering content to multiple channels and is particularly adept at handling complex content relationships and rich media management. While its advanced features are a strong asset, they may require a higher level of technical expertise to fully leverage.

  • GraphQL Native: A GraphQL-native CMS that offers powerful developer tools for building complex, queryable APIs.
  • Schema Management: Allows for easy management of content schemas with a user-friendly interface.
  • Real-time Collaboration: Supports real-time collaboration and versioning, which enhances team productivity.
  • Rich Media Management: Advanced handling of media files, supporting a variety of formats.

Hygraph interface

Hygraph pricing

  • Free forever:
  • Professional: $199/month
  • Scale: $799/month
  • Custom: Contact to get a quote

Hygraph pricing

File Management7.9
Content Management8.7

Ideal project for Hygraph

Hygraph is ideal for complex, data-intensive projects such as dynamic websites, digital experiences, and apps that require robust multi-channel content distribution. Its capabilities are especially beneficial for projects that involve intricate content relationships and need to efficiently deliver personalized content across various platforms.

9. Butter CMS

Butter CMS logo

ButterCMS is tailored for developers who need a straightforward and easy-to-use headless CMS with a focus on marketing integration. It provides a marketer-friendly interface, enabling easy content updates without extensive technical knowledge. Butter CMS excels in SEO and blogging capabilities, featuring a variety of tools to enhance content visibility and engagement. Although its features are robust for content management and marketing, it may not be as customizable as some more developer-centric CMS options.

  • Marketing Integration: Particularly strong in marketing integrations, providing tools for SEO, content marketing, and more.
  • Simple API: Focuses on a simple RESTful API that can be quickly integrated with existing projects.
  • SDKs and Libraries: Offers SDKs for popular programming languages, facilitating integration with various tech stacks.
  • Personalization Features: Supports content personalization, crucial for creating tailored user experiences.

Butter CMS interface

Butter CMS pricing

  • Micror: $99/month
  • Startup: $199/month
  • Small Business: $375/month
  • Enterprise + Agency: Custom

Butter CMS pricing

File Management7.9
Content Management8.0
Design and Development7.9

Ideal project for Butter CMS

Butter CMS is ideal for marketing websites, blogs, and eCommerce sites that prioritize content marketing and require seamless integration with existing marketing tools. Its user-friendly nature and strong content delivery features make it particularly suitable for projects that aim to scale content production with minimal developer involvement.

10. Directus

Directus logo

Directus is an open-source headless CMS that stands out for its ability to wrap any SQL database with a dynamic API and an intuitive app for non-technical users. It is highly customizable and can handle any data structure, supporting a wide range of data types and relationships. Directus is particularly valued for its transparent and flexible approach to content management, offering direct database access with real-time updates. While its openness and flexibility are significant advantages, they can also pose challenges in terms of setup and maintenance without proper technical expertise.

  • SQL-based: Allows you to connect directly to a SQL database, exposing the database schema directly through the API without additional layers.
  • Real-time Data: Supports real-time data, which is critical for dynamic and interactive web applications.
  • User Roles and Permissions: Extensive options for managing user roles and permissions, ensuring security and proper access control.
  • Extensible: Highly extensible through custom extensions and hooks.

Directus interface

Directus pricing

  • Self-hosted: License required
  • Professional Cloud: $99/month
  • Enterprise Cloud: Custom

Directus pricing

File Management7.9
Content Management8.4
Design and Development8.3

Ideal project for Directus

Directus is perfect for projects that require direct control over a complex database and need a flexible content management system. It is especially suited for bespoke systems, internal tools, and applications where data integrity and detailed content relationships are critical. Its capabilities make it ideal for businesses looking to create tailored solutions that can evolve with their data management needs.

11. Payload CMS

Payload CMS logo

Payload CMS is a newer entrant in the headless CMS space but has quickly gained attention for its developer-focused features and flexibility. It offers a highly customizable framework that leverages modern JavaScript (using Node.js and React), which is appealing for projects requiring custom server-side logic and a personalized admin UI.

  • Ease of Integration: Designed with developers in mind, Payload CMS offers full TypeScript support and a highly customizable admin UI, making it a perfect match for Next.js applications that utilize TypeScript.
  • Flexibility: It stands out for its deep customization capabilities, allowing full control over the admin UI and the APIs. This level of customization makes it possible to tailor every aspect of the CMS to the project's needs.
  • Performance: Payload CMS is optimized for performance, featuring efficient data handling and delivery mechanisms. This focus on performance is evident in the speed and responsiveness of Next.js applications powered by Payload.
  • Community and Support: Although the community is currently smaller, it's rapidly growing. The developers are actively involved in expanding the documentation and offering support, ensuring users have the resources they need.

Payload CMS interface

Payload CMS pricing

  • Free
  • Standard: $35/month
  • Pro: $199/month
  • Enterprise: Custom

Payload CMS pricing

File Management7.9
Content Management8.2

Ideal project for Payload CMS

Payload CMS is ideal for custom web applications, e-commerce sites, and enterprise solutions that require detailed customization and full control over both frontend and backend interactions. It's particularly suitable for developers looking for a powerful, extensible platform that can be deeply integrated with their project's specific infrastructure and workflow requirements.


In this table, we've compiled our final ratings for the top headless CMS platforms based on data from G2, presenting a clear and concise overview of how each ranks according to our evaluation.

Payload CMS8.3
Ghost CMS8.0
Butter CMS7.9

While each of the CMS options listed offers unique strengths, for React developers particularly, Sanity and Storyblok stand out due to their powerful APIs, seamless integration with React, and superior developer experience. We recommend considering your project requirements, such as scalability, customizability, and ease of use, when choosing the right headless CMS.

Ultimately, both Sanity and Storyblok are highly recommended for their robust feature sets and developer-friendly environments. Whether you prioritize a rich editing interface or extensive customization capabilities, these platforms can significantly enhance your React project's content management strategy.

If you'd like to migrate your project to a Headless CMS or you are building it from scratch - contact us We are a Headless CSM agency and we can help you with the project you have in mind.


Aleksei Zhilyuk

Aleksei Zhilyuk

Business Development Manager at FocusReactive

Best React Headless CMS

Sanity StoryblokDirectusKentico KontentPayload CMSGhost CMSPrismicStrapi ContentfulHygraphButterCMS