Prismic FAQ: direct answers to common questions

Learn about Prismic by reading questions and answers. It’s almost like talking to a human – and maybe even better.

What is the value of Prismic

For everyone

  • With Prismic, teams of developers and marketers/editors/content managers can create websites and apps with instantly updatable content and custom design

For developers

  • Prismic enables front-end developers to build websites and apps using any technology, programming language and framework: React, Angular, Node, Laravel, Rails, vanilla JS/PHP/Ruby, the list goes on

For content managers and marketers

  • Prismic makes content teams independent, so that they can produce new pages themselves – without asking for help from developers

For PMs and buyers

  • Prismic makes content management more efficient by selectively addressing the needs of developers and content teams. For developers, the headless API-centric architecture enables them to use any technology they like, which increases the speed and quality of development. Meanwhile, the content editing features make marketers and content managers more independent, resulting into faster time-to-market for new materials.

What is Prismic - short answer

  • A CMS – content management system
  • Specifically, a headless, API-first, hosted, proprietary CMS – with a web app for creating and publishing content

What is a headless CMS

It's a CMS with an API. We also wrote a 500-word article that explains the concept of headless in detail – have a look if you'd like to know more.

What problem does Prismic solve

  • It’s 2018 already, but building simple websites is still surprisingly hard: most CMSes make either developers or content managers suffer (often both)
  • Having experienced that first-hand, we set out to create a CMS that would make it possible to control content in websites and apps in a way that respects both developers and editors – and maybe is even a bit enjoyable

What’s special or different about Prismic

Developers can work with any technology

  • What: Developers can use their preferred tools and programming languages to build websites and apps
  • Why: Because of the Prismic content API and SDKs for major languages

Content teams become independent

  • What: Content managers can update content in websites and apps, instantly and independently
  • Why: Because editors can create, edit and publish content in the authoring environment (Writing Room) without involving developers

No infrastructure management

  • What: Prismic doesn’t require infrastructure setup, configuration and maintenance. Teams can start building a project immediately, not having to do anything
  • Why: The Prismic team maintains its own content infrastructure (the “cloud”)

What is Prismic - slightly longer answer

Technically speaking, Prismic is 2 things:

  • Writing Room. The place where content managers work. It’s a web application. It's very similar to what's called "admin panel" in many other CMSes.
  • API & content backend. The place where all content created is stored. Developers query the API when they need to plug some content into their project.

How is Prismic different from other CMSes

Compatible with every technology

Developers can use whatever tools/languages they choose to build their projects 

Headless, not monolith

Developers get to build a custom frontend instead of working with template configuration or proprietary technology

API-first, not WYSIWIG

All content created in Prismic is available via an API, so that any app can fetch it

Hosted, not maintain-it-yourself

The team behind Prismic maintains both the software and the infrastructure where it’s running, so that teams can start working on their projects immediately, without having to set up anything

Proprietary, not open source

The Prismic team maintains the software and infrastructure behind Prismic and provides support if something ever goes wrong. (We love the open source philosophy, and we obviously use a lot of open source tools ourselves. So far we've been focusing on building a profitable company, but we do intend to make some parts of Prismic open source.)

Editing environment built around content teams’ workflows

Prismic is not just a UI on top of a database. It provides important editorial features such as rich editor, collaborative editing, live and shareable preview, dynamic layouts, revision history, scheduled publishing.

What people make with Prismic

Projects with custom design and UX which are hard or impossible to make with existing website builders (Wix, Squarespace, etc.) or template-based CMSes (Drupal, WordPress, Joomla, etc.)

  • Websites: landing pages, e-commerce websites, editorial projects, promo websites, static sites, etc.
  • Native apps of any kind
  • Anything else that is online and involves content and can be built by a developer

What kind of people can get the most out of Prismic

Small teams (2–20 people, regardless of company size) who 

  • want to choose their own technology stack
  • like to customize design and UX
  • don’t want to take care of the infrastructure
  • prefer to iterate and release projects quickly

Speaking of job titles,

  • Content and marketing teams use Prismic to edit words and pictures in websites and apps
  • Developers use Prismic to build frontends of said websites and apps
  • Content strategists use Prismic to create information architecture of a project

What Prismic is not for

  • Simple 1-page websites – because there are simpler tools to achieve that goal, such as visual website builders (Wix, Squarespace, etc.)
  • Mobile/data backend like Parse – because Prismic addresses the workflows which are specific to content management and authoring experience (it's not just an API on top of a database)
  • We're constantly thinking of more things to add to this list

Who Prismic is not for

  • Teams without developers
  • Teams that prefer visual website builders
  • Teams that insist on maintaining their own servers
  • Teams that don't put emphasis on authoring experience

My question isn't listed here 🤔

We love questions! They are the little cornerstones of curiosity. Send yours to contact@prismic.io – we'll do our best to reply as soon as humanly possible.