Websites, libraries or plugins to create content through a CMS and compile to static HTML pages.



Write front-end code with Gatsby, Hugo, Jekyll or VuePress and push to your Git repo. Forestry will pull in your commits and update the CMS.

Invite your team to create content in a rich UI. Their updates get committed back without merge conflicts.

Forestry does not actually build or host your website - it just a pretty CMS view which controls users and editing of content. It does have a preview mode for fast building on a private randomized URL.

I like this and found this experience similar to the Jekyll Admin view, but with more functionality.

Their is a free tier - pricing.

Forestry supports a few site generators (list), summarized here below and grouped by language.

  • JavaScript
    • Next JS
    • Vue-based
      • Vue JS
      • Nuxt JS
      • VuePress
    • Gatsby
    • Eleventy
  • Ruby
    • Jekyll
  • Go
    • Hugo

Forestry has some great quickstart options, covering a couple of the languages.



This acts as a CMS for Jekyll sites hosted on GitHub. I found this difficult to setup the way I wanted and get my head around and it had a few limitations compared with Forestry, so after trying out a few Siteleaf projects I stopped using it.

Changes through Siteleaf create commits in GitHub. When you have YAML metadata in the frontmatter of your sites, these will be formatted according to Siteleaf’s styling, removing any comments. Also, any files without extensions become .md files. I didn’t what it did to my project.

Netlify CMS


    Open source content management for your Git workflow

    Use Netlify CMS with any static site generator for a faster and more flexible web project Netlify supports functionality control user access for the application’s admin view which works for a CMS. Netlify itself does not have a CMS view, but you can provide your own admin index page and config for your Jekyll or Hugo site. I don’t know what else Netlify supports.

Netlify CMS supports user management and inviting users by email.

The limitation on number of users is based on your Netlify account and the Netlify site’s details. You’ll be the admin user and you can invite other users, up to a limit of about 5 I think on the free tier. There is also a way to have 100 users, but that makes that any person who views the site can register, which you may not want.

This integrates with a few static site generators. So far I have encountered these used with Netlify:


Ruby-based static site generator.


I used a Netlify CMS quickstart for Hugo. Unfortunately, you cannot run the admin view locally (the admin page points to Netlify) which means content is updated on the remote and not locally. Also, the admin view’s content rules and preview ability needs to be maintained and kept in sync with your main application.

I found this tedious and too much effort, so I went with another solution. Perhaps there are other ways to use a Hugo CMS which are easier.

Jekyll Admin

Homepage: Repo: jekyll-admin

A Jekyll plugin that provides users with a traditional CMS-style graphical interface to author content and administer Jekyll sites. The project is divided into two parts. A Ruby-based HTTP API that handles Jekyll and filesystem operations, and a Javascript-based front end, built on that API.


Basic steps to get this working locally:

  1. Add the gem to your Gemfile under :jekyll_plugins.
  2. Install gems.
  3. Start Jekyll server.
  4. Go to http://localhost:4000/admin/. This is always from the root, so ignore any base URL.


  • You do not have to login, as there are no users. This is simple and easy.
  • You can get up and running without code - you do not need to add any config file or HTML file specific to the admin view. The admin view immediately allows you to edit the files in your project easily.
  • YAML files can be edited as text or in a more structured way (though comments will be removed when you save).
  • When you save a change in admin view, the files will be updated locally and the site will rebuild.


  • Note that the livereload flag will be applied automatically when starting the Jekyll server with this plugin enabled.
  • It will prevent rebuilding on changes on files made through the IDE and will only rebuild on changes made through admin UI. This can be inconvenient if you are switching between the admin view and your IDE for editing, but it not too annoying. And I suppose it encourages you to stick to the admin view, although some things are more appropriate or only possible in the IDE view.


Unfortunately you cannot setup an admin view for a CMS on a GitHub Pages site, as GitHub Pages does not support user login.

With some customization (config file and HTML), you can access this admin view in Netlify through their Netlify CMS integration for managing user access.

Ease of use

This CMS is probably targeted at developers. It unfortunately requires a lot of knowledge about the Jekyll ecosystem of liquid/markdown, functions, layouts and so on. So you might have to write code in your CMS and edit YAML. But this can still make you more productive as a developer using a CMS rather than an IDE.

From my little spend spent on Forestry, I found that better as a no-code solution.

Jekyll Manager

Homepage: Repo: jekyll-admin

A repackaged Jekyll Admin fork with some alterations.

This has some extra features which come in useful. See the links for more info. Details for Jekyll Admin above apply here.



I’ve not used this before but came across it through a Storyblok Nuxt quickstart repo for Netlify. storyblok/nuxtwebsite

Free for use with one user.


  • Homepage:

    CloudCannon has everything you need to build, host and update Jekyll websites

  • Features:](
  • Pricing:


Targeted at building a documentation site, Gitbook allows you to use their CMS view to build and host a site which is synced to GitHub. The code synced to your repo is minimal though but becomes a full site when viewed through their editor / user-facing view.

I’ve also seen Gitbook built standalone using an NPM package but don’t know how much is involved there and what it does.