You’re interested in a headless CMS for your next project. It sounds like a great fit, but you have questions. How will a modern CMS help you achieve your business and marketing goals? Should you make the move to headless? Are there any downsides?

Modern (Headless) CMS vs. Traditional CMS

WordPress and Drupal are great examples of Traditional CMS. These systems are responsible for storing and displaying the content for your website. Administrators add content using the CMS backend. Website themes are used to construct the website. A traditional CMS manages both the content and the presentation.

In comparison, a modern CMS, like Contentful, is not responsible for your website. A modern CMS sole purpose is to store and make your structured content available for use. Your website (or web app) is completely separate.

Why Go Headless?

Traditional CMS vs Headless CMS
Traditional CMS vs Headless CMS. Courtesy of Contentful

Use your Content Anywhere!

Traditional CMS lock your content in silos. This means that your content is not available outside of that system. With a modern CMS your content is available for your website, your in-store display, your intranet, your mobile app… and so on.

Manage All Your Content Updates in one Place!

You know those changes where you have to update content in multiple systems. You know the ones: logo and branding updates, product updates or price changes? Imagine being able to make the update in one place and the change is displayed everywhere. A Modern CMS lets you do that!

Future-Proof Your Investment

Modern CMS, like Contentful, future-proof your investment by separating the content layer from the presentation layer. You just need to replace the presentation layer. The CMS remains in place, ready to serve content for your next project. No more costly migrations or moving over your content to a new system by hand!

High Performance Websites & Web Apps

We can achieve greater performance metrics with a modern CMS. A headless CMS allows programmers to use modern frameworks to deliver digital experiences quickly and free of the added weight of a CMS.

Contentful vs. WordPress vs. Drupal



  • Well suited for medium-sized to enterprise level projects
  • Content is accessible for all use cases (websites, apps, third-party apps, etc)
  • Clear separation between content and visual presentation
  • API-based from the ground up.
  • Reliably hosted and accessed via Contentful CDN


  • Requires a dedicated team and developers.
  • Proprietary solutions/code



  • Well suited for small to medium-sized traditional CMS projects.
  • Massively supported by passionate developers.
  • Performance with a custom theme is adequate for most website applications.
  • Extendible with well-supported plugin library
  • Supported by a large community of passionate developers.
  • Open Source


  • Content is siloed in the traditional implementation.
  • Only available as a headless solution from version 4.7
  • Security updates should be applied frequently and reviewed.
  • Historically built with website content in mind, not content in general



  • Well suited for medium-sized projects
  • Community-driven by open source developers
  • Great solution for projects that have multiple content types, require multiple permission levels for users or content creation is community-driven.


  • Content is siloed in the traditional implementation.
  • Generally more difficult to use for administrators and content entry teams than WordPress
  • Major version upgrades/ migrations have been difficult in past versions
  • Drupal’s content API was initially introduced as a third-party plugin on version 7 to support headless implementations

Can WordPress & Drupal be used as a Headless CMS?

Yes, you can now use both of these systems as a headless CMS. To permit this functionality WordPress and Drupal have been extended with additional code. The purpose of headless is efficiency. A system should not become more bloated to suit this use case. The benefit of a modern CMS lies in its simple architecture. Contentful is purpose-built for headless. It is the clear winner for a headless CMS implementation at the time of this post.

Choose Hammerhead for Your Next Headless Project.

We are your partner and your success is important to us. We are also Contentful Partners. The future of the platform is important to us. Let’s have a chat if you are going headless for your next project! We are here to solve your challenges and help you achieve your business goals.