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Sanity CMS - why and how to use the market's #1 content platform

Star rating graphics showing 4,7 of 5 for Sanity CMS.
(592 reviews)  4,7 of 5
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Written by Øyvind Østmo
- builder of brands and businesses since 2000
UPDATED Mar 13, 2024
9 minute read
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Everything you need to know about Sanity CMS and how the market's #1 content platform can benefit your business. Future-proof, flexible, and lightning-fast web solutions.

We can build "almost anything" using Sanity, including high-end websites and modern high-converting Shopify stores.

Represent was invited by Sanity to be one of the first official Sanity agency partners, based on our dedication and experience with Sanity CMS. We are honoured 🙏 and proud to continue our journey as a focused Sanity agency.

Sanity is ranked as the best and most flexible headless CMS out there, compared to other popular options like Contentful.

An introduction to "headless" content management

With a headless CMS like Sanity, the content of your business is stored as structured data, totally separate from the presentation. That means that when it's time to design and develop a brand new website, your content can live on and be presented in the new solution without starting from scratch. It also allows you to distribute your content to the web, emails, apps, anywhere.

Graphic showing Sanity CMS structured content omni-platform publishing.

Sanity is ranked as the #1 headless CMS on the market in 2022 and 2023.

Sanity is rated as the #1 headless CMS on G2 based on reviews by hundreds of companies

Star rating graphics showing 4,7 of 5 for Sanity CMS.
(592 reviews)  4,7 of 5

Choosing the right platform to structure and manage the content for your business is critical and should be based on more than the opinion of one or a few individuals. That's where g2.com comes into play, letting you compare platforms side-by-side based on verified reviews from businesses worldwide.

Sanity worlds leading headless CMS on g2.com

Based on reviews from several hundred companies, Sanity is the leading headless CMS in the world. Congratulations! Sanity's position makes us happy here at Represent as we keep grinding to be the leading experts in the world.

We are free to design and develop the editor interface in the same way that we do with the user-facing web application.

10 reasons why we love Sanity

There are many reasons why we love to work with Sanity from a developer perspective. Below are some of the main benefits for our clients and their editors.


The best and most flexible editorial interface

Skjermbilder fra Sanity Studio CMS redaktørgrensesnitt.

We are free to design and develop the editor interface in the same way that we do with the user-facing web application. Each instance of the "Sanity Studio" (where the content work is done) is unique and custom-made for each client we work with. The flexibility opens up a whole new world when it comes to developing engaging editorial experiences and workflows.

Contextual website editing in Sanity CMS with Sanity Presentation.

In 2024 Sanity introduced "Presentation". It allows the editor to split the Sanity Studio into a preview on one side and the content editing panel on the other, and then click any content on the website preview to open up the correct field to edit that content. Read more about Sanity Presentation and see a demo video in this article.


Sanity is FAST!

We develop super-fast and user-friendly websites when we combine Sanity with Next.js (modern React framework) hosted with Vercel. Nothing kills sales faster than a slow site, especially on mobile. Google: 53% of mobile users abandon sites that take over 3 seconds to load.

Vercel speed score on Google Page Speed insights aka Google Lighthouse

The above is a performance review using Lighthouse while rounding off the development of Manymore.com.


Reasonable pricing that scales well

Sanity has a free plan including 3 editors and a certain quota of use. The pricing structure is relatively complex to decode as the price depends on a lot of variables linked to the usage. Here's an attempt to simplify and exemplify:

  • FREE: Somewhere between 150,000 - 250,000 page views pr month (depending on the size/content of the pages).
  • FREE: Unlimited administrators
  • $3 pr 25,000 page views for usage over the above quota.
  • $15 / month pr extra editor
  • The next level after the Free plan is the Team plan at $99 / month which includes 10 editors and about 4 x the usage quote.


Content as structured data

Sanity Studio content as structured data

With a headless CMS like Sanity, the content is structured and stored separately from the website presentation. It can be used across websites, apps, newsletters, and more. You can also save a lot of effort when it's time to restructure or redesign your website, as the content can live on in Sanity for multiple iterations of your website.


Superior collaboration and editorial workflow

Sanity really shines in organizations with several editors working with different content at the same time. The level of control and the usability of version control in the editor is in a class of their own.

Sanity Studio version history

To take the editorial flow to the next level, Sanity offers custom editorial workflows where we can build out Trello-style "kanban" boards where editors can move content along between phases in the editorial workflow.

Sanity custom workflows

All documents (what we call pages and any other piece of content in Sanity) can be edited and published individually. Editors can be assigned custom roles with custom permissions to assure that content is only published after it has been reviewed and approved.


User-friendly image handling

Image hotspots and crops in Sanity Studio

Sanity handles images really well. Both on the website with lightweight images in the right sizes pr device and also in the Sanity Studio where editors can set a hotspot and crop while previewing different crops.


Custom integrations

We can integrate Sanity with just about any system that allows integration. Here are a few examples of how custom integrations we have developed to exchange data between Sanity and other platforms:

  • Mailchimp integration to compose and send newsletters with related articles without ever leaving the Sanity Studio.
  • Dashboard in Sanity Studio displaying data from Memberful (memberships/sales), Google Analytics (web usage statistics), and Mailchimp (newsletters) in a single view for a glance at how the entire content business is doing across platforms.
  • Two-way integration between Hubspot and Sanity to move leads through a sales funnel.

Responsive videos

When we design rich articles with background videos, it's crucial to serve the user high quality video in the right size for their device for the fastest possible load times.

Mux video upload in Sanity Studio

Using the MUX plugin, the editor uploads videos directly in the Sanity Studio. The video is then uploaded to MUX in the background, which processes the video, and makes source files in different sizes for different device types automatically that we can access and display on the website.


Localization - languages and markets

Sanity localization - languages and markets

Sanity supports content in multiple languages. Even simple low-budget websites like the non-profit Support not Protect feature the option to speak to their audience in their native language.


Build like the best, no matter the size of your company

Sanity works well for websites of all sizes, from simple websites to enterprise solutions with content served to multiple websites and other channels in a single instance of the Sanity Studio. Successful brands like Nike, reMarkable, and Sonos build their site on Sanity - the best modern CMS.

Sanity customers


20 Frequently Asked Questions about Sanity

Sanity is ranked as the best headless CMS in the world. But what is Sanity? What is a headless CMS? We are here to answer all your questions.

Head on over to the article below to learn the answers to the top 20 questions Google, and we, get about Sanity.

Sanity CMS FAQs

Top 20 FAQs about Sanity

Is Sanity the #1 CMS? Get the most frequent Sanity questions answered.

Learn more


Modern "headless" e-commerce with Shopify and Sanity CMS

Shopify, the market leading e-commerce platform, has invested in Sanity and developed a tight integration between the two platforms, undoubtedly making Sanity CMS the best option for extending the (very) limited content editing capabilities built into Shopify.

With the “Sanity Connect” Shopify plugin, any changes you make to your product catalogue in Shopify are instantly reflected in the Sanity Studio, where you manage all your content, including enriching your products with additional content.

Learn more about headless commerce with Shopify and Sanity CMS.

Headless Shopify development with Sanity CMS.

Modern "headless" commerce with Shopify and Sanity CMS

Build and scale your online business.

Learn more


"The editor's choice" - quotes about Sanity

The best way to figure out if something is worth a shot: Talk to someone who walked down that path before you. Or the next best thing: Read their stories. See case studies on www.sanity.io/case-studies and some selected quotes below:

We see people take hold of Sanity and run with it. Most times, we never hear from them again. We can get out of the way, so creators can focus on how they are contributing. People who hate CMSes because they feel constrained love Sanity — our designers don’t even realize they’re using a CMS

Jon Wheeler
Senior Product Marketing Engineer, InVision
Read case study

Sanity has given us a clean slate and the opportunity to have our content platform match how the entire organization is thinking about content.

Emily Diamond
VP of Product, Morning Brew
Read story

With Sanity, we can tailor the open-source Studio to meet our content production needs and delight our site visitors, and at the same time use their Content Lake to host our content. We love the agility and “no-ops happy meal” that Sanity brings to the table. It’s a genius approach.

Chad Alderson
Head of Marketing Design & Engineering, Datastax
Read case study


VIDEO: Sanity introduction and demo

Feast your eyes on this fairly extensive introduction and demo of Sanity that we made just for you:

00:00 - Intro
01:30 - Custom content types
07:20 - Images - hotspots and crops
09:40 - Collaboration and version control
12:10 - Content distribution
13:45 - Localization (language support)
15:15 - Previews (web x SEO/SoMe)
16:30 - Global settings and menus
17:25 - An awkward goodbye :)

Also, have a look at the 15 advantages of going custom in website development. that also covers important points of going with custom development on a headless CMS like Sanity vs template-based and no-code web development.

Sanity is the best and most flexible headless CMS out there, compared to other popular options like Contentful.

Why we use Sanity CMS over the alternatives for headless content management

There are many alternative headless content management systems to Sanity CMS. We have worked with Contentful, Prismic, and many more. Here are a couple of reasons why we ended up sticking with Sanity over the other options:


Tried and proven - based on first-hand experience

We have used Sanity for everything from building simple MVP websites to huge solutions like when we replaced 4 separate content platforms with Sanity for a large Norwegian corporation. We have worked with most of the alternatives, we have the experience, and when it comes to Sanity we feel very safe in our choice to stay on our course.


Pricing and scale

Sanity has a pricing model that works well from the smallest website through growth. It scales well without any surprises, compared to Contentful which jumps from the free Community plan to the Team plan starting at $489/month 🤯


The best flexibility for building editor interfaces

Sanity CMS desk interface

We are all about building good solutions which are easy to use and motivating for editors who work in Sanity on a day-to-day basis. Sanity offers the best flexibility to customize the editor interface for the individual use case. We can build and integrate other platforms into the Sanity studio itself, building it out as a very flexible web application.


Global vs local content

In Sanity, we have better flexibility and options as to where content lives, than with a platform like Contentful where all the content is "global". In Sanity, if we have let's say a list of features in a content block, the elements in that list live only within that content block, as opposed to being "related" from a (potentially huge) content archive which is the case with Contentful. It's hard to explain it in an understandable way, but it's a thing :) 


Flexibility in building and hosting the CMS

We can choose to host Sanity CMS ourselves or have it hosted with Sanity that we normally do. The website itself we host with Vercel. We also have all the data schemas and setup for the Sanity studio in Git, giving us full control of the code and versioning as we build and customize the Sanity studio.


Sanity has a promising future

Sanity is a Norwegian company with an incredible team. They raised $39 million in June 2021. We have our deepest faith in the direction they're building their company, team, and product.


It's not just our opinion - Sanity scores better than competitors

In our humble opinion, Sanity is the best and most flexible headless CMS out there, compared to other popular options like Contentful (that may be the closest equivalent). It's not just our opinion though; Hundreds of businesses seem to agree with us on Sanity being superior to Contentful.

When is a custom developed website the right choice?

Head over here for an in-depth article on Should you build your website with code, "no-code", or a website builder?

We're excited to learn...

...about your business and how we can work together to build a success story.

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Øyvind Østmo

Agency Manager

A selection of our Sanity projects

Stories about Sanity