Ghost(Pro) and Developing a Website Locally

Hello, I am new to Ghost and website development, and have found myself confused by which development tools I should be using.

Where I started:

  1. I signed up for Ghost(Pro).
  2. My short-term goal is to launch a single-column blog that displays full-posts, most recent first, with ten appearing on the home page (and all subsequent index pages).
  3. My longer-term goal is to index all these blog posts by categories, tags, and publication month/year.
  4. I understand that in order to get the functionality I want, I need to edit a Ghost theme locally, and that the Casper theme is a good place to start.
  5. Following the instructions provided in the Ghost developer documentation, I successfully installed Ghost locally. I planned to use this local install in conjunction with VS Code to develop the website I wanted.

The issue that led me to question if I were on the right path:

  1. When navigating to http://localhost:2368/ghost, however, I was prompted to sign-up for Ghost all over again.
  2. This sign-up is separate from the Ghost(Pro) subscription that I already have, which leads me to believe I may have difficulty reconciling the two further down the line when I am finally ready to launch my website.
  3. Searching the forums, I came across this discussion: How to bring local website to Ghost(Pro), which leads me to believe I might pursue a better/different path. In the discussion user @DavidDarnes suggested that someone having similar issues to myself instead “set it up as a GitHub repo and then use GitHub Action to automatically deploy changes to a Ghost(Pro) site.”

My questions:

  1. Would it make more sense for someone in my situation to go the Github integration route to develop my website locally or to continue down the local install route I started with?
  2. If I continue down the initial route, is it possible to merge the site I build with my Ghost(Pro) subscription?
  3. Does developing the site via a Github repo give me the same ability to make the changes to the Casper template that I would like to make as I would have developing the site locally using VS Code?

I appreciate any direction someone may be able to give. And knowing that I am new and likely not explaining myself clearly (or even asking the right questions), please do not hesitate to ask me for clarifications. Thank you.

Hi there! Welcome to Ghost.

You’re on the right path but missing a few information pieces.

The local installation and your Ghost(Pro) instance are totally independent. This is so that the content (posts, pages, etc.) and your theme are separate, which makes it easy to switch themes, export content, etc.

The workflow, then, is as follows:

  1. Write and publish content on Ghost(Pro)
  2. Develop your theme locally
  3. Use the GitHub Action to sync your theme from your local environment to Ghost(Pro)

Check out this tutorial for more on how this works:

Here’s info on the GitHub Action:


Thank you for clarifying my workflow. This makes sense. I was able to get everything set up on the Ghost end and the the Github end, and am now rolling. I appreciate it.