How to add DATO CMS to an existing static website on Godaddy

I’m trying to use Dato CMS on an existing website but not sure how to proceed with it. I took over the management of the pages and would like to use a CMS to update content. Any ideas on how to proceed ?

hello @ijespal and welcome to Community!

I think that integrating with your static sites depends a lot on how you are generating that. Can you please give me some info on how you create your static site? Are you using a static site generator? Which one?

Hi mat_jack,

Thanks responding to my message. I’m not using a static web generator but I think the original developer probably used one. Not sure though because all I received was flat html files. I then hosted the files on godaddy.

For what it’s worth, I don’t think GoDaddy really caters to the headless systems. They are designed for simple sites running plain HTML, GoDaddy’s own WYSIWYG system, or traditional CMSes like Wordpress.

If all you have are a bunch of static HTML files of unknown origin, and no access to the original templates, you’ll have to hook everything yourself. It’s a pain and will take a long time because you’re basically reverse engineering the output and trying to figure out how it was modeled and how the templates were built.

If I were you, I’d consider:

  1. If you’re stuck with GoDaddy, maybe move your content into their WYSIWYG website builder system instead
  2. Consider a file-based CMS like Grav instead of a headless system, so you can more easily modify your existing HTML into templates and they can all live together
  3. If you really want to go headless, consider Next.js + Dato, probably hosted on Vercel. That will make your life a lot easier than trying to squeeze this stack onto GoDaddy. Other languages & frameworks are available too, like if you wanted to do it in PHP or Ruby.
  4. If SEO and graceful degradation aren’t important, you can also consider making the whole thing a clientside single page app, using clientside JS to talk to Dato.

But in general, GoDaddy just hosts a bunch of static files. To generate them from a headless CMS (Dato), you need some sort of build system, a template system, and a deployment system. It’s a lot of work to configure yourself, which is why Next.js + Vercel takes care of all that stuff to let you focus on building templates & content.

It’s basically a question of pre-configured tooling. It’s possible to configure this stack to deploy to GoDaddy, but you have to set up everything yourself, every step of the way, vs the one-click integrations & deployments if you use Next + Vercel.

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Thank you very much @roger!!

Also @ijespal if you want to read more, you can have a read here: Gatsby - Introduction - DatoCMS Docs it’s a guide meant for Gatsby, but the intro is valid for whatever static generator.

Good luck!

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Thank you so much @roger for the detailed information. I’ll take a look at the options you’ve mentioned here.

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Thank you @mat_jack1. I’ll check it out. Thanks again.

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