A blog is a great way to show the world who you are and what you're capable of. It allows you to share your insights while also deepening your understanding of particular topics as you write about them. A blog is a great idea for anyone, whether you're an individual looking to grow your personal brand or an employee of a company that wants to demonstrate their industry expertise.

But how do you choose the platform to blog on? There are so many.

This article will introduce you to Sanity Studio, a highly customizable Content Management System (CMS) designed to streamline your content operations. The article will also walk you through how Sanity Studio differs from other CMS providers and what you need to get started. Let's go.

Why Choose Sanity Studio?

Traditional CMS providers tend to limit your control over your blog's layout, structure, and functionality. Sanity Studio doesn't. It allows you to tailor every aspect of the blogging experience. You can customize the editorial interface, design unique content structures, integrate bespoke components, and more.

This is possible because Sanity Studio's core is built on JavaScript and software engineers can easily enhance the CMS' functionality with React. You can create custom components, widgets, plugins, and more to build out the content experience that you want for yourself and your readers.

Sanity Studio is built with the software engineer in mind. As an engineer myself, I'd go as far as to say it's a dream come true. Because it's built on JavaScript and powered by React, it's a familiar environment for engineers to extend and enhance. Third-party API integrations, custom input types, serverless functions, it's all possible with Sanity Studio.

Getting Started with Sanity Studio

These are Sanity Studio's prerequisites:

  • Node.js and npm: Ensure that you have the latest LTS version of Node.js and npm installed. Download from nodejs.org.
  • CLI knowledge: A basic familiarity with the command line or terminal is essential for installing and managing Sanity Studio.
  • JavaScript fundamentals: You need a basic understanding of JavaScript and ideally React for customizing and extending your blog.
  • CMS concepts: You need familiarity with content management systems, including content modeling and publishing workflows.
  • Web development basics: Knowledge of HTML, CSS, and general web development principles is important for front-end customization.

Given that you've read the blog post until this point, I'll assume you have all the above ticked off. Let's now dive deep into the actual blog setup with Sanity Studio:

1. Set up your account. Create a free account on Sanity.io and follow the step-by-step guide to initialize your project.

2. Initialize a project. You'll be prompted to run a specific command, like:

If you encounter any errors during this process, like in the screenshot below, execute sanity login to authenticate with the Sanity API, which should allow you to proceed.

3. Configure the project. Choose your project's location and select your preferred package manager. After completing these initial steps, launch your project locally by running:

bash code
npm run dev

This command serves Sanity Studio at http://localhost:3333 by default.

4. Define your schemas. Initially, your project won't have any schemas defined. Schemas in Sanity Studio are akin to database table definitions and are crucial for creating content. You'll need to define a schema to get started.

Sanity Studio's Structure

Sanity Studio organizes its configurations and content structures through datasets and schemas:

  • Datasets. Like a database, where your content is stored.
  • Schemas. These define the structure of your content, similar to table structures in a database.

Sanity Studio’s initial file structure looks like this:

The schemas folder is where we want to define our first schema. Within sanity.config.js, you can specify your project's dataset and schemas as follows:

How to Create Document Types

1. Post Type. For our blog, we'll start with a Post document type. The document type is like a table in a SQL database or a collection in NoSQL. It acts as the backbone of our blog and defines the structure for each entry. Create a new file named post.ts in the schemas folder with the following content:

2. Category Type. To organize posts, a Category document type is essential. This allows you to group posts by topic. Define this in a new file named category.ts within the schemas folder:

3. Integrating Categories. To link categories with posts, add a reference field to the post schema:

4. Schema Registration. Now update the schemas/index.ts file to include your new document types:

When you now go to Sanity Studio, you will be able to start creating content using your newly created schemas. Hurray!

Conclusion and Next Steps

Sanity Studio is a versatile and powerful CMS that can provide you with the tools and flexibility to manage your blog's content efficiently. If you've followed the above steps, you've laid a solid foundation for your blog. Now you can create engaging content and establish a strong online presence.

But the journey doesn't end here. There are several next steps to consider that will improve your blog, like connecting it to a user interface and making sure that it's easily accessible to your audience. That will be the topic of a future blog post (which will be linked here once published).