General concepts > Overview


    DatoCMS is a cloud-based headless CMS designed to work with websites, mobile apps and server-side applications of any kind. Freelancers, agencies and startups use DatoCMS to allow non-technical clients and team members to manage the content of their digital products within a web-based CMS.

    What does "headless CMS" mean?

    A headless CMS clearly separates the actual content from the display layer and the front-end user experience.

    The headless CMS concept is one born of the demands of the digital era and a business’s need to focus on engaging customers with personalized content via multiple channels at all stages of the customer journey.

    As the content in a headless CMS is considered pure (because it has no presentation layer attached) just one instance of it can be used for display on any device; website, mobile, tablet, Internet of Things devices, smart watches, etc.


    DatoCMS provides a content infrastructure that comprises different APIs for working with your content. Each of these APIs serve a different purpose, so which one to use depends on what you want to do:

    • To obtain content for presentation to users on a website or app, it is recommended that you utilize either the Content Delivery API or the Real-time Updates API. The latter is preferable if you require dynamic content that can be updated in real-time, delivering events as they happen.

    • If you want to programmatically create or update content items, or make any other change to your project/schema, use the Content Management API.

    One account, multiple projects

    Once you signup to DatoCMS and create your account, you'll be able to create an arbitrary number of different projects. For each one of those you'll be given an administrative area at a specific domain (ie. https://[my-project] from which you'll be able to invite a number of collaborators to manage its specific content. All the projects you create will be completely isolated from each other.

    New to DatoCMS?

    If you want to get started with DatoCMS and learn the basics, check out these video tutorials for beginners!