Explaining the Difference Between Shifter Static and Shifter Headless

Jason McClintock | May 18, 2020

You may have noticed that there have been some recent changes here at Shifter. Up until now, we’ve offered one product called Shifter. But recently, we’ve introduced a new product called Shifter Headless. In order to avoid confusion, our original product, previously known as Shifter, has been renamed Shifter Static.

You may be wondering about these products and what the differences between them are. In this article, we’ll walk you through some of the thinking behind why we’ve decided to introduce new products to Shifter and which one might be the best fit for your next project. 

Jamstack Solutions for WordPress

WordPress is something that we care deeply about. Our team is made up of WordPress core contributors, experts, and active community members. When we first launched Shifter in 2016, we had one goal: to push the mission of WordPress forward. We believed the best way to accomplish that mission was and is to shift WordPress to the Jamstack and make cutting edge technologies widely accessible to the WordPress community. Part of making those solutions widely accessible is making sure that our products fulfill the requirements of our customers.

There isn’t a one size fits all solution for every project, and If our customers require different needs, then we need to adapt our products or create new ones to meet those needs. In fact, product development at DigitalCube is completely driven by customer feedback. When one of our customers has a need that requires a new feature and it makes sense for a DigitalCube product, we’ll work to add that feature or to create a new product that fits that need. 

That’s why Shifter has transitioned from being a standalone product, to a platform with a suite of Jamstack products for WordPress. In other words, Shifter is the platform, Shifter Static and Shifter Headless are the products. Each product fits a different need, but both are Jamstack solutions for WordPress. So which product is the right one for you? 

Shifter Static


Quick overview

Great for everyone, from beginners to experts

Convert an existing WordPress site to a static site or create a new one at the click of a button.


Who is it for? 

Shifter static is our original product and a great solution for anyone, from absolute beginners to seasoned WordPress developers. We designed Shifter Static to be a perfect solution for anyone who wants the benefits of a static site along with the WordPress experience. 

What is it?

Shifter Static is a static site generator for WordPress. Shifter Static allows you to use WordPress as you normally would with a static end result. 

How does it work?

We designed Shifter Static to take all the work out of making static WordPress sites. Getting up and running is as simple as a single button click. The way it works is by running WordPress in a temporary environment that only you have access to. Once you’ve spun up that temporary environment, you can use the WordPress dashboard as you normally would, publish your changes, and then generate a live static version of your site that is displayed publicly. You’ll be getting all the benefits of a static site like incredible security and improved performance and SEO.

When should I use Shifter Static?

Shifter Static is a great solution for both creating a new static WordPress site, or migrating an already existing WordPress site. If you’re looking to create a static website without the upfront work that creating a static WordPress site from scratch, Shifter Static is a good solution for you. 

Shifter Headless


Quick Overview

Developer centered solution

Use WordPress as a headless CMS with any modern JavaScript framework.


Who is it for? 

Developers of all types, whether they have WordPress development experience or not. If you’re looking to develop modern sites with your favorite JavaScript framework while delivering your users the WordPress dashboard experience, this is the solution for you.  

What is it?

Shifter Headless allows you to use WordPress as a headless CMS. 

How does it work?

With Shifter Headless, we’ve decoupled the front and back ends. That means that you are able to choose any JavaScript framework you would like to develop modern websites while your end users still get the WordPress dashboard experience. We’ve also made it easy to get started and included several templates to get your project off the ground and running. We’ve also made Shifter Headless intuitive and easy to use, you’ll be able to create a new headless site in seconds.  Unlike Shifter Static, the Shifter Headless WordPress environment is always running and can be accessed at any time by anyone with the correct credentials. 

When should I use Shifter Headless?

If you’re looking to create a headless site with a JavaScript baked framework like Gatsby.js, Vue.js, and more without worrying about the WordPress backend, Shifter Headless is a great solution. 

You drive our Development

Are you still unsure which solution is the right one for your needs? Feel free to reach out to our customer support team and we’ll be happy to chat about your next project. As we mentioned before, all product development at DigitalCube is driven by customer feedback and we sincerely appreciate your input. 

If you’d like to see Shifter Static or Shifter Headless in action for yourself, we offer a free trial for both products, so feel free to try out anything you’d like and let us know how it goes. 

Thanks for using Shifter!

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