Is anyone here using their Discourse instance as their entire website?

In order to simplify our technology stack, I’m wondering if we shouldn’t be hosting a website and a forum separately, but rather reconfiguring Discourse to be both our website and our forum together.

I see this is how Pavilion by @angus uses Discourse.

Our website needs are more complicated, though! This is our current website.

I’d be curious to know if there are other Discourse only websites out there that I can explore. Or if you have any ideas for how this could be done.


well, it is possible to use publish pages for your non-posting content

Then use a header sub-menu plugin to give you a top menu with sub-menus or another plug-in to just give you a menu with no subs.

It all depends what your requirements are.


Yes! I think those are a great start.

One of our requirements would be around being able to embed things like our newsletter sign-up form and our donations form.


I also don’t know just how powerful custom styling is for page publishing. I’m wondering if there are examples out there of pages that do have much more stylized pages with things like content blocks with different backgrounds.


The question boils down to three things:

  • the amount of “published content” (a) versus community (b)
  • the proportion of visits to (a) versus (b)
  • your budget

You can serve millions of pageviews from a $5 VPS running WordPress with the right caching and CDN in place. The equivalent Discourse instance would be much, much costlier.

If the majority of traffic and activity occurs within Discourse and there’s no risk of traffic surges to static pages, then hosting it all within Discourse might make sense. In other cases a proper CMS is still king.


Yes. My main landing page is Discourse forum.

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Hmmm you might want to sort out your https and certificate.


15 posts were split to a new topic: SSL cert not working on main Discourse site

Discourse is Rails back-end and extenable so you can do anything a Rails app can do i thought, but are you looking for a silver bullet?

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While it can certainly be done, and it may make sense for your organization, we at Discourse use different software for our main website.

Our main website is static HTML generated by and our blog is a simple WordPress instance.

It really depends on how your organization engineering is structured and what needs and priorities you have.


Thanks for that, Rafael.

I’m anxious to get WordPress out of my life. I was thinking that I"d go with a Discourse-only solution, but I’m now thinking that I’ll go with jekyll for the static/info stuff currently at and migrate just the money-getting parts to Discourse and the up-and-coming discourse-subscriptions plugin. I’m feverishly working on a Discourse plugin that will be a front end for my tools that do installations, upgrades, and other maintenance.


As food for thoughts, here are two websites entirely made with Discourse (the first one uses the Docuss plugin, now deprecated, the second one uses the DiscPage plugin):


Thank you for this framework for making the decision!

I have to be honest and say I’m not sure what this means so I’ll now turn this over to our tech folx. :smile:

@pfaffman Could you say more about this? What are the pain points that you have? I’m still considering CMSs and WordPress is up there.

I would be very interested in staying connected on this!


Yes, this is exactly what I needed. Thank you!


To be fair, I learned php before it was called that, and didn’t keep up with the more modern language that it is now, and my needs are very specific (I need to take money, and do stuff to make a Digital Ocean droplet get created and Discourse get installed on it).

But the last couple times I accepted $500-1000 to do some kind of Discourse/WordPress tweak that I was sure was going to be fast, easy money, I was sorry. And the most recent, I spent a bunch of time and gave back someone’s money. Of course, if they were doing easy stuff, they’d likely not have hired me. I’ve also got another client with a WordPress site with a zillion out of date and un-upgradable plugins. It’s a dumpster fire and somewhere along the way got hacked and has a bunch of porn links in it. Easy enough to avoid.

OTOH, I’ve been using Gravity Forms rather than WooCommerce for the past year or so and have been quite happy using that to take people’s money, both for one-time and subscription stuff (though not integrated with Discourse). (But I can’t get it to fire off the Discourse install exactly when I want it to!)

If you’re doing “standard” stuff and stick to well-supported plugins, you probably won’t be sorry (but I’d use discourse-subscriptions to handle, well, Discourse subscriptions). A quarter of the sites on the internet use WordPress and there’s a good reason for that.