What sets Ghost apart from other products is that you can publish content and grow your audience using the same platform. Rather than posting content and hoping someone is listening, you can attract signups and build a real audience. The feature that makes all this possible is called Portal.
Portal is an embedded interface for your audience to sign up to your site. It works on every Ghost site, with every theme, and for any type of publisher.
You can customize the design, content, and settings of Portal, and decide whether you just want people to sign up to a free newsletter, or run a full premium publication with paid subscriptions.
Once people sign up, they'll receive an email confirmation with a link to click. The link acts as an automatic sign-in, so subscribers will be automatically signed-in to your site when they click on it.
There are many benefits to accepting sign ups on your Ghost publication:
- Subscribers become registered members, so you can choose to restrict access to posts and pages and make them accessible to members only.
- All members sign in using secure email authentication links, so there are no passwords for people to set or forget, and you don't need to worry about spam.
- You can send any post to members, or a segment of your members, as an email newsletter in just a few clicks.
- Once visitors become members, you'll get real data about which posts they've read, and which emails they've opened.
Portal makes all of this possible. It appears by default as a floating button in the bottom-right corner of your site. When people are logged out, clicking it will open a sign-up/sign-in window. When members are logged in, clicking the Portal button will open the account menu where they can edit their name, email, and subscription settings.
The floating Portal button is completely optional. If you prefer, you can add manual links to your content, navigation, or theme to trigger it instead.
Like this: Subscribe to the Ghost newsletter here!
Social networks go in and out of fashion all the time. Email addresses are timeless.
Now that you've started to think about growing your audience, lets take a look at how you can deliver new content to them seamlessly, by sending new posts as email newsletters.