Ceros vs Readz
Readz is a powerful alternative to Ceros. Readz offers designers a powerful, responsive, no-code design environment with much better performance at a significantly lower cost.
Hi! Thinking about moving away from Ceros? Trying to decide which platform would be a better fit for you? Or maybe you're evaluating Ceros?
To help you, we thought we’d put together an overview to show the difference between Ceros interactive content, and Readz interactive content.
What's the overall summary?
On Ceros, you can create interactive designs in the Ceros Studio.
You have nice control over your design, and Ceros allows for a good amount of interactive options you can add. You might encounter some limitations while designing, but the trouble starts with the actual result of all your hard design work. Once you look beyond the cool examples on desktop, you might encounter some serious no-no’s that should make you question some choices.

A 'mobile' version, not a responsive one

‘In theory’ there is a mobile version - mobile, but not responsive. Meaning that mobile might just be plain unusable. Simply shrinking content makes for text and content that cannot be read on mobile devices. And mobile can be important - depending on your sector it can be even more significant than desktop traffic.
The Ceros mobile version offers unreadable content
For content to be readable on mobile, it has to be treated differently from its appearance on desktop. Line-lengths need to be reduced, else font sizes will shrink to an unreadable size. Often content that is in columns or next to one another needs to be reflowed. We don't need to go on, you get it, it is basic rules of responsive design.
However, Ceros is different. Try it, check that flashy Ceros content on your mobile phone. Not the example the sales rep sent you, but some real examples.
Here is an example of Ceros on mobile. The desktop view is simply shrunk. Indeed, it is mobile, but definitely not responsive content.
Don't worry if you cannot read it. It's not you. Nobody can.

Good design options in the editor, but really poor performance of the actual result

The quality of the back-end code is under-performing and will sink any SEO aspiration you might have for your Ceros-content.
Hosting on a Ceros domain is the default? That is - if you host your content on your own domain. Somehow most of the examples and customers we spoke to ended up publishing their content on a Ceros’ domain.
Ceros does not use its own product for its core online content
Ceros users complain about performance and poor SEO results. But that’s not the end of it. Some deep, fundamentally wrong coding issues await those who publish their content on Ceros. That came out all Halloweeny, didn't it? But seriously:
Have you ever wondered why Ceros, as a digital content company, does not use its own product for its marketing except in non-critical areas? That’s right. Ceros relies on a different company (yes, that would be WordPress) for its web presence. One would think that with a bit of imagination, the Ceros website content could be designed and hosted as Ceros interactive content. Well, they don’t and no wonder because the Ceros back-end tech is not up to par and would tank things like SEO, performance and sales results. Apparently Ceros' marketing staff is smart and realizes that having a good mobile version is a minimum these days.
The reason why: Dated, insecure, and slow back-end technology
Here are some of the dirty secrets that running standard tests (GT Metrix, or Lighthouse, and others) will reveal. Google’s Web Vitals shows that Ceros can add a multi-second loading delay to your page, due to its inefficient bloated code and large network payload.
Google's testing tools awarded Ceros content with a 17/100. And check out that 'Largest Contentful Paint' score of 16.9 seconds.
Bloated pages with loads of unused Javascript
If you thought those are the basic things in terms of performance optimization, you would be right. But it does not stop there. Checking Ceros pages reveals unused Javascript on the pages, which is pretty common on the web. But the size of the unused Javascript is staggering. Unused Javascript with a size of 500 Kb to download Ceros’ HTML5 player. And in case you might be wondering, yes, that means mobile users will have to download all this extra weight to get access to your Ceros pages.
And unfortunately, if you would like to embed Ceros content onto your own pages, this will add a round-trip to the (slow) Ceros servers which can come with a serious time penalty.
This rather long list of issues on Google Web Vitals shows some of the issues Ceros content has. And if you are on Ceros, you likely have these issues as well.

It all makes for a very slow page

All the inefficiencies give one result in the end: a page that is slow to load.
Why speed is important
You might ask - is that really so important for me? Well, it might or might not be. Perhaps your intended audience will wait until the page loads. Maybe they don't have an alternative. But Google has done tons of research on this topic, and here is what they say about it: "No matter what, faster is better and less is more." The results in the graph below speak for themselves.
As page load times go up, the chance of someone bouncing and leaving your pages increases dramatically.
Here is how Ceros interactive content performs
On GTMetrix, page speed is analyzed in great detail, and they show a great graph of how a page loads. Here is an example of a Ceros page. We added some links at the bottom, you can verify all of this yourself if you would like to do so!
All in all, this specific page took 7.3 seconds to load.

Then why is Ceros soooooo expen$ive?

Ceros does not make its pricing structure public. Many sales- not product-drive companies do so. But online multiple sources quote a list-price of 36,000 $ yearly. If you find this to be a tad expensive, read on, we have some good news for you.
If this is the price for Ceros, then hopefully you received a good discount.
Look, we want to be real here, it is not all bad. Ceros has a nice-looking editor, and it is made for designers. The issue is of course that Ceros has taken in a good chunk of VC money and they need to deliver hard returns and growth. That might translate in harder business models, higher prices and attempts to lock-in users .
If you are not worried about money, and satisfied with interactive content that loads slowly and are not too worried about usability or readership on mobile, the product can be a good option for you. But if you are a designer and have a brand to take care of, you can probably do better.
So what does Readz do better?
A true design platform
At its core, Readz is a design tool. It feels like a design tool, looks like a design tool and acts like one. If you have ever worked with Adobe’s InDesign or Figma and feel at home in it, then Readz will feel like a digital home to you.
In Readz, you will discover a platform with a designer-oriented interface and tools. Styling panels, indexes, animation settings, and many other features, Every single aspect of your content can be designed and adapted. It is you who controls the design, not our programming team.
In Readz, you will discover a platform with a designer-oriented interface and tools.
Styling panels, indexes, animation settings, and many other features.
Readz offers you a ton of interactive elements and options, which you can set to perform on desktop, mobile, or both.
These interactive elements include basic elements which come with out-of-the-box animation options
  • image sliders
  • content sliders
  • popups
  • lightboxes
  • forms
  • pre-made navigation
  • ....
Interactive elements come with a ton of out-of-the-box animations and options.
For example, the image slider offers many options, including transitions, multiple slides and more.
But Readz also allows you to add also animations and effects onto content. These include effects and animations such as
  • hide / show
  • expand / collapse
  • X - Y axis movements
  • scaling
  • fade in/out
  • bouncing
  • rotating
  • slide in / out
  • zoom
  • and a ton more!
Instant Publishing
Publishing takes seconds, not minutes - and your content is automatically available on the most performant global CDN.
We DO use our own platform
Unlike Ceros, we do use our own platform at Readz to create all our content, even the page you are currently looking at. Readz is flexible enough in terms of design options to allow for that. As a result, performance is something we live ourselves. We are in the same boat as our customers...
Fast loading speed
Talking about performance: we are continuously implementing optimizations to make our content lightning fast.
You want a nice A on your content, like this score for Readz's content pages.
Have a look at the comparison below. We took a Readz page and a ran it through the same test that was used for a Ceros page earlier (see above).
Here is the comparison of how the pages performed using GTmetrix' testing tools. Ceros's page shorter page took 7.3 seconds to load vs Readz's page with 0.997 seconds. And you can count on us to reduce that time even further soon!
Ceros vs Readz: side-by-side speed comparison
To put that difference in perspective, we placed them side by side below.
Adhering to security standards
Security and adhering to technology standards is a basic and essential part of our code - in more than one way.

Default HTTPS - on ALL publications
Oh, and by the way, HTTPS and HTTP/2 are implemented on ALL our publications. We have a business to run on Readz, and so do our customers.
FAIR pricing
The Readz pricing model is straightforward and fair. Our base license offers you already a complete solution, and you can add on features and functionalities that might fit a specific additional need you have.
Oh - and for the price 3600 USD which is 1 single month of Ceros, you get more than a year on Readz ...
In conclusion....
Compared to Ceros, Readz gives significantly lower prices for a platform that offers design freedom, a ton of animation options, a performant and secure publication, and unmatched, friendly support.
It’s worth having a look at Readz’s core concepts, our features, our help guides, and the academy which we launched this year. And if you want to expedite your process by using pre-built blocks, we have those as well. And while you’re at it, why not check out some of our customer projects?
A start can be to have a friendly (did you notice that word coming back again and again) and open conversation about your needs and discover if Readz is a possible match for you.
There’s so much that is possible. Let’s do it together.
Migrating from Ceros made easy
All your content, images and videos can be migrated from Ceros to Readz without any disruption to your traffic and audiences. Get in touch with us at concierge@readz.com to have us do the heavy lifting for you.
TL; DR: The short version
Cut to the chase? Get to the point? Stop beating around the bush? Get down to brass tacks?
Ceros may be better for you if:
  • You just want a platform that allows you to design interactive content with animations that look cool;
  • Mobile and mobile usability is not a factor, you don't need your content to be read on mobile devices;
  • You are not worried about performance and loading speed;
  • You are not worried about money or budget, and over-spending will not get you fired
Readz is best if:
  • You are a designer and are looking for a platform with a ton of animation possibilities;
  • You want to guarantee rock-solid security and performance
  • You like friendly support and account management
  • You like flexibility in contracts and getting a fair price
Design features
✅ Oh yes!
❌ Not too bad.
✅ Fully responsive
❌ Unreadable
✅ Fast, state-of-the -art
❌ Dramatically slow
✅ 150 USD monthly
❌ 3600 USD monthly
✅ Transparent, no lock-in
❌ Closed, lock-in
You are now armed with knowledge!
Hopefully this guide was useful to give you a general idea of Foleon compared to Readz.
Get the conversation started by contacting us at concierge@readz.com
Want to know more?
It is easy. Get a demo, start a free trial, let's start!
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Check facts?
Here are several links to sites where you can test performance and security, as well as some links to Ceros pages and Readz pages.
Depending on your specific implementation (your own IT might have had to work on improving the situation), you might get different results, but try it out!!
Test sites:
Google offers its own, super-strict testing tool. Test your homepage once as well just to get an idea how hard it is to score high in this test.

GT Metrix is another gold standard for all web speed weenies. It provides a super-detailed view on loading and what goes wrong (or not).
https://gtmetrix.com/ KeyCDN offers a nice speed testing tool as well - with a very clear overview.
Some Ceros pages:
Most of these are on a Ceros URL (see above why this is so). To perform a somewhat objective test, you want to select the longer pages in a publication.
A stand-alone Ceros publication:
An embedded Ceros publication. Shrink your desktop browser to see the mobile version and how Ceros handles it.
And some more Ceros content:

And of course - if you are a Ceros customer, you can select pages from your own content to test.
sounds good?
Maybe we should have a chat.
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