8.5 Out Of 10
|Services||Website Builder & eCommerce|
|Support||Help Desk, Forum, Videos & Knowledge Base|
|Best for||Designers with limited technical skills|
|Strengths||Beautiful Pre-Made Templates|
|Weaknesses||Marketing tools are limited|
|Promotion||20% Off Promo|
What is Squarespace?
Squarespace is a well-known brand in the web design space. Squarespace is a well-respected brand that does a lot of advertising, including podcasts and the Super Bowl. They also have a great product with a long history. Recently, I was asked to help with a bundled website builder software. Squarespace was one of the brands I tried. Here’s my complete Squarespace review.
First, let’s give you a brief overview. There are many things to consider when choosing a website builder.
There are many options and pricing, and there are many ways to get exactly what you want. For example, someone can type in a website URL and see your information in their browser. Your site’s design can have a huge impact on your business or personal website.
It can affect your flexibility, functionality, and brand in the long-term. It can cause headaches in the short-term. However, it is not possible to choose the best or most desirable physical home or office. It’s all about your experience, goals, and circumstances.
Squarespace is the ultimate website builder. It offers everything you need to start and grow your website. This contrasts with solutions that require you to purchase, install, and maintain each “piece” of your website individually.
Squarespace works in the same way as leasing an apartment in a luxurious development and personalizing it instead of purchasing and owning a house. While you retain control over decor, cleaning, and other aspects of living, the property owner is responsible for the building, security, and infrastructure. This is crucial because convenience and control are often in direct conflict.
Squarespace is a great website builder, but it may not be the right fit for you.
Squarespace is directly competing with all-inclusive web builders like:
They offer more customization and code access than their direct competitors. Squarespace is trying to appeal to both the non-developer community and the developer community. Although it’s not an easy pitch to sell, Squarespace does its best.
These options compete with self-hosted WordPress, which provides free software to create a website you control – . You can also use the text file option to type actual HTML code. Does that make sense? Let’s get into Squarespace.
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Monthly Freebie – $26
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The Best Website Builder
|Plan||Personal||Business||Basic Commerce||Advanced Commerce|
|Yearly price (discount).||$12.00/mo.||$18.00/mo.||$26.00/mo.||$40.00/mo.|
|Domain Name Design|
|No cost domain name||1 Year||1 Year||1 Year||1 Year|
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Pros Of Squarespace
Here are the pros I found in Squarespace, not only in comparison with Weebly or their competition but also as an overall online solution.
Squarespace is known for its tagline “Build it Beautiful.” It lives up to that motto with their design templates. To start your design, you must choose a Squarespace template when you create an account.
Upload your own design. Squarespace is a great place to start. They have many templates that look professional and are beautiful.
Photography is a key component of their designs. You can personalize your template by adding your own photos. To give your template a professional touch, the typography, color schemes and responsiveness are all kept in sync.
A single, well-curated hub of beautiful design can be a big plus when building a squarespace site.*
Squarespace templates almost all require professional imagery. These templates look fantastic in a template, but you will need the right imagery to make your site unique.
Their Build It Beautiful tagline goes beyond the design templates and into the backend experience for customers.
You know that feeling you get when your hands touch a beautiful physical product or an Apple product? You get the same feeling when you navigate your Squarespace account.
They create a brand that is beautiful in their ads, and they extend it to the user interface. You can see why Squarespace is such a cool tool by simply clicking through the admin section.
It’s refreshing to see a new functional, but not very attractive software. It makes it fun to build websites.
Apps & Extensions
Squarespace was an all-in-one platform that had no extensions or ability to add third-party apps or plugins for a long time.
This approach made everything work. There is now a regulated ecosystem that allows you to access quality Squarespace extensions and apps, just like Apple and Shopify.
Although it isn’t as popular as other options for website builders, it is growing rapidly and can be easily integrated into their platform.
Speed, Security and Data Export
The all-in-one platform has the same theme, but with a different focus: speed and security. Squarespace hosts websites created with their software. The hosting cost is included within the monthly price.
Squarespace takes care of all technical requirements. This ensures your web hosting is compatible and optimized. They also take care of website speeds.
They are responsible for website security. Squarespace is responsible for any attempts to hack your website. You don’t need to purchase and configure security software. They offer a bundle and a free SSL certificate.
Squarespace offers hosting in a bundle, but they also offer some benefits for self-hosting.
Customer Support and Improved Onboarding
Squarespace provides 24/7 customer support. Support is available via email and live chat.
They also have extensive knowledge with video walks and guides. A high-quality forum is also maintained by them.
Phone support is the only problem. However, Squarespace’s customer service is an excellent pro to use the platform, given its chat/email efficiency, and direct competitor support options. *
Readers have mentioned to me that the delay between customer service responses can lead to miscommunication and unnecessarily prolonging an issue.
Customer support is more than answering questions. You want to stop questions from happening. Many of these questions are answered during onboarding.
Onboarding refers to the process of getting a new user up and running. This is when you can convert a customer who is anxious but nervous into a customer who is confident and has no buyer’s regrets.
Even though I have a lot of experience with different platforms, Squarespace’s online onboarding was not sufficient for me when Squarespace first launched in 2015. Although the backend was stunning, it was difficult to find out how to publish and edit my homepage. This is not to mention the complexity of setting up analytics and design edits.
Squarespace introduced a new customer onboarding email sequence in 2016. It’s simple and well-designed.
Their walkthroughs in Support are excellent. Compared to my previous Squarespace experience, onboarding has evolved from a disadvantage into a strong pro.
Cons Of Squarespace
Squarespace’s downsides are a must-see in any Squarespace review. Squarespace complaints are plentiful online. Many of these complaints are based on anecdotal evidence that Squarespace wasn’t a good fit for a particular situation. Let’s take a look at five of the disadvantages that I discovered.
The price is a function of value. This is one of the most difficult aspects of buying a website solution. Everything will be based on your goals, budget, and a specific feature set.
However, Squarespace plans are more expensive if you contrast them to their direct competitors. It’s more expensive to set up your own website with WordPress than Squarespace.
The major issue with Squarespace pricing versus other all-inclusive solutions are their caps. They only allow one website to be included in their plans. The tiers below them limit the number of products and pages they can host.
Squarespace’s pricing is simply higher than their direct competitors. Weebly’s plans are less expensive for the same amount (except eCommerce options). Wix also offers very competitive plans, with an additional free option.
Although their pricing is very competitive in terms of overall value, Squarespace’s pricing is not the best. This is especially because their unique features don’t kick into the Business plan.
Advanced Marketing Tools
People will not just come to your website if you have it built. Your work must be promoted. There are many advertising and marketing channels. There are many. Some are better than others. Websites with the right tools can have an advantage over others.
Squarespace offers all the essentials (aka social media buttons) and some more advanced features (aka URL redirect options, landing page builder and landing pages). There are many marketing features that are missing or need to be modified.
Squarespace SEO options, for example, are available but need to be modified in order to put the correct metadata. However, even the most complex SEO strategies can be implemented with the right guidance. It’s easy to use their support for Facebook Open Graph and Twitter Cards. A/B Testing cannot be integrated.
Advanced Settings contains integration for Google Analytics and Google Search Engine. Facebook retargeting is another option. These options must be added and tested using the Code Injector tool.
Although you can put all the marketing tools in place for Squarespace, the platform has a bias toward design and not functionality. Squarespace’s marketing strategy is an issue.
Backend User Functionality
Squarespace’s backend functionality is difficult to use for a website builder that claims it is simple, straightforward, easy and easy.
This includes things such as editing and adding content, opening pages, adding functionality to blog posts, editing the design template, moving parts around, and so on.
Although Squarespace is easy to use, you won’t have to touch any HTML or CSS codes. However, the process of building a website using Squarespace is not very smooth. Finding the right touch elements is more difficult than web builders such as Weebly.
It’s also really strange because it seems so simple, yet it’s actually quite complicated.
It’s almost like Squarespace is the IKEA furniture for website building. It is beautiful and well-designed. It comes with good instructions and all works together. It can be difficult to build it. Or, it’s possible to change something that will throw off the entire setup. In my case, it was adding pages and navigation that didn’t exist with any content.
Squarespace will help you learn if you don’t have any experience building websites. Although it isn’t as steep as other options, it is still a learning curve.
I would say that Squarespace has poor user functionality. It’s not bad. But the point of Squarespace over building your website on your own hosting was to provide an easy, fluid setup experience.
Squarespace eCommerce Addendum
Squarespace’s eCommerce functionality is a big selling point. Squarespace allows you to sell products directly from your website, without the need for any additional development or switching platforms.
While eCommerce is an excellent feature, I would not call it the complete eCommerce store platform that Shopify and BigCommerce offer. Squarespace offers many great eCommerce features, particularly on their advanced commerce plan. You can now sell unlimited products even with their basic commerce plan. Squarespace eCommerce pricing is not comparable to major eCommerce competitors.
This is great for websites that are primarily informational or lead-generation sites, but also wish to sell products. Imagine a restaurant selling mugs and t-shirts.
Websites that are eCommerce-first may not find it as useful. It’s functional. It’s great.
Squarespace’s eCommerce functionality is not something I would choose. Either you build your own online store with WordPress + WooCommerce, or you choose a specialty eCommerce platform such as BigCommerce (review).
Squarespace offers a solid, all-inclusive website building platform. With a few exceptions, they live up to their slogan of “Build it Beautiful”, with a particular focus on developer tools.
An all-inclusive website builder has many tradeoffs. If you decide that this route suits your goals, I would evaluate Squarespace and Weebly to determine which design price, functionality, etc., is most appropriate for your needs, especially if you are creating a website for a business or blog platform.
I created a comparison between Squarespace and Weebly.
You might think that building your website on your own hosting service is better. Check out my step by step guide to creating a WordPress website from scratch.