Why I Use Squarespace Over Wordpress
Let's talk websites.
As a front door to your business, blog, or shop, you really want to have something easy to keep branded and maintained.
If you've ever spent hours trying to solve a problem or decode an error message on your site, you know this to be true. Or maybe you've been on a business website and have been unable to get it to load or unable to find their location, hours, contact info, etc.
It's so frustrating! You want to make it as easy as possible for your people to find what they need from you without spending hours and hours maintaining it.
My Experience With Wordpress & Other Platforms
Being in the graphic design field, I've been able to try out quite a few different website design platforms for myself and my clients over the last decade. I've spent a lot of time in Wordpress and Shopify, and then have also used a little bit of Blogger, Prophoto, Showit, and Wix. I am not a developer. I only know basic html and a little css. That's it.
So with my experience and after having a taste of each, my go to pick is 100% Squarespace.
(In fact, any time that I'm designing in another platform for a client, and issues just won't stop coming up, I'm constantly saying in my frustration, "THIS IS WHY I USE SQUARESPACE!")
There's something to be said for a website that just works the way it's supposed to. All the time.
I know everyone has different needs for their site, but I absolutely love it and wholeheartedly recommend it for creatives who just want something simple, beautiful and easy to maintain.
You can avoid so many headaches and being frustrated to the point of tears by having something that isn't overrun with errors.
Wondering if switching to Squarespace will solve your website problems?
Let's break it down...
Design & Appearance
Obviously this is really important to me as a designer. But it's also really important to your customers and followers. A good design with beautiful imagery signals to viewers that your business is professional and trustworthy.
I love that you don't have to pay for expensive themes for Squarespace - all themes are included. And you can easily switch them in and out without throwing off all your content, navigation, pages, etc. I've very often redesigned my whole site within an hour or two. That's not just because I'm a designer, but because it's so incredibly easy.
I also love that everything is so customizable. No more guessing at code or trying to figure out widgets. It's nearly as simple as just dragging, dropping and changing values. Plus you can see the changes as you design, so no more hitting "preview" and then going back to a different page to make edits. (See Below)
Automatic & Seamless Updates
This one seems like a small thing, but if you've ever had to deal with tons of updates that throw off your website on a consistent basis, you know it's a BIG DEAL. No more headaches about random error messages, plug-in updates, outdated themes.
I don't have to spend hours worrying about the back end of things. I don't have to deal with attempting to learn css, php, java, htmlqurslkjlfak or any of the other languages. (Note: There is a code block and css editor if you really want to use it. I haven't needed to yet.)
Squarespace Help and knowledge base is free, visual, and super thorough. I have never (seriously, NEVER) had a question on Squarespace that didn't have a step by step walkthrough page to answer it.
Products & Galleries are Simple
If you're a shop owner, you have enough to worry about without wondering about the basics like whether your customers will be able to checkout. Or whether your digital product will ship out okay.
If you're a photographer or need to show off your portfolio, you need to be confident that your gallery is working and your photos will look beautiful in them.
The last thing you want is for the images to have trouble loading right or to look wonky. Maybe you want to change from a grid view to a carousel. Or maybe you want three columns instead of four. Squarespace makes this process so simple that I could cry with happiness.
Plays Nice With Others
Do you use Mailchimp for subscribers? What about Gmail for contacts? Paypal or Stripe for checkout? All of these and many others take minutes to set up and integrate beautifully. Want to link to your social media platforms for easy sharing? It's as easy as typing in your username. Forget stressing about which plugins are safe to use or being ashamed of those ugly icons you can't customize.
Who Squarespace May Not Be For
I get that every business is unique and so it may not work for everyone. Here are a few things to think about before you make the switch...
Are you willing to pay a monthly/yearly fee? I personally think this fee is well worth the cost. Especially when you consider the time and headaches, as well as the cost of themes, plugins, and support that other services charge for. You might be saving yourself the cost of hiring a developer or designer.
Does your shop have 500+ products? Squarespace doesn't have a ton of filtering options for products so it may frustrate your customers to sift through pages of products to find the one they need. (For this reason, I tried switching my shop to Shopify and Wordpress in the beginning. BUT I immediately switched right back to Squarespace after I encountered a host of other issues that just weren't worth it. I'd rather have a simpler online shop than have a ton of headaches.)
Are you a pro-blogger? If you have a really large amount of content, ads, recipes, etc. It might benefit you to have more of the options that Wordpress offers. From what I've read, SEO is pretty good with Squarespace but it may not be able to offer some of the features a high quality SEO or Recipe Plugin might offer, for example.
What platform do you use for your website? Have you run into many major headaches? Try Squarespace Free.