Squarespace Review 2022 – Is It Worth It?
Are you looking for a platform to build your e-commerce website, but you don’t have any web development experience? If so, Squarespace might be a good solution for you. Although Squarespace began as a solution for creating “static” websites, the platform has evolved in recent years to include integrated e-commerce and marketing components. It can now be used to host your e-commerce website, create marketing strategies like email campaigns, and even assist you in creating different types of advertisements.
Squarespace was created in 2004 to let consumers without web development skills design and manage their websites. Today, it powers millions of websites globally.
In this Squarespace review, we will discuss how the platform works, its characteristics, as well as its pros and cons.
How Does Building a Website on Squarespace Work?
You’ll only need a web browser to start using Squarespace. The service is “hosted,” meaning you don’t have to download any additional software. Courtesy of a very accessible and convenient content managing system (CMS), you don’t have to have any coding experience to build and edit your Squarespace website.
To put it in another way, the Squarespace themes, templates, and style editor allow you to build your website without having to type out long lines of code with the help of a more traditional web design tool.
Most things can be changed by simply clicking and dragging, from choosing a template, changing different elements and components, changing the style in the style editor, changing backdrop colors and text typefaces, etc.
The Benefits of Using Squarespace
It is estimated that there are 2.8 million active Squarespace websites, making the platform one of the most popular website builders currently available. The company employs around 1,100 workers. The popularity boom can be attributed to the many advantages Squarespace possesses.
Variety of Themes
Squarespace has over 100 elegant themes that are mobile and tablet friendly. They appear to strive for excellence in every aspect of their designs – fonts, sizes, graphics – everything fits perfectly. The templates can also be significantly customized using the Design menu.
Keep in mind that the templates frequently rely substantially on the pictures that are utilized. Therefore, if you substitute the templates they provide, the appearance of your website will be drastically altered.
Use the “Search for image” option and select an image from Unsplash to use for your website. Squarespace allows you to purchase photographs straight from Getty for $10 per image, which is a decent deal if you don’t like this option. Furthermore, searching for a stock picture using a keyword makes it very simple to include Getty photos on your site. They also offer specific templates for ecommerce.
Squarespace is an excellent option if you want to use a blog as one of your main website features. They include a complex comments system, multi-author capabilities, the opportunity to schedule articles, and AMP support. In addition, the AMP feature enables the page to load very quickly, which can help your website rank higher in search results. Squarespace even allows you to broadcast your own podcast.
Unlike other competing platforms, you can have as many blogs as you like on your Squarespace website. You can either establish separate blogs for different sorts of material (news, reviews, tutorials, and so on) or keep with one blog and use categories and tags to organize your articles.
There will, however, be certain limits, most of which are linked to the blog editor itself. It isn’t as strong as some of the alternatives, and there are fewer content editing possibilities. As a result, bloggers who are used to more powerful platforms, such as WordPress, may feel confined.
Squarespace also provides help via email and live chat. The email option is accessible at any time, but expect a response in a few days. Live chat is only available during the mentioned operating hours, presently 4 a.m. to 8 p.m. EDT. You will receive an almost instantaneous response using live chat support.
Their customer service team will even make small screencasts to show you the exact steps to resolve your issue.
There are officially five Squarespace apps available. Squarespace, the handiest of the five, is accessible for iOS and Android. It lets you change nearly every component of your website, including pages, blogs, and your store.
Because the editor is a shared experience, any changes you make on the desktop site will also be mirrored on the mobile website. As a result, this is a valuable tool for complete beginners or those who want a unified and beautiful cross-platform experience.
A Squarespace website can theoretically host up to 1,000 pages. This is more than most competitors. As a result, it can handle larger websites. However, to keep your site functioning effectively, they recommend 400 as the absolute limit.
Website Editor Usability
Some aspects of the editor should be considered. For example, instead of reminding you to save your work after every modification, it should just autosave and provide a site-wide undo button or a site history feature.
The number of clicks required to accomplish basic website editing operations appears to be more than necessary. Also, remember that any changes you make will be published as soon as you save them. This can be inconvenient at times.
Lack of Navigation
Squarespace is currently not a good choice for building websites with “multi-level” navigation systems.
While all Squarespace subscriptions enable you to construct many pages, there are some restrictions on organizing them. In actuality, the platform only allows you to design relatively “flat” websites with two layers of navigation at most.
In some ways, this is a positive thing since it makes your site easier to traverse. Nevertheless, certain customers, particularly those that provide a wide or complicated variety of services, may require a more detailed website hierarchy and an appropriate navigation system to accomplish this. It also makes multi-lingual websites impossible to make with Squarespace.
Google’s Page Speed Tool gives Squarespace’s templates a low rating, which might result in a bad user experience on smartphones and could impact your search engine rankings.
Is Squarespace Easy to Use?
Squarespace offers one of the most user-friendly and straightforward content management systems available. The best thing is that you don’t even need to know how to code. Of course, you can use code if you wish, but one of Squarespace’s most significant advantages is that it allows anybody to build a professional website without worrying about coding. In addition, this is a pretty simple method of building a website since you can see precisely what changes you’re making as you go.
The user interface is simple, but it could be more practical. Compared to other site builders, you’ll definitely need a little more time to grasp everything properly.
Pricing and Payments
Squarespace offers four different plans:
- “Personal” — $16 per month
- “Business” — $26 per month
- “Basic Commerce” — $35 per month
- “Advanced Commerce” — $54 per month
The prices shown in the images include the annual discount. The discount is only available if you pay for a year in advance, and it ranges from 25 to 30٪.
The four plans have significant differences, which you should consider when choosing your plan.
Only the “Personal” Squarespace plan doesn’t include the option of selling online – Squarespace e-commerce features aren’t available with this subscription. The other options allow you to use your Squarespace website to sell an infinite number of items from your online shop. But the e-commerce features you receive are dependent on the subscription you choose.
Abandoned cart auto-recovery, for example, is only offered on the costliest plan, “Advanced Commerce.” Moreover, many e-commerce features like real-time carrier delivery, discounts, the benefits of Squarespace API are all limited to the “Advanced Commerce” subscription.
Transaction fees can be avoided when using the “Basic Commerce” and “Advanced Commerce” plans. However, you’ll be charged a 3% fee for all purchases made through the online shop if you choose the “Business” plan. This can lead the “Basic Commerce” or “Advanced Commerce” subscriptions to become cheaper than the “Business” in the long run, depending on the volume of sales involved.
Another thing to consider is that Squarespace’s “Personal” package doesn’t allow you to use CSS to fully customize your Squarespace website. However, you can use CSS to style and customize a template, and having access to it might be beneficial if you wish to have total control over your web page’s appearance.
The “Personal” plan also limits your webpage to two contributors. If you’re on a “Business” or a more expensive subscription, you’ll be able to access Squarespace’s exclusive integration features. You may use them to link your webpage to external services and applications.
Squarespace’s promotional pop-ups and banners are available on the $35 per month “Business” plan and higher. These enable you to advertise specific deals on your website or offer customers to join mailing lists. On these plans, you may also include mobile information bars. These allow mobile consumers to call immediately, email, or find your business.
If you’re stuck between the Basic e-commerce plan and the Advanced option, think about the needs of your business and the features you think would be most beneficial for you. For example, you could feel like paying an extra $14 per month for a few extra things isn’t worth it. However, an additional $14 per month will be a good deal for many established companies to retain more clients and provide greater shipping options and discounts. This may not be the cheapest choice, but you’ll get your money’s worth!
You also have the option of a 14-day free trial. Besides that, there are two more plans available: “Select” and “Enterprise.” These provide you with priority support and consulting services. Still, they’re rather pricey – “Select” costs $4,900 per year, and the “Enterprise” pricing is flexible.
Squarespace e-commerce makes accepting recurring payments for goods or services simple. However, the payment gateway options are limited to Stripe and PayPal.
Dropshipping possibilities are also restricted, with only a handful of dropshipping suppliers available. This won’t be a deal-breaker for anyone looking to use the platform to sell things locally. Still, suppose you’re looking to sell goods globally. In that case, platforms like BigCommerce or Shopify are a better alternative as they allow you to display product pricing and accept payments in local currencies.
Analytics and SEO Features
Analytics is a must-have for any internet business. The option of choice is Squarespace’s platform or Google Analytics. The typical analytics available will provide traffic statistics such as the number of visits your site received, the geographic location of visitors, and the most popular pages.
The second component, which is only available on premium subscriptions, is centered around your online store. You can find information about the number of sales, total income, and the best-selling goods. There’s also a Purchase Funnel, which shows how a consumer ended up buying your product: which sites they visited, how long they spent on each page, and so on. You can also link your Squarespace website to Google Analytics, the industry leader in tracking site data in great detail.
Squarespace’s SEO is strong, and all of its pages adhere to SEO best standards. In addition, it provides you with all the tools you need to make the most of what’s available, such as title editing and adding keywords and alt text.
But when it comes to SEO, Squarespace isn’t the most user-friendly platform. However, Squarespace’s support sections provide guidelines to assist you, including a detailed introduction to SEO and marketing tools. In addition, an in-house system is an excellent method to unify your brand across your whole website, from your homepage to your marketing messaging.
eCommerce and Inventory Management
You can sell both digital and physical goods and import inventory in bulk from a CSV file. Some web designers have previously treated e-commerce as an afterthought, leaving “serious clients” to “serious platforms.” Squarespace attempts to go all-in by providing a solid solution that can be accessed directly from the dashboard.
Adding the items is simple: Go to your Squarespace commerce menu and choose “Inventory.” You can also bulk import your inventory from a CSV file, which is handy if you’re switching platforms.
You also don’t have to bother about creating checkout and payment pages because Squarespace takes care of it for you. But, of course, you can change it to your liking in the Squarespace commerce options if you wish to.
Even though most of Squarespace’s work is done in-house, several third-party commerce extensions are still available. Some of those solutions may need additional payment, which is to be expected. For example, Squarespace Scheduling is an excellent method to keep track of your appointments. Clients may arrange their appointments, pay online, and reschedule on the go — there’s no need for you to do anything. Squarespace Scheduling plans start at $11 per month.
Five applications can help you manage your Squarespace site while you’re on the go. Both iOS and Android versions of all five apps are available.
The leading software you’ll need to manage your Squarespace site from a smartphone is the ”Squarespace” app, which enables you to modify pages and articles, check analytics, and manage orders.
The Squarespace scheduling applications will help you manage appointments that your customers have previously made through your website. People can book and change appointments using the “Schedule Client” app, and you can manage them with the “Scheduling Admin” app.
Squarespace has many built-in connections with popular online apps, allowing you to integrate services like Dropbox, Google Drive, Mailchimp, and Pinterest into your website in various ways. However, you’ll need to be on a “Business” plan or above to get full access to these.
How Secure Is Squarespace?
Squarespace makes it simple to sort out some of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) requirements. Data security is strong, and you can easily add privacy policies, website terms of service, and cookie notice papers to a site.
DDoS Protection helps defend your site from malicious traffic, and Squarespace includes built-in security to combat malware and undesirable bugs. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, and it encrypts all data sent to and from your website. This means it is crucial for payment processing websites, such as online retailers.
Is Squarespace the Right Choice for You?
Squarespace isn’t the strongest e-commerce platform out there, but it’s an excellent option for small and developing businesses looking for a fully integrated online shop. Squarespace’s two e-commerce plans contain various essential features, including inventory management and abandoned cart recovery.
You can even sell offline and have everything in one place if you combine the Squarespace Commerce app with your Squarespace account. Any sales will automatically sync with your online inventory, and you can take card payments on the go with ease.
If you are looking for a simple way to start your e-commerce website and don’t have a lot of experience in web development, Squarespace is an excellent choice for you.