Which One Comes Out on Top?
Many websites are made using a website builder, no matter how simple they are. Out of the various choices available, Wix and Squarespace dominate the internet. Around 55% of all websites published originated from one of these products. Many ecommerce vendors have success with both platforms, but not everyone understands the differences between them.
In this Wix vs Squarespace in-depth comparison, we will dive into each pros and cons.
Wix and Squarespace are pretty different, both in features and philosophy. Users have to pick up new skills when transitioning to either builder for building sites and adjusting object positions. Let’s take a look at both tools and their ecommerce features.
The Basics of Wix and Squarespace
Before we dive into the pros and cons of both platforms, let’s go over their basic information. Both Wix and Squarespace were introduced in the early 2000s, with Squarespace coming first in 2003. Wix would join the market in 2006, taking the world by storm.
Compared to Squarespace, Wix is much more beginner-friendly. It also comes with plenty of third-party app integrations you can take advantage of. Most of them are even available with the free plan.
However, Squarespace sites focus on helping users look more professional, which their modern templates reflect. It also emphasizes the mobile experience, something Wix isn’t mainly known for. You get a 14-day trial, after which you lose access to your website.
Both website-building platforms are evolving by the day, which is a boon for all users. E-commerce users can rest assured that their developers and customer service representatives listen to requests. Even though you don’t know how to code, both platforms allow anyone to make a professional-looking site in no time.
You’ll find out all the significant advantages of Wix in this section. You can trust Wix for simple e-commerce projects.
Even larger shops will find the platform ideal. Thanks to its loaded features, ranking high on Google Search with Wix won’t be a problem.
Ease of Use
You can’t even think of Wix without remembering its drag-and-drop website building function. Unlike many other platforms, including Squarespace, you can move an object practically anywhere. You don’t have to code anything to release some hidden limit.
The drag-and-drop feature in Wix is so precise that you can make anything move by a single-pixel if you want. “Pixel perfect“ does exist, and Wix can make it happen.
Right-clicking an object brings up menus for extra customization options as well. From alignment to editing, you’re in complete control of the process. The interface is easy to understand by inexperienced users too.
Wix’s editor is considered an unstructured editor, meaning that you can create all the chaos you want. However, while anyone can let their imagination run wild, users who prefer some limits and restrictions won’t find them here.
Impressive Number of Templates
When you first create a site with Wix, you’ll need to choose a template. There are over 800, and even Wix Free websites can take advantage of them. While most of the templates are free, some of them are locked behind premium packages.
The best part about these templates is their aesthetics; there’s something for every user. So no matter your industry or niche, there are bound to be suitable choices out of the 800 available.
From single-page templates for landing pages to complete sets, you can always find what you need.
The templates are pretty mobile-friendly, and you can adjust them to your liking. As smartphone screens are much smaller than computer monitors, you can hide some elements using the editor without an issue.
While you can design a beautiful and crisp website on your own, Wix also offers AI assistance in the form of Wix ADI. ADI stands for “Artificial Design Intelligence“ and is available to all users.
If you’re not confident in your design, ADI can help you arrange objects and buttons in the best locations. Then, it can either act in your stead or show you the best choices. This is because the AI has been trained to have an uncanny sense of design.
The AI also learns about you throughout the website creation process. That’s how it starts making the perfect website for you.
Originally, Wix had a bad reputation among SEO (search engine optimization) experts, but the platform has come a long way. Today, websites created by Wix have no problem ranking highly on Google Search. The developers also continue to provide updates and new features to their SEO tools.
With Wix, you can optimize many parts of the website, including the most relevant ones. Here’s a list:
- Alt text
- Image alt text
- Meta descriptions
Google Search Console is handy for SEO experts, and Wix websites let you integrate it easily. Any e-commerce entrepreneur should do so for essential SEO management. Connecting the site to Google Analytics is also quite simple.
Other than boosting security, HTTPS/SSL certification can also increase SEO rankings. That’s because Google prioritizes HTTPS sites, and all Wix websites have the certificate by default.
Some sites have 301 errors, requiring redirects to help visitors reach the correct page. But, again, users can set these up effortlessly, as the feature is built right into the dashboard.
Wix also allows site owners to customize URLs for all pages. There’s one minor caveat for product pages, as the builder adds random short strings at the end. However, your main pages won’t have this problem.
Wonderful Customer Service
Another defining feature of Wix is excellent customer service. There are already thousands of articles on Wix’s Help Center to provide tips and tricks. They’re all available in nine different languages, too.
Here’s a list of all languages supported by Wix’s customer service:
If the articles don’t seem to be helping, you can send in a support ticket or call an agent. Depending on the language, Wix customer care agents are readily available.
You can schedule a call or ask for one at the nearest opportunity. The agents are highly professional and will try their best to assist anyone.
If you have a feature in mind that Wix doesn’t have, you can even publish it in a post. The developers pay close attention to these requests, and many useful ones have eventually made it into the builder.
Plenty of Integrations
There are more than 200 apps you can integrate into your Wix online store. Of note are Wix Email Marketing and Wix Stores. E-commerce entrepreneurs will love both of them.
With Email Marketing, you can start precise email campaigns effortlessly. The app will gather all the data you need to create one.
Wix Stores is a powerful app that can handle lots of functions. Here’s a brief list:
- Generate coupon codes
- Manage store orders
- Pick product page templates
For small or medium-sized shops, this app is a perfect addition. What’s more, the app doesn’t take commissions from any of your sales.
There are also many third-party apps you can integrate. However, Wix isn’t in charge of their maintenance. Therefore, the company won’t assist you should these apps fail or malfunction.
Nevertheless, you can find an app for almost any function you want. From business tools to video embedding software, it’s all waiting for you to install. you can visit wix app market here.
Beyond Adequate Security
Security is vital for online stores, as customers send money to the website before it arrives at the vendor’s bank. Thus, Wix has lots of security features to protect your store or website. Take a look at these features:
- Free SSL certification for HTTPS websites
- Level 1 PCI compliance
- ISO 27001 & 27018 certificates
- TLS 1.2 protocol
- DDoS protection from hackers
- Round the clock website monitoring by security teams
- Two-step verification required
- Centralized security system
- Websites are GDPR and CCPA-compliant
Many of these protection features are automated, allowing for constant protection from malicious users. However, human security teams are combing through your websites all day, every day. It would take a sophisticated hacker to break through these measures.
The development team also hosts bug bounty events. White hat hackers can sign up to locate bugs and loopholes to make Wix sites safer. As these happen often, problems are addressed quickly.
Depending on your location, your website has to comply with one of several privacy regulations. Wix sites don’t break any of these requirements, allowing anyone to use them without worry.
Despite glowing reviews, Wix isn’t a perfect service. There are problems to be discovered, though the company is always hard at work fixing them. Thanks to regularly hosting bug bounties, the developers tend to find and resolve issues quickly.
Not everyone is a fan of Wix’s unstructured editor. While it encourages creativity and lets you place objects anywhere you want, it can be overwhelming. Editing a page can become a chaotic affair.
The editor also doesn’t edit your mobile page simultaneously. If you change your desktop site, you’ll have to do it again for the mobile version. You’ll lose some time repeating steps across platforms.
Even though you get plenty of templates, you can’t change them after publishing your Wix site. The only way to modify your site is to copy everything and move it to a new website. It’s only during the creation process that you can swap to a new template.
It won’t be a problem if you’re not going to switch templates and styles. However, for those who fancy a change, it can be unpleasant. Unfortunately, copying content for large websites to new pages takes time and is the only way of doing this.
Slower Loading Times
Wix sites aren’t the slowest, but they don’t sport the best loading times either. So if your online store starts getting lots of traffic, users might find the site a bit slow.
Slower loading times can frustrate potential customers, and they might not want to come back after encountering this issue.
Some Features Aren’t Customizable
Even though Wix offers many customization options, you can’t adjust confirmation emails and certain navigation features. Thus, if you value in-depth customization, Wix may seem problematic.
Regardless, Wix does work well for smaller and simpler online stores.
Slightly Lacking in the SEO Department
Platforms like Squarespace offer plenty of SEO functions, including some highly advanced ones. Unfortunately, Wix falls behind in this regard, though smaller businesses usually don’t mind this. One glaring problem some SEO experts find with Wix is the site map.
Wix does generate a site map in .xml format for all websites. However, users can’t edit it or even access it. Most stores don’t mind, but highly precise SEO specialists aren’t big fans of this.
Even with multilingual support, users still can’t edit URLs for different languages. This feature is crucial for shops that cater to more than one language group.
Wix’s SEO capabilities are constantly being improved, but it might not be enough for your needs in its current state.
Not the Best With Multiple Currencies
Shops that turn on the multiple currency options will find this issue strange. While Wix can display the price of products in several different currencies, the final sale price won’t be.
This phenomenon is rather strange and, as it’s still alive, we can only wait for it to be fixed.
Some Analytics Features Are Locked Behind the VIP Subscription
All of Wix’s e-commerce plans will let web owners consult reports. However, there are a few features that require a Business VIP Premium plan.
Without one, you can’t create new reports, duplicate, or edit them. You can still view specific information in one of two chart formats, but the reports themselves aren’t touched.
It’s time to move on to Squarespace. This website builder is neck and neck with Wix but boasts its own advantages. While it didn’t have e-commerce capabilities initially, many online stores today are based on Squarespace.
When compared to Wix’s incredibly user-friendly interface and system, Squarespace falls behind slightly. Nevertheless, users who take the time to learn how to use it report its interface to be excellent.
You can use the drag-and-drop builder to add objects to pages, similar to Wix and other competitors. Then, after placing these items on your page, you can continue to customize them as you see fit. All of this is thanks to Squarespace 7, the latest version.
Compared with older versions, Squarespace 7 is much more intuitive. For example, it only takes a few clicks to edit an object.
Squarespace’s designs are also made to load quickly, even on mobile devices, instead of focusing on better aesthetics. Today, many shoppers visit online stores on their mobile phones, making mobile optimization essential for creating an online store.
We just looked at Wix’s unstructured editor, which is the direct opposite of Squarespace’s structured editor. With the latter, you can’t place an object wherever you wish. Instead, there’s an inherent sense of order to follow.
Even though users might like uninhibited creativity, having some limits will prevent creative mistakes. Therefore, the structures of Squarespace are optimized to provide the best page appearances possible.
Squarespace doesn’t have as many templates as Wix, but most of them are highly professional. As a result, the quality over quantity approach works very well, and online stores can achieve a clean and straightforward look without too much editing.
All Squarespace templates are fully customizable as well. If you find a design you like but hate the color, you can always edit it to match what you have in mind. The fonts, buttons, and even margins are all free to adjust.
Something relevant to e-commerce users is how each template has a Products page. You can preview them before finally settling on one. Even if it’s not perfect, you can always tweak it first.
You’ve heard how Wix websites are stuck with a template once it’s published. For Squarespace users, this problem vanishes. You can keep the same pages as you modify your pages and switch to a classier look.
Each of Squarespace’s templates is mobile-friendly, as they were also designed with the smartphone and tablet user in mind. All of them are formatted for touchscreen controls. When you edit your desktop site, the mobile version is also adjusted automatically.
After adding the finishing touches to the PC site, you can work with the mobile version immediately.
Squarespace SEO Is Powerful
Website builders have been slammed as useless for SEO, something that used to plague Wix as well. However, like its competitor, Squarespace has made leaps in its SEO capabilities. Today, you can rank at the top of search results on Google with it.
Squarespace boasts many features that online stores will love. Here’s a sampling of what you can optimize or implement:
- Site title
- 301 redirects
- Meta titles
- Meta descriptions
- Canonical tags
- Google Index
Anything an SEO specialist wants to optimize is available for them to do so. In particular, Squarespace lets admins rename files, which can significantly boost your site’s SEO because file names double as alt text.
Squarespace assigns random URLs to all your pages, but you can always change them to something you like. What’s more, you can name every page exactly what you want. The builder won’t add anything to the end of a URL, even for product pages.
Catering to SEO experts, anyone can access their Squarespace online store’s sitemap. It’s a .xml file that all sites have, though not all websites make them accessible.
For increased SEO analytics, you can link the online store to Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Both are free to use, and the process for doing so isn’t complicated.
Included Mailchimp Subscription
Every Squarespace Commerce plan comes standard with Mailchimp integration. Mailchimp lets you send out tailor-made newsletters and emails to all of your customers. Visitors who opt into newsletters tend to come back after hearing about exclusive deals and offers from an active shop.
Email marketing remains popular in e-commerce, as people aren’t opposed to opening new mail. In fact, plenty of emails are opened within one hour after delivery. With this powerful tool at your disposal, you can begin an effective email marketing campaign immediately.
Blogging With Squarespace Is Easy
If you want to start a blog for your site, Squarespace makes it accessible. Blogs are an integral part of ranking highly on Google, and they also improve your brand’s image.
Your blog has a landing page, where you can find all your posts in a neat grid. These posts also have individual subpages for each entry. A blog with this layout tends to appear more legitimate instead of looking like an afterthought used only to drive traffic.
Since you have customized the blog, it’s possible to manage your posts. Scheduling posts for later can only be done on PCs, however. Finally, if you don’t want comments on particular posts, turning them off is an option.
A Free Domain Name With Each Plan
Every time you buy a new website and pay annually, you’ll get a free domain name. As long as you pay for the store every year, the name is yours to keep forever. There’s no need to pay extra just to keep it.
However, if you’re importing a site from elsewhere, there’s a small fee to pay before Squarespace transfers it.
Squarespace’s free version doesn’t allow for e-commerce use. However, with the domain that comes with your upgraded plan, you can boost traffic to your shop. Plus, the domain name won’t contain any other branding, such as Squarespace’s extensions, so your new business will look professional.
Unlike some other website builders, Squarespace doesn’t limit how many products you can carry at once. You’re also allowed to generate unlimited SKUs.
No matter the variations of a single item, including size, weight, color, or version, you can list it all in one entry.
Managing a lot of products wouldn’t be easy without Squarespace’s dashboard. It has options to let users send customers shipping notifications and even handle refunds. In addition, if you want to print some quick shipping labels or update a product’s stock count, the dashboard can help.
Despite Squarespace’s remarkable success, there are several issues that users aren’t happy about. First, even though the developers fine-tune the platform frequently, they still need time to fix problems. Some are complex issues requiring immense resources to solve.
Takes Time Getting Used to the Interface
Squarespace’s editor has quite the learning curve before users master it. As such, some newcomers might not enjoy using it. However, most experts who spend plenty of time learning how the editor works claim that it’s well worth the effort.
Some things might not seem evident at first, but anyone can build a stylish online store that attracts customers with enough practice. After some growing pains, it becomes easy to navigate the interface and dashboard without a hitch.
The Templates Can Be Restrictive
While the structured editor is a boon to those new to website-making, seasoned professionals can get frustrated with Squarespace template limitations. These limits prevent people from making mistakes while creating a new Squarespace site, but they also mean the pros can’t always work their magic.
For example, someone skilled in website design might wish to place an object in a particular spot, but the template won’t allow it. In this instance, the restrictions stifle creativity and expression instead of promoting innovative design.
However, this doesn’t apply to everyone. Professionals can always work around the limitations and make a stunning website.
Not Many Payment Options
Online shoppers come from all around the world with many different payment methods. Today, plenty of website builders support more obscure payment options, but Squarespace is still trailing behind.
The main payment option is Stripe. Through Stripe, you can accept these methods:
- Visa credit or debit cards
- Mastercard credit or debit cards
- American Express credit cards
- Discover credit cards
- Diner’s Club credit cards
- JCB credit cards
- Afterpay cards
- Apple Pay
The second standard method is PayPal, and by extension, Venmo. Unfortunately, competitors like Wix and BigCommerce have more than 100 payment options that shoppers can choose from. Until Squarespace introduces new supported ways of paying, the competition will keep leaving it in the dust.
Squarespace Has No Free Plan
While you can get a 14-day free trial, Squarespace doesn’t have an actual free plan that users can take advantage of permanently. After the trial ends, you’re denied access to the site.
If you prefer to take longer to test website builders before committing, this feature can be very inconvenient.
Limited Customer Assistance
It’s true that Squarespace offers round-the-clock email and live chat support. Their agents work quickly and don’t step out of line. This behavior is standard for many customer services departments.
However, there’s no option to call a representative for help. Instead, everything is done through a support ticket or live chat. Occasionally, users find that they’re directed to help articles or told there’s no solution.
In some cases, the problem is indeed impossible, but other times, users will have to code or do more research. As a result, the quality of the service can differ on any given day.
Email support is available in these languages:
- Brazilian Portuguese
Sadly, the live chat support is only available in English.
No Multi-Currency Selling
Having only one currency in the store isn’t a problem for online stores that sell locally. However, if you’re planning to sell internationally or in at least two countries, Squarespace can’t help you. There’s no way to change your currency when you decide to check out.
As conversion fees usually favor the seller, not everyone is willing to spend extra money in this manner. As a result, Squarespace’s competitors tend to allow for more than one currency.
Wix vs Squarespace Pricing Comparison
Now, we can finally move on to both builders’ pricing plans. We’ll start with Squarespace’s e-commerce packages:
- Business costs $18 per month
- Basic Commerce at $26 per month
- Advanced Commerce for $40 per month
You can pay for these plans annually to save some money. They’re the only rates that you can start an online store with. It’s not an option for the Personal plan.
If you want zero transaction fees, you’ll have to start with Basic Commerce and Advanced Commerce. The Business plan has a 3% transaction fee. These two also come with several other features, including:
- Customer accounts
- Instagram products
Advanced Commerce has the most functions of all the plans. You can set up advanced discounts, sell subscriptions, and more. Smaller shops can stick with Basic Commerce, but Advanced Commerce will work well for larger stores.
Below are Wix’s plans for e-commerce stores:
- Business Basic costs $17 a month
- Business Unlimited at $25 a month
- Business VIP for $35 a month
While Wix’s Business Basic plan is the most affordable, growing shops can still benefit from its features. It comes with 24/7 customer service and unlimited products. Business Unlimited is great for medium-sized businesses that can afford more functions.
Business VIP is the best package in terms of features. It allows unlimited videos to be embedded on the site, customized reports, and priority customer care. The latter advantage is legendary because of how effective Wix’s service agents are.
Overall, Wix gives you much more bang for your buck. Its plans are slightly cheaper than Squarespace’s, and its features are nothing to scoff at. Even the Business Basic plan provides 24/7 customer care that also extends to phone calls.
That doesn’t necessarily make Squarespace inferior since it offers plenty of advantages as well. But, by comparison, Wix’s templates can be hit or miss, and several are pretty outdated for today’s standards.
Which Is for Me?
Wix is an incredible website builder for online stores, as it includes myriad payment options, unparalleled customer service, and compatibility with many different apps. By contrast, Squarespace is more known for its stricter templates, unlimited product variants, and mobile-friendliness.
Whichever best suits your needs is for you to decide. For example, you might prefer the total freedom Wix has for your site, but someone else might choose Squarespace due to how professional their shop can look. In the end, it’s all a matter of personal preference.