And why I run my business off of Squarespace
Perhaps the top question I receive from new business owners is: what should I use to build my website? Most individuals have heard of Wordpress. There are also options like Squaresapce, Wix, and Weebly. But what's the best solution for your website?
In my opinion, 95% of my clients should choose Squarespace. And the rest should go with a Wordpress site. Wordpress is a fantastic tool, but it's a platform that requires a high-level of technical knowledge to maintain and a decent set of design skills to customize. In my experience, it's expensive to hire designers and developers for Wordpress (especially for recurring maintenance). Most individuals and business owners want to focus all of their attention on their business and not on learning Wordpress, so although Wordpress may initially appear more affordable, the cost climbs quickly. That being said, some individuals and businesses need the particulars of this tool; I recommend individuals that needs a portal or password-protected community, those that utilize a complex and changing set of categories and tags, and those that want to run a multi-site network consider Wordpress. Everyone else, I steer toward Squarespace.
Squarespace is an all-in-one solution. Instead of just being the content management tool or platform, like Wordpress, it also provides the design/template, the technical maintenance and updates, the plug-ins, etc. Moreover, Squarespace now offers logo creation and domain purchasing/hosting. Everything you need to start and run a website.
I switched to Squarespace (from Wordpress) several years ago when I was looking for the best way to display my photography portfolio. My Wordpress site was responsive (it flexed up and down based on screen size so it looked great on any device), but the gallery plug-in I had at the time was not. I found myself frustrated searching for the right combination of tools at the right price. It was then I realized that many photographers I admired were Squarespace clients. I switched shortly thereafter and I haven't looked back.
After several years on the platform, here's my pros and cons list for Squarespace:
- Provided responsive designs/templates
- Technical support and maintenance included
- Security monitoring and upgrades included
- Highly customizable
- Down time is rare
- Fantastic help/support community
- Continually rolling out new features
- Unlimited space (fantastic for image-heavy sites!)
- eCommerce options
- Built-in SEO and analytics tools
- Discount codes frequently available
- No third party tools/apps allowed (except for HTML code blocks)
- Annual subscription prices increased in recent years
- Blogging tags/categories organization less robust than Wordpress
- No media library
- Each site is a separate subscription (no discounts for multisites)