WordPress vs Squarespace is a big subject of discussion among entrepreneur who want to bring their business online, do the website themselves and start selling their services as soon as possible. Before I get into this topic I want you to know that I design for WordPress and choose the Genesis Framework mostly. I can design for anything but the one thing that makes my life easier and gives me more control is WordPress.
I’ve designed websites since we could only use plain HTML. Today things have changed, I am always learning, looking into new platforms for the new kid in the block. I belong to several women entrepreneur Facebook groups and the new kid on the block for most is Squarespace. The main thing I noticed my fellow entrepreneur seem to like the most about Squarespace are
- the themes are pretty
- they get to have a website up and running without paying for a web designer
- it’s affordable
- it’s perfect for a non-techy person
The biggest misconception I observed is that WordPress and Squarespace are always compared is if they are the same. The truth is that they are not the same at all. Squarespace is a drag and drop website builder. WordPress is a content management system. The biggest plus for WordPress is that anything Squarespace can do, WordPress can do it plus wayyyy more. Today I want to share with you the reasons, in my opinion, WordPress will always be better than Squarespace.
With Squarespace, you are renting a website. It comes with a monthly fee. Let’s say for whatever reason Squarespace goes down (remember when Blogger went down? plus read this used to be Squarespace lover nightmare!), your website goes down with it.
With WordPress you own your website and have full control.
Ease of Use & Learning curve
Squarespace is better than WordPress for absolute beginners. They let you customize your templates via their visual editor but you are still limited to their customizer options.
Today WordPress has themes and plugins that offer complete drag & drop capabilities like Themify and Headway Themes.
Squarespace plans start at $8 per month (keep in mind you’re renting?) and the business plan at $26/month gives you more options and bandwidth.
WordPress beats them with a variety of choices from around the world. How much you want to pay for web hosting and domain name, is totally up to you. There are many choices available. You can start at $3.50/month and change your hosting as your business and website grows. You basically pay for the resources you need. There are thousands of free templates and free plugins.
eCommerce is very limited on Squarespace. You don’t have PayPal option and can only use Stripe for payment which is not available in certain countries. No other payment system is available to accommodate a larger global audience. On a business perspective who wants their sales limited?
WordPress surpasses Squarespace when it comes to eCommerce. You can integrate and use the payment processor you want, PayPal, Google Checkout, Stripe, 2Checkout, Payoneer, Skrilll, or Bitcoin. There are many WordPress plugins that allow you to use those payment processors with ease. There are also many tools available to manage affiliate links and tracking.
Squarespace has in-house developers, they don’t have a community where the public can contribute to their platform. So if you have a problem, they write all of their codes and they know how to solve the problem. My only objection is that the company spends a lot of money, really millions of dollars on advertising, which attracts a lot of customers, yet they only have 285 employees to support them.
WordPress has a very large community that is simply amazing. You can google your problem and find the solution online. If you own the Studiopress platform, they have really amazing technical support with developers and more.
What if you want to take your website content with you?
The export feature on Squarespace is also very limited. You can only export some of your content in an XML file but your product pages, album pages, text, audio, and video will not be exported.
WordPress comes with the ability to export all your data. You also can use a backup solution like BackupBuddy to back up your themes, plugins and your entire database.
You spend hours creating your content, it should be yours and you deserve the freedom to take all of it with you whenever you want.
In conclusion, if you want a starter for a short time, you are okay with using only Stripe, you are okay with the eCommerce limitations and support a separate back up for all your data, then Squarespace is right for you. If you want full control of your website with limitless possibilities including the drag & drop feature Squarespace offers, you should seriously consider WordPress.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”