WordPress was the most popular content management system in 2013 but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best solution for everyone.
The biggest complaint I hear from my clients is that they have trouble understanding how to edit and arrange pages with the WordPress editor.
There’s a learning curve required if my client wants to edit anything (without my help) relating to the core design of their website.
First, I want to start by saying I’m a huge fan of WordPress. I use WordPress for probably 60% of my web projects. But, I consider Squarespace a viable alternative which I have used more and more over the last two years.
While Squarespace is relatively new to the CMS scene, it’s been around long enough to know what makes a website look good and function well. The simple drag and drop site editor makes creating new pages easy, whether you have coding skills or not.
You start the process by choosing a template. There are several options to start with and each one is completely customizable.
Each template is unique, but they all have a clean and modern look that focuses on whatever visual content you add.
Did I mention all of the Squarespace templates are mobile-optimized? That means with zero work on your end, your website will look just as amazing on your desktop as it does on your iPhone.
Once you’ve chosen your template, you can add your own content, change colors and fonts, and move around any of the site elements just by clicking and dragging them.
The site editor uses a grid layout so every time you move an element, it snaps to the grid allowing you to quickly create columns and float elements.
Any new content elements you add to the page are called “blocks” and different blocks allow you to add different content types. There are blocks for photos, videos, forms, text, code, social icons, etc.
There’s even an e-commerce block if you want to sell products on your website.
What About Setup and Hosting?
Unlike WordPress.org, Squarespace takes care of all the hosting for you.
No separate login, and nothing to install.
With Squarespace, you simply create an account, pick a template, and start building your site right away. You can also manage multiple sites from one login.
If you run into any problems, Squarespace has fantastic email support with some of the fastest response times I’ve seen. They have a team there to answer your questions day or night.
What’s the Downside?
Like I said, I still use WordPress for about 60% of my web projects. Why? Because even though Squarespace is great for most basic business websites, WordPress offers more flexibility with a huge database of third-party plugins to choose from.
Squarespace does have a developer platform which offers more ways to customize your site, but I’m not as familiar with this since I tend to use WordPress if I know a design needs anything beyond the basics.
Which Should You Choose?
If you want to build a website or blog yourself with little or no coding experience, Squarespace is a great option. If you want to add more advanced functionality to your site that you think may require custom development or specific plugins, go with WordPress.
If you have any questions about building a website or you’re looking to hire a web designer, check out my portfolio and get in touch.