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Lately, we have already written several articles about CMS '. We wrote reviews about WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal, among other things. In this article, we write a review about Squarespace. What do we think of the system, and what are the pros and cons of the platform?

Squarespace review | How did the platform come about?

Squarespace was developed in January 2004 by the American student Anthony Casalena. He created a platform that allowed anyone to build and host their own website. Until 2006, Casalena was the only employee of the company, which has already achieved a turnover of one million dollars. In 2010 the company still had few employees compared to other systems within the industry. At the time, 30 employees were part of the platform. In the meantime, the system started to get bigger and bigger, and it grew into one of the largest CMS 'in the world. The number of employees has been increased considerably in the meantime. In 2018, the New York company already had 797 employees, with Anthony Casalena still as CEO.

Squarespace review | Statistics

As we said: Today, Squarespace is one of the largest CMS in the world. The platform is number 5. Only WordPress, Joomla, Shopify, and Drupal do better within the CMS industry. As you can see in the photo below, Squarespace's market share is 2.6%. 

Source: W3techs

How many Squarespace websites are there?

At the time of writing, there are a total of  2,128,837  websites live made with Squarespace. Built with keeps track of exactly how many Squarespace websites are live. You can also compare this with other platforms, such as Weebly, of which 946,368 websites are life at the time of writing. Keep in mind that our statistics are out of date. For the live statistics, it is best to consult the Builtwith website. Below you can see a screenshot of the statistics at the beginning of 2020.

Source: Builtwith

Benefits of Squarespace

  • You can easily create a visually appealing website with Squarespace's website builder. This makes it seem as if an expensive web designer has been working for you. Squarespace provides a professional-looking website without you having to hire a web designer.
  • There are many different templates you can choose from. These templates are of high quality. For many people, this is a reason to use Squarespace. Squarespace also offers the possibility to upload your own design. 
  • Squarespace is an all-in-one platform. You don't have to worry about apps, plugins, and extensions. Everything is built into the platform. You can even keep track of your website statistics in the backend of Squarespace. While there is no support for third-party apps, plugins, and extensions, and this is also a disadvantage, this closed-source system also offers advantages. For example, there are fewer problems with functionalities that no longer work after updating.
  • The SEO and marketing functions are quite extensive. For example, you can edit page titles, create meta descriptions, and add custom URLs. Squarespace also has full social integration. This way, you can make contact with customers from, for example, Twitter or Facebook. (Source:  eCommerce platforms ) 

Disadvantages of Squarespace

  • Designing your website in the website builder takes more time than other platforms, such as WordPress and Wix. You will have to put in more effort to use Squarespace. This means that it takes more time than with other systems. The question is whether you are willing to do that.
  • Squarespace is relatively expensive. We were mainly surprised that you have to pay extra money if you want to publish more than 20 pages. It is a revenue model that you do not see much anymore nowadays, which scares many people. 
  • There is no support for third-party apps, plugins, and extensions. This makes it difficult for beginners to customize their site. You have less control over the functionalities of your website than with other platforms, such as WordPress, where there are more than 50,000 plugins available.
  • Squarespace uses Stripe to process payments. Only since 2017 has it been possible for Dutch webshops to use Stripe as a payment platform, which does not offer the option to pay with PayPal. This can especially affect digital sellers. But it's not just digital sellers who notice. Even if you sell physical products, there is a good chance that you will miss part of your turnover. You can add PayPal as a payment method, but this is not done via Stripe, but you have to “connect” a Paypal business account separately (source: Squarespace ).

Squarespace review | Our vision

We think Squarespace has one big advantage. Those are the professional templates that you can use for free. You can often compare these templates with, for example, the paid WordPress themes that easily cost between 60 and 80 euros. Chapeau to this! However, there are many disadvantages to why we would not make a website with Squarespace that quickly. It is mainly in the price here. You already pay $ 144 per year for the cheapest package, and even then, you are still limited in what you do. For example, you can publish a maximum of 20 pages. If that is not enough, you are obliged to switch to the "business package" for which you already spend $ 216 per year. These packages include web hosting and a professional theme.

Conclusion: It should be clear that you pay more for Squarespace than for other website builders. We do believe that you get value for your money. This way, you get a beautiful professional theme that you can design according to your own wishes. So it is up to you whether you are willing to pay the price. If so, I would definitely go for Squarespace. If you'd like to pay a little less, I would create a WordPress website and add WooCommerce hosting. You can then get started right away with your WordPress webshop for a relatively low price, in combination with the WooCommerce plugin. 

 

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