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Wix vs Squarespace: Where should you build your site?
If you’ve ever tried to get a website off the ground, then you know just how hard it can be. You can do it alone, but many turn to a website building platform instead. Wix and Squarespace rank among the most popular options for most people, but how do you choose? Well, we’re placing Wix vs Squarespace in a website building showdown to help you decide.
See also: 10 blogging apps for Android!
We won’t just look at the pricing in this breakdown. Instead, we’re going to take Wix and Squarespace from top to bottom and figure out what makes each platform tick. Then we’ll do our best to help you decide what you need on a website. Ready to get building? Let’s go!
When you’re trying to get a website or even a company off the ground, pricing is a huge factor. You don’t want to get tied down in tons of fees as you try to grow and find your way. Wix and Squarespace take two slightly different approaches to pricing, and we’ll walk through each of them individually. Check out this table first for a quick pricing overview:
Free plan available
14-day free trial
Combo for $14 per month
Unlimited for $18 per month
Pro for $22 per month
VIP for $39 per month
Personal for $12 per month
Business Basic for $23 per month
Business Unlimited for $27 per month
Business VIP for $49 per month
Business for $18 per month
Online Store Basic for $26 per month
Online Store Advanced for $40 per month
No matter what you’re after, Wix offers more plans than Squarespace. For starters, you can sign up for a free plan, and you’ll never have to change away from it. However, the free plan only really works if you need a very simple site with almost no added features. You won’t be able to add your own domain name, and the free Wix plan pretty much bars you from e-commerce features.
Once you’re ready to splash a little bit of cash, Wix starts to shine with its Combo plan. Just $14 per month gets you a year of domain name access, 3GB of storage, and 30 minutes of video on your site. You won’t get too many advanced analytics, but you can jump to the $18 Unlimited plan or the $23 VIP plan if you want to push your site further.
On the business side, Wix starts at $23 per month. All three business plans provide essentially the same features, just with slightly different video hosting and storage limits. You’ll get basic e-commerce features with the Business Basic plan. However, Business Unlimited might be your best bet for running an online shop at $27 per month. All of Wix’s business plans include abandoned cart recovery, unlimited products, and even social integrations to reach more users.
Over on Squarespace, you’re looking at a 14-day free trial if you don’t want to spend your hard-earned money. Unfortunately, you’ll have to start paying for access right after that. Squarespace has a lower cost of entry at $12 per month, but you’ll find that it’s very limited in analytics and perks like a custom email address.
Once you jump to the $18 per month business plan, you’ll get more analytics and e-commerce options, but you still won’t get everything. Squarespace will take a 3% cut of all sales at the basic business level. Additionally, you’ll have to splurge for the $40 Advanced Commerce option to secure features like abandoned cart recovery. In fact, there are around a dozen shopping features that you can get with Advanced Commerce that Squarespace won’t offer at the business tier.
Wix vs Squarespace: Design and flexibility
No two websites should be the same. After all, it’s hard enough to stand out as it is. Luckily, Wix and Squarespace once again take slightly different approaches when it comes to construction. Both offer drag-and-drop functionality, just with slight changes that improve your control. Here’s what makes each platform unique:
Wix is all about what you want and how you want it. You can choose from hundreds of templates. Each one offers as much freedom to drag and drop as you could ask for. For better or worse, you can truly put your elements anywhere you want to on the page. It’s great for building your own unique page, but it can be tough to make sure that your content optimizes perfectly for mobile and desktop.
On the bright side, you don’t need any coding knowledge to use Wix. Even if you have some coding chops, they won’t do you any good. Wix is wholly dedicated to its structure, which is helpful for beginners by design.
Squarespace lags far behind Wix in the number of available templates, but for a good reason. Each one of Squarespace’s templates is carefully crafted to perform both on desktop and mobile platforms with a specific layout. That means you’ll have slightly less control over dragging and dropping, but you probably won’t run into too many significant problems either.
If you happen to have some HTML or CSS coding experience, you’ll probably want to turn to Squarespace. Coding may not be the focus, but you’ll at least have the chance to put some of your skills to use as you fine-tune your site.
Once you’re ready to start making sales, you’ll need a reasonably robust e-commerce platform. Wix may not be the first name that springs to mind, but it’s impressively capable. Squarespace may be the more powerful platform in general, but your choice comes down to your needs. In fact, if you’re purely aimed at making sales, you may be best served with a Shopify site. Here’s what to look for from each platform in the battle of Wix vs Squarespace:
It costs slightly more to dive into the Wix e-commerce options, but you get more for your money. The abandoned cart recovery feature is a must-have if you want to stay entirely on top of your inventory. You won’t have to worry about any fees either. Wix doesn’t take a percentage of your sales. You also get a few extra options like cash paid on delivery and a few more credit card platforms.
If you spend a bit more money on the $27 per month plan, Wix also allows you to sell subscriptions. You’re limited to USPS for shipping, though, so consider your needs carefully. The platform is mainly built to sell goods rather than services. However, you’re able to sign up for the Wix Bookings app for added functionality.
As we mentioned in the pricing section, Squarespace has a slightly better starting price for business features. You can grab the basics for $18 per month, but you won’t get much in the way of analytics or social sales. Most advanced features like selling subscriptions and abandoned cart recovery are only available on the top-tier $40 per month Commerce Advanced plan. If you decide to pay the higher price, you will find that Squarespace is one of the most powerful and intuitive platforms.
Wix vs Squarespace: SEO features
If you build it, they will come — right? Well, as long as they can find you. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is right up there with good design when building a website. After all, people can’t buy from you or follow your updates if they simply cannot find your website. Once again, both platforms offer SEO integrations at all levels, but you’ll have to spend a little money if you want the best tools available. Here are the key differences:
As usual, Wix is geared towards the SEO beginner. That means assisted optimization pretty much as far as the eye can see. You can customize your URLs, titles, meta, and more for the best results. Wix is also the better option if you want to customize your image alts as you have better control than Squarespace’s menus. It’s also slightly better when it comes to titles. You can tinker with everything from H1 to H6 sizes.
Outside of the differences mentioned above, Wix and Squarespace essentially draw when it comes to SEO functions. You can customize just as many features with Squarespace, though the titles only go to H4 instead of H6. Squarespace and Wix both offer integrations for Google Analytics and Google Search Console. However, you need a bit more experience to take full advantage of Squarespace’s tools. It’s equally as capable as Wix if a bit less beginner-friendly.
Wix vs Squarespace: Widgets and extras
We’ve gone through templates as well as a few of the most important aspects of each platform, but what if you want more? This is where apps and integrations come in, and Wix has a huge advantage. Like its extensive list of templates, Wix offers a robust app store full of add-ons and extras to make your site even more unique. Some of the apps come from Wix itself, and you’ll need them for options like selling services, running hotels, and booking at restaurants. Not all of the Wix apps are free, and there are no guarantees on the third-party options. Nevertheless, you have the flexibility to choose.
If you decide to go with Squarespace, you’re looking at a much smaller list of options. The company calls its add-ons extensions, and you’re currently limited to 24 in total. There’s a bit of overlap between the Squarespace Extensions and the Wix app store, so it comes down to your individual needs once again.
Your website probably won’t run smoothly at first, and that’s alright. Nobody ever lands on the perfect website in a single try. There are almost always growing pains along the way. When you run into problems, you have to be ready to reach out for some assistance. Both platforms offer easy, accessible forums if you want to read other users’ issues and see what the community has to say. Wix and Squarespace also publish tutorials and how-tos if you’re going to build alongside the professionals.
However, there are some big differences in customer service if you can’t find the information you need on the forums. Your preferred platform will probably come down to how you communicate best. Wix offers email communication as well as a 24/7 callback center so you can get in touch with a real human being to find your answers.
On the other hand, Squarespace offers 24/7 email response with a target response time of an hour or less. You can also access a live chat feature during weekdays, which may be easier for a written record of your conversation. The platform now offers much better support than in years past, including more in-depth tutorials to get you started.
Wix vs Squarespace: Which one should you choose?
Finally, the potentially million-dollar question — in the battle of Wix vs Squarespace, who comes out on top? If you add up our winners in each category, Wix comes out on top with a score of three wins to Squarespace’s lone victory. There are also two ties between the platforms, which suggests that the contest is closer than it looks. Overall, Wix is the clear winner when it comes to simplicity and the freedom to customize just about everything. It’s made for beginners and designed to work with minimal technical skill.
However, if you have a bit more website building experience, you may want to try Squarespace instead. Some of the functions are a bit more advanced, and integrating some coding is a huge plus. It may also be slightly more affordable if you want a basic website.
If you’ve made your decision in the battle of Wix vs Squarespace, all that’s left to do is sign up. Get your website off the ground at the buttons below: