Squarespace vs Wix – are two of essentially the most well-known web site builders. I’ve written a person Squarespace overview and a Wix overview. However how do they examine to one another?
|Key Power||Design & Templates||Constructed-in Options|
|Key Grievance||Pricing for Worth||Knowledge Export & Versatility|
|Greatest for…||Portfolios & Creatives||DIYers & Enterprise Websites|
|Present Promotion||Get Present Promo||Get Started For Free|
First, a bit of background. Over just the past few years, website costs have plummeted and the technology to get a website from idea to reality has blossomed. Whether you are using a text editor and uploading to the Amazon cloud; hosting your own site powered by WordPress or using a drag and drop website builder, there’s never been an easier time to create a website.
All-inclusive website builders have been particularly interesting. Companies like Squarespace and Wix have brought websites to everyone regardless of coding knowledge or skills.
On the wide spectrum of website building tool options, they live on the end that is all-inclusive and provides everything you need to get started and grow your website. This is in contrast to solutions where you buy, install and manage all the “pieces” of your website separately. That’s not a good or bad thing. But it is something to be aware of when you’re choosing one of them as a solution…since it affects your website both long and short term.
In the long-term, it affects your versatility, functionality, and, of course, your brand. In the short term, it can certainly add/take away a lot of headaches. That said, just like choosing a physical house or office, there is no such thing as an absolute “best” or “top” choice. There’s only the right choice relative to your goals, experience, and circumstances.
Using a site builder is sort of like leasing and customizing an apartment in a really classy development instead of buying and owning your own house. You’re still in control of decor, cleaning, and everything living-wise – but you leave the construction, plumbing, security, and infrastructure to the property owner. That point is key because there’s usually a direct tradeoff between convenience and control.
Squarespace and Wix as a group compete with options like WordPress (which provides the free software to build a website that you own & control – see my WordPress website setup guide here) all the way down to options like typing actual HTML code into a text file. Make sense? Awesome, let’s dive into the comparison.
Table of Contents
Comparing pricing between Squarespace and Wix can be tough because their tiers are completely different. Squarespace has tiers based on advanced features, users, and eCommerce. Wix has several tiers based on a wide range of factors. And Wix has a free plan option that includes Wix ads and a subdomain.
Squarespace has limits email and advanced features with its personal plan. It adds transaction-fee free to Basic Commerce, and then adds more ecommerce tools to Advanced Commerce for an online store.
Wix has very customizable pricing tiers – and has some limits on every tier, even up to VIP.
Wix’s pricing is very different due to its tier structure & bonuses. They are competitive – but be sure to note your exact needs and features, especially with storage needs.
Squarespace offers solid value on each tier and is particularly competitive with their ecommerce plan options and the personal plan.
Squarespace pricing generally does better on upfront value for most sites. However, the most important thing here is for you to write down your needs & goals – evaluate each tier based on that – rather than looking at features that you may never use.
*Reminder – these costs are all very different than if you are looking at building your own site with WordPress or a something else. Part of the point of website builders is the bundled pricing where hosting and software costs are added together – and are priced per site. It’s possible to get many custom websites with unlimited functionality for much cheaper if you build it yourself using separate hosting & software.
Onboarding & User Experience
No matter how intuitive and simple a piece of technology is, there’s always that moment of “what am I looking at and what do I do now?”Sponsored Links
Onboarding is the process of guiding you past that point. In theory, a huge selling point of website builders is that they have a near-zero learning curve. They have a straightforward process from website concept to website reality.
On this point, Wix does very well – and Squarespace lagging a bit due to their attempts to please both a web developer / web designer audience and DIYers.
Squarespace sort of drops you into their interface after choosing a design. The interface is fairly intuitive, but it takes some clicking to figure out where everything is, how stuff works, and what to do next.
Squarespace has greatly improved its onboarding email sequence though – so props to that.
Wix is solid for onboarding. They have an email sequence, which is mainly focused on hard selling their premium plans over helping. Their backend is straightforward, but requires some clicking and strategizing to decide what to do next. They have a *ton* of features directly in their builder. Once you locate everything, it’s great. But at first, it can be overwhelming.
Wix also has excellent “templating” and even a “design AI” (called Wix ADI) that will take care of a lot of the busywork of designing for you. Whether that works in practice or not all depends on your goals. I explored this tradeoff in-depth in my Wix Review. If you are a DIYer who doesn’t want to work with code at all – then it’s amazing. If you want control over details, then it’s not ideal.
Part of the overall value of website builders is design.
Web Design is hard. And it matters – a lot. A lot of people can spot a good looking website but have a harder time figuring out how to get there. Using a template for a foundation and then customizing it is a good way to get the site you want without paying for a custom design.
On this point, Squarespace does well. Their platform is all about design (their tagline is “Build It Beautiful) and you can tell. The front and backends look and feel beautiful. They use a more structured editor compared to Wix’s templates + drag and drop editor.
Squarespace has a diverse set of templates that are built so that they do become unique with some photography and color scheming. They have plenty of customization options.
One quick aside with using a Squarespace template is available imagery. If you do not have high resolution, professional imagery to replace the template imagery…you’re site will not look as good. Squarespace’s templates are only as good as your photography.
Wix’s designs are solid and trendy. They’ve improved a lot over the last few years. Whether you want a moving image or a parallax feel – Wix has plenty of pre-built “fancy” templates to choose from. However, the Wix editor doesn’t allow any CSS customization. They also don’t allow you to switch back and forth between templates, so you’re really stuck with whatever templates they have – and whichever one you commit to. I did dig up a bunch of actual Wix website examples out in the wilds of the Internet.
Squarespace wins on design…if you have the imagery to fill their templates. If you want more trendy designs, then you’ll like Wix.
Technical features are all the web development best practices that don’t really matter…until they matter a lot (especially if you decide at some point to work with a professional). I’m talking about generating clean URLs, editable metadata, allowing page-level redirects, etc. I’d also include a blogging tool, content management system, and ecommerce features in this group.
On this point, Squarespace is good. They could do better – and neither is as good as a self-hosted site.
Squarespace offers more access to advanced tools, especially via their developer platform.
The laggard is Wix. Not to keep jumping on Wix, but they build and serve their pages in a way that is not ideal from a professional developer perspective. The system is a lot better than their old Flash technology but is still clunky to look at from a technical perspective. Wix websites get a URL structure that works but is not ideal. It runs more like a game application than a website. Their blogging tool and content management system is fine for most websites, but gets clunky past 50 or so pages. And this isn’t just my opinion – browse any thread on HackerNews about Wix, and you’ll get the same feedback. I covered this in my Wix Review here. This is a non-issue if you are DIY – but something to be aware if you are looking to hire an SEO for example.
Website builders are limited on technical features by nature, but Squarespace and Wix are fine as far as the most important items go with Squarespace doing a bit of a better job.
In Field of Dreams , Kevin Costner’s character famously says “in the event you construct it, they are going to come.” Sadly, that’s not true about web sites. Identical to any enterprise, you need to actively promote and market your web site for anybody to point out up.
Advertising and marketing options like customized metadata, open graph info, Schema markups, electronic mail signups, share buttons, touchdown pages, social media and so forth all make advertising your web site quite a bit simpler.
For general advertising device choices, Squarespace does nicely. Squarespace requires some workarounds for customized metadata and may be hit and miss with Open Graph info. However general each have the instruments to do the job.
Right here Wix is quickly enhancing in comparison with their outdated setup. They supply many extra native apps in comparison with Squarespace. So if you’re keen to commit absolutely to the Wix “ecosystem” and the Wix App Market then you definitely’ll have loads of selections. If you wish to work with third social gathering apps or templates, then Squarespace has a greater setup.
This level transfers as nicely to Search Engine Optimization (search engine marketing) – which is my wheelhouse. Each permit you to execute on fundamentals like key phrase utilization, crawlability, and so forth. Nonetheless, if my consumer had a heavy emphasis on natural site visitors, I might encourage Squarespace primarily based totally on versatility – not on the concept that one is “higher for search engine marketing” than one other.
Assist & Service
Each have knowledgebases and buyer assist. Wix does telephone throughout enterprise hours, along with electronic mail tickets and buyer boards. Squarespace doesn’t have telephone assist, however they do have 24/7 stay chat and electronic mail.
If telephone assist is essential to you, then I’d rule out Squarespace. If not, Squarespace does supply stable hours and fast response through chat / electronic mail.
Firm Construction & Future
I’ve been actively observing the web site constructing & know-how trade for greater than 8 years now. Probably the most underrated consider selecting a vendor in your personal enterprise is the construction & incentives of the particular firm. Advertising and marketing departments can say no matter they need within the short-term, however for a long-term (greater than a yr) partnership, you want an organization whose construction matches your personal enterprise targets.
Sure – that’s obscure and conceptual. However right here’s the way it applies to those three corporations.
Squarespace is a personal firm funded by enterprise capital that’s going public quickly. Any such firm is normally pursuing marketshare & consumer development above all else. Something that grows consumer base is sweet. The upside is that there are normally no limits to funding. You’ll be able to anticipate plenty of instruments and love and assist. The draw back is that they nonetheless don’t know precisely what is going to generate income or drive development for his or her buyers. After going public, many corporations have a a lot shorter runway to profitability. Some are capable of get earnings with out hurting prospects, however others are.
Wix is a publicly-traded firm. You’ll be able to truly go purchase a share and change into a part-owner if you’d like. Any such firm is pursuing each development & profitability like each different traded firm. Something that drives these issues will get consideration. The upside is that Wix truly makes its cash with its web site builder. That’s their factor. So their product will get whole focus. The draw back is that they’re a publicly-traded firm ruled by Web Promoter Scores and Earnings Estimates – and all the great & unhealthy that that might entail (similar to Squarespace quickly).
Squarespace vs. Wix Conclusion
In the event you resolve that utilizing an all-inclusive web site platform is best for you, then I might get out of the mindset of discovering “the very best” – and as a substitute suppose via what you want now – and what you hope to do sooner or later.
Wix focuses on the 100% DIYer or the enterprise proprietor who’s keen to commerce some technical options for extra comfort together with helpful native instruments & good templates for a enterprise web site. Get a free trial for Wix right here.
Squarespace focuses primarily on design, developer instruments, and branding – however depends on user-generated images for full advantages. Signal Up for Squarespace right here.