There are several important things to consider before building a website. Why do I need a website? How much experience do I have? What features do I need to make the website work the way it needs to?
WordPress and Squarespace are two of the most popular website builders today, and each has its pros and cons. WordPress boasts an extensive list of plugins and a lot of adaptabilities, while Squarespace’s clean appearance and versatile customization options ensure a beautiful-looking end product.
Overall, Squarespace is the winner between the two, with an easy-to-use interface, top-notch ecommerce, and marketing capabilities, and beautiful designs all around. WordPress excels in blogging abilities and has a handy list of tools. Still, its cluttered dashboard and difficult-to-master layout make it difficult for those getting started in website building without a lot of coding experience.
|WordPress – Best for blogging or personal sites||Try for Free|
|Squarespace – Best all-around site builder||Try for Free|
Ease of Use: Which Is More Beginner-Friendly?
For beginners, straightforward tutorials and a clean interface make all the difference in navigating website builders. Ultimately, while WordPress has a free option ideal for newcomers, Squarespace is easier to use because of its sleek appearance and clear tutorials.
WordPress Ease of Use
WordPress is notoriously difficult to use despite its popularity, particularly when it comes to adding multiple pages to a website and coordinating widgets and menus.
The WordPress Dashboard is relatively straightforward in appearance, but it is not a standard drag-and-drop format like many other website builders. There are plugins you can use for a drag-and-drop feature, but WordPress itself does not come with this setup.
Other notable factors of WordPress’s dashboard are widgets, used to draw attention to social media feeds, sitewide news, and more. Menus are another way to organize your pages, tags, or categories, but this process could overwhelm a newer user or someone unaccustomed to website building.
Squarespace Ease of Use
Compared to WordPress, Squarespace’s primarily drag-and-drop interface is much easier to grasp for beginners. Squarespace’s modern layout clearly displays your options, and the flexibility to add and remove some elements is a strength for this website builder.
Like most things, there is a learning curve when it comes to mastering Squarespace. Once you get the hang of it, though, you can add more pages or customize your site easily.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Ease of Use – Verdict
Ultimately, Squarespace’s sleek look and easy-to-navigate sections make it easier to use compared to WordPress, especially if you’re new to building websites.
Design Flexibility: Who Offers More Creative Control?
Design flexibility matters a lot when building a website and helps website creators of all experience levels express themselves and their websites’ intentions. WordPress has many templates that fit a variety of website types, with both free and paid options. Squarespace has fewer options, but these themes are much more elegant in appearance.
Overall, Squarespace’s design flexibility is greater than WordPress because of its current catalog of templates and customization options.
WordPress Templates: The Facts
WordPress’s themes fit a variety of website categories, and the website sorts them accordingly.
- Hundreds of templates
- Free and paid options depending on your plan
- More customizable for those who can code
- Best for writing and blogging
Squarespace Templates: The Facts
Squarespace has several dozen themes geared toward professionals and businesses.
- Clean and sleek designs
- Responsive across devices
- Less developer freedom
Design Head-to-Head: How Do the Templates Compare?
WordPress houses many more templates than Squarespace, but these templates range in appearance from professional and elegant to amateurish. On the other hand, Squarespace’s fewer templates are all beautifully designed and look professional across the board.
Another aspect of design where Squarespace succeeds is mobile responsiveness. All of Squarespace’s themes are responsive across screen sizes, a crucial factor for anyone building a website in the days of smartphones. WordPress’s themes are not all responsive by default, but you can filter through themes to find responsive themes.
Customization features allow you to create a unique website, and both WordPress and Squarespace offer ways to do so.
A difference between the two websites lies in their developing abilities. WordPress has an entire page dedicated to the process of development and the resources you can use to make it work if you want to develop your WordPress themes. Squarespace, however, does not allow developers to create and distribute themes for use on Squarespace sites.
A highlight of both website builders is the ability to switch templates at your leisure. It allows you to transform your website as it grows and changes over time.
On WordPress, you can switch themes easily, and all of your content migrates to the new theme except for any customized CSS. However, with such a vast array of themes, adapting your content to a new theme presents some hassles when locating certain features.
Squarespace has recently updated to Version 7.1, where there is one universal theme that you can adapt to fit your needs. For those in version 7.0, you can switch themes while keeping your content, but some features only exist in specific templates and do not cross over.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Design Flexibility – Verdict
Both website builders allow a lot of room for design flexibility, but Squarespace’s structured and simple themes make for a great starting point to customize your website. WordPress has more themes and more customization possibilities, but there are potential difficulties not found on Squarespace.
Features and Tools: What Will Your Site Be Able to Do?
Specific tools and features take precedence over others when creating your site, and it’s essential to identify what features you want out of your website and why. The features and tools on WordPress and Squarespace overlap in some areas but overall serve different purposes.
Squarespace’s features work best for selling products and marketing them effectively, and the website builder makes this possible right from the beginning.
Squarespace’s plans include two Commerce options, showing that ecommerce is a substantial addition to Squarespace’s toolbox. These ecommerce tools extend to analytics, point-of-sale through Square, and making selling your products and services online as simple as possible.
Beyond ecommerce, Squarespace’s features are somewhat limited. There are connected services like social media integration and email campaigns, but collectively these features serve one primary purpose and do not diverge very far.
In contrast to Squarespace, WordPress offers tools applicable to a variety of website types. One way is through a partnership with Google Apps, which lets WordPress website users access Google Analytics, the G Suite, and more to grow your business and help it run smoothly.
Along with Google Apps, WordPress lets users pick and choose from its vast array of plugins for ecommerce, social media, marketing, and more to share your work across the web and make your website function to the best of its abilities.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Features and Tools – Verdict
WordPress’s features and tools outshine Squarespace because of its greater array of options for different types of websites. For sites singularly geared toward selling, though, Squarespace has everything you would need.
Ecommerce: Can You Sell Online?
Selling online products and services is a primary goal for many people when creating a website. On WordPress and Squarespace, the types of products you can sell and payment options are similar, but payment options and fees differ.
|Main Payment Options||Stripe|
|Abandoned Cart Recovery||Yes||Yes|
|Transaction Fees||2.9% (Stripe)||0-3%|
|Product Limit||Unlimited for ecommerce plan||Unlimited|
On WordPress, the “Payments” feature allows users to accept payments on their sites, and this feature is available beginning at the Personal plan. For WordPress.com sites, there is a 2.9% fee + $0.30 (USD) for Stripe payments. Users with Premium plans or higher can add a PayPal button to their checkout page.
Since WordPress relies heavily on plugins like WooCommerce, features like Abandoned Cart Recovery and Stock Management are available with specific plugins.
For Squarespace, processing fees vary from 0-3% across their payment options, as well as a 3% transaction fee for Business plan users with Square. You can also conduct sales in person with the point of service platform Square.
While WordPress introduces subscriptions in a less expensive plan, Squarespace builds ecommerce into multiple plans and supplies features like unlimited products and ecommerce analytics across the Business and Commerce plans.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Ecommerce – Verdict
Because of the built-in commerce features, Squarespace is a better option for your online store.
Blogging: Which Is Better for Posting Online?
WordPress and Squarespace both market themselves toward bloggers, with themes and customization features that are ideal for blogs.
WordPress started as a blogging platform, and despite expansions, blogging continues to be its strong suit. An entire tab on the WordPress website delineates blogging features. Templates for blogging and growing a blog on social media create a promising atmosphere for up-and-coming bloggers.
Squarespace also dedicates a section of its website to blogging. However, marketing tools to promote your blog, such as Email Campaigns, come at an additional cost. Compared to WordPress with its free or more affordable options, blogging alone is perhaps not the best use of a Squarespace website. For people blogging in addition to selling products or sharing art, Squarespace would be the better choice.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Blogging – Verdict
WordPress is the better choice for blogging for its variety of blogging templates and analytics integration and its ability to run on blogging alone. While Squarespace has great blogging tools, they are not worthwhile for websites solely looking to blog without another purpose.
Marketing: How Can You Grow Your Site?
Marketing tools facilitate the advertisement of your website and attract more users. Both WordPress and Squarespace supply marketing tools depending on your website plan but in different ways.
Marketing Your Site with WordPress
As your plan price on WordPress increases, your access to marketing tools increases as well. Users can access paid newsletters at the Personal plan and improve social media access, Google Analytics, and more at the Premium level. Plugin availability increases with plans too, and Business plan users can install plugins.
Squarespace Marketing Tools
A highlight on Squarespace’s marketing tools is the email campaign, with customizable layouts and analytics. However, the service is separate from the website plans and ranges from $5-$48 per month for an annual plan or $7-$68 per month for a monthly plan.
Outside of email campaigns, Squarespace supports integration with several popular social media apps like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook and promotes the app Unfold for creating Instagram stories. Other features, like promotional banners and website analytics, are available with the Business plan.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Marketing – Verdict
WordPress’s marketing tools outdo Squarespace’s paid email campaigns, thanks to a library of thousands of plugins that you can add to your site for free.
SEO: Which Site Builder Will Help You Get Found Online?
SEO ensures your website ranks higher in search results and can generate traffic, sales, and views for your content. Strong SEO, or search engine optimization, is vital for a website builder to attract customers and for visitors to find your site.
SEO tools begin at the Business Plan in WordPress, where you can view how your site would look on the web and customize descriptions. The support page also lays out the options available on WordPress for SEO and how to override them with plugins if you choose.
Squarespace’s SEO tools are a little more concrete, with built-in SEO features across all plans, and its support page walks you through the steps to take at each point in your website-building journey with tips on keywords, tags, slugs and more.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Ease of Use – Verdict
Squarespace’s SEO tools rank first due to their availability across plans and clear benefits discussed on the support page.
Help and Support: Who Has the Best Resources and Support Team?
WordPress and Squarespace offer very different experiences when it comes to support. Squarespace offers excellent support while WordPress comes up short.
WordPress’ support page includes a search bar that auto-populates with questions as you type and a few specific troubleshooting guides. For the less expensive plans, WordPress offersemail and live chat support 24 hours a day, five days a week. You can unlock Google Analytics support with a Premium plan.
Squarespace’s extensive help and support page breaks down support with videos, help guides, and an auto-fill search bar. The topics in the guides cover billing, customization, SEO, and more.
A key difference in WordPress and Squarespace is the 24/7 live chat feature. This option is available to all users across Squarespace, whereas WordPress introduces this feature at the Business plan and higher.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Help and Support – Verdict
Squarespace wins this round thanks to extensive online resources that will help you with things like troubleshooting and 24/7 chat available with all plans.
Pricing and Value for Money: Which Site Builder Is the Best Investment?
Both WordPress and Squarespace offer multiple monthly plans paid annually to fit your website’s needs, whether it’s selling products in an online shop or a digital portfolio. Each website builder unlocks more perks as your plan cost increases.
However, each has an advantage over the other: WordPress offers a free plan and more affordable rates overall, while Squarespace differentiates in offering both monthly and annual plans.
WordPress Pricing and Value for Money
WordPress advertises five plans total, each geared toward a specific user based on their intended use for their website.
|WordPress Pricing Plans||Annual Plan ($/month)|
The free plan is great for beginners unaccustomed to WordPress or website building in general. With this option, the features are limited to the basics in terms of storage and customization and unavailable in the marketing and eCommerce sections.
The personal plan, geared toward “personal” use, the plan doubles your storage space compared to the free plan, eliminates ads, and introduces a few marketing tools like newsletters. Premium, labeled the most popular plan and ideal for freelancers, provides the most creative control before the massive price jump to the Business plan.
The Business and eCommerce plans are a steep increase from the previous two paid plans, but they are ideal for businesses and larger-scale institutions. These plans pull out all the stops in terms of marketing, SEO, and customization features on WordPress, along with a massive 200 GB of storage.
Squarespace Pricing and Value for Money
Squarespace offers the same number of paid plans as WordPress, but these plans offer more flexibility in payment and are slightly higher in price overall.
|Squarespace Pricing Plans||Monthly Plan ($/month)||Annual Plan ($/month)||Savings with Annual Plan|
All of Squarespace’s plans include access to all templates, basic SEO, unlimited storage, and 24/7 support. However, the differences arise when comparing the Personal and Business plans to the Commerce options.
The Personal option limits customization and marketing tools, while the Business option adds on a few marketing and commerce tools. For large-scale business activities, the Commerce plans offer the most customization and, of course, the most ecommerce tools like discounts, advanced shipping, and point of sale.
Keep in mind that there is not a free plan on Squarespace. Alternatively, users can try out Squarespace for a 14-day free trial before choosing a paid plan.
WordPress vs. Squarespace Pricing and Value for Money – Verdict
Despite Squarespace offering more flexibility in its plans, WordPress’ prices are hard to beat and make it the winner of the pricing and value for money category.
WordPress vs. Squarespace: Our Overall Winner
We compared WordPress and Squarespace from an aesthetic standpoint to their marketing abilities and flexibility for new users. Hopefully, these comparisons clarified which website builder would work better for you.
WordPress is great for bloggers, writers, and personal websites with its free and more affordable plans. There is a vast number of templates aimed at this demographic, but apps for business owners are also a strong suit of the platform.
Squarespace is the better choice overall for its beautiful designs, easy customization, and broad scope of commerce tools for business and individual sellers. While it lacks a bit in the features department and costs more overall, Squarespace’s fantastic support page can help you through any hiccups along the way when building your website.
|Category and Winner||WordPress||Squarespace|
|Ease of Use Winner: Squarespace||The dashboard clutters quickly with pages, widgets, and menus||Learning curve to master the designer, but becomes simple to use after a bit of practice|
|Design Flexibility Winner: Squarespace||Lots of templates that vary in appearance and how professional they look||Fewer templates that are all functional, well-designed and professional in appearance|
|Features and Tools Winner: WordPress||Tools for bloggers, business owners, and sellers across professions that suit several needs||Features are primarily geared for businesses or individual sellers and may not be as useful for other users|
|Ecommerce Winner: Squarespace||Ecommerce tools mostly limited to the eCommerce plan||More ecommerce tools over three plans|
|Blogging Winner: WordPress||Websites dedicated to blogging alone are possible, with numerous blogging templates and a free option for those just starting out||Blogging along with other website aspects like a portfolio or shop is possible, but blogging on its own is not as practical for the price|
|Marketing Winner: WordPress||Plugins provide a greater breadth of marketing ability at a more affordable price||Some marketing tools cost extra along with the website plan and are more limited|
|SEO Winner: Squarespace||SEO tools start at the Business plan and are less robust overall||SEO tools built into each plan make marketing possible at any level|
|Help & Support Winner: Squarespace||24/7 support is not available for all users, and there are a handful of help guides||Robust catalog of help guides, tutorial videos, and 24/7 support for users|
|Pricing & Value for Money Winner: WordPress||Free and inexpensive plans are great for beginners and individuals, while a price jump exists for Business and Ecommerce plans||No free plan, but plans range in price for individual use and Commerce.|
The competition is close, but Squarespace outshines WordPress in five out of nine categories, including ecommerce and SEO, which are crucial to the success of any online business.
When to Use WordPress Over Squarespace
WordPress is better for users on a budget, particularly individuals with personal blogs or websites. However, WordPress’s diverse marketing tools make it stand out compared to Squarespace, and business owners or small shops could use these tools to market their products or services.
When to Use Squarespace Over WordPress
Squarespace is the better choice for businesses, artists, or anyone who wants a multi-faceted website. Its reliable ecommerce tools are ideal for individual sellers or business owners, but creatives selling their work or showcasing it in a portfolio benefit from Squarespace’s beautiful templates.
Which Site Builder Do We Recommend?
Overall, we recommend Squarespace for its beautiful themes that suit a variety of needs and its business and creative-oriented features. Along with well-developed SEO tools and flexibility in design, Squarespace offers a streamlined website-building experience compared to WordPress.
WordPress vs. Squarespace: FAQs
Below are answers to a few common questions about WordPress and Squarespace.
Who Should Use WordPress?
Individuals—particularly freelancers and bloggers—should use WordPress. WordPress showcases templates and plugins that are ideal for personal blogging or professional writing and suited to individuals rather than companies.
Who Should Use Squarespace?
Businesses or online sellers should use Squarespace for its extensive marketing features, ecommerce, and SEO tools. Squarespace is ideal for users who have more experience designing websites or who want to grow their website quickly.
Which Website Builder Is Easier to Use: WordPress or Squarespace?
Squarespace is easier to use but requires some practice. WordPress is straightforward at first, but the interface can get crowded with content and features that make navigating your dashboard challenging for beginners.
Which Website Builder Has Better Templates: WordPress or Squarespace?
Squarespace has fewer templates that excel in functionality and beauty. While WordPress has more themes, they vary significantly in appearance and functionality.
Is WordPress or Squarespace a Better Value?
WordPress offers a free option, and four paid plans that suit any budget, while Squarespace’s plans are generally more expensive.
Which Website Builder Has Better Customer Support?
Squarespace has 24/7 live chat for all users regardless of plan, as well as a lengthy list of support topics, guides, and video tutorials. WordPress also has a support page, but finding information is more time-consuming and not as straightforward as on Squarespace.
Which Is Better for SEO: WordPress or Squarespace?
Squarespace offers better SEO tools across all of its plans and integrates social media and marketing features to best suit your website’s needs. WordPress has a plethora of plugins, but these plugins do not improve SEO so much as organize information.