Squarespace is one of the best-known website builders in the world, but it isn’t the right option for everyone. In this article, I will cover some of the best Squarespace alternatives you can use.
Squarespace platform is famous for its stylish site templates, intuitive website editing tools, and extensive advertising budget. If you listen to podcasts, watch YouTube, or tune into Superbowl, chances are – you’re forced to hear about Squarespace’s features regularly.
But while Squarespace’s marketing team would like you to believe that it’s the perfect website builder ever created, that’s not the case for all users. Some are put off by Squarespace’s underwhelming eCommerce package, while others get frustrated by its lack of a free plan.
And that’s why I assembled this comprehensive list of top-notch Squarespace competitors.
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Are you looking for a cheaper way to create a website for your small business? Or are you just searching for a service that gives a better selection of features? Whatever the reason you’re on the hunt for alternatives to Squarespace, you’ll find an excellent option below.
Right now, the best sites similar to Squarespace are:
- Wix (super powerful alternative with a lot of great templates)
- GoDaddy Website Builder (simple Squarespace alternative for small businesses)
- WordPress.com (best Squarespace alternative for bloggers)
- Weebly (a simple online store solution for beginners)
- Shopify (a superior Squarespace alternative for eCommerce)
Was Squarespace too limiting for you? If you’d like to take complete control of your website design, Wix is a Squarespace alternative worth considering. Thanks to its enormous template selection, diverse app market, and free-form editor, Wix is a very popular option. To sum it up, this platform lets you insert some of your personality into your site’s pages.
As soon as you open a Wix account, you can tell how much more open-ended it is than Squarespace. The first step in creating a site is to pick a template, and while Squarespace offers under 100 different designs, Wix has over 500 unique templates. That means you are far more likely to find an option to match the personality of your website with Wix.
And the massive library isn’t there to make up a number. Every Wix design is distinctive and well thought out. You can find templates for film sites with moving video backgrounds, professional business websites, and everything in between.
But if you don’t see a template that catches your eye, don’t worry. The Wix editor is so free that you can create your own theme from nothing. Unlike Squarespace, which places restrictions on where you can move content, Wix allows you to drag-and-drop content literally wherever you want.
But be warned, because Wix doesn’t fuss about content positioning, it’s easy to mess up a Wix site by moving a text block or image to a position where it gets cut off. If Squarespace editing is like a coloring book where you have to stay within the lines, Wix is an empty canvas that gives you more space for your ideas and mistakes.
If you want a little more design guidance, stick closely to the default Wix template layout or take advantage of Wix ADI.
It’s an artificial-intelligence-powered tool that takes information about your business, asks you a bunch of questions, and builds you a complete website.
Another reason to pick Wix as an alternative to Squarespace is that it offers a better selection of third-party app integrations.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone. Wix is a seriously popular website builder, and that scale has encouraged developers to build a healthy ecosystem of apps for it. So, if you find that you can’t make a certain type of website with Squarespace, Wix may have the app for it.
Wix is worth considering as a Squarespace free alternative because it offers a site hosting and design package for nothing. However, I would caution against using the free plan for professional websites because unpaid Wix websites come with compulsory ads and an ugly subdomain.
GoDaddy Website Builder
Using Squarespace is an intuitive process, but that’s not to say it’s totally straightforward. There are still a lot of features to figure out and options to tweak. If you thought that Squarespace was too hard to use or unnecessarily complex, GoDaddy Website Builder is one easy-to-use alternative to Squarespace that a lot of small business owners might adore.
GoDaddy Website Builder is a product created by – you guessed it! – GoDaddy, website hosting and online services giant. And it’s a reliable product, doing its best to take advantage of the company’s skillset and legacy.
And what I mean is that at its core, the website builder was designed for speed. The site-building process here is streamlined with an efficient setup wizard that asks what kind of website you’re after and automatically generates a template for you on the spot.
And for businesses, there are plenty of tools, too. Perhaps my favorite is the GoDaddy InSight, describing itself as the “GPS for Business.” It will give you a score (1 to 100) on how well your business is doing and offer constantly-changing tips on what it should do to keep improving.
Despite sounding complicated – all of that is simple. The tools are readily available in the dashboard, and you get plenty of help going forward.
The mantra of simplicity is definitely a part of GoDaddy’s DNA.
Things don’t get any more complicated when you start editing your site. Unlike the Squarespace editor, where media and text can be moved around freely, all GoDaddy Website Builder content stacks vertically. Some users might feel this is a little over-restrictive, but others will appreciate not worrying about text or image positioning.
If you put something on your website – it works. For everyone, on all devices.
GoDaddy’s rapid site creation and editing system add some impressive time savings.
If you’re more of a technical wizard than an average consumer, you can modify your site’s HTML and CSS code or change how your pages appear on mobile devices.
And finally – one small (yet still serious) reason you should see GoDaddy as one of the best Squarespace competitors is its good customer support.
An extensive knowledge base and 24/7 phone and live chat services run by knowledgeable customer service agents. By comparison, Squarespace support is more limited, with live support only available during weekday business hours.
What’s more, if you’d prefer a little extra design assistance or advice, you can hire a GoDaddy representative to create a site for you. This might be a good option for users who don’t have any site-creation experience and aren’t confident about making their first website. Yet truth be told, GoDaddy’s builder should be simple enough for most.
In the base plan, you’ll get your domain name and access to the website builder. However, anyone intending to use this builder for a business site should consider upgrading for additional security features, such as an SSL certificate, which doesn’t come with the lowest tier subscription.
Are you a keen blogger who needs to share your thoughts online? If so, WordPress.com is a convenient site like Squarespace, which can be used to do so. WordPress powers 455+ million sites – and there are plenty of reasons for writers to choose this platform to build a website.
Wix and Weebly, the two Squarespace competitors we’ve looked at are quite similar because they’re drag-and-drop page builders, allowing for some blogging functionality.
WordPress is different – because it’s first and foremost a blogging platform, putting features relating to that left, right, and center.
Editing the page is a bit different, too – there’s a general Customization zone where you can edit the main things of your website. There, you can also build new pages.
Then, all the pages can be separately edited on an entirely different editor.
If that sounds a little complicated, fair enough – it is. No question using a CMS like WordPress involves a steeper learning curve than designing a site with Squarespace. However, the advantages of such a platform might be worth the time investment.
Once your WordPress site is set up with an appropriate theme, adding posts takes less time than in Squarespace. WordPress automatically modifies any content you add, so you don’t have to waste minutes re-positioning text on every page. This is an excellent advantage if you’re a keen blogger who needs to post frequently.
Plus, pages come pre-configured with SEO-friendly layouts, so it’s easier for readers to find your site for the first time.
Another critical advantage WordPress has over Squarespace is its plugin catalog. With some premium WordPress packages, you’ll get access to thousands of third-party plugins.
These add-on software packages offer an insane level of customizability. You can find plugins that do everything from creating unique gallery widgets to automatically generating email subscriber lists.
WordPress is an excellent free Squarespace alternative with a basic blog plan that will work well for casual bloggers who only want to share the occasional post with family and friends. For everyone else, paid WordPress plans range from $4/month to $45/month for a fully-fledged eCommerce store.
But before signing up, make sure you understand that there’s a big difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Both versions share the same core software, but the ‘.com’ version is an all-inclusive hosting and website building solution.
WordPress.org, on the other hand, offers a free software-only package. To use it, you’ll need to purchase a hosting plan from a third-party – and have some additional website development skills.
WordPress.org is significantly more complicated to use because you’ll need to manage things like software updates manually. However, it may be a better option for advanced users. The choice is yours.
But as far as it goes for Squarespace alternatives – I suggest WordPress.com, as it maintains a fairly similar level of simplicity.
Weebly lets you build sites like Squarespace – but it offers far better eCommerce support and features. In general terms, Weebly is a comprehensive business platform. It gives you the ability to create functional digital stores as well as letting you design regular web pages based on a selection of well-curated themes.
Until 2018, Weebly was just a regular website builder with a feature set that was very similar to Squarespace’s. But then it got acquired by card payment processor Square who decided to put eCommerce at the front and center of the platform.
The best thing about the acquisition was that Weebly online stores gained the ability to integrate offline point-of-sale payments. This is a neat feature if you’re running a real brick-and-mortar business and want to open a digital eCommerce branch.
Through Weebly, you’ll be able to see all of your online and offline transactions in the same place, letting you keep track of stock and finances.
On top of that, Weebly online stores also come with advanced SEO and site statistics software. What does that mean? In real-time, you can see which products have the most significant impact on your audience and adjust marketing and sales strategy accordingly, helping grow your business.
Regarding general non-eCommerce sites, Weebly and Squarespace take a similar approach to templates. Both offer a small but highly curated selection of themes that make up for their size with attention to detail.
Essentially, if you liked Squarespace’s template catalog but were let down by other areas of the platform, Weebly could well be the best Squarespace alternative for you.
In terms of design, Weebly has only 40 themes available. But while Squarespace templates work best for creative, artsy websites with lots of bold lettering and whitespace, Weebly’s themes are a bit more diverse and are suited for various businesses and goals.
The site editing with Weebly strikes a decent balance between being intuitive and customizable. Like Squarespace, Weebly uses a drag-and-drop page builder, making it easy to see exactly how your pages will look from the editor itself.
When you move content around in Weebly, you have to pin it to a ‘grid,’ which is a helpful way to stop you from making bad design choices. Weebly offers the same level of design freedom as Squarespace does.
Weebly is one of the cheapest premium Squarespace alternatives out there. Regular website prices begin at $5/month, and eCommerce packages start at $12/month. Overall, those prices mean Weebly is significantly more affordable than Squarespace.
Were you let down by Squarespace’s online store features? Well, I tested a few eCommerce platforms on this site, and one of the options that impressed me the most was Shopify. This is one of the biggest online store platforms in the world, used by many major businesses for setting up e-stores, so it’s better than Squarespace for eCommerce.
Squarespace is an all-purpose website builder that largely markets itself as a platform for creatives. And this carries over to its eCommerce site designs most suited to small businesses and boutiques. By contrast, Shopify is a platform entirely focused on eCommerce. Meaning there are options for businesses of all sizes and goals.
Why does that matter? For one, Shopify’s eCommerce tools are more powerful and comprehensive. Secondly, its store designs vary more than Squarespace’s. Therefore, you’ll be able to find a suitable theme for your business with Shopify, no matter what industry you’re in.
Because of this scale, the numerous developers who work exclusively with Shopify have created a vast array of different applications. Among the thousands of add-ons in the Shopify app store, you’ll find apps that do things like add live chat support and different shipping options to your shop.
But you’ll also come across plenty of more obscure options too. One such app is Variant Image Automator, which makes it easier for customers to explore your product design variations. Of course, most users won’t require this particular feature, but it’s still a great example of the kind of niche eCommerce functionality that Squarespace doesn’t offer.
There are differences in the general experience of running a store, too. Squarespace is a drag-and-drop website builder, and Shopify is a content management system. Adding products and editing your website are done via menus on the website.
Shopify’s way of doing things has advantages, though. For example, after you’ve picked a theme, Shopify will automatically generate product pages for you, saving a lot of time for anyone with a large store.
Shopify is better than Squarespace for customer support. While Squarespace staff are unavailable at weekends, some of the busiest times for online shops, Shopify assistants are available 24/7 through both live chat and over the phone. What’s more, if you need extra help with your store design or administration, you can also get access to a personal success agent with higher-end Shopify plans.
Now – the prices. Shopify is generally going to be a fair bit more expensive than Squarespace.
The starter Basic Shopify plan costs $29 a month. However, for that money, you get more or less a perfect option for small businesses. It comes with two administrator accounts and lets you add an unlimited number of products to your store.
There are also plans costing $79 and $299 a month, adding features such as extra staff accounts, gift cards, lower credit card payment fees, and point-of-sale availability.
Best Squarespace Competitors
Squarespace is an excellent platform for creating beautiful websites, but it’s not the perfect tool for all users. Whether you’re looking for a site like Squarespace with more comprehensive eCommerce features or a Squarespace alternative that’s easier to use, there’s a suitable option here.
There’s no single answer, and you should choose a service according to your requirements. For example, Wix is a good all-around option with many great editing options, while Shopify is ideal if you’re going all-in on eCommerce.
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