You know that feeling when you’re obsessed with one way of doing things because you know it’s awesome? And you tell everyone about it to try and ‘enrich’ their lives by bringing them over to the ‘light side’. Think iPhone vs Android debate. Passion can cloud the consideration of an individual’s needs.
The truth is, in life there is rarely one-size fits all. Different strokes for different folks.
If someone tells you that their way is the only way I’d stop and question that. Where is it coming from? Fear? Desperation? Maybe not. Let’s cut them some slack. Maybe they just reeeeally love it.
It’s no secret that when it comes to websites, here at Anorak Cat, we are ALL about WordPress. But we’ve been helping and working with businesses long enough to understand that our way is 1) not the only way, and 2) certainly not always the ‘best’ way. What does ‘best’ mean anyway? And for who?
The decision to choose between WordPress or an easier ‘drag-and-drop’ or diy option like Squarespace or Wix is one that can cause business owners looking to get online frustration, anxiety and head spinning confusion.
Maybe this blog can help you by delivering a concise overview of the different platforms pros and cons.
For simplicity, I am going to just cut this down to a comparison of two by putting Squarespace and Wix under the same column. They are similar in so many ways, that it makes sense to group them for this purpose. (You can always do a separate Google search for ‘Squarespace vs Wix’ if you want to refine the details down later.)
It’s perfect for growing businesses that want a highly customised website with lots of options for extra features.
There’s an incredible number of themes (paid for and free) to choose from and infinite customisation options.
It’s so widely used that there are endless resources online to help you troubleshoot if you need help.
Do you want a specific feature or display on your site? With seemingly unlimited plugins available you’re sure to get that sorted.
It can be easier than Squarespace to update yourself once built. WARNING: It needs to be built in an awesome page builder like Elementor for this to be the case. Otherwise you could find yourself in a real pickle and needing to rely on your website designer to always do it for you.
Creating a shop in WordPress is excellent with a wide range of e-commerce plugins to choose from. You can also accept payments in whichever way you want.
It’s often the preferred choice for professional websites. It’s the best platform to manage high amounts of content, measure analytics and overall have a highly functional and bespoke site.
You’ll probably need at least some knowledge of CSS or HTML to create some of the customisations.
To be in a position to easily make changes yourself (as described above) it may be best to pay a trusted professional to build it for you. Then you can manage ad hoc changes.
It needs regular maintenance and quite a bit of ongoing attention. (Yawn!) This can be a pain if you’re not tech-savvy but want to save money by taking care of it yourself. (You can, however, just pay someone to do this for you every month. The same way as you’d pay Squarespace a monthly fee.)
It’s much harder to learn how to build a website yourself in WordPress than in Squarespace. However, if you are tech-savvy and willing to learn you might really enjoy yourself!
The default editor is not flexible or intuitive but there are now a few excellent drag and drop page builders available, such as Elementor and Beaver Builder.
It’s easy to learn and use. And because there’s not much learning involved and it’s quite simple to use, you get far less headaches! There’s also loads of online resources available that you can use to learn for free.
You can easily create a highly visually appealing website. Due to the limits on customisation, you can happily create your own website and know that it’s sure to look gorgeous at the end! It’s hard to mess up.
All of their themes look modern and lovely so it’s a really great platform even if you are not creative. With it’s easy ‘drag and drop’ editor you can’t really go wrong.
It’s perfect if you need a simple, portfolio website.
Squarespace have outstanding customer support on hand if you help.
It performs really well without any of the potential headaches you might get from WordPress.
Unlike WordPress, there are a limited amount of themes. And you can’t import a theme from elsewhere.
There are not as many features or customisations available to you on Squarespace as there are on WordPress.
Squarespace does not allow external plugins. This can make things very difficult if you need to do something a little more complex e.g. custom post types and fields can be created by anyone easily in WordPress but only a developer can do this in Squarespace.
They are both awesome in their own rights but for very different reasons. There’s a place for both in this diverse digital world.
Any web designer or consultant worth their salt will take the time to understand the business that is asking for help before offering a solution. We’re not shy to proclaim our passion for WordPress, but if someone said on a thread that they have little to no budget, want to build their website themselves, hate technology, need a simple website but want it to look great, and don’t know where to start…we’d recommend them the right solution to get them started. (If you’ve read the list above you’ll know what that would be. Look at you all knowledgeable about websites now!?)
Since opening our doors in 2015 our client base has grown massively, and the size of businesses we now attract and serve has grown with it. Our clients are now mostly growing businesses that want to be prepared and ‘future-proofed’ for expansion, growth, more customisation (now and down the line) and to be strategically focussed for conversions. Their needs and options available through WordPress lead them to this platform.
Not everyone is there and they might never need to be. Or want to be for that matter!
Twice this week we have recommended checking out Squarespace and Wix to people asking for advice on which platform might be best for them for their new website. Fundamentally, it was the right thing to do. By recommending to someone the right solution for them even if it is not yours, you are not losing a potential client.
They should never be your client if your solution isn’t the right fit for them.
We believe in being good humans and offering the right help and advice.
There’s enough business to go around.