If you’re looking for a website builder to set up an online business or ecommerce store, then there are lots of options out there. But two popular choices are Wix and Squarespace. While they both have a number of positives, there are also some things you should consider before you decide between them.
We take a look at whether creating a Wix or Squarespace site is the best option in 2021.
Both Squarespace and Wix are website builders designed for people that have little or no coding skills but want to create and run a website. They both run on a monthly subscription basis and provide you with a domain, templates, a content management system, hosting, and ecommerce functionality.
Although both platforms are fairly similar, there are a few key differences that set them apart:
We’ll go into these in more detail below.
If you’re struggling to decide between Wix and Squarespace, we’ve compared some of the key aspects such as pricing, set-up, templates, and ecommerce features to help you make the right choice for your business.
Both platforms have a range of plans at different price points.
Wix offers four plans for standard websites, and three other plans for business and ecommerce sites that can accept online payments. All plans come with a custom domain and SSL certificates.
Squarespace pricing is more straightforward as they only have four plans that all offer custom domains and unlimited bandwidth. The basic entry-level plan does not offer ecommerce features, but all other plans do.
Overall, if you’re looking for a platform to run an ecommerce business, Squarespace’s pricing is slightly cheaper.
Wix and Squarespace are aimed at beginners with little knowledge of building websites and coding, so they’re fairly easy to get set up.
Both platforms use drag-and-drop to build websites. However, Wix gives you slightly more freedom and allows you to drop any element of the site anywhere on the page. Squarespace allows you to move around sections, so it can be more difficult to get things looking exactly how you want.
They also offer Artificial Design Intelligence, which will generate a website based on how you answer a few questions in the initial set-up stage.
Templates make it easier to design a professional-looking website, and both Wix and Squarespace have some good options.
While Wix offers a huge range of over 800 different templates, many of the Wix templates are fairly similar and somewhat basic. Squarespace offers fewer templates but they still have over 100 to choose from and they’re all well designed so you’ll be able to find a suitable one for your business.
Both platforms allow you to add video backgrounds, although with Squarespace you have to upload it to YouTube first; with Wix, you can upload the video straight onto the platform. They also both provide a library of stock images that you can use in your website design.
All of the Squarespace templates are fully responsive so they will automatically adjust to display correctly on any device. On the other hand, Wix offers ‘absolute positioning’ rather than responsive designs.
This is one key area where Squarespace has an advantage. With Wix, you have to create two versions of your website — one that’s for desktops and one for mobile devices. Plus Google prefers responsive design for mobile websites, so this might have an impact on your rankings.
Once you’ve chosen a template for your website, neither Squarespace nor Wix will allow you to change to another one. So it’s important to spend some time choosing the right one for your requirements and your brand. However, if you do want to change the look of your site, Squarespace allows you to change each of the features and design elements.
The cheapest ecommerce plans for Wix and Squarespace offer all the basic ecommerce tools you’ll need to run an online store such as payment gateways, inventory management, shipping tools, and product listings.
Wix has a slightly more expensive starting point for its ecommerce plans, however, it offers more features such as abandoned cart recovery than Squarespace does on its lowest plan.
Wix also doesn’t charge any transaction fees with any of its ecommerce plans, whereas the lowest plan for a Squarespace site does charge a 3% fee.
So for businesses looking at the most cost-effective plan for their ecommerce store, paying a little bit more each month for Wix will end up working out better.
Wix and Squarespace both offer SEO tools that can help your website to rank in search results. You can edit meta titles and descriptions, add alt text for images, and integrate Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
However, if you need help with your SEO, Wix has a specific SEO app and provides prompts for how you can improve, which makes it more beginner-friendly if you don’t have much SEO experience.
If blogging is a priority for your business then Squarespace is probably the best choice for you.
Both platforms offer the basics to set up and publish blog content. However, to launch and manage a full blog with Wix, you’ll need to install the Wix Blog app to your site. And even then, Squarespace’s blogging tools are far more advanced and easier to use with better templates.
When it comes to other aspects of marketing such as email and social media integrations, Wix offers a marketing suite called Ascend that covers email, analytics, SEO tools and social integrations. There’s a limited free version included with your plan, or for full access to all the features, you’ll need to pay an additional subscription.
Squarespace offers its platform, Squarespace Email Campaigns, to manage email marketing, and also integrations with social media channels, and analytics. However, there’s no free plan for their marketing tools so you will have an additional cost each month. There are a number of other marketing integrations, including MailChimp, available in the app store though.
Squarespace offers email support 24/7 with an aim to reply to all requests within an hour — so if you’re ever stuck then you should be able to get a quick answer. They also offer live chat during the week, provide an extensive knowledge base with guides and videos, and have a forum for questions and answers.
Wix offers a similar level of support with email, 24/7 callback phone support, forums, and a Support Center, but they don’t offer live chat functionality. However, what sets Wix apart is that they offer more help when you’re getting set up and managing your website — there are lots of useful prompts and it’s easy to access help if you’re struggling.
The Wix app market offers over 200 extensions and add-ons to give you even more functionality. Some are made by Wix and some are third-party apps that can connect your website with other platforms and tools.
Squarespace on the other hand offers most of the features you’ll require within the platform so it has a much smaller number of apps. In the Squarespace app store, there are just over 20 third-party integrations for shipping and fulfilment, finance, inventory and products, and sales and marketing.
Both Wix and Squarespace also offer a mobile app that allows you to manage your website from anywhere at any time.
Wix and Squarespace are very similar platforms for building a website, and for most businesses, you’ll be able to use either of them.
Squarespace does offer some better templates and provide you with everything you need for a professional website for your business. Overall though, Wix is slightly more user-friendly, especially for beginners. They offer better support and help walk you through building a successful website.
If you’re confident in your technical skills then Squarespace can offer you more creativity, but if you’re just looking to get a great looking website up and running, Wix is probably the better choice.