Ladies and gentlemen, tonight we have a clash of titans, two of the biggest website builders in the world! Brought to you by SEO Heroes Bangkok!
In the blue corner, we have the famous WordPress!
In the red corner, we have the revolutionary contender Squarespace!
This head-to-head battle will let you see the 20 key differences to be aware of, and therefore, allow you to know which website builder is the ideal pick for your purposes.
Brace yourself, because this is going to be the combat of a lifetime!
Overview: What Aspects Are We Going to Review?
Here you have the 20 factors in a simple and beautiful list:
- Best Use
- Ease of Use and User Experience
- Design and Aesthetics
- Mobile Support
- Plugins and Extensions
- Price and Value
- Updates and Maintenance
- Flexibility and Adaptability
- Customer Support
- Server Resources
- Analytics & Tracking
- Blogging and Content Management
- Data Capturing
- Multilingual Support
- Site Migration
A lot to review, we know, but at the end you will be able to choose the best solution for your project.
Even though many people think they both are website builders, it is not exactly the case. Yes, you can build a website with both, but here you have a key difference:
- WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS)
- Squarespace is a Website Builder
WordPress brings you far more freedom and control; however, you are responsible for every aspect of your website. It takes more work, but at the greater benefit of flexibility and more customization options. In addition, WordPress is free.
On the other hand, Squarespace takes care of everything. You only have to sign up, pay your subscription and that’s all. You’ll have a complete pack to launch your website while they take care of resources management, security and other key aspects of running a website.
From this, you can easily deduct who they aim to:
- WordPress: For people who prefer total control, ownership, freedom, flexibility and adaptability for their websites. With WP, the sky is the limit. You can edit every single aspect as you please. Furthermore, you get total control of the resources, so, you can administer them as you prefer
- Squarespace: For people who want to launch a beautiful and professional website with minimum effort. Therefore, perfect for those with limited technical knowledge or who just don’t want to bother with the work of setting up and bringing maintenance to a website
Now you have a clear idea of what platform is better depending on your goals. However, keep reading, because there is a lot more to see.
Some people would say that Squarespace is better for beginners, and although it is true in most cases, WordPress is also easy to manage. It only has a more challenging learning curve at the beginning, but once you get hold of it, things become much simpler.
You need to keep more into account at the hour of choosing one of these solutions, therefore, just keep reading, and worry not, because if you have more questions, just let us know in the comments.
Ease of Use:
From the section above you can already make some conclusions, but here we are going to talk in detail about ease of use and user experience.
Regarding WordPress, once you get pass through the learning curve, it becomes very easy to use, because its interface is intuitive and user-friendly. You can edit your website, add content to your blog, add pages and anything you else very easily.
However, truth be told, the least technical persons will have some difficulties at first, but if you put in some time and effort to learn it properly, perhaps complementing it with video tutorials, you will get a firm hold of it in record time.
Furthermore, you will need coding skills to fully adapt it to your needs, in the case of complex projects. However, you can always outsource it.
Now, in the case of Squarespace, it is noticeably easier to use than WordPress, because you can design your own website with its Drag n’ Drop editor.
Therefore, for absolute beginners, Squarespace will be easier to use, but not for much, because once you get a hold on the fundamentals of WP, you will not feel any difference.
Nonetheless, it is important to note that Squarespace is slightly more complex than other builders like Wix. It takes a bit of time to get used to the interface, but other than that, it is super easy to launch your first website with it.
It is evident that your website must be protected against the rising number of hacks and internet attacks. They happen in a daily basis. It is something we cannot stop, however, we can prevent them from happening to our websites.
In the case of Squarespace, they take care of every single aspect of security. You don’t have to worry about updating themes, plugins or the website builder, as they handle it for you. Also, they take care of backing up your website regularly.
If you have no clue about proper security measures – or simply don’t want to bother with it – Squarespace handles it all for you, so you can repel hackers and online attacks.
Furthermore, they also bring you an SSL certificate, which is essential to protect your visitors, especially if you have an online shop where transactions take place.
Nonetheless, it is important to know that they have been suffering regular DDoS attacks, which put websites offline for a while. However, they have handled such attacks efficiently.
With WordPress, you have to be responsible for the security of your website. You have to:
- Choose a proper web hosting to deal with DDoS attacks and other issues
- Update your themes, plugins and the CMS regularly
- Back up your website, although, some web hosting companies will do it automatically for you
- Ensure that the plugins or themes you install don’t contain malicious code.
As you can see, it is more demanding than Squarespace, but in exchange you get far more freedom and flexibility, as we are going to see in the next sections.
Design and Aesthetics:
You need to make your website beautiful and stunning. However, not only that, you need to make sure that it connects with your audience.
We have to reckon that Squarespace makes it super easy to launch a beautiful website, even as a total newcomer. You can make your website highly aesthetic without any prior experience, because you have tons of templates that you can edit as you please.
Also, the quality of their templates are top-notch, much better than the many other website builders. Therefore, you can bring your websites a professional and stunning look.
Surprisingly, you can customize many aspects of your design, bringing you more freedom than traditional web builders.
Now, let’s talk about WordPress.
You have an amazing variety of themes to choose from, both free and paid, which allow you to customize them as you please. If you want to replicate the aspect of many Squarespace websites, you only have to install a Parallax theme.
The principal advantage of WP resides in its capacity for adapting it as you please. You can easily grab a theme, hire a developer and edit it at level code to meet your design goals, something that you cannot do with Squarespace.
With WordPress, your creative potential will meet no limits. You can mold any theme as you prefer. Furthermore, you can even get a framework and do all sort of amazing things, either by yourself or by hiring a developer.
Did you know that mobile traffic was responsible for 52.2% of internet traffic in 2018?
That percentage will only keep growing, and therefore, being ready for mobile traffic is more important than ever before. Thus, you must choose a platform that is mobile friendly, and furthermore, that makes it easy for you to make your website mobile friendly.
Again, Squarespace takes care of everything you need, to make your site responsive and mobile-friendly. It also includes a mobile app to monitor your website on the go.
For WordPress, again, you have to take care of it yourself. However, it is easy, because most modern themes are mobile friendly, so, you only have to install one and that’s all.
Nonetheless, to make sure that your site is 100% mobile friendly, you need to run several tests to see how it looks on different devices and make the necessary fixes, and in most cases, you will need to hire a developer.
Plugins & Extensions:
As your website grows, or straight from the beginning, you will need extra functions to accomplish specific goals, and that is why you need plugins and extensions.
WordPress wins by a knockout here, because it brings you far more plugins that Squarespace will ever do, because more people use WP, and as it is the better platform here in terms of flexibility, use of resources and adaptability, there is a high demand for plugins.
From capturing data to monitoring the behavior of your visitors, the market of WordPress plugins is simply amazing.
They can help you to compress your images, improve your website load speed, take care of your on-page SEO, manage redirections, build quizzes and funnels and more!
On the other hand, Squarespace comes with built-in apps, however, that’s all you get. There is no marketplace to browse, so, you are very restricted regarding the extra functions you can integrate to your website.
Therefore, the definitive winner here is WordPress. It beats Squarespace any day of the week.
Price & Value:
WordPress is free, Squarespace is paid. As simple as that.
Even though WP is free, you still need to invest money in the following:
- A proper web hosting
- Plugins (you have many great free plugins)
- Themes (you have plenty that are free)
- SSL certificate
Furthermore, if you want to fully adapt WP to your project, in case it is very complex, you will have to hire a developer, and that comes at an extra price.
Nonetheless, if you want to run a basic website, for example for a small business or a personal blog, you don’t need much, because with a free theme, free plugins and a reliable web hosting, which will cost you between $5-10 per month and an SSL certificate, you will have more than enough.
Now, let’s talk about Squarespace. You have the following plans:
|Plans||Monthly Price||Annual Price|
|Personal||$16 USD||$12 USD|
|Business||$26 USD||$18 USD|
|eCommerce – Basic||$30 USD||$26 USD|
|eCommerce – Advanced||$46 USD||$40 USD|
If you opt for a yearly plan, you will have a lot of money in the long run.
Once you pay for your plan, you won’t have to take care of anything else, in most cases, because they provide you everything to run your website: themes, hosting, security updates, extensions, etc.
Furthermore, if you want to set up your own web shop, they bring you an all-inclusive package – be it Basic or Advance – to launch your store right off the bat.
If you want to get laser-targeted organic traffic, you need to start by building a website that is SEO-friendly, and hence, your platform of choice is essential.
We will make it short for you: When it comes to SEO, WordPress beats Squarespace any day of the week, because it allows you to optimize your website to a much deeper degree.
However, for the beginner, Squarespace is good enough, because they have built-in SEO tools and they take care of the principal aspects of making your website SEO friendly.
Therefore, if you are setting up an ambitious project, you will need far more control on what you can do, and that’s something that only WordPress can bring you, because it is a hosted CMS solution.
One of the key difference is that Squarespace doesn’t bring you control over the title or meta description tags at page level, which is harmful for SEO, because it means you cannot optimize both elements to achieve a higher CTR.
Furthermore, when you have to design complex SEO strategies, flexibility of your CMS becomes a crucial factor, and therefore, many professionals prefer WordPress.
In conclusion, WordPress is better when it comes to SEO, and that is why we suggest all of our clients to use it over any web builder like Wix or Squarespace.
Are you planning to launch your own web shop? Then, your choice for building your store is essential, because you need a solution that brings you a beautiful, easy to administer and fast-loading shop.
The advantage of Squarespace is that you can launch your eCommerce shop easily, similar to Shopify. If you are a total beginner who only wants to have a portal to sell online, while keeping technical endeavors at bay, Squarespace will suffice your needs.
Nonetheless, if you want to set up a fully functional, perfectly adapted and powerful shop, which is the case for daring and complex projects, WordPress is the best way to go.
You have more control over your resources, you can adapt it to your specific needs, and therefore, offer a better experience to your visitors, which will result in higher conversions.
That is why we use WordPress to set up the websites and stores of our clients. It is far more reliable, powerful and flexible. Our team of expert WP developers guarantee you the best results with our web design service.
However, it is also possible to set up a simple web shop with WordPress. You can use an extension like Prestashop or WooCommerce, to have a fully functional store.
Nonetheless, you will have to take care of setting up all the details like payment processors and order fulfilling.
In conclusion, if you want to launch as soon as possible and reduce work to its minimal expression – aside from attending the operations of your store – Squarespace is the best choice. Nonetheless, if your ambition is much bigger and your needs require far more, WordPress is the perfect solution.
Updates & Maintenance:
You need to use a platform that is constantly updated, because in this cybernetic world of always-happening attacks and hacks, you need to make sure that your website is patched and ready for them.
In the case of WordPress, you have to handle it yourself. You are responsible for updating your plugins, themes and the system itself. Also, you have to back up your website, however, you can do it automatically by picking a hosting plan that offers such feature.
There is a strong and active community behind WordPress, and therefore, they are releasing updates regularly for the CMS, as well as plugins and themes.
On the other hand, Squarespace takes care of it all, so you only have to worry about designing and adding content to your website. They reduce maintenance to its minimum expression, because they handle it all.
Flexibility & Adaptability:
Maybe you just want to set up a simple website, or perhaps, you want to set up a very complex project that requires many functions and tons of flexibility of the platform.
Hands down, WordPress beats Squarespace when it comes to flexibility and adaptability. At first glance, in the basic levels, it is not easy to appreciate, but when you need to set up a project with many functions, heavy use of resources and specific design requirements, WordPress arises as the best choice.
You can build any kind of website with WordPress. You can even set up a file sharing website for example. Of course, you can also build a web shop as big as you please, with hundreds of functions and extensive tracking.
You can also build a video portal like YouTube, because there are themes that allow you to do it easily, and of course, you can hire a developer to handle it for you, to add specific functions that surpass the capacity of plugins and conventional themes.
In conclusion, if you want to take down your boundaries and have a platform that can adapt even to your most daring dreams, then WordPress is exactly what your life needs!
Which one has the largest community? It is very important, because if you ever have a question, or want to start a discussion about a feature of the CMS or website builder, you will need a solid community behind it.
Another aspect where WordPress arises as the definitive champion, because it has one of the largest communities in the internet, the WordPress Support Forum.
Furthermore, they also organize conferences and conventions regularly. Another fact that allows you to see the huge dimensions of popularity that WordPress has obtained.
What about Squarespace? Even though they have a community, it is very small in comparison to WordPress. Furthermore, they don’t organize any kind of event or convention.
Therefore, the conclusion is clear, WordPress has the bigger and better community in this comparison!
If you ever face issues or have questions, you will need customer support service. It is essential.
As Squarespace is a paid service, they have a team ready to answer your questions or bring assistance when you need it.
In most cases, they answer very fast and they can handle all sort of issues, especially the most common that beginners face.
On the other hand, with WordPress you can only rely on the community or the customer support for the themes or plugins you buy. Of course, it also includes your web hosting service, but WordPress itself does not offer customer support service, because it is a CMS, not a paid service.
However, its community is very active and helpful, so you only have to post your question or issue and the most experienced users will be glad to help.
Even though the plans of Squarespace bring you a decent amount of resources, especially in the top-tier plans, it still cannot compare to what you can get from hosting WP in a high-performing web hosting plan.
With Squarespace you are limited, whereas with WordPress you only have to upgrade your hosting plan, or even better, get your own Dedicated Server or Enterprise solution, in case your project requires a massive amount of server resources.
So, the answer is clear, WordPress brings you a better management of server resources.
Analytics & Tracking:
If you can’t track key aspects like site visits, traffic sources, pages visited, time spent on page and other key metrics, you are leaving a lot of money on the table, because you cannot really measure the performance of your website.
Again, WordPress beats Squarespace, because it has amazing plugins that allow you to track every single aspect of your website. You can even integrate Google Analytics, to check all the metrics right from your dashboard.
On the other hand, Squarespace is very basic in this regard. They bring you analytics, yes, but they only record basic metrics, and when you are doing a very extensive and deep Conversion Rate Optimization job, you need far more data than what Squarespace can bring.
That is why we prefer WordPress, because it makes CRO much more efficient and easier. In fact, we recommend to the clients from our Adwords service to use WordPress, and in case their site doesn’t use it, we take care of the migration, design and adaptation.
In short, if you want more data to understand better your visitors and to truly measure the performance of your website, always opt for WordPress.
Blogging & Content Management:
A blog is essential for any website, because it allows you to educate your readers, funnel your traffic and rank in search engines.
Both systems are easy to set up a blog, because you build and design it easily and it is very simple to add content regularly.
As you have seen, Squarespace is more suitable for total beginners, because it allows you to set up your website easily, and the same goes for adding posts and formatting them.
However, the WordPress editor is very easy and practical as well. You can format your posts as you please and add all the media you need. You can organize everything by categories and add tags.
Therefore, if you want a more complete blogging experience, WordPress is the way to go. If you prefer to keep things as simple as possible, Squarespace is the most suitable choice.
You can capture all sort of data with Squarespace and WordPress, however, the difference resides in ease of integration.
Integrating forms, Google Sheets, Mailchimp and other services takes a lot more work with Squarespace than WordPress, because you have to use services like Zapier to unite all the processes.
On the other hand, with WordPress you only have to install Gravity Forms and that’s all. It allows you to integrate all the services you need to capture your data and use it as you need.
In conclusion, when it comes to capturing data, WordPress is far more efficient and practical.
If you are targeting different countries – which is usual in the eCommerce space – you need to bring content in the language that your audience speaks. Therefore, you need a platform with excellent multilingual support.
So, which platform is better suited when you want to have a website in multiple languages?
In short, WordPress is the best choice, because you only have to install WP Multilingual Plugin to set up different versions of your content in the language you specify.
Alternatively, you can use the WordPress Multisite to create multiple versions of your site. As you can see, this CMS brings you different solutions for the same problem. Plenty of angles!
You can set up a multi-lingual site at Squarespace, but the process is far more demanding than with WordPress, and in addition, it does not work at the same level.
Therefore, the answer is clear: WP rocks for multilingual support!
In the online space, it is usual for a website to go from small to very big, and therefore, you need a platform that allows you to scale as you grow.
Hands down, WordPress is the best option when it comes to scalability, because you can stretch and adapt it to your growing needs without problems. All you have to do is to hire a developer when the moment requires it, because there are times when a project surpasses all of your technical abilities and knowledge.
Nonetheless, you can extend the capacity of your WordPress website by:
- Getting a better web hosting plan (ex: a Dedicated Server)
- Using plugins to add functions to your website
Once you need to edit it at code level and add functions that exceed the capacity of plugins, you will have to hire a developer, but that is the general rule for any big and growing project.
In this regard, Squarespace is better than WordPress if you are a beginner, because they have an integrated that makes migration very easy. In addition, their support team will help you if you need it, you only have to ask.
With WordPress, you have to handle it yourself. However, many web hosting services offer free migration, so, they will take care of the process.
Nonetheless, it is important to note that Squarespace is limited when it comes to exporting data, whereas WordPress, again, brings you far more freedom and flexibility.
Squarespace restricts many elements when exporting, so, keep it into account, because if you ever plan to switch platforms, you will have to redesign many aspects of your website.
Therefore, we recommend you to start off with the right foot by choosing WordPress. It will make your life easier and bring you better results.
Now you know the top 20 differences between Squarespace and WordPress, which is enough to see which platforms will fit your needs the best.
If you have more questions, feel free to let us know and we will get back to you!