A well-designed website can be a game-changer for the success of a personal blog, business, artist/band, photographer, portfolio, or even a best friend’s birthday party. It is essential to have a universally accessible platform to hold all the information that makes you, your product, or your event unique. Finding the best website builder for you, however, can be a challenge.
There are many popular website builders to choose from including Squarespace, Weebly, Wix, WordPress, and many more. So much variety can make the decision seem daunting, as there are a lot of factors to consider. Identifying your skill level and deciding what features are important to you, however, can help narrow down the options.
This article will compare and contrast the two most popular website builders: Squarespace and WordPress. We’ll take a look at cost efficiency, ease of use, plugin availability, and Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which will all be important for the consideration of both site builders.
One of the most critical factors for any business or individual who wants to build a website is value for price.
Squarespace offers a variety of plans with differing price points. Each increase in price point offers incredible and comprehensive value. Squarespace’s website outlines the details of each subscription so that you know the value you’re getting for the money you spend.
- Personal Plan – $12 per month
- Business Plan – $18 per month
- Basic Commerce Plan – $26 per month
- Advanced Commerce Plan – $40 per month
WordPress also offers a variety of plans to choose from:
- Free Plan – $0 per month
- Blogger Plan – $3 per month
- Personal Plan – $5 per month
- Premium Plan – $8 per month
- Business Plan – $25 per month
- eCommerce Plan – $45 per month
While WordPress has virtually no financial barriers to entry keep in mind that there are a lot of potential costs when it comes to getting your website up and running that may make it more expensive in the long run. We’ll take a look at some of those secret fees below.
Squarespace is pretty simple as their plans are financially all-inclusive. The only way to incur additional costs is to use a third-party plugin (for more information, see the Plugins section of this article).
Lines tend to get blurred when it comes to WordPress, even if you do purchase a plan. Only the eCommerce plan seems to be all-inclusive. All of the potential premium and paid features are accessible without paying extra per plugin or for specific tools with this subscription.
Here are some potential extra costs depending on the plan you purchase with WordPress:
- Securing a Domain*
- Additional Storage Space
- Premium Themes
- Advance Design Customization
- Premium Plugins
*Most of the WordPress plans include a free domain for one year. You will have to pay extra on top of your subscription plan to keep your domain after that year. Alternatively, you can choose to purchase a domain from a separate site and then connect that domain to your WordPress site. This is particularly helpful if you want a gTLD that isn’t available through the builder, such as .ai for your fledgling tech startup.
Is it User-Friendly?
When it comes to ease of use, Squarespace has to take the lead.
To set up a Squarespace site, a user simply chooses a template and creates an account. A user can even build out a website during the short trial period and choose to enter payment information after if they want to publish it. Building is simple with the use of Squarespace’s user-friendly features and widgets.
Setting up a WordPress site is more complicated. Before you can jump into building a website, you have to download the WordPress application and complete the setup wizard. Even after you have an account and download the software, building a site can still be complicated. While there are more features, plugins, and theme options with WordPress, they are typically more difficult to figure out and may come with an extra cost to use them.
Plugins and SEO
WordPress is superior regarding plugin availability and SEO. Because of its open format, WordPress has tens of thousands of plugins from which to choose. Some of these plugins do cost extra money, but there are plenty of free plugins available.
In recent years, Squarespace has improved its SEO capabilities by adding features like Site Maps and SSL certificates. However, WordPress still does a better job when it comes to more advanced SEO tactics. Squarespace also doesn’t offer any plugins within the site builder. There is an option to purchase plugins from third-party companies that sell Squarespace compliant plugins. However, most people don’t necessarily need these plugins because of the design in their site-building widgets.
Although both Squarespace and WordPress are capable website builders, depending on consumer needs and skill levels, one should easily emerge as superior to the other.
In my opinion, Squarespace is best for a novice or small business with little web building experience who wants to build a beautiful website. These consumers would benefit from Squarespace’s value proposition, minimal learning curve, ingrained mobile site optimization, and a generally accessible interface. Squarespace is, without a doubt, the most cost-effective and user-friendly of the two site builders.
WordPress would most likely be optimal for an experienced web developer who is familiar with troubleshooting interactivity and design. The full customization and endless possibilities that WordPress has to offer would be better suited for an experienced web builder, especially at the eCommerce level.