When starting an online business, choosing the right e-commerce platform is crucial as it will determine the future and longevity of your endeavor. With so many platforms available in the market, it can be hectic to pick the one that works best for you.
Currently, both Shopify and Squarespace provide a strong platform to build your business but there are subtle differences that may swing in either’s favor. Shopify is a full-fledged e-commerce platform, allowing sellers to create and scale their business while Squarespace is a website creation platform with just enough options to launch your business.
While both are excellent choices for you, there are certain advantages and drawbacks. In this article, I will walk you through each one and compare their key features.
Let’s get going.
Shopify Vs Squarespace: Key Differences (2023)
Before we begin, let’s have a look at some major differences between both platforms.
|Price||Plans start at $39/month||Starts at $16/month|
|Blogging Options||Comment moderation, scheduling, bulk post removal, etc.||Tools & analytics post scheduling, moderation, tags, and more|
|Customer Care||Email, chat, phone call||Email, Social media, chat|
|SEO Tools||Meta descriptions, page titles, advanced analytics for Google||Built-in SEO tools, customized URLs, Google analytics|
|Backup & Storage||Offers unlimited storage, manual backup||Unlimited storage, manual backup|
|Designing||Free and 50+ premium templates||Free templates for designing|
Shopify Vs Squarespace: A Quick Rundown
Shopify began its journey as an online business solution platform and has subsequently expanded to an all-in-one e-commerce platform adding several website development tools. It has all the necessary features that will help you build an e-commerce site, including the ability to sell an unlimited amount of products through numerous sales channels. You can easily customize and modify your store by choosing numerous templates and tools.
Squarespace is a user-friendly website builder that provides everything in a single package. It’s a complete e-commerce solution that offers various templates, themes, website management tools, plugins, etc. The platform also offers e-commerce integration at three different levels. You may find fewer features compared to Shopify, but if you are looking for a lightweight and beginner-friendly website builder, Shopify is the right option for you.
Shopify Vs Squarespace: How Do They Stack up?
|Sr. No.||Comparing Features – Shopify Vs Squarespace|
|4.||Products & Sales|
Here we have compared the features of Shopify and Squarespace in detail.
1. E-commerce Features – Shopify Vs Squarespace
Shopify offers better features for scaling your website and making it easier for your customers to shop. Squarespace’s website may look more trendy, but they lack some key elements which can be a deal breaker.
With Shopify, you get a built-in search bar on your website, which makes it easy for buyers to look for the exact products. There is no default search bar on Squarespace but you can add it through a third-party application along with a custom bar on each of the website’s pages. But the process is not as straightforward, to be honest.
Another important e-commerce feature is the ability to generate reviews and product ratings. It gives your customer a better idea about the product and business. You can manually activate iron Shopify, but we are yet to see this feature from Squarespace.
Shopify also allows you to reward your customers through reward points. You can download the necessary app from the Shopify app store. Again, No such option is available at Squarespace.
Shopify allows you to use 1-click upsells, and cross-sells, through paid third-party subscriptions. With Squarespace, there is no possibility to implement 1-click upsells. However, you can manually add cross-sells but it might take a lot of time if you have a big inventory.
2. Website Design – Shopify Vs Squarespace
Both platforms provide a simple drag-draw tool to design your website however you want. Since Squarespace was initially launched as a website builder rather than an e-commerce platform, it has a lot more options for designing an attractive and professional website. Shopify is not far behind but the options are limited and more expensive compared to Squarespace.
There are more than 100 website templates to choose from, suitable for any kind of business including jewelry, book store, pet supplies, home & decor, office equipment, and more. You can customize your website according to your brand name, business type, and approach. Squarespace also has a collection of modern and classic customizable themes that will give a completely new look to your website. You can customize color, fonts, brand logos, and much more to give your website a more personal touch.
Shopify offers a limited number of free themes (around 10) but frankly, there is not much to choose from. Most of the themes appear similar and don’t have as fair as Squarespace themes have. Also, to change minor things like font, color, and tabs, you will need to play with CSS code, making it more tricky to handle.
The only other option is to go with premium themes but they are pretty expensive without any customization. You can go to the Shopify theme store and browse for more suitable themes. The biggest disadvantage of Shopify is that once you’ve selected the template, there is no way you can change it, meaning there are no website previews available.
3. SEO Tools – Shopify Vs Squarespace
For any e-commerce business, SEO is an integral part as it helps your website achieve a higher rank and shoots your products up in Google search results, giving you a higher chance to get picked by worldwide buyers.
Shopify has the lead in terms of built-in SEO tools. Shopify is built around Google’s prime web requirements and focuses on multiple website components including stability, page loading time, and overall responsiveness. It will also suggest meta descriptions and titles based on the page content, making it easier for you to build a Google-friendly website.
On Squarespace, users can customize the meta title, description, and URL of their pages to align with the content. But it must be done manually since there is no built-in feature for that. However, Squarespace does offer Google Analytics and makes it easy to integrate with social media such as Facebook and Instagram. You may not be able to use all third-party SEO apps on Squarespace, but there is built-in SEO support which will help you rank your website easily.
4. Products & Sales – Shopify Vs Squarespace
When talking about products and sales features, both platforms allow you to build an online store and sell through the website. Squarespace is more inclined toward website building while Shopify focuses on brand building and scaling. This approach is clearly visible in both platforms’ tools and features to organize products, payments, and PoS.
With Squarespace, you get a well-crafted website where you can showcase your products along with advanced features such as 360 zoom-in, welcome dashboard, and so on. You get basic order management and payment facility along with quick checkout to seamlessly conduct your business.
With Squarespace, you can create a website matching your brand idea and sell various products including custom printed items, subscription services, and basically everything that you can on Shopify, only at a cheaper price and in a hassle-free manner.
Shopify, on the other hand, gives you a base to start your business from scratch and grow. Although the company is keen on brand-building and providing opportunities for global business, it does offer a decent website to list your products, process orders, and accept payments. Shopify emphasizes more on functionality rather than aesthetics and you will notice some cruel display features missing from website layouts such as image zoom-in, customization, etc but you can easily achieve that through third-party integration applications.
Both Squarespace and Shopify provide in-person sales, however, Squarespace doesn’t allow POS transactions outside the USA.
Ultimately, it all comes down to your personal preference. If you are a web-designing enthusiast, looking to start a small business, PoD website, or dropshipping business, Squarespace is the one for you. Contrary, choose Shopify if you want a more global approach, sales, and marketing features.
Para 2 – What products can you sell on Squarespace?
5. Fulfillment – Shopify Vs Squarespace
Fulfillment is an essential stage of any e-commerce business and both Shopify and Squarespace provide you with fulfillment services through third-party integration. Shopify is a bit ahead in the race, simply because it integrates with a lot more fulfillment partners compared to Squarespace.
Shopify allows you to use Shipstation, FBA direct, ShipBob, and many other fulfillment services along with its own fulfillment network if you are based in the USA or Canada. You can ship your entire inventory to Shopify fulfillment centers and it will find the fastest possible way to arrange delivery and return on your behalf.
With Squarespace, your options are limited. Currently, it partners with ShipBob, a popular order fulfillment but you will have to pay for a subscription to be able to use its services. You can connect to a few dropshipping providers such as Syncee, Printful, Art of Where, and many others. Squarespace also gives you the option to use FBA and Shipwire through the ShipStation extension.
6. Payments – Shopify Vs Squarespace
Squarespace offers fewer payment options and supports fewer payment gateways compared to Shopify.
With Squarespace, you have Stripe, Apple Pay, and PayPal. You also have the option to pay in person which was recently launched by the company.
Shopify supports nearly 100 payment options including Amazon Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, the majority of international credit cards, and even cryptocurrencies. It’s quite evident that Shopify handsomely wins the payment options battle.
7. Third-party Integration – Shopify Vs Squarespace
When it comes to third-party integration, Shopify is a clear winner as it allows you to sync your website with numerous renowned platforms. Squarespace has limited integration options such as fulfillment, Facebook, Google analytics & product feed, email marketing, POD, and shipping (USPS).
The biggest thing in favor of Shopify is the ability to sync your website with multiple sales channels, including Amazon, eBay, Walmart, AliExpress, etc. For social media, you get Facebook and Instagram, allowing you to sell through social media. There are numerous integration options for marketing automation, payment gateways, shipping, fulfillment, Dropshipping services, WordPress, and much more.
The Bottom Line: Shopify vs Squarespace (2023)
I hope this detailed comparison will help you pick the better e-commerce platform for your store.
Shopify shines in the areas of customer care, SEO tools, payments, and third-party integration. As I mentioned, it was primarily created to help online retailers and has improved its features over time.
Squarespace, on the other hand, is mainly focused on creating websites, as it was launched originally, but later ended up adding up some additional e-commerce features, making it a strong competitor of Shopify.
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