Shopify Vs. Squarespace: Which One Is Right For Your Business?

August 04, 2022 | Author:  Andrew Maff
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As an e-commerce business owner, you have many different options for choosing a platform for your online store. Two of the most popular choices are Squarespace and Shopify. Both platforms offer many great features, but which one is right for your business?

This article will compare Shopify and Squarespace to help you decide which platform is the best fit for your business.

When it comes to e-commerce sites, there are so many options available. Finding the right fit for your business can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. You can sell your products or services if you have an online store. But, before you start building your e-commerce website, you should know precisely what you’re getting into. 

It doesn’t matter which of these platforms you already use or whether you plan to sell your items. If you’re considering starting an online business, you need to know about Shopify and Squarespace. 

These are both top-notch e-commerce solutions that cater to different types of businesses. Let’s look at the key differences between these two e-commerce platforms.

What Is Shopify?

Shopify is an e-commerce platform that helps you create an online store. It is a SaaS (Software as a Service) platform, which means you can use it wherever you have an internet connection. Shopify is one of the most popular e-commerce solutions available. It’s used by over a million online retailers, including online businesses and bloggers.

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What Is Squarespace?

Squarespace is an online content management system (CMS) that you can use to create websites. It comes with many themes that you can use to build your site, along with templates for specific industries, like fashion and food.

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How To Set Up A Shopify Store

First, you need to decide what items you’re going to sell. You can choose to sell your products or include thousands of marketplaces. When building your Shopify online store, you start by choosing a plan and adding your products.

Next, you need to choose a theme. Shopify themes are the visual elements of your website. You can choose from numerous free, paid, and custom themes. You can also create your content, like blog posts, images, and videos.

Once your store is up and running, you can offer your customers plenty of customization options. You can set up shipping options, tax rules, and payment gateways, making your store unique.

Stripe powers Shopify payments, so you can accept credit cards and other payment options. The Shopify app store has over 2,000 apps to help you run your business, from accounting to marketing.

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How To Set Up An Online Store With Squarespace

Like Shopify, Squarespace is an all-in-one CMS. This means you can choose from a wide range of Squarespace templates to create your site. Squarespace also has a drag-and-drop website builder that lets you create your site in minutes.

After you decide on a template, you can start adding content to your site. You can choose from an extensive library of photos, images, templates, and your custom content.

They even allow you to add e-commerce functionality to your Squarespace website. You can choose to set up shipping, taxes, and payments or let your customers handle all of that themselves.

Shopify Vs. Squarespace

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Pricing

One of the first things you'll want to consider when choosing an e-commerce platform is pricing. Shopify and Squarespace have different pricing structures depending on your service level.

Shopify has three different pricing plans: Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify. The Basic Shopify plan starts at $29 per month, the Shopify plan starts at $79 per month, and the Advanced Shopify plan starts at $299 per month.

Squarespace also has three different pricing plans: Personal, Business, and Commerce. The Personal plan starts at $12 per month, the Business plan starts at $18 per month, and the Commerce plan starts at $26 per month.

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Features

Another essential factor to consider when choosing an e-commerce platform is features. Both Shopify and Squarespace offer many great e-commerce features for online stores, but there are some key differences that you'll want to keep in mind.

Shopify offers a lot of features for online stores, including:

  • A customizable platform
  • A wide range of themes and apps
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Multiple payment options

Squarespace also offers a lot of features for online stores, including:

  • A customizable platform
  • A wide range of themes and apps for your Squarespace site
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Unlimited products and storage
  • Sell online and in-person with Square Point of Sale integration
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Ease Of Use

Both Squarespace and Shopify are fairly user-friendly regarding ease of use. However, Shopify does have a bit of a learning curve since it's a more robust platform. Squarespace is easier to use since it's simplified, but it doesn't offer as many features as Shopify.

Shopify Pros

Easy To Set Up - Starting an online store will take time and effort. You’ll need a plan and a team to lift it. But, Shopify is easy to set up. All you need to do is sign up for a free account. You’ll then choose to either use their drag-and-drop builder or install a third-party app. It’s a straightforward process.

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Flexible Pricing - With Shopify, you have the freedom to choose your pricing. The software is ad-free and built by entrepreneurs. As a result, they understand the needs of businesses. You can choose a plan that suits your needs. This is especially helpful when it comes to managing growing businesses. The program offers a free plan ideal for one person or a small team. You can also choose to start on a small plan and upgrade to a larger one later.

Squarespace Pros

Secure And Easy To Use - Squarespace makes it easy to build a website. You can choose from many templates and customize the look to fit your brand. The platform is also secure. There are no complicated sign-ups or settings. You can create a new site or move an existing website from WordPress.

Free Plan Can Be Used for Online Courses - Squarespace's free plan is ideal if you plan to launch an online course. It’s easy to use and has a high-quality design. You can add images, videos, and audio without any problems. The software is also mobile-friendly. That means it looks great on any device.

Shopify Cons

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Slow Customer Support - the slowness of its customer service overshadows Shopify’s excellent marketing tools. If there’s a problem, you might have to wait days or even weeks before receiving a reply. As a result, it’s easy to fall behind with your marketing. You can’t rely on email marketing or social media campaigns.

Limited Design Options - There are only a few design options with Squarespace. If you want your site to stand out, this might be a problem for your business. However, if you have a straightforward website, you can get by fine.

Squarespace Cons

Not the Best For Selling Physical Products - Squarespace is great for selling digital products. The templates are easy to use and come with solid support. But, Squarespace is not the best choice if you plan to sell physical products. It has limited design options, and templates are not well suited for selling physical products.

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Free Plan Doesn’t Support Payments - While shopping cart integration is included with the free plan on Squarespace, it doesn’t support payments. You’ll need to add them manually. This is a problem for businesses that need to take online payments.

What Sets Shopify Apart?

Shopify is one of the most popular e-commerce platforms. It features a large variety of templates, themes, and content. Plus, it has a strong focus on security and compliance.

Shopify also has a strong app ecosystem and thousands of apps for things like payments, shipping, and marketing. 

Once you sign up for a plan and start selling, you receive 24/7 support. Shopify also has helpful community forums where you can get help from other merchants.

What Sets Squarespace Apart?

Squarespace has a wide range of templates and a large library of photos, images, and templates. You can also choose from a large library of industry-specific templates or create your unique design.

Squarespace also has a large community of merchants, which means you have a wide range of designs to choose from. You can also get 24/7 support when you sign up for a plan and start selling.

Google Analytics is also included with all Squarespace plans. This means you can track your website’s traffic and see how well it’s doing.

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Final Thoughts

Choosing the right e-commerce platform can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Shopify and Squarespace are top-notch platforms that can help you build an online store.

Shopify has been around for over a decade, making it one of the most established e-commerce platforms. With over a million merchants using it, it’s the perfect option for e-commerce businesses who want to start selling online.

On the other hand, Squarespace is a younger platform. It’s only been around for a few years to help businesses create and manage their websites. You don’t have to decide between these two. They’re both great, and they have a lot to offer.

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