Thinking Of Using Squarespace For Your Blog?
I've been running my blog through Squarespace for a year now and personally? I love it.
I toyed with the idea of self hosted Wordpress for all of an afternoon (simply because that's all I knew about blogging) before cancelling it before the payment had even gone through and hopped right over to Squarespace and never looked back.
The reason I knew about/liked Squarespace was because I already used it for 10 months previous for hosting my illustration website. The templates and system make for a really snazzy portfolio but I never considered using it for a blog until I started taking mine seriously.
So if you're looking for another alternative to Blogger or Wordpress for your own site here's a few pros and cons from someone who's been using it a year (and wouldn't turn back now).
1. No Self Hosting.
I am not tech savvy when it comes to blogging. I can barely code, have no skills in making my own templates and the idea of hosting myself makes me go weak at the knees. One of the biggest advantages of Squarespace in my opinion is they take all the hard work out for you. They host your site, you do the work and they make sure it keeps running. And if something DOES go wrong for whatever reason, there's 4829478357 articles to help you and their Twitter team is ace.
2. Easy To Use Templates.
Again, back to the no coding skills. Making a template from scratch is not my forte at all but Squarespace have a whole range of templates that you install for free and then shift about as you wish, adding and deleting what you do and don't want with the use of a drag and drop system Piece of piss for want of a better term.
3. Sleek Design.
Ok so nobody bite my head off but I find the Wordpress themes a bit naff. Like really, when you think of all the bloggers themes you love, chances are, if you scroll to the bottom you'll find a copyright notice saying it was designed by Pipdig and the like. I love that Squarespace's templates are sleek and professional to start with and that only means enhancing it and making it your own so even if you don't have the most creative brain, chances are your site will still look profesh.
4. Domains Are Easy.
With a Squarespace site you can get a domain through them which makes it suuuuuuper easy when it comes to renewals - you essentially set it up as automatic and it renews with your site every year. That's what I did with my illustration website and actually it was free when I signed up back in March 2015. With twentysomethingmeltdown I already owned the domain bought through another site but it was scary easy to transfer the domains to suit my new platform.
5. It's Really Easy To Use.
Have I made that clear yet? Sure at first it's a bit confusing as anything is but like I mentioned, if you Google a problem on Squarespace, their community is VAST and there's always a billion answers to help you. The templates, the drop in widgets, the accessibility to linking all your social media links etc....once you get how it works it's SO simple and I love it more than the first 8/9 months I was on free Wordpress.
1. It's Expensive.
Let's not beat around the bush here, it's not the cheapest of platforms. Personally, I think the cost is worth it for the ease I find when accessing the site and actually it's not ALL that much than self hosting on Wordpress. The only problem I find is that Squarespace is an American company and therefore all their rates are in USD which means the exchange rate of transferring that into GBP depends on how the financial climate is doing at the time. I pay yearly which kinda avoids the most exchange rate fiascos of paying monthly but obvs paying that much in one go isn't for everyone. It is worth noting that Squarespace offer a discount for students so if you still have a valid university email address it makes it much more affordable that way.
2. No Auto Save.
This is one I have fallen victim to on more than one occasion. Squarespace doesn't offer auto save when it comes to blogging so if your internet crashes and your blog freezes, if you didn't manually save you've lost the lot. I have been known to lose entire brand collabs complete with photos right at the end of the post after hours work but you can get around it by training yourself to save manually frequently (I now save after every paragraph).
3. You Can't Link Bloglovin.
Now correct me if I'm wrong and point me in the direction but I have yet to find out how to link Bloglovin in my social media icons. I know you can include the widget in your sidebar or on the blog but you can't link it like you can Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest etc. I even spoke to Vix Meldrew about this and she couldn't work it out either so if she can't, I have no hope.
4. You Are Limited To The Template.
So personally I don't find this a problem because I am a girl of simple pleasures and the templates work for me but you ARE limited. There are a million different templates and options and colours and widgets to add and ways to make it look but if you DO get bored, you can't implement a Pipdig theme like you can on Wordpress.
5. Not As Many People Are Using It.
No it's not the world's smallest platform, it's actually pretty huge and successful but blogging wise it's not as popular (or maybe people just don't know it's an option) with the community. I only know Vix and Sarirah for sure who use it and it means when you DO have a question, you normally have to relate to Google or Squarespace help when sometimes all you want to do is send a tweet out to your blogging gals for help.
Overall, I won't be changing any time soon and even though I have about 90 quid to part with on the weekend as my blog renews, I'll be happy to do so for the site I get blogging with Squarespace.
If you do fancy migrating your blog this way or have any questions I'd be happy to try and answer them - leave me a comment or drop me a tweet!
**EDIT: Since writing this post, Sarirah from Pretty Not Included wrote this post on tips for transferring your blog to Squarespace and it's 1. Hugely useful and 2. Everything I wanted to get across in this blog and didn't!