Headquartered in New York City, Squarespace is a US-based website building company providing software and payment processing tools to build a unique website for businesses. Squarespace was founded by Anthony Casalena, who built it as a startup from his dorm room back in 2003. Initially, Squarespace was created for his personal use. Later in 2004, it was shared with the world, now having offices in Portland, Ireland, and Oregon.
Squarespace brings numerous resources for people who want to grow their business by creating an online platform to showcase their products and services. Its various features and templates make it easier for business owners without knowledge of website development or coding but need an appealing eCommerce business. Squarespace makes it possible for companies to reach more consumers.
Squarespace also offers an accessible platform for blog hosting, website analytics, online stores, and a virtual outlet for impressive portfolios.
Squarespace Features and Products
Squarespace reviews ascertain that it offers varying pricing plans to merchants, and each plan contains a set of features. Merchants have access to the following features based on the payment plan that they subscribe to;
Squarespace gives easy access to a wide range of pre-designed templates. These templates can be edited and changed to fit the theme of the merchant’s business. The design can be customized, and video backgrounds can be added with straightforward drag-and-drop tools.
The templates are categorized by theme and business type to find the best template for your design.
The processor mainly focuses on eCommerce businesses and allows merchants to showcase and sell their products online without much effort. If you are a merchant with international customers, Squarespace allows you to receive payments in more than 20 currencies.
Moreover, customers can create an account on an online store’s website and have better access to its products by logging in to their accounts. This feature leads to a smooth shopping experience without any inconvenience.
Squarespace has an app for insights, giving you access to views, sales, and other information that can help you make better strategies for your online store. This app also shows the sale count of your products. It can track the number of orders received and the items sold from your shop. With this analytics app, you can engage in email campaigns and know what works best to attract more customers to your website. Merchants can connect their Google Analytics accounts to this app and get information about the device a customer uses to access their website.
Squarespace provides marketing tools to merchants for social media marketing. A merchant can connect their social media business accounts with their website on Squarespace and link these accounts. This way, they can post on these accounts in one go. With this feature, customers can have multiple ways to reach a business and can see its products through social media.
Squarespace reviews show that it offers marketing campaigns via emails and search engine optimization tools to help you with SEO marketing plans to grow your business.
Inventory Management Feature
On Squarespace, you can view the inventory of your products anywhere on a web browser or the app. You can use this feature to receive emails reminding you of a product’s availability status. For instance, if the stock of a product is about to end, you will receive an email for that. This lets you know the exact quantity of products on your shelves and pre-plan restocking your inventory.
Furthermore, through this feature, you can put up ‘limited stock’ notices and sales updates on your website and actively engage with your customers. Inventory management is an effective tool that can satisfy customers when harnessed completely.
Squarespace Contract Terms
Squarespace conducts its processing through PayPal and Stripe, and you can see the similarity in their pricing and contract terms. Merchants are offered 2.9% + $0.30 on transactions and a 3% transaction fee for business websites on Squarespace.
Squarespace offers four types of subscription plans, and the pricing varies accordingly. This subscription fee will be paid monthly, but a discount is provided on annual subscriptions. Squarespace pricing plans are divided into two categories. Websites and online stores. Online store plans have advanced features that merchants can use to customize their websites based on their business needs. The website plan is further divided into personal and business plans, whereas the online store plan or commerce plan is subcategorized into basic and advanced commerce plans. A brief description of the plans and their features is reviewed below;
If you subscribe to the personal plan, you will have to pay $12 per month if billed annually and $16 for a monthly subscription.
A business plan charges $18 per month on annual and $26 per month on monthly subscriptions. It also has a 3% transaction for websites that use Squarespace services.
Basic Commerce Plan
The basic Commerce plan has a fee of $26 per month on annual and $30 per month on monthly subscriptions.
Advanced Commerce Plan
For an advanced commerce plan, a merchant has to pay $40 per month for an annual subscription and $46 for a monthly subscription. In the commerce plan, a merchant will have the option to connect a POS system with their website.
Squarespace Customer Service
Every subscription plan has a 24/7 email customer support and live chat option available from 3 a.m. to 8 p.m. Squarespace also offers a help center in case of any queries.
Squarespace Reviews and Complaints
Squarespace reviews indicate that customers are satisfied with most of its features. The only positive feedbacks are about its templates, and merchants seem to love the wide range of eye-catching backgrounds and patterns to choose from.
However, In the course of a year, Squarespace has received more than 15 complaints. The other 22 reviews also sound negative. These complaints mainly concern customer care, substandard website integration, and hidden charges. There are also a few complaints about technical glitches.
Although Squarespace is not BBB verified, there are 96 complaints filed against it on its BBB profile. These complaints include billing issues, product malfunctioning, poor customer service, inconvenience in product delivery, and issues regarding sales and advertising. Out of these 96, only 26 were responded to. All these complaints and the non-responsive behavior of the company are enough to give a D rating to Squarespace.
Drawbacks of Squarespace
Squarespace has some valuable features that help merchants create a website that can attract more customers. It showcases its products and services in the best possible way but has proven unsatisfactory in various other departments. According to the reviews by the users of Squarespace, here are its few major drawbacks;
Poor Customer Service
One of the most common feedbacks about Squarespace is about poor customer service. The merchants are immensely unsatisfied with it. The reviews show that customers’ emails either get ignored or do not get a timely response. The live chat is only available during fixed hours. Squarespace does not offer phone support, which is a serious issue for merchants who need to reach customer care via phone.
High Subscription Fee
Squarespace does not offer a free trial and is very expensive for people who need to access all features. If a merchant wants eCommerce accessibility, they will need a subscription to the business plan causing them to pay a 3% transaction fee.
Not Suitable For Fast Growing Businesses
If your business is rapidly growing and you need to keep a check on every detail of your business through business analytic features, Squarespace may not be the best pick for you. The company’s eCommerce features are not enough for a fast-growing company. And the features that it offers are only available if you subscribe to the advanced commerce plan, which is too expensive for most new and small-sized businesses.
As the backend payment processors of Squarespace are Stripe and PayPal, there are some serious complaints about transaction-related issues. Stripe has a reputation for unexpected fund holds. As merchants are subscribed through Squarespace, the complaints go against Squarespace instead. In addition, the customers are not even provided with timely solutions regarding this issue. Some customers also complained that they were charged for canceling an automated subscription.
Squarespace provides some valuable features and tools for businesses that have just started and need to generate a simple website to advertise their products and services as an online store. It is also good enough for people who are not an expert in creating websites and need an external source to help them do that. However, it is not suitable for merchants who need to make their website an all-in-one source to grow their business and effectively reach customers.
Considering the limited number of features in the basic subscription plan, Squarespace has proven too expensive for freshly started businesses. So it is best to look for more affordable options, especially if you have a company with a low profit margin.