20.12.18 | 0 Comments|
As an entrepreneur or business owner, one of the most important things you need to think about is how to build your website. There are many aspects to consider, such as features, security, design, customer support, and much more. When first starting out, it’s very difficult to understand which site builder is best for your needs, especially with so many options available out there, and it’s important to do your research before committing to one company.
While it is possible to change your mind and rebuild the website or move a website to another platform, it is not always easy and can, in fact, be very complicated down the road. Two of the most popular site builders are Squarespace and Weebly. You can use these site builders to create a variety of different types of websites, such as for special events, however, we’ve found that they are both best used for business and e-commerce purposes.
The signup process is fairly simple and fast on both site builders. With Squarespace, you can browse their template categories or answer a question about what type of website you’re looking to build. You free-type in your response so you aren’t limited by multiple choice answer options, and then Squarespace presents you with templates that they think would be a good fit. Once you select a template or design, you’ll need to create your username and enter your name, email, and password to continue.
Weebly requires signing up first. This only takes about a minute, and you will have to provide your name, email address, and choose a password. Once you do that, you will be shown all of their templates, which you can filter by category, and you’re ready to start creating your Weebly website.
Squarespace offers dozens of beautiful modernly design templates. You can filter the template by various categories, such as popular design, online stores, fashion beauty, music, and many more. Overall, Squarespace templates have a common theme: they are all designed in a minimalistic and modern way, with slightly pastel colors and beautiful imagery. Finding a template that works for you is not a problem with Squarespace, thanks to the many professional options available.
Weebly offers fewer templates in number than Squarespace, but their designs are more diverse. There is no common theme when looking at all of the templates together, and you can find many different layouts, designs, colors, and styles. Like Squarespace, you can filter the Weebly templates by category. The categories available here are business, portfolio, personal, event, blog, and other.
In terms of templates, when looking at Squarespace versus Weebly, Squarespace has many more templates and categories then Weebly. On the other hand, Weebly does offer more styles, so it’s difficult to say which one is better. It is best to take the time to look at the templates that both site builders offer to see where you can find one that best suits your brand.
Before building your website, you need to understand which features you’d like to have on your site and prioritize importance. In other words, which features are nice to have, and which are absolutely necessary? This will help you choose a site builder that has the features that you need before spending time on choosing a template and learning how to use the editor.
Weebly offers a few very basic and important features, such as a gallery, slideshows, maps, contact forms, newsletter forms, embedded video and audio, social icons, and the option to add your own block of code. If you can’t find the feature that you need, Weebly has an App Center where you can browse available apps and add them to your site. While there are many free apps, a few do cost an additional fee. You’ll find apps for e-commerce, communication, marketing, social, and various site tools. Weebly has a few very advanced apps, such as live chat or Facebook live chat, popups, coupons, and many more.
Squarespace is more limited though offers a range of e-commerce, marketing, and analytics features. One benefit is that these integrations are already built-in so there is no need to search an app store and add plugins yourself. Their features cover what most businesses and websites need (Google Drive, Getty Images, Adobe Creative Suite, etc.), however it is important to check since there are not as many options as Weebly.
In both cases, you can add your own code for more specific features not available in the site builder. Furthermore, both Weebly and Squarespace are responsive and mobile-friendly site builders, which is a must these days.
Squarespace is pretty easy to use. The first time you start editing your template, you’ll get pop-ups with explanations on how to move things around, add content blocks, and more. When hovering over an item on your site, i.e. an image or text, a small menu will appear with the options available to you such as edit and delete. Hovering over the menu will also show a hand icon which allows you to simply drag the item to a new location on the page. Adding more content blocks is possible by simply clicking “add block” at the top of the page. When you’re done, click “save” if you like what you see, or “cancel” if you decide that you don’t want to save your changes.
The Weebly editor is a little easier to use and understand. Once your template is chosen, the editor is very intuitive. You’ll find a sidebar on the left with all of the items you can add to your site and a menu at the top of the editor with additional editing options. Hovering over an item will allow you to drag it to any location on the site, and clicking it will allow you to edit.
When it comes to usability, both site builders have a very small learning curve and are easy to use. Neither requires technical or design skills. Squarespace may seem slightly more difficult to understand intuitively, but they do provide “how-to” tips for first-time users.
Squarespace has four packages: The “Personal” and “Business” packages for websites, and the “Basic” and “Advanced” packages for online stores. The “Personal” package is $12 a month when billed annually or $16 when billed monthly. The Business package is $18/month when billed annually and $26 when billed monthly. The online store packages are more expensive, at $26/month for the Basic package when billed annually or $30 monthly, and $40 for the Advanced package when billed annually or $46 monthly. Annual packages have a significant discount, however, it is recommended to try it out for a month to see if it meets your needs before committing. The differences between the packages are the features. The Personal and Basic packages cover most of what a business would need to start, while the more advanced packages have features such as subscriptions, abandoned cart auto-recovery, advanced shipping, gift cards, and more.
Weebly has three packages billed monthly or annually: Connect at $5/month billed annually or $8 monthly, Pro at $12/month billed annually or $18 monthly, Business at $25/month billed annually or $35 monthly. The Pro and Business packages include a free domain. In this case, the most basic Connect package is not usually enough for a business, and the Pro and Business packages are recommended.
Both offer SSL security in all of their paid packages, which is very important, especially in e-commerce sites.
Upfront, Weebly pricing is much lower than Squarespace pricing. Be aware, however, that there could be additional costs down the line if you need more advanced apps that come at an extra fee on Weebly. In addition, while Squarespace is more expensive, they offer 24/7 support to all subscribers, which may be critical for some businesses.
Both Squarespace and Weebly are great site builders that allow you to quickly get your site up and running and looking professional. As an entrepreneur, you need to look closely at site builder reviews and try them both out before choosing to ensure you end up with the site you want and the features you need.
While you’re here, make sure that you don’t fall prey to these 8 things that everyone forgets when choosing a website builder!