Webflow vs Squarespace: Pros & Cons

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The markets that Webflow and Squarespace are aiming for are not always the same. Squarespace caters to small to medium enterprises and individuals, while Webflow caters to agencies and professionals.

Squarespace has a long history of modifications and upgrades, as well as a devoted customer base, dating back to 2003. Webflow was launched in 2013 and has gained a reputation as a little more advanced web builder for professionals in its relatively short existence.

Both will provide you with a professional-looking website, but what is more important to you as a user? Who wins in terms of ease of use, cost, functionality, and appearance?

With this Squarespace vs. Webflow comparison, I want to provide a fair comparison between the two. Here's how they compare.

If you've already decided to get Webflow, just click the button below.

What is Webflow?

Webflow isn't your typical website creator. For starters, it eliminates the requirement for designers to pass website designs on to developers. As a result, it's great for designers and advanced users who want to construct a site on their own but need more creative flexibility than Squarespace or Weebly can provide.

Webflow vs Squarespace

The product itself resembles a cross between a website builder and a content management system. You have entire control over the design and development of completely responsive websites, as well as the ability to customize mobile versions (unlike with most website builders). You may make site-wide changes without having to install any plugins by using the visual editor.

In this regard, Webflow's approach is similar to Wix Editor X's, however we think it's a touch more sophisticated. Nonetheless, Webflow is far more user-friendly and straightforward than WordPress.

Webflow may also host your site for you, which is a significant distinction from WordPress. As a result, you won't need to employ your own hosting company (or use the more limited WordPress.com).

Webflow, unlike WordPress, focuses a strong emphasis on customer support, with courses, video lessons, articles, and a user forum available through their Webflow University. 

Webflow pros

  • Drag and drop page builder
  • Intuitive editor interface
  • Work directly with the eCommerce site's CMS data
  • Page layouts that are responsive
  • Work with CSS classes that can be reused
  • Flexbox is a useful tool
  • Create a set of global color swatches
  • Directly to the web using SSL and ISO 27018
  • The entire platform, which includes marketing tools as well as data collection
  • Download the code that was exported
  • If necessary, use the code editor to add your own code
  • Make animations that are scroll-based

Webflow cons

  • For a website builder, it's a little tricky to use
  • There is no live chat or phone help available

What is Squarespace?

Squarespace is a website-building platform geared mostly towards small business owners and self-employed individuals.

What is Squarespace

Squarespace, along with Wix and Shopify, is one of the most well-known site builders available. Founded in 2004 as a solution to help consumers without development skills construct and maintain their own website, Squarespace now powers 2.6 million sites and online stores (source: Builtwith.com). The company employs approximately 1,100 workers.

Squarespace is a 'hosted' website builder. This implies that it is hosted on its own servers, and you do not need to install any software on your computer to utilize it.

It allows you to create a professional website without coding in a web browser and easily change it thanks to a user-friendly content management system (CMS).

To put it another way, instead of launching Dreamweaver or another web design program and pounding out lines of code to build a site, you do it all online with Squarespace's templates and style editor. To work on your site, all you need is a web browser and connection to the internet.

You choose a template, click on the elements of the design you want to change, and then change the controllers in the style editor. For example, you can alter the typeface of some text by clicking on it; change the color of a background by clicking on it; and so on.

However, Squarespace is not the right option for folks who want to fiddle about a lot — it's a platform that pushes you to pick a template, fill it with content, and hit the publish button.

Squarespace is a SaaS (software as a service) application, which means you don't own a copy of the software and instead pay a monthly price to access it. 

Squarespace pros

  • The site loads quickly
  • A good selection of templates is available
  • Interface that allows you to drag and drop items
  • Import/export of data is possible
  • Friendly to e-commerce
  • Excellent assistance
  • Integration with G Suite

Squarespace cons

  • It's not the fastest builder to develop a website because it's difficult to grasp at first
  • The editor is a touch too manual at times; for example, you'll be requested to save your work after each modification, but it doesn't save automatically

Webflow vs Squarespace: feature comparison

Before we go any further, it’s time to discuss how the top-performing features of these apps stack up against each other. Keep in mind that each of them also come with their own feature sets. For now, we’ll talk about what they have in common and how they perform. 

Let’s get started.

Getting started

Some website builders are less user-friendly than others, however neither of these platforms fall into that category. Both ask a few basic questions to get you started and then suggest one or two themes depending on your responses. If you wish, you can use a different theme on both.

webflow website editor

Webflow walks you through a step-by-step onboarding process with text and GIFs to demonstrate how to use the website builder. They explain that it works on the basis of a "box model," in which "child" boxes are contained within "parent" boxes.

A novice will be confused by a few of points in their introduction. For example, they discuss "working with dynamic data in the CMS," which could be scary to someone who is new to using a site builder. They aren't necessarily aimed for someone who is new to web design.

Webflow was tested by someone who is knowledgeable with websites and web builders, and they felt the introduction to be sufficient to get them started. Although there is a lot going on, we believe the interface may be intimidating to a total newbie. It has a layout that is similar to Photoshop.

Squarespace website editor

On the other hand, when you first start using Squarespace, the UI is cleaner and less daunting. It is likely that someone who is a total newbie will prefer it. They, too, walk you through a gradual onboarding process, demonstrating where everything is and how it works. In general, theirs is easier to understand and avoids some of the jargon included in the Webflow onboarding process.

Winner: In my opinion, Squarespace takes the cake when it comes to the onboarding process thanks to its simpler and more beginner-friendly process.

Design elements

Everyone wants a nice website, but some people have more complicated requirements than others.

For individuals with prior design skills and understanding, Webflow shines as a platform. The interface is significantly more sophisticated, as we discussed in the last section, but it will be familiar to designers.

Webflow includes over 180 themes, all of which are responsive. Some of the themes are free, while others need payment. Most types of organizations may easily locate niche-specific templates.

webflow blog templates

Those who are comfortable with HTML/CSS/JavaScript editing can customize themes. This opens up a lot of options, although it's obviously better suited to individuals who are already comfortable with coding. (It's worth noting that they emphasize that you don't need to write a single line of code to create a website with them.)

Dropdown menus, sliders, carousels, and custom typography are among the other design features. It allows you to save your design preferences as "classes" so that you can reuse them over and over again.

In comparison, Squarespace has roughly 90 free design templates to choose from, but you may also pay for custom templates. One of Squarespace's most well-known features is its visually stunning templates. Many designers enjoy using the platform since it allows them to create a beautiful website without having to perform much coding.

Squarespace templates are mobile-friendly and responsive. There are also numerous solutions for certain niches. One difference with Webflow is that if you can't find a template you like, you don't have to start from scratch, whereas Webflow allows you to create your own design.

On Squarespace, you can alter themes in the middle of the design process, however on Webflow, this is not feasible. If you have a Business or higher plan, you can add custom coding to Squarespace.

Winner: In essence, Webflow gives you additional design options, but it also adds complexity. Squarespace has a more straightforward design interface with fewer (but higher-quality) options.

Tools and features

Customizable forms, interactive Google Maps, bespoke animations, and an easily implemented ecommerce functionality are just a few of the complex capabilities offered by Webflow. Because it can work with HTML/CSS, it can add a wide range of custom features.

webflow features

Webflow provides a number of plugins and widgets that connect to popular apps. Almost any feature you can think of will be possible to incorporate. Overall, using Webflow is similar to having access to the entire hardware store rather than just the tools in your toolbox.

Although Squarespace does not have its own app store, it does have a number of useful features. You may also buy third-party plugins and connect them to a variety of integrations.

Squarespace features great ecommerce capability, including the option to create customer accounts, if you require it. Their ecommerce setup is solid and provides a pleasant shopping experience for customers.

Squarespace doesn't have as many features and integrations as Webflow, but it does a great job with what it does offer. In the vast majority of circumstances, people will be able to find what they require. It's fair to argue that Squarespace caters to the end-user as a website builder, whereas Webflow assumes that the customer is a professional.

Winner: I would say it’s a tie and that you get what you need with the platform you choose. All you really need to do is dive deeper and take a look at what each of them has to offer.

Customer support

Customer service is fairly high on both platforms. Webflow includes a comprehensive knowledge base, lesson videos for every aspect of the site, and a helpful help center. Customer service can be reached by email if you can't locate what you're looking for.

With a rich knowledge base and an automated assistant to guide you through crucial activities on your website, Squarespace also makes it simple to obtain support. Customer service is available via chat and email.

Winner:  It’s a tie! I like how both of these platforms do a really great job in assisting its customers and subscribers with their needs.

Design flexibility

With Webflow vs. Squarespace, how much control do you have over the design of your website? In this category, there is a significant disparity between the two systems.

When it comes to design, Webflow puts you in the driver's seat. You have complete control over every aesthetic element of your site, in addition to having three alternatives to start with - starting from scratch, selecting a template, or selecting a preset layout. Webflow's drag-and-drop editor allows you to change content, location, styling, and interactivity.

Additionally, Webflow allows you to include custom HTML, CSS, or JavaScript code. You also have the opportunity to alter the design for up to seven different breakpoints, as I said before, allowing you complete control over how you build mobile experiences.

You have fewer options with Squarespace. Templates have a limited number of styles and layouts to choose from. While this aids in design uniformity, it also limits creative freedom. They can be altered to some extent, but only to that amount. While Squarespace's Business plan allows for design overrides via code, it's far from the ideal customization experience.

Squarespace Design flexibility

The editor itself has some limitations. Content is updated section by section, and because Squarespace's editor isn't a true drag-and-drop editor, placing things into the appropriate location necessitates the usage of columns and spacer elements.

Even though Squarespace's template system has vastly improved with its most recent version (7.1), Webflow still offers far greater versatility. Squarespace's lead has shrunk to 2:1.

Winner: You can’t beat the flexibility Webflow offers. However, it’s much more difficult and complicated to use compared to Squarespace.

Blogging

Which is the superior blogging tool? You could be pleasantly surprised.

Webflow is a good blogging platform. You can customize your blog template anyway you like, and you can use Webflow's dynamic content tools to have your blog entries made automatically.

Webflow blogging feature:

webflow blogging

However, getting added features like comments, RSS feeds, and social media sharing to function takes a little more effort. All of these must be put up manually, and usually necessitate some coding tinkering.

Squarespace turns out to be one of the greatest website builders for blogging we've come across. Comments, multiple writers, post scheduling, and AMP (Accelerated Mobile Posts) support are all provided out of the box in its blogging capabilities. Built-in email campaigns, social media integrations, mobile editing, and even podcast hosting are all available. It's impressive to say the least.

So, while Webflow gives you more design freedom over your blog, I believe Squarespace is the more comprehensive solution if blogging is a priority for you: As a result, we now have a 3:1 score!

Winner: I love the usability of Squarespace when it comes to blogging. I think it’s definitely a good choice for everyone who wants to run a blog.

Search engine optimization

On this front, I'd say Webflow and Squarespace are quite evenly matched. Both offer great SEO editing capabilities, allowing you to handle all of the essentials (edit page titles, URLs, descriptions etc). They also offer advanced SEO features like setting up 301 redirects, editing your robots.txt file, and generating sitemaps.

Squarespace advanced seo tools:

Squarespace advanced seo tools


Both have their own set of advantages. Squarespace goes above and above to make your site Google-friendly, including enabling AMP for your blog posts, structuring product data to target Google rich search results, and providing direct interaction with Google data via its Keyword Search panel.

The ability to have complete control over the responsiveness of your site in Webflow can help you win extra points in Google's mobile-friendliness ranking criteria. It also allows you to determine the structures of ‘auto-generated' meta titles and descriptions for collection pages (e.g. blog posts).

Winner: Webflow wins this round right off the bat. However, if you’re not well-versed in SEO, you may get better results with Squarespace.

Apps and widgets

What if you wish to enhance your site's functionality? Let's take a closer look at how far a Webflow vs. Squarespace site can go.

In December of this year, Squarespace debuted its Squarespace Extensions marketplace. It has roughly 20 different extensions, the majority of which are connected to ecommerce and accounting (e.g. Shippo, Printful, Quickbooks Online).

Pop-ups, photo galleries, appointment scheduling, Member Areas, and other built-in Squarespace add-ons are available if you purchase the Business plan or above. Additionally, if you have an ecommerce site, you may use Code Injection to add third-party tools to your site, as well as set up APIs.

The integrations in Webflow are a little different. Although it has over 200 connectors in its library, these are more guidelines on how to manually install the tools than direct app integrations. They're useful, but they necessitate a little more effort than simply turning on an extension.

Different techniques, yet both offer a good deal of flexibility in terms of improving your site.

Winner: For this round, I think it’s definitely a tie. Both are really good at what they offer, so it’s all a matter of having exactly what you need before you hop into anything permanent.

Pricing

Let's start with their standard website plans, which are designed for folks who do not intend to add an online store.

Squarespace pricing plans

The Personal plan on Squarespace costs roughly $12 per month and allows you to create a blog or personal website on your own domain. You have unlimited storage and bandwidth, but you don't have access to Squarespace's ecommerce, marketing, or source code services. If you require these features, you can upgrade to the Business plan for $18/month, albeit ecommerce options are limited on this level.

Webflow's Basic plan, which costs $12 per month, is comparable. This plan includes 100 pages, 50GB of CDN bandwidth, and a monthly visit limit of 25k, but no CMS collection items. You can upgrade to a higher plan, such as CMS ($16/month) or Business ($36/month), to increase any of these limits.

On the other hand, ecommerce programs have a slightly higher price tag:

Squarespace's cheapest ecommerce plan costs $26 per month. There are no product limits, however sophisticated capabilities like abandoned cart recovery and real-time shipping prices are unavailable. These can be purchased for $40 per month on Basic Advanced.

Webflow's cheapest ecommerce package is the Standard, which costs $29 per month. The biggest difference is that you have a 500-item limit (including products, variants, categories, and CMS items). You'll need to upgrade to the Plus ($74/month for 1,000 items) or Advanced ($212/month for 3,000 items) plan if you require more.

Webflow site plans:

Webflow site plans

As a result, if you require more storage, bandwidth, or products, Squarespace clearly outperforms the competition in terms of value for money.

However, there are a couple advantages to Webflow that Squarespace does not have:

Webflow's Starter package includes the ability to create two websites for free. Squarespace does not have any free plans, however you can try it out for 14 days for free.

Webflow also offers a number of account plans, starting at $16/month, if you need to develop many sites (for example, for clients).

That's why I believe Webflow merits a point in this round, because it's not often that you come across such a diverse set of plans to meet a variety of needs.

Winner: Webflow is obviously much more affordable and gives you the best value for your money compared to Squarespace. 

The final verdict

Of course, this is dependent on your requirements. If you work for an agency or as a professional designer, Webflow offers a wide range of features and customization options. It is, however, difficult, and you will need some coding experience if you want to explore the more advanced capabilities.

Squarespace is an amazing platform for all types of small to medium enterprises. Designers will love the modern looks and functionalities, while end-users looking to build their first website will appreciate the relative ease of the platform compared to Webflow. Squarespace is a winner in my book, but what about you?

About the author 

Peter Keszegh

Most people write this part in the third person but I won't. You're at the right place if you want to start or grow your online business. When I'm not busy scaling up my own or other people' businesses, you'll find me trying out new things and discovering new places. Connect with me on Facebook, just let me know how I can help.

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