Squarespace or Shopify?

Shopify or Squarespace?

Which is the best solution for an online store?

This is question everyone is asking us right now. The answer is “it depends”.

Shopify and Squarespace look very similar on the surface, but we’ve worked with them for some time, and we know the pros and cons of both.

A Part-Time Gig?

If your primary aim to build a content-focused website or a blog and sell a couple of products on the site in your own country, then Squarespace is probably your best bet. Squarespace is an excellent platform for websites but if you’re creating a store, it does have fairly limited tax, shipping and payment processing options. If you’re a micro business in the UK or the US, you probably won’t notice these issues in the first few years. It really depends what you are selling, where your business is located, and where the prospective purchasers reside.

A Startup with Potential?

If your primary aim is to create an online store (or you’re based outside the UK/US) then Shopify is the better option. It has a more extensive feature set and excellent payment processing options for almost every country in the world.

The Best of Both?

If you already have a Squarespace website then a third option is to add Shopify’s e-commerce functionality to your Squarespace site, using the Shopify Lite plan. By integrating a Shopify Buy Button into your Squarespace site you can use the Shopify cart, checkout and payment providers on your Squarespace site.

Summary

In summary, each platform comes with pros and cons. If you’re choosing between the two, you may want to consider:

  • Your budget. Monthly pricing and transaction fees vary between the companies and their plans. Squarespace charges a transaction fee on Business Plans.

  • The country you are based in. Some payment gateways only support a few countries. Shopify supports more than 100 gateways; Squarespace offers two.

  • The countries you intend to sell to. This will affect the complexity of your shipping and sales tax requirements. Shopify supports more of both.

  • If you intend to sell in-person too. Shopify integrates with point-of-sale; Squarespace hasn’t added this yet.

  • Whether you want a ‘wow’ factor. Squarespace offers a better visual design without resorting to code.

  • If you’d like telephone support. Yes, Shopify still offers this.