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Squarespace Ecommerce Review: Does It Beat the Competition?

Squarespace, in its most basic form, is a popular platform for building general websites. πŸ›’ Its ecommerce plans, however, turn any Squarespace site into an online store capable of showcasing products and processing payments. Our hands-on Squarespace Ecommerce review will help you decide whether it’s the right place for your store.

πŸ‘‰ To help you make the right choice, our Squarespace Ecommerce review will cover the following areas:

Squarespace Ecommerce review.

If you’re considering adding products to your current Squarespace website, or you’re debating between Squarespace and other ecommerce platforms (like Shopify and WordPress), keep reading to guide your decision. πŸ›οΈ

Squarespace Ecommerce review: Hands-on look at five key features πŸš€

The Squarespace website.

To kick of our Squarespace Ecommerce review, let’s take a hands-on look at some of the most important features that the platform offers.

Squarespace is known for its design prowess, so of course we’ll cover its beautiful templates.

πŸ‘‰ Beyond that, we’ll dive deep into features like payment options, marketing, SEO, and much more.

Various product types and selling methods

Squarespace Ecommerce offers a range of features to accommodate different product types and selling methods, allowing you to diversify your offerings and cater to various customer needs. With Squarespace, you can sell:

  • πŸ“¦ Physical products: Showcase and sell physical products with customizable options and inventory management tools.
  • πŸ›οΈ Digital products: Securely deliver digital files to customers through automatic download links or email, with built-in file hosting.
  • πŸ‘¨β€πŸ”§ Services (Bookings and Appointments): Accept bookings and appointments directly through your website, with a convenient booking system and automated reminders.
  • 🀝 Subscriptions: Set up recurring billing and offer subscription plans for products or services on a monthly or recurring basis.
  • πŸŽ“ Courses: Sell and deliver online courses, with options to organize course content and set up pricing.
  • ⭐ Memberships: Create and manage membership plans, offering exclusive content, community access, or special discounts to your members. There’s also a video on demand option.
Methods to sell.

In total, we counted eight total product types, making Squarespace easier to configure for unique product types than much of the competition.

Beautiful and customizable templates

One of the standout features of Squarespace Ecommerce is its collection of highly visual and expressive templates.

With over 40 ecommerce templates available, Squarespace offers a wide range of options to suit different industries and aesthetics.

Whether you’re in the fashion, gardening, or food industry, you can find templates specifically designed for your niche.

Some of the 40 themes from our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

What sets Squarespace Ecommerce templates apart is their focus on showcasing products.

Each template is designed to prioritize product display, with large, high-resolution product images that make a lasting impression on visitors.

A theme with a good product showcase.

All Squarespace Ecommerce templates are optimized for mobile devices, ensuring a seamless shopping experience for customers on smartphones and tablets. With the growing number of mobile shoppers, having a mobile-optimized website is crucial, and Squarespace delivers on this front.

Mobile version of a Squarespace theme.

After you choose a template, it’s all customizable through the powerful drag-and-drop builder from Squarespace.

The design center of Squarespace.

When comparing Squarespace Ecommerce templates to other platforms like Shopify, GoDaddy Commerce, and Weebly Ecommerce, Squarespace holds its own. While Shopify boasts a larger number of themes, Squarespace’s templates are known for their high-quality design and attention to detail. BigCommerce offers a good selection of themes as well, but Squarespace’s templates often have a more modern and visually appealing aesthetic.

Simple yet scalable store management

Squarespace Ecommerce offers a robust set of features for store management, making it simple yet scalable for you to handle day-to-day tasks and grow your business.

From the backend, Squarespace provides a user-friendly interface that allows you to efficiently manage your inventory, shipping options, taxes, and orders.

The dashboard from our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

When it comes to shipping, Squarespace Ecommerce offers multiple options to cater to different needs.

You can choose from flat-rate, weight-based, and carrier-calculated shipping methods.

Additionally, Squarespace integrates with USPS, FedEx, and UPS for rate calculations and label printing.

Adding shipment options.

Squarespace Ecommerce also offers fulfillment profiles with shipping rules. This allows you to specify whether a particular product can be picked up locally or requires a specific shipping method, such as flat-rate shipment.

Setting up fulfillment profiles during our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

When it comes to taxes, Squarespace Ecommerce provides powerful features to handle tax-related tasks. You can set up tax-inclusive pricing, calculate sales tax automatically based on customer location and even automate tax filing.

Adding a rate in Squarespace.

In terms of order management, Squarespace Ecommerce offers a comprehensive system that includes customer profiles with merchant management and targeting options. You can also view order details, such as shipping addresses and payment methods, all in one place.

Respectable (but limited) payment options

Squarespace Ecommerce offers a variety of payment processing options, allowing merchants to provide convenient and secure payment methods for their customers.

With Squarespace, you can integrate popular payment gateways such as PayPal, Stripe, and Apple Pay.

Additionally, Squarespace supports Afterpay, a service that enables interest-free installment payments for customers in select countries, including New Zealand, the US, Canada, and Australia.

Payments for customers.

For merchants who also have a physical presence, Squarespace Ecommerce offers the option to accept in-person payments using the Square Reader device. This allows you to integrate your online and offline sales channels seamlessly, providing a unified payment experience for your customers.

The Square swiper.

One of the standout features of Squarespace Ecommerce is that the entire payment process is handled on your website, without any redirects. This means that customers can browse products, add items to their shopping cart, and complete the checkout process without being redirected to external payment pages. This is something that wasn’t always available from Squarespace in the past.

The checkout module from our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

Although Squarespace has improved in the payment processing arena, it still lags competitors.

BigCommerce, Wix, Shopify, and WooCommerce all accept integrations with far more payment gateways than Squarespace. Still, most stores will be fine with options like Stripe, PayPal, or Square, so this really only makes a difference if you specifically need to use a less well-known payment processor, such as a local processor that focuses on your region.

Marketing and SEO tools

Squarespace Ecommerce offers several marketing and SEO tools to help you promote your products, engage with customers, and drive traffic to your online store. From blog posts to email marketing campaigns, Squarespace provides a comprehensive set of features to support your marketing efforts.

Blog posts on a Squarespace site.

With Squarespace Ecommerce, you can create and publish blog posts directly on your website.

You also receive built-in email marketing. You can create and send email campaigns directly within the platform, with the ability to insert products, blog posts, and logos into your emails.

Squarespace offers a sleek email designer with personalization and automation features, making it easy to create professional and engaging email campaigns. The platform provides email marketing templates to help you get started and streamline your email marketing efforts.

Setting up an email in Squarespace.

Other marketing highlights include social media content creation with the Unfold app, customer segmenting, analytics for tracking trends, and on-site banners.

When it comes to SEO, Squarespace Ecommerce provides built-in tools and guides to optimize your website for search engines. From clean URLs to sitemaps, Squarespace ensures your website follows SEO best practices. The platform automatically generates markup and SSL security, further enhancing your website’s SEO performance. Each product category gets its own SEO-friendly page, and Squarespace offers additional tools like a quick box to edit SEO page titles and descriptions, hide a page, and control your social image.

SEO options from our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

How does Squarespace marketing compare to the likes of Shopify and BigCommerce? Squarespace excels with its built-in features. Platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce require additional apps for things like email marketing and social selling. For that reason, we’re rather impressed with how merchants can quickly market their stores, and it’s all included with your subscription.

Pricing: Squarespace Ecommerce review πŸ€‘

During our Squarespace Ecommerce review, we found a range of pricing plans to cater to different business needs. With a 14-day free trial, you can explore the platform and its features before committing. However, it’s important to note that some lower-tier plans may not provide full ecommerce functionality.

The Personal plan, starting at $16 per month, allows you to sell digital products, but that requires a paid extension. Additionally, while you can design merchandise with the Personal plan, you must upgrade to the Business plan to actually sell it.

πŸ“Œ Here are the plans that truly support ecommerce functionality:

  • The Business plan: Starting at $23 per month, it includes everything in the Personal plan, along with a free custom domain, checkout on your domain, unlimited products, customer accounts, memberships, courses, pop-ups and banners, and customization with CSS and JavaScript. One downside is the extra 3% transaction fee on top of what your payment gateway charges.
  • Commerce Basic plan: Starting at $27 per month, this plan includes everything in the previous plans, but with a 0% transaction fee. It also adds features like point of sale, limited availability labels, selling on Instagram and Facebook, product reviews, and advanced merchandising.
  • Commerce Advanced plan: Starting at $49 per month, it includes all the features of the previous plans, along with advanced discounts, advanced shipping, commerce APIs, abandoned cart recovery, and subscriptions.

Squarespace Ecommerce pricing plans can be paid monthly or annually (to save some money in the long run).

For a deeper look, check out our full guide to Squarespace pricing plans.

Overall, Squarespace Ecommerce pricing is comparable to its competitors on the market. While there are some trade-offs, such as the transaction fee in the Business plan and the requirement of the highest-tier plan for abandoned cart recovery, the pricing plans provide a good balance of features and affordability. Squarespace Ecommerce remains a solid choice for merchants looking for a reliable and reasonably priced ecommerce platform.

Customer support: Squarespace Ecommerce review πŸ†˜

Squarespace provides direct customer assistance through live chat and email. They do claim 24/7 “human” support, but our research shows otherwise, considering they have a bot answer many initial questions in the chat box. There’s also not a phone number you can call, which is a shame since they’re selling a product where merchants need immediate support. A phone call is usually the best course of action for this.

We found chat bots from our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

As for online resources, our Squarespace Ecommerce review uncovered excellent documentation, a help center, a user forum, and a blog.

The help center from our Squarespace Ecommerce review.

Overall, the online resources from Squarespace really shine, but the direct “human” customer support could improve. A phone line would be a good start.

Final thoughts on our Squarespace Ecommerce review 🏁

Squarespace Ecommerce offers a number of notable features that make it a solid choice for building and managing online stores (and as a general site builder).

With its modern and customizable templates, store management capabilities, and integrated marketing tools, Squarespace Ecommerce provides a user-friendly and visually appealing platform for businesses of all sizes.

While it may have some limitations in terms of third-party integrations and fees, the overall package and competitive pricing make it a strong contender in the ecommerce market.

If you’re ready to get started with Squarespace, you can follow our step-by-step Squarespace tutorial to set up your store.

Or, to discover some other Squarespace Ecommerce alternatives, check out our full guides to the best ecommerce platforms or the best cheap ecommerce platforms.

Do you still have any questions about Squarespace Ecommerce or our Squarespace Ecommerce review? Let us know in the comments!

Don’t forget to join our crash course on speeding up your WordPress site. Learn more below:

 

Squarespace Ecommerce

4.2 out of 5

Squarespace Ecommerce is an ecommerce platform that builds on the standard Squarespace website builder. You can turn any normal Squarespace site into an online store. It offers powerful built-in marketing tools, along with some of the nicest templates on the market. You’re able to sell a wide range of products at a decent subscription price, but beware of limitations like the number of plugins and payment gateways.

Features
4.5 out of 5
Ease of Use
5 out of 5
Price
3.5 out of 5
Design
5 out of 5
Customer Support
3 out of 5

Pros

Beautiful templates, with an intuitive and powerful website builder

Various product and selling types, like physical, digital, membership, and subscription products

Fully integrated marketing and SEO tools, including a robust email marketing platform

Flexible and powerful tax and shipping tools, with options for things like automated tax and shipping calculations

Devices and software to sell in person

Customization with CSS and JavaScript

All checkouts are completed in your domain

Cons

Limited third-party integrations when compared to competitors

A smaller selection of payment processors when compared to competitors like WooCommerce and Shopify

An extra 3% transaction fee for the cheapest ecommerce-specific pricing plan (<em>no fee on higher-tier plans</em>)

The most expensive plan is required for abandoned cart recovery, a feature practically given away on other platforms

Joe Warnimont
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