Congratulations on narrowing your choice down to Squarespace and WordPress, the two big players when it comes to DIY websites for businesses. You’ve likely heard great things about both brands, so it can be hard to decide which will be the better option for you. Now let us make the remaining decision easy for you.
Each service offers fantastic website-building services, so the key to making the big decision boils down to how well they handle search engine optimization (SEO). Without the ability to set up SEO properly or effectively, you may as well save your time and money building a website altogether. SEO is what gets you seen in web searches. Without it, you’re dead in the water. Your website is the face of your business, and we want to make sure you’re getting the best out of your software service.
In this article, we’ll be scrutinizing each service to determine which one wins for SEO so you can build a highly-optimized and efficient website. Before we get into the nitty-gritty of SEO, let’s look at what each brand offers its customers:
Squarespace operates on a monthly subscription basis, with their lowest package at $12/month (if you pay annually). You’ll receive everything you need to build and maintain your website. The features you have access to include:
The standard version of Squarespace is the most widely used and is designed for people with no web-designing skills. For experienced web-developers, there is also a developer’s version that gives access to source code, which can then be manipulated.
WordPress also operates on a monthly fee basis, though they offer a free version which is great if you want to try it out before taking the plunge. WordPress is also starts out fairly cheaper than Squarespace, with their lowest paid package starting at $4/month (paid annually). Where it differs from Squarespace is the option to add-on many third-party applications to enhance the website’s operation, aesthetics, and functionality. This means WordPress is more flexible than Squarespace as it allows the user to customize their website with additional tools and applications.
Like Squarespace, there are two versions of WordPress. Hosted and self-hosted. Self-hosted has the ability to modify the code and be customized to a larger degree than the hosted version.
Squarespace is a fantastic option for those with little to no website building experience. All the functions are designed with ease-of-use in mind and limit the ability to “break” the website. The downside to this is that the options for customization are limited to what Squarespace offers.
WordPress requires a certain amount of learning to build an effective website. While it is possible for someone with extremely limited website building skills to create something out of WordPress, it will involve a steep learning curve to get there. The upside of this is the far more flexible options available from the 3rd-party app providers that enhance the functionality and feel of the website.
Now you have an overview of each service; it’s time to delve into what each has to offer when it comes to SEO. This is where you will really start to see differences between the two players and you’ll find it easier to make a decision about which service is best for your needs.
Ok, we’re going to level with you now. Website builders such as Squarespace have long been known for their SEO inferiority compared with WordPress. But wait! Before you dismiss Squarespace in the battle of Squarespace vs WordPress SEO, we’re going to tell you why the service is still in the running.
While it’s true that website builders such as Wix and Weebly are the absolute pits for SEO, Squarespace is surprisingly underrated. The important thing to know here is that users of Squarespace can and do hit the ultimate no1 spot in Google on a reasonably frequent basis.
It’s important to understand that to get the best out of SEO, you first need to familiarize yourself with SEO best practice. Squarespace users are not exempt from this. Squarespace is not a quick option for implementing an SEO strategy, but it will be worthwhile if you have the time.
Here’s what makes Squarespace worthwhile and head and shoulders above other platforms:
Here’s what’s not so hot when it comes to Squarespace and your ongoing relationship with SEO:
It’s a bit misleading to call this section “WordPress SEO.” We mentioned earlier that WordPress has the ability to use plugins and apps to make the most of the platform and optimize. There are, of course, plugins available for SEO. The undisputed champion of them all is Yoast.
Yoast is designed to make SEO easy for those with limited technical experience and has a configuration guide to ensure that you stay on track and get things right. Additionally, it has a built-in analysis tool so you can see how your chosen keywords and phrases are ranking.
The beauty of Yoast is that anyone can pick up and use it. One of its features is a “traffic light” system that shows how optimized each of your web pages is. Red is bad. Green is good. There are, however, some downsides to this, which we’ll cover in a moment.
These are the things we love about this plugin:
Nothing is perfect. Here’s what we think needs improving:
When it comes to a question of Squarespace vs. WordPress SEO, our final verdict is WordPress. Though as a digital marketing agency WordPress is much more verstaile, so the true decision should be based on your needs and skill level.
It’s important to note that WordPress/Yoast holds more weight when it comes to ranking higher in Google searches. This is mainly down to the fact that WordPress is the world’s most-used website building software service. If you’re using WordPress, then you’re already favored by the search engines as it is generally structured in accordance to their preferences.
That being said, if your SEO isn’t good, the fact you use WordPress won’t make any difference. But great SEO combined with the use of WordPress gives you an advantage over other web-building software.
Don’t discount Squarespace based on WordPress’s popularity. Squarespace sites can still rank well with Google and other search engines as long as you know what you’re doing and are prepared to put the effort in. It’s never a bad thing to brush up on your SEO knowledge. Using Squarespace is the perfect opportunity to learn and/or sharpen your SEO skills, which will be useful throughout your digital marketing adventures.
Squarespace and WordPress are both great options for modern SEO. When deciding which option to go with, consider the pros and cons of each carefully to determine which one is best suited for your own requirements.
SEO is a sprawling subject to master, but keeping your goals in mind will help you keep your SEO simple and effective. Both brands make it easier for businesses to optimize their sites. If you need help with either, or simply have questions, feel free to contact us today.