Squarespace is a code free website builder. It allows anyone, regardless of technical skill, to build, design and publish their own website. Squarespace takes away all the complicated parts of building websites like coding and design, and instead offers pre-designed templates that users can tweak on their own.
By using website templates, you can easily design and create your own website without needing additional developers or even being technologically savvy. Squarespace is best for companies & individuals that are nimble and don’t require any hard-code features. In fact, the whole process is so simple, you can build a website on Squarespace in as little as one day. ** *Minerva Note: For those of you who are waiting for the perfect time to launch your own website, this is your sign! *
It’s high design, simple to use format and affordability make it a great tool for any small business owner, designer, freelancer, blogger or company. Our favorite part about it is that there is a healthy amount of templates to choose from. There are over 113 templates to choose from. This makes it a lot less overwhelming than Wordpress (11,000+) or Wix (800), which both have much more flexibility when it comes to hard coding features.
- Drag-and-drop tools to add content, like text and images, and create a website without directly editing code. J*ust set it and forget it! *
- Responsive design for mobile viewing - Responsive design comes standard on every Squarespace site, ensuring your content looks great on any device. Never. Forget. Mobile.
- Content hosting - All of your content is stored in Squarespace’s infrastructure, ensuring fast site speed from anywhere in the world.
- Squarespace Analytics - Understand traffic patterns, referral sources, and other key metrics similar to Google Analytics.
Is Squarespace right for the small business owner, freelancer or solopreneur?
Yes, especially if you are a beginner or just want something straightforward but well designed! If you are in the early stages of your business or making less than $10K in revenue per month, we suggest using Squarespace to maintain your digital presence as you are working on growing your business and brand awareness. Don’t get bogged down by the design elements. At this point in time, your number one focus is GROWING your business. Here are 5 interactive how - to guides to help you get started.
Generally, most sites will tell you to head on over to GoDaddy and purchase a domain name, or figure out the color and logo for your design. If you are in the beginning stages, what you really need to do first, is create a landing page, or an interim page that you can turn friends, families and customers to while you are getting the rest of your website built. With Squarespace, you can have an interim domain while you are still testing and figuring out your site.
> This is a place for you to start testing out how you talk about your business and how you speak to customers. Who are your customers? What is the best way to attract them?
Believe us, there is a huge difference between having an idea in your head and having to explain it in person or write it out. This is where you should start exploring that, and not put too much pressure on yourself to get it correct, right away.
Startups have a term for this called an MVP, or a minimum viable product. In order to know if a business will survive, you first need to get it in front of people! It is only by testing and iteration that you can figure out what works. The MVP poses the question, what is the least and fastest amount of effort that you can put out to test the concept?
In our case - it will be building a landing page. This landing page will be ideal for:
- Showcasing the very first iteration of your website.
- Capturing email sign ups from potential customers.
- Testing how your talk about your company, what you are selling and how you interact with your customers.
It’s important to not let the website being 100% ready prevent you from getting started. "Perfect" is the enemy of progress. As you start playing around here and showing it to friends/family, you’ll begin to get a better idea of what you want and what works. Sometimes, these don’t always match.
These are starting points of contact for you as you build out the rest of your website. In order to set up a landing page for your website, simply choose a landing page template, and start tweaking the logo, imagery and text. You can follow our interactive guide to create your own landing page on Squarespace.
You know the saying, "a picture is worth a thousand words"? Well, it’s true. Whether you’re a multi million dollar CEO or up and coming business owner trying to make your own website for the first time - you CAN and should use great photography. Back in the day, you used to have to go out and shoot images yourself, pay for photographers, and negotiate usage rights but nowadays, you can do it for free, using stock photography. But, cool and modern stock photography.
We like using Unsplash or Pexels for great free photography. You can use these images for free if you credit the photographer. As a business owner, get used to the term, “Copyright Law” because you will NOT want to break these. Illegal usage of other people’s images can get you into as much trouble as wading through a pool of molten lava in a pair of Crocs. Let’s just say it won’t be pretty.
The checklist that you’ll need is:
- Are your images high quality (between 1500 and 2500 pixels wide)?
- Is your image a .jpg, .gif, or .png?
- Do you have the name of the photographer to credit?
- Did you add Alt text, title and description to the image?
Here’s our step by step guide to uploading your images on Squarespace.
Now that you’ve selected your images, well, you’ve got to choose your background image. Lots of templates have color templates that you can switch to your brand colors, but you could also use images as a background as well.
A great example of this would be to use different textures, like waves, pottery, sand, wood grain, or extreme close ups of high quality images that reflect your brand or business. For example, if you sold handknit baskets, you could do an extreme close up of your baskets, or a basket and get super meta.
You can follow our interactive GUIDE to show you the exact steps to changing a background image. [
Oh it’s logo time! Believe it or not, the name and logo of your business are some of the most overrated items on the checklist. Most startup founders and business owners spend ages nitpicking the perfect name and color and design, instead of learning to pitch and test their concept out in the wild. Logos and brand designs will change, no matter what and when you’re in the earliest stages of your business, you can’t be too obsessed...just yet.
If you’ve already got a logo and color design, you can update the Squarespace brand kit so that your assets always appear automatically. This will save you time and ensure that your website looks cohesive.
While you may opt to hire a designer or create your own logo (you can do this in Canva, yourself for free to start) - upload this to Squarespace so that you can get some traction in the interim. Don’t feel that things have to be perfect yet. Like learning to ride a bike, you can’t draw or visualize yourself riding it, you have to ride it and look a little shaky, for a long time first.
Use our guide to upload your logo on Squarespace.
Blogging adds social capital to your website, helping to drive SEO traffic and building domain authority on your site. Blogging, in its most efficient and streamlined form can be the difference between your website getting seen by 10 people, and 10,000 people. In many instances, more so.
Integrating blogging into your marketing strategy is a surefire way of getting noticed, and in the very least, more than just your close friends and family.
Setting up a blog in Squarespace is fairly simple. Before you start, here’s a simple checklist.
- WIFM - “Whats In It For Me?” - What type of value are you adding for your target audience?
- Do you have an idea of what type of topics you want to be creating?
- Do you have a group of at least 10 articles that you can have to set up and auto schedule?
- What type of publishing cadence do you have in mind? Be wary of starting too strong in the beginning. It is better to start small, and gradually add more as opposed to getting your audience/customers used to a lot and then scaling back.
Use our guide here to setting up a blog on Squarespace.
Once you set up and figure out your blog topics, you can work on a blog distribution strategy to share via email marketing and your own network.
There you have it, the beginner’s guide to getting started with Squarespace. Remember friends, the website is just the starting point. You’ll still have to work on marketing strategies to grow your business. You can learn those and more by exploring through our guides.