30-Second Summary:

  • A website builder can make or break your dream website so it’s important to understand if the ones you’re looking at are a good fit.
  • Squarespace and Wix both have a lot of design flexibility, support HTML and CSS editing, but one of them brings something different to the table
  • Each website builder has similar eCommerce functionality but there’s one that helps you spread your products far and wide
  • Professional quality templates are available on both platforms but one severely limits your ability to make updates
  • Add-ons and integrations make the world go round. Both website builders have them but one clearly outshines the other.

A new website is full of unrealized hopes and dreams. It’s natural for the owner to do everything in their power to make it look good and fulfill its purpose. Sometimes, no matter how much effort is put in, the way the website looks and functions are limited based on the available tools.

Many website builders do X but not Y, limit your ability to customize your website, and present a slew of other issues you wouldn’t know about until you start working with it. This guide compares Squarespace and Wix so you understand which one is best suited to building your dream website.

Squarespace VS Wix

It’s often difficult to give an apples-to-apples comparison of website builders because they may be designed for different types of customers. This guide will look at multiple aspects of each website builder and compare them to each other directly. At the end of the article, you’ll know where each one excels and where it falls short and be in a position to make a more informed decision.

Design flexibility 

Squarespace – This website builder puts you in the driver’s seat when it comes to design. Though it doesn’t have blank templates or pages which you can use to build from scratch, you’re able to customize most aspects of the pages.

It provides access to HTML and CSS, you can customize the page layout, use different content types, duplicate pages easily, access Google fonts, supports custom color palettes, and more. You can get granular with the editing by adjusting things like padding, individual element colors, and importing images directly through an Integration with Unsplash.

Wix – This platform comes right out the gate with a powerful drag and drops editor. You can choose elements from the customization menu and place them within sections of the page. It doesn’t have as much flexibility as some platforms when it comes to placing elements but it will make sure your websites always have a decent layout.

In addition to the drag and drop editor, you can change the color palette of the entire site. The color optionality is coupled with countless elements and settings to choose from. These include media galleries, font selections, animations, video backgrounds, parallax scrolling, and much more.

If you’re not keen on building a website from scratch, you can use its AI called Wix ADI to launch the main design of your site then it can be tweaked to meet your needs. Like Squarespace, you have access to the HTML and CSS of your site.

A recent addition is called Velo by Wix. This is an open development platform that provides the tools to build custom web applications. You take advantage of the Wix infrastructure and use your own skills to create something amazing.

When it comes to design flexibility, Wix wins.

eCommerce/selling tools

Squarespace – It supports physical products, services, and even digital products and provides built-in order fulfillment. You’re able to integrate with a surprisingly small collection of payment processors which include Stripe, PayPal, Square, and Afterpay.

After you’re done with the setup, you can create recurring subscriptions (which come with tangible benefits) for weekly or monthly payments. A nice perk is its scheduling application which allows you to place a calendar on your website, book appointments and collect payments.

You can create multiple variations of physical products, set up product categories, upload multiple product images, allow users to zoom in on product images, and provide a quick view option. It’s also possible to manage inventory from the Android and iOS mobile apps and get low order notifications.   

Wix – Just like Squarespace, Wix supports eCommerce functionality. You can do everything from setting up recurring subscriptions to running a dropshipping business. It integrates with a wide range of payment gateways like Stripe and PayPal and dozens of others. There’s also a native Wix payment gateway you can connect to handle the heavy lifting.

It pulls ahead of Squarespace by integrating with popular marketplaces like Facebook, eBay, Instagram, and even Amazon. It also provides detailed store analytics, a customizable checkout experience, automated sales tax, and fulfillment integrations.

Wix takes a narrow win when it comes to eCommerce because it integrates with third-party marketplaces.

Template quality

Squarespace – It has a large collection of beautifully designed templates spread across multiple categories. For example, it has templates for personal websites, fashion brands, events, travel, podcasts, etc. None of the templates look dated and it’s obvious that professional designers were called in to ensure you put your best foot forward.

Wix – It has over 800 professional-looking templates across multiple categories. It includes business, eCommerce, lifestyle, creative, community, blog, and even more subcategories under each one. The problem is that some of the templates look dated and are due for a refresh. A major drawback of Wix is that you’re unable to change templates once you’ve selected one.

Squarespace wins when it comes to template quality.

Marketing tools

Squarespace – It has built-in email marketing tools that help you stay in contact with your audience, email collection forms, simple social media integrations, banners to highlight important information, and deep marketing analytics.

Wix – Similar to Squarespace, it has a range of tools for marketing your website. It has built-in email marketing, integrations with Facebook Ads which is further supported by AI optimization, and even a video editor. In addition to those marketing tools, it allows you to insert lead capture forms on pages and has a CRM by Ascend.

Wix edges out Squarespace.

Add-ons

Squarespace – They’re referred to as extensions and there is only a limited selection to choose from. While they are high-quality, this is a departure from other website builders which often have hundreds or more. With that being said, the major categories such as finance, marketing, and fulfillment are represented.

Wix – Wix has a large collection of app integrations from third-party platforms that help you do everything from capture leads to managing inventory. They’re categorized based on their function and the Wix team helps you find the best apps with a featured section. A few categories include selling online, media & content, and design elements. Many of them are free but a few of them require a subscription.

Wix has a more robust integration ecosystem so it wins here.

Ease of use

Squarespace – Even though it’s full of useful features, Squarespace has done a good job of making it easy to use the platform. You can get a feel for the basic features in a few hours and get comfortable with the advanced features fairly quickly. There is still a learning curve you’ll need to overcome to make the most of this website builder.

Wix – While Wix is easier to use than many website builders, it does have a learning curve because of the huge number of features. It has Wix ADI, the standard Wix Editor, Wix Velo, and Wix eCommerce. It can take a considerable amount of time to master all the nuances of the platform. If you want a fully customized website then be ready to dedicate a good amount of time to learning Wix.

Squarespace wins in the ease of use department.

Conclusion

Wix and Squarespace are solid website builders. Neither one of them could be considered a poor choice in general but you do need to consider what you want to accomplish. Squarespace is easier to use and has a large number of high-quality templates. Wix, on the other hand, has a large integration ecosystem and more eCommerce tools. Weigh your needs against the aspects that this guide has touched on and make your choice.