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{web Lakeland} vs. Squarespace: Which is better for business websites?

The other day I got a question I must have heard a hundred times already: what makes {web Lakeland} different from Squarespace?

A large portion of our customers switched from Squarespace, so I get this question a lot.

As someone who lives, eats, and breathes web development, Squarespace is about as far away as {web Lakeland} as you can get. But then I started thinking – to someone not surrounded by web design 24/7, it’s easy to get the different service providers confused.

I wanted to take a minute to clarify some of the key differences between our offerings, as well as to help you figure out which might be best for your business.

Here’s what it comes down to: Squarespace is a DIY (“do it yourself”) platform, while {web Lakeland} is DFY (“done for you”) team of web professionals at your fingertips. Generally, we can complete a whole project for you with just a few phone calls. A very different experience from a DIY tool, even a sophisticated one like Squarespace!

I’m a huge superhero nerd, so to put it differently: Squarespace is like getting a spiderman suit and having no idea what to do with it. {web Lakeland} is like hiring the entire team of Avengers.

Ok, dorky references aside: let’s look in more detail on how Squarespace and {web Lakeland} compare in a few areas.

Both Squarespace and {web Lakeland} let you edit your own website.

Because Squarespace is a DIY platform, editing your website yourself is your only option (unless you hire an outside contractor). {web Lakeland}, on the other hand, is a done-for-you service. We completely design and build a custom website redesign from scratch, around your content.

We do, however, build all our websites so that it’s easy for you to go in and make small changes. Simple adjustments like changing the headline on a page or adding a blog post can be done in a snap, without training.

You’ll have full control over as much or as little of your site’s content if you want. And should you ever need help, you can easily request additional projects from our team of professionals through our client portal.

In fact, access to our team is one of the most valuable (and most often overlooked!) benefits of working with {web Lakeland}. Ordinarily, hiring and vetting new freelancers to update your website is a stressful time suck. With {web Lakeland}, you’ll always have a force of experts who know your site like the back of their hand.

Squarespace promotes templates to make attractive websites, while {web Lakeland} offers custom design.

Web design from scratch is hard. To make it easier on you, Squarespace provides easy-to-edit templates and starter sites.

While these sites help you create a functional website, it’s hard to stand out from the crowd when you’re using the same template as everyone else.

I can’t stress this enough – literally thousands of other websites will be using the same layout and templates as you. Not only is this confusing to your customers, but it’s a big mark against you for Google.

It’s much more difficult to prove to Google you’re an authority when your website is a clone of the same cheap template thousands of others are using. And as the online space becomes more and more competitive, this isn’t a hinderance you want to deal with.

While you can hire a designer to custom-build your website through Squarespace’s partner program, this is just as expensive as hiring any other traditional web freelancer or agency. You’ll pay anywhere from several hundred to several thousand dollars for your site (average $2,000-$5,000 if you use a Squarespace partner).  

At {web Lakeland}, we redesign your website for free with no strings attached.

80% of our clients are on our essential plan, and for good reason. We spend an average of 120 collective hours on a client site (collective hours reflecting the total between your account manager, designers, and developers). Each site is built from the ground up so it’s a perfect fit for your content and brand. No templates, pre-fab sites, or clones of your competitors.

We put our money where our mouth is immediately after our initial call. We’ll invest 6-8 hours designing a mockup (preview) of what your website would look like if you decide to do business with us.

This mockup is designed completely from scratch (no templates, pre-fab sites, or B.S.). There are no contracts, commitments, or even exchanges of money. The mockup is a completely free service, provided because you are confident you will love our service and want to move forward. (You can see for your self by scheduling a call here.)

Once you get your mockup, you’ll have the opportunity to give feedback and request as many rounds of revisions as you need until it has your seal of approval.

The sky is the limit in terms of what we can design. My team is trained in all aspects of web design and development, and are not limited by restrictive templates.

Once you’ve approved the mockup, we’ll build your site to match it exactly. Only after you’ve approved the site and it goes live will billing begin (and our affordable, all-inclusive plans start at just $99/month).

So while you technically get custom design though a Squarespace partner, you’ll might end up paying more than you bargained for! {web Lakeland} is the clear choice on this front.

Squarespace gives you some SEO tools, but {web Lakeland} handles everything.

SEO, or search engine optimization, is critical because it helps potential customers find your business online. The more traffic you have coming to your site, the more chances you have to gain new customers.

While Squarespace provides some basic tools and training for SEO, you still have to do the bulk of the work yourself. If you’re unfamiliar with the best practices for SEO, it’s easy to waste your time on SEO efforts that are at best unhelpful and at worst actively detrimental to your business.

At {web Lakeland}, on-site SEO is included in all of our monthly plans. From the beginning, every site we build is fully optimized for both search engines and human visitors.

So if the phrase “add your target keywords to your meta description” sounds like gibberish to you, you might want to give yourself a break and let {web Lakeland} handle the SEO!

Squarespace is for anyone, we are not.

At {web Lakeland}, we know trying to be all things to all people is a fool’s errand. Because we know exactly who we are best able to help, we are able to deliver stellar service every time.

So if your business falls into one of the following categories, we’ll be upfront: choose Squarespace, because we’re not a good fit.

  • We don’t work with new companies. You MUST have been in business for at least two years and already have a website.
  • We don’t build e-commerce websites.
  • You must not promote (directly or indirectly) hate or adult content.
  • You MUST do business in the US.

Squarespace is a better choice for brand new businesses, while {web Lakeland} is better for established businesses ready to grow.

Due to our unique business model, we have to be selective about the clients we take on at {web Lakeland}. We have no long-term contracts or commitments and pour 100+ hours of high-end design and development work into your project for free. If you decide our service isn’t worth it, those are costs we’ll never recoup.

At {web Lakeland}, we don’t make money unless you make money. We earn our money over a long time relationship and as your business grows and you expand digitally, we hope to always be your choice.

So if we don’t think we can help you, we won’t waste your time and take you on as a client. I don’t say this to sound harsh – I genuinely want to do everything I can to help your business succeed online, even if that’s telling you to go with another service provider.

For this reason, we only work with established businesses. If you’ve been in business for over 2 years and already have a website, {web Lakeland} may be a great web partner for you.

Squarespace’s business plans start at just $18/month for a reason. The platform is specifically designed to help new businesses get started online.

One thing to keep in mind is that Squarespace will push you towards an annual plan with significant discounts. For example, you’ll pay $18/month for a business plan when you pay annually, but $26/month when you pay monthly. While the discount may seem attractive, it’s essentially a way to ensure they make money whether you succeed or not.

So if you’re new to the business world, Squarespace is a great choice. You can make a starter website in a weekend without breaking the budget, and upgrade later to a company like {web Lakeland} once you’ve gotten more settled.

Should I use Squarespace or {web Lakeland} for my website?

Although the answer to this will be different for every business, here’s my two cents on the matter.

Squarespace is better for:

  • Brand new businesses
  • Business owners who are willing to spend a lot of time learning the skills to make a website

{web Lakeland} is better for:

  • Established businesses
  • Growth-focused business owners who don’t have time to worry about every detail of their website
  • Businesses in competitive industries who need to stand out with quality web design and user experience

Again, these are just my opinions – if you’re still wondering whether {web Lakeland} is a good fit for your business, go ahead and schedule a call so we can talk more specifically.

Disclaimer: {web Lakeland} is not affiliated with Squarespace. This content is based on internal case studies and collected data across our clients. {web Lakeland} does not guarantee any results from using this content and it is for educational purposes only.

About the Author

Michael is the Founder and CEO of {web Lakeland}. He brings years of experience in web development, marketing, and cybersecurity together to help small to midsize businesses redesign their websites into beautifully designed, lead-generating machines. A nerd at heart, you can find him spending his time outside the office tackling home improvement projects or watching superhero movies with his nephews.

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