Squarespace is king among online website building platforms, known for its great branding, ease-of-use, and well-designed templates.
The platform allows anyone to drag-and-drop their way through the process of setting up a high-quality website whether they’re an emerging fashion brand, commercial photographer, or the local electrician.
While Squarespace is a great tool for designing and building a website without any coding know-how, it’s important to note that Squarespace isn’t a post-click landing page builder. In fact, we’ll say this up top: if you’re looking for a website solution that offers a robust catalog of customizable landing page templates and advanced features, this isn’t for you.
What are Squarespace Landing Pages?
Technically speaking, Squarespace landing pages aren’t actually a thing. The platform offers something called “cover pages” instead.
Cover pages are essentially landing pages; they’re standalone pages that allow you to announce a new product, collect email addresses, or promote an upcoming event. You can direct traffic to your cover pages and have multiple live pages at a time for different offers or customer segments.
Which, okay, sounds like a run-of-the-mill landing page. However, there are a few things that stand out about Cover Pages–we’ll go over them quickly here:
- Pre-styled Layouts: Squarespace allows users to change up the copy, add images, audio, forms, and more, by clicking various on-page elements to make changes.
- Fixed Text Blocks and Buttons: Text stays within a fixed layout. While that might sound like a negative, those limitations ensure that inexperienced users don’t mess up the page layout during the design stage.
- Some E-commerce-Specific Options: Squarespace offers three types of product pages: classic, advanced, and unique. The classic is a typical product page, while the Advanced brings in a few extra features like Zoom, Quick View, and hover options. Unique product pages come with template-specific e-commerce features.
Squarespace offers marketing tools like Squarespace email, an add-on service that allows users to design and deliver email campaigns to drive traffic to your site. It doesn’t, however, promote landing pages as part of this service either.
What are the Benefits & Negative Aspects of Building Landing Pages on Squarespace?
Squarespace landing pages are attractive solutions that come ready for users to plug in some copy, add some great pics, and go live without breaking a sweat.
Here’s the thing about cover pages, as mentioned above, they come with some distinct limitations. It’s worth pointing out, however, that those limitations may be seen as a blessing or a curse, depending on who you ask.
Squarespace, you may want to already have a layout in mind before getting started, and from there, use that as a baseline to select a template that fits the bill. The platform does integrate with some third-party apps that offer more in the way of customization, as well as a CSS editor, but state that Squarespace support doesn’t extend to any add-ons.
In looking through Squarespace’s support section, it’s clear that customization is not part of what the platform offers. The language around it reads a bit like a restaurant menu with a “no substitutions” rule, stating that designs are set up a specific way for a reason.
The idea is similar to the experience of using Apple products, in by removing functionalities you’d find in most web design tools, Squarespace offers a clean interface, simple set-up, and limitations that protect users from their own inexperience.
The bottom line, with Squarespace, the pros are the cons.
How Does Squarespace Compare to Other Solutions?
Wix does offer landing page templates that cater to a variety of needs. The platform operates on a similar premise to Squarespace but gives customers a few more customizable elements to work with. That said, many of those elements feel a bit sloppy, whereas everything about Squarespace feels curated and intentional.
Still, there are some solid landing page options, as you can see here in this roundup we found on Pinterest.
Like Squarespace, Shopify is all about simplifying the process of creating a website and starting your business. Shopify is designed specifically for e-commerce, whereas Squarespace is more general.
Also like Squarespace, Shopify’s built-in templates are a bit rigid when it comes to personalization. That said, those limitations ensure your site looks professional and prevents poor design choices (or mistakes) from standing in the way of conversions.
The commonalities end there, though. Shopify’s landing page game is on another level when compared to Squarespace. For one, Shopify is a platform designed to help people sell products, which of course, depends on elements like high-converting landing pages.
The platform also offers its own app store, which comes with a ton of plug-ins & marketing tools.
When it comes to customization, WordPress is the polar opposite of Squarespace. Users can create custom landing pages by pasting in HTML from a text file or add a plug-in to a site that essentially takes care of everything for them.
In most cases, your best bet will be to look for a landing page builder with a WordPress plug-in like Leadpages or Divi.
Magento doesn’t come with a landing page builder or any templates out of the box but does offer an add-on called Amasty in the Magento marketplace, which costs an extra $69 a month.
Amasty templates are open source and customizable and allow users to filter products associated with a particular page by price, SKU, attribute sets, and more. Additionally, users can create landing pages based on the search results and optimize URLs, tags, and pages for SEO.
For online retailers that have the development skills to take advantage of Amasty’s features, this is a clear winner compared to Squarespace, which is best suited for smaller companies or those with limited inventories.
Drift Conversational Landing Pages
Like the other entries on this list, Drift landing pages allow users to customize your page without any coding know-how. However, our landing pages are a bit different than the default options that come with say, Squarespace or Wix. Instead of static forms, users can collect insights and offer assistance by adding chat:
You can also personalize the conversation for each of your visitors, so you’re no longer creating multiple versions of the same landing page to connect with buyers.
Here’s an example of what it looks like live:
5 Landing Page Examples Built on Squarespace
With Squarespace landing pages–or rather, cover pages, there are a lot of attractive, creative designs out there, but very few function like your average landing page.
We’ve noticed that Squarespace tends to promote the use of cover pages as a literal cover for websites, but often the CTA doesn’t lead to a visitor completing an action aligned with a brand’s goals.
That said, here are a few examples:
Aside from the navigation bar on the left, this example from Expensify is a pretty solid landing page. There’s a compelling headline, a subheadline that explains the offer, and a stand-out CTA button.
While this Squarespace landing page doesn’t actually capture any visitor information, the page functions as a slideshow and does a nice job compelling users to click the button to learn more about Refinery29’s creative department.
3. Peter McKinnon
We wouldn’t necessarily call this a landing page in a traditional sense, but it’s worth pointing out that this seems to be the more common way to use Squarespace landing pages–a point of entry, though not necessarily tied to a specific offer.
4. Washi Arts
Washi Arts offers a similar approach to Peter McKinnon’s page–Squarespace’s signature barrier to entry. We like the design–which works well with the subheadline and buttons featured on the right. However, as a conversion tool, users have three calls-to-action to choose from, none of which feel especially compelling.
Another example that feels a bit more like your typical landing page, UberEats gets straight to the point, inviting users to start “finding food” upon arrival. It’s a low-stakes way to attract new users, as even someone visiting the site out of curiosity is likely to check out the local options–and if something hits the spot, they’ll have to go ahead and create an account to place an order.
Plugins & Apps for Squarespace Landing Pages
Unlike Shopify or WordPress, there’s no Squarespace app store buzzing with countless add-ons and plug-ins. However, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t support integrations.
Here are some of the direct integrations Squarespace users can add to a site to power up landing pages. Of course, users can add indirect integrations via Zapier, if they’re looking for a more comprehensive solution.
- Eventbrite: Squarespace users can add registration landing pages to sites using the Eventbrite widget. Perfect for promoting a live event, webinar, or save-the-date.
- Drift: Drift integrates with Squarespace within a matter of minutes, bringing chatbots to any page on your site. Follow the instructions here to see how it’s done.
- Wufoo: Wufoo’s Squarespace integration allows users to add custom forms to any page, including cover pages.
- GoDataFeed: GoDataFeed isn’t a landing page builder, but the plug-in does allow Squarespace users to automatically generate compliant product feeds for platforms like Google, Facebook, and Instagram, plus 200+ other marketing channels that can be used to create customized product ads. Send visitors to product pages and track conversions with UTM codes or the Facebook Pixel or send them to your cover page.
- MailChimp: Squarespace’s MailChimp integration allows users to collect email addresses through its website using any form on the site. Users can add an opt-in pop-up, pull blog content into your newsletter, and measure lead-gen efforts through MailChimp.
Whether Squarespace is the right tool for you comes down to a few key factors—what kind of business do you run, what are your goals, and how much customization do you need? While some website owners might appreciate that the platform’s designers take care of the hard stuff, others might feel stifled by the platform’s limits.
Ultimately, Squarespace is best suited for restaurants, small online boutiques or those who provide a professional service–think freelance writers, designers, artists, law firms, musicians, or photographers.
While there’s a lot of diversity within these categories, we’re talking about business models that don’t have thousands of products on sale at once or countless customer segments. For e-commerce brands–Shopify is probably the best all-in-one option–website, landing pages, and all kinds of add-ons, at your disposal. For those who want more customization and integrations, WordPress is the way to go.
Whether you’re working with cover pages or something more traditional, sign up for a free 30-minute assessment with a Drift pro for some actionable tips for driving conversions.
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