Wix or Squarespace? Or, heck… WordPress, Showit, GoDaddy - you name it. There are SO many platforms out there and one of the most frequently asked questions I get is “Well, what makes Wix better than X?”
Psssst, Check out our Wix vs. WordPress blog right here.
But unfortunately, it’s not that simple of an answer, and even according to Google, it doesn’t matter so much the platform you’re using as much as it matters the quality of content on your site. So when designers of a particular platform tell you that every single website should be on that platform - don’t believe them!!
Because it depends on so many things.
In this blog post, we’re going to get into:
The bottom line is, we primarily use Wix because it’s the easiest, most user-friendly platform for pet industry entrepreneurs to use. We’ve dabbled into Squarespace before. In fact, we’ve taken Paige Bruton’s Squarespace course along with many others in the past so we could give it a full go, but unfortunately, we weren’t too impressed, for reasons you’ll see below! Now that doesn’t mean Squarespace isn’t a great platform - it just means we’re meeting our customers and clients where they're at and what will be the most likely platform for them to easily maintain moving forward, which I believe is the most important factor when it comes to growing their business via their website.
So, how do you know if you’re a great Wix candidate vs. a Squarespace candidate?
Squarespace is a super popular platform that most business owners will select simply based on the premise that it’s easier to use than WordPress and more robust than Wix. But, it’s not really that simple. Yes, Squarespace can be a great solution for lots of pet business owners. In our opinion, some things are lacking, one of which is the lack of true customization. From the beginning, you have to select a template from which to edit and you’re kind of held into that template as you proceed. This means a ton of research needs to happen ahead of time to make sure you’re selecting the right template with the features you need for your particular business.
The other main feature of Squarespace, which to be honest is one of the main reasons why we don’t use it, is despite its reputation for being ‘easier to use than WordPress,’ you have to keep clicking back and forth between editing the design and editing the content/copy of your site. That functionality was extremely limiting and frustrating on my end as a designer, as I couldn’t just edit the site as I pleased and therefore, sites ended up taking longer than I wanted because one… it just took longer and two, you had to keep testing and messing around with what you could change and head back and forth between both editors!
Now, this is just my experience, but I know others who do love their Squarespace sites! They have lots of customization ability, mobile responsiveness, blog features, and more.
Wix is a wonderful platform that allows you to customize your site fully and easily. Each template and site is still 100% customizable, and you’re still able to add Embed/HTML code when needed throughout your site. If you’re a small business, Wix is probably the better platform for you when it comes to monthly maintenance, cost, time commitment, etc.
There’s no need to know how to code. It’s a simple drag and drop type platform where you can simply edit and move around things on your site to your liking! You can change absolutely ANYTHING and are not bound to anything within your template, if you’re even using one. They even have a mobile editor now, which allows you to customize, add, or remove most things on the mobile version of your site.
Here's the deal: If you’re a small service-based pet business and will be the one maintaining your site on your own (and prefer to keep things easy), you may prefer Wix! You’ll still get the amazing features and 100% customization without having to learn code or worry about intense monthly maintenance.
The bottom line?
Wix is easier to customize than Squarespace with its drag and drop functionality
You have a completely separate mobile editor in Wix compared to Squarespace
Squarespace does have great e-commerce features that are worth looking into!
For small pet service businesses, Wix gives you a lot more freedom and flexibility for customizing your site
How to switch your website from Squarespace to Wix
1. First things first, leave your current site up until you’re ready to go live with your new Wix website. That way you won’t have a website that’s down or not completed yet.
3. If you purchase one of our Wix website templates, you’ll gain access to our Unleashed Website Academy (UWA) course, which walks you through the process of editing/customizing your new website, how to write your pet business copywriting, how to implement SEO, how to integrate your software, and launch your new website! Otherwise, once you create a Wix account, you can follow the instructions to begin customizing your new website - either blank or via a template.
4. Once you’re done customizing your new Wix site and are ready to launch, follow the instructions in UWA on how to get everything connected (all the backend techy stuff) or access the instructions inside your Wix account on how to get your domain connected to your new Wix site!
If your domain is currently HOSTED on Squarespace, you will need to transfer your domain elsewhere to either Wix or somewhere like GoDaddy! If you’re transferring to Wix, you might as well host your domain there because when you upgrade Wix to a premium annual plan, you’ll receive a free domain for your first year!
5. Launch your new Wix site! Once it’s live to the world and your domain is fully transferred, you can cancel your Squarespace account.
If this sounds overwhelming, you’re 100% not alone! Here’s what a couple of our past students had to say specifically when it comes to the tech portion of the course:
Brienne C., Beyond the Sit Dog Training
"Going through the tech portion of launching my website was "easier than expected with changing the domain to this new Wix site."
Ingrid C., Scales Tails & Paws Pet Sitting
"Oh my goodness, I did it. I got through this and it looks really good and I am so grateful I got to be part of this process...The tech portion was much easier than I anticipated."
Before wrapping up, here’s one of the most frequently asked questions about switching website platforms that we wanted to address:
“Will my SEO drop or be affected if I switch my website over to another platform?”
SUCH a valid question and unfortunately, the best answer I have for you is: it depends.
If anyone tells you it will 100% go up or down, it’s simply not true because there’s no way for them to know. If your website has been ranking consistently for an extended period, you will likely stay in place especially if you set everything up properly in terms of your SEO settings and any 301 redirects that may be needed. If you weren’t really active with your SEO and weren’t increasing or haven't been as stable in terms of ranking results, you may go down but back up quickly! The moral of the story though - We haven’t had an issue with any customers in regards to SEO. In fact, most customers seem to increase in rankings immediately (but again, it depends on where they were before purchase).
Our website templates are strategically built to boost the user experience, which ultimately helps keep people on your website longer and helps with your SEO. The UWA course that comes with your template has a whole module on how to set up the proper SEO settings for your blog, your pages, your photos, etc. so you’re not left in the dark whatsoever and you can make sure everything is optimized properly before launching your new site.
When it comes to the Wix platform specifically, here are a couple of things for you to know:
Wix has tons of built-in SEO features, including the Wix SEO Wiz that gives you a complete checklist to follow to help you rank in Google.
If you want more info on Wix’s (which means our templates!) awesome SEO capabilities, here’s an article written by one of their experts to explain it all!
However, again… it doesn’t matter so much the platform you’re using so much as it does the quality of your content on the site itself, so we have plenty of copywriting strategies and education in our course as well to help you with just that.
To learn more about our Wix website templates for pet businesses, head to the PMU Shop. If you’re interested in custom website for your pet business, head here to learn more about our custom design projects.