Shopify vs Squarespace in 2024

A deeper look into the two juggernauts of e-commerce platforms

Confused about whether Shopify or Squarespace is the better platform for your online store? You’re not alone. In this straightforward comparison, we’ll tackle the gripping debate between Shopify and Squarespace, giving you the facts you need to make an informed decision. Expect no fluff—just clear insights into each platform’s features, costs, ease of use, and customer support. By the end, you’ll have a clearer picture of which service may be your path to ecommerce success, as we dive into “Shopify vs Squarespace.”

Bottom Line

  • Shopify is primarily tailored to ecommerce businesses with advanced features for online selling, while Squarespace is better suited to content-focused websites with a user-friendly design focus.
  • Both platforms differ significantly in pricing, with Shopify plans ranging from $29 to $299 and more comprehensive ecommerce tools, whereas Squarespace offers more affordable plans from $16 to $49 with basic ecommerce capabilities..
  • Shopify outshines Squarespace in terms of ecommerce features, offering extensive tools for product management, sales channels, and shipping. However, Squarespace is noted for its superior design and template offerings, emphasizing high-quality aesthetics.

Shopify vs Squarespace: Key Differences

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Shopify and Squarespace, two giants in the ecommerce platform industry, each bring something unique to the table. However, they are tailored for different types of businesses, and understanding these differences is crucial for making the right choice.

Shopify, with a primary focus on ecommerce, is a haven for businesses that prioritize online selling. It offers a comprehensive suite of ecommerce features, from inventory management to shipping and fulfillment, which are powered by Shopify Payments. On the other hand, Squarespace is ideal for content-focused websites that incorporate elements of squarespace ecommerce.

In terms of pricing, Shopify’s plans range from $29 to $299 per month, offering a robust set of ecommerce tools. Squarespace, however, provides more affordable plans, starting from $16 to $49 per month with basic ecommerce features. Both platforms also support Google Analytics integration for tracking website performance.

While Shopify’s extensive ecommerce capabilities offer a wealth of opportunities, they can contribute to a steeper learning curve. Squarespace, in contrast, is known for its user-friendly drag-and-drop editor, making it easier to use. For growing businesses, the advanced Shopify plans offer more comprehensive features.

Target Audience

Shopify’s target audience primarily consists of businesses with a keen interest in ecommerce. It’s a popular choice for individuals with a genuine interest in the product or potential purchasing capability. Shopify’s extensive ecommerce features and integrations through its Shopify App Store make it an attractive choice for online businesses.

In contrast, Squarespace is more geared towards individuals, particularly creators, who are seeking to build a website to display their content. It targets a younger demographic with a slightly higher female user base. Squarespace’s user-friendly interface, professionally designed layouts, and strong support for SEO best practices make it the preferred option for those looking to establish a visually appealing online presence.


Shopify is renowned for its wide range of advanced ecommerce features, making it one of the top ecommerce platforms for online selling. With a well-designed Shopify site, some of its key features include:

  • Security
  • Personalization
  • Fast loading speed
  • Mobile commerce readiness
  • Site search
  • High-quality photos & video
  • Reviews & Rating display

All of these features can be easily managed through the Shopify dashboard.

On the other hand, Squarespace is known for its design and customization capabilities. With flexible layouts, custom color palettes, and built-in photo editing tools, it offers a wide selection of modern and minimalistic templates. This makes Squarespace a strong competitor in terms of design and customization, even though it doesn’t match the comprehensive range of ecommerce features offered by Shopify.


When it comes to pricing, Shopify’s plans are a bit on the higher end but offer extensive ecommerce tools that justify the cost. The monthly subscription charge varies based on the plan selected and doesn’t include any hidden fees.

Squarespace’s pricing plans, on the other hand, are more affordable but do incorporate a 3% transaction fee on the Business plan and a payment processing fee of 2.9% + 0.30¢ per transaction.

Shopify’s higher-tier plans, like Shopify Plus, include advanced features like dedicated account management and tailored solutions that are customized to meet specific business needs, making Shopify more scalable and suitable for growing ecommerce businesses.

Ease of Use

Despite its vast ecommerce capabilities, Shopify can have a steep learning curve. However, it offers a range of user-friendly features, such as a unified order management system, SEO tools, and support for high-quality photos & videos, that make navigating the platform easier.

Squarespace, in contrast, is renowned for its user-friendly nature. Its features include:

  • Intuitive drag-and-drop editor
  • Attractive Templates
  • Design Flexibility
  • SEO Capabilities

Even for those with no coding knowledge, creating a sophisticated and visually appealing website on Squarespace is straightforward and hassle-free.

Design & Customization

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When it comes to design and customization, Squarespace tends to have an edge. It provides:

  • A wider range of visually appealing templates
  • Native customization options in the theme editor
  • Free, high-quality templates
  • An intuitive drag-and-drop editor

With these features, users can easily modify and create a unique website using a website builder.

Shopify, on the other hand, offers:

  • Fewer free templates but has a selection of premium ones for a price
  • Customization options that may feel limited for those without coding expertise
  • Access to the theme editor from the dashboard, allowing users to customize the theme to their liking.

In terms of content presentation, Squarespace stands out as a superior platform, thanks to its emphasis on high-quality design. It offers a total of 110 templates, compared to Shopify’s 100, and these are more modern and visually appealing.


Squarespace offers a diverse range of free templates, including Seen, Montclaire, and Maca, catering to various website styles. This makes it a great choice for individuals looking to create a unique and visually appealing website without breaking the bank.

Shopify, on the other hand, offers a fewer number of free themes but makes up for it with a variety of premium options. With over 100 professionally designed Shopify templates, Shopify caters to different business needs. The paid templates range in price between $89 and $350, offering additional value for the cost.

Customization Options

Creating a Squarespace site provides extensive customization capabilities through its intuitive drag-and-drop editor. Users can make design changes using the Design > Site Styles section without needing to code. Additionally, advanced users can implement custom code modifications, providing substantial design flexibility and customization capabilities.

Shopify, on the other hand, also offers a wide range of customization options for online stores. These include unlimited product options, customizable color swatches, and bundle add-on products. However, to go beyond the basic Shopify customization options, individuals should possess proficiency in HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Shopify’s proprietary Liquid template language.

Ecommerce Capabilities

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In terms of ecommerce functionality, Shopify shines. It provides extensive tools for product management, sales channels, and shipping & fulfillment, making it a robust platform for any ecommerce business. Its product management features include the Jasper Product Information Management system, 11 Best Product Management Apps for Shopify, and the ability to create unlimited product variants and options with conditional rules and prices.

Furthermore, Shopify facilitates multichannel sales, enabling companies to add products across various sales channels including online, social media, and in-store. Shopify also enhances merchants’ competitive position by providing superior shipping and fulfillment options. These include real-time shipping quotes and the potential to secure discounts of up to 50% on annually billed subscriptions through Shopify Shipping and its partner couriers.

Product Management

Shopify provides a wide range of features to support the strategic planning, execution, and optimization of online retail offerings for your Shopify store. These include:

  • Inventory tracking and management for physical goods
  • The sale of digital products
  • Insights into customer behavior from apps like PushOwl, Live Product Options, and One Click Upsell by Zipify.

On the other hand, Squarespace offers integrated tools for the addition and management of both physical and digital products. These features include product variants, categories, and the utilization of product blocks for displaying items. However, these features may be comparatively more simplistic when stacked against Shopify’s extensive product management features.

Sales Channels

Shopify provides a range of robust tools that facilitate the promotion and sale of products on various popular social media platforms, including:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • TikTok
  • Google
  • YouTube

It also streamlines the process of managing sales and promoting products across different platforms, enabling seamless product sharing directly from the Shopify admin.

Squarespace, in contrast, provides the opportunity to sell through their website and integrate with various social media platforms. However, its focus is primarily on content presentation and management, offering fewer sales channel options in comparison to Shopify.

Shipping & Fulfillment

Shopify offers advanced shipping features like real-time shipping quotes and discounts, which Squarespace does not provide. Real-time shipping quotes refer to the precise shipping rates determined by carriers, which are automatically computed and displayed during the checkout process on the Shopify platform.

In addition, Shopify merchants can derive benefits from the ability to create free shipping discounts and utilize the Shopify Shipping Calculator to accurately calculate and preview discounted rates, thereby enabling them to save costs on shipping.

Marketing & SEO

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Both Shopify and Squarespace offer marketing and SEO tools, but Shopify has an edge in this area. It offers superior social media integration and email marketing tools, and while both platforms provide basic SEO features, Shopify has additional SEO tools that give it a competitive advantage.

The platform’s social media integration enables sales on multiple marketplaces and sales channels such as Facebook, Google, and Pinterest. In addition to this, Shopify offers a wider range of apps and options for social media advertising, facilitating seamless expansion into various platforms.

In terms of SEO, Shopify provides a range of supplementary tools that offer in-depth SEO analysis and insights. These tools include:

  • MozBar SEO Toolbar
  • Bing Webmaster Tools
  • Ahrefs
  • SEMRush
  • AnswerThePublic

Furthermore, Shopify’s site speed is faster than Squarespace’s, which contributes to enhanced search engine ranking potential for its users’ online stores.

Email Marketing

Shopify has a competitive advantage in email marketing through its provision of built-in email marketing tools and a diverse range of supplementary apps that bolster email marketing strategies. Shopify Email is an integrated email marketing solution that enables merchants to efficiently develop, distribute, and monitor their email marketing campaigns without leaving the Shopify platform.

Popular choices for email marketing on Shopify include:

  • Shopify Email
  • Klaviyo
  • Mailchimp
  • Seguno Email Marketing
  • Automizely Email Marketing

These tools provide seamless integration with Shopify, enabling a more comprehensive email marketing strategy.

On the other hand, Squarespace offers an Email Campaigns add-on that enables users to send branded marketing email campaigns directly from their Squarespace website.

Social Media Integration

Shopify provides a more comprehensive range of social media integration options compared to Squarespace. It enables more extensive marketing and sales activities directly within the platform, allowing businesses to reach customers across different channels and manage these sales channels with minimal logistical challenges.

On the other hand, Squarespace’s social media integration features encompass:

  • The capability to link social media accounts to your site
  • Share social content
  • Showcase social profiles to visitors
  • Automatically distribute new content to chosen social media profiles

However, compared to Shopify, Squarespace offers fewer options for social media integration.

SEO Features

SEO features are crucial for any ecommerce platform as they contribute to enhancing the visibility and searchability of an online store. Shopify provides a range of built-in SEO features that enable users to:

  • Customize title tags, meta descriptions, and URLs
  • Use automatic sitemaps and XML sitemaps
  • Modify store URL structure
  • Optimize URLs and meta tags

These features help improve the SEO performance of your online store.Squarespace, on the other hand, also provides basic SEO features, but lacks the additional tools that Shopify provides. Furthermore, Shopify’s features include:

  • Faster site speed
  • Enhanced search engine ranking potential for its users’ online stores
  • Improved traffic and sales performance compared to competitors such as Squarespace.

Customer Support & Resources

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In terms of customer support and resources, Shopify takes the lead. It offers 24/7 phone, email, and live chat support, while Squarespace offers email and live chat support, but only during standard business hours on weekdays.

Both platforms also offer educational resources. Shopify provides a diverse range of materials, including Shopify Academy, tutorials, self-guided business courses, a Help Center, Community forums, Shopify Blog, and Shopify Masters Podcast. Squarespace offers educational resources including video tutorials and free webinars, but it’s worth noting that Shopify offers more extensive options such as its Academy, various self-guided resources, and expert-led courses.

Support Channels

Shopify provides around-the-clock phone, email, and live chat support, making it easy for users to get assistance whenever they need it. The platform also provides language assistance in various languages, including Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, and French, making it accessible to a global audience.

Squarespace, on the other hand, offers customer support only during standard business hours on weekdays. Users can reach out to Squarespace’s customer support team through email and live chat, but the lack of 24/7 availability can be a disadvantage for users in different time zones or those who require immediate assistance.

Educational Resources

Shopify provides a wide range of educational resources that can be beneficial for both new and experienced users. These include:

  • Free Sessions
  • A YouTube Playlist
  • Blog Posts
  • Detailed Courses
  • Step-by-step theme development documentation

These resources cover a wide range of topics and are delivered through various mediums, making it easy for users to find the information they need.

Squarespace also offers educational resources, including video tutorials, a free webinar series, and options to create lessons and course pages. While these resources can be helpful, they may not be as comprehensive or extensive as those offered by Shopify.

Real-World User Reviews

Real-world user reviews provide valuable insights into the strengths and weaknesses of both Shopify and Squarespace. Users often highlight aspects such as the ease of use, design and customization capabilities, and ecommerce features when discussing their experiences with these platforms.

Shopify User Reviews

Shopify users highly value the platform’s comprehensive ecommerce features. They often mention:

  • The ability to recover abandoned carts
  • The seamless integration with other platforms and apps
  • The insights into customer behavior provided by apps like PushOwl, Live Product Options, and One Click Upsell by Zipify.

However, some users have expressed concerns about the challenges and the overwhelming nature of Shopify’s learning curve. Additionally, the cost of Shopify’s plans is often cited as its least favorable aspect, with a value for money score of 3.6 out of 5.

Squarespace User Reviews

Squarespace users appreciate the platform for:

  • Its user-friendly interface
  • Creative, professional website designs
  • Reliable features
  • Easy-to-use interface

These factors contribute to high ratings for its design capabilities.

However, users frequently express dissatisfaction with Squarespace’s ecommerce features. They cite inadequate store functionalities, limited customization options, and subpar customer support as their main criticisms. These limitations can be a significant disadvantage for businesses that require more advanced ecommerce features.


In conclusion, both Shopify and Squarespace have their own strengths and weaknesses. Shopify is a robust ecommerce platform with advanced features, making it ideal for businesses that prioritize online selling. Squarespace, on the other hand, excels in design and customization, making it a great choice for content-focused websites. While Shopify may have a steeper learning curve and higher costs, its extensive ecommerce capabilities and 24/7 support make it a worthy contender. Ultimately, the choice between Shopify and Squarespace depends on your specific business needs and goals.

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