Showit vs Squarespace — which platform is really the best to build your wedding photographer website?
Earlier this year, I finally decided to make the switch from Squarespace to Showit for my own website. Since then, I’ve seen a lot of people contemplating the two platforms, wondering which one is best, or why I recommend Showit over Squarespace (and especially Squarespace 7.1).
I wanted to create another post that highlights some of the critical aspects that really makes Showit the best website builder for wedding photographers, and why I recommend this as a Showit website designer!
Curious about some of the key features in this Showit vs Squarespace debate? Keep reading to find out why I choose Showit over Squarespace!
As a custom brand designer for creative entrepreneurs, font hierarchy and font choices is one of the most important aspects of choosing a website builder.
While Squarespace used to allow for a lot more flexibility in setting up your fonts in their older version (7.0), Squarespace 7.1 utilizes a new type of font settings referred to font packs. The problem with the font packs is that without coding, you’re not able to set a different font style for your various heading sizes (header 1, header 2, etc), causing them all to look pretty much the same.
From a designer perspective, this is obviously not ideal, as it really hinders the way we’re able to utilize fonts and font treatments to create an engaging website.
On Showit on the other hand, you are way more in control of your font settings. Not only do you have more control over your overall default settings with individual selections for your various header levels, you can also adjust individual lines of text in case you need to.
My design style relies heavily on varying fonts for Header 1, Header 2, and Header 3, and this was actually one of the first reasons that led me to think Showit would be a better option.
The only downside here is that Showit doesn’t have access to the Adobe fonts like Squarepsace does; however, this can easily be fixed with a small bit of code!
Whether you’re looking for a Showit sales page template or a Showit pricing guide template, Showit’s ability to add purchased designs onto your existing website might be one of the most beneficial features in this Showit vs Squarespace showdown.
If there is one thing 2020 has taught us, it’s that you need to be flexible in business, and willing to try new things. So why on earth would you want to spend hours tweaking your pricing guide in Canva (or InDesign), sending PDFs or even recreating web pages on your Squarespace site to set up a semi-working sales page, when all of this can easily be done in Showit?
Showit allows you to add + sites, which are subdomains of your main website, giving you the creative freedom to add things like Showit sales pages, Showit pricing guides, and more to your existing website! This makes it super easy to purchase add-on templates like a Showit sales page template without redesigning your entire website! Talk about a huge win!
Add this feature with the separate mobile editing (more on this to come), and Showit is a clear winner!
While Squarespace used to use Index pages to create website pages, these have now been replaced by sections. The problem with this, is that the sections are not as easily duplicated across the site, and the section choices from the dropdowns are pretty limited (unless you’re creating from a blank section).
As a Showit designer, one of my favorite aspects of Showit is being able to create and perfect specific canvases (the equivalent of Index pages in Squarespace) and utilizing these with modifications throughout the site.
Not only does this method speed up the process, it also creates this sudden feeling of cohesiveness across a site without much extra work.
For instance, the layout of part of an about page might work really well as the starting point for part of a services page.
Not only is this a big deal during the actual design phase of a site, but it is also important to note that being able to easily utilize these Canvases across your site can really help you maintain and grow with your site in the future. It will truly allow you to quickly set up new pages based on sections of your existing site, which makes it a lot easier for you to DIY new pages as needed without your designer having to come in and recreate it all with code, etc!
The Showit mobile editing capabilities might be one of the most useful features. No more coding for mobile breakpoints and other CSS tweaks in Squarespace, as turning things on or off the mobile view is as easy as a click of a button.
While it might seem a little tedious at first to design mobile and desktop separately coming from Squarespace, the added flexibility and control completely outweighs this.
For most photographers, mobile traffic tends to be higher than desktop, so the ability to design with mobile in mind greatly outweighs any extra work it takes to set this up.
And besides, if you purchase a premium Showit template or a Showit sales page template, this part has already been done for you, so all you have to do is customize it to fit your copy and brand.
A seamless mobile experience, that’s not just your desktop site in a stacked version, really does make this Showit vs Squarespace debate a no-brainer in my opinion!
When Squarespace rolled out Squarespace 7.1, they also got rid of parallax scrolling. Parallax is the effect where some banner images move slower than the rest of the page, creating an illusion of depth on your website. It’s very useful for text overlays, as it allows you to show off more of a photo, with the text being legible still.
When this was available in Squarespace, you had to choose whether to use it or not and it would apply to your entire site, while Showit allows you to easily enable this for specific canvases on your site!
This is not something you’ll use a ton, but is very useful to create a special effect and more interest throughout the site!
One of the most surprising things for me coming from Squarespace to Showit was the fact that I could no longer launch a site all on my own. Having to reach out to support and request setup seemed like it slowed me down a little. However, now that I’ve adjusted to this and just see this as part of my process, I will say that I am loving the interaction with the Showit support team.
Not only are they super responsive to any small or large questions, but the ability for me as a designer to be included in communication between my clients and Showit really makes this incredible. Most of the time, I’m the one reaching out on behalf of my clients anyways, so Showit being understanding and accommodating of this is such a breath of fresh air.
You see, I felt like Squarespace’s move to 7.1 was a big stab to a lot of designers. While I certainly believe that you can DIY a website, I don’t think that you always should, and I think that is something Showit overall has done a great job of fostering. Showit also just feels like more of a family. Their Facebook group is incredibly useful and always so supportive and positive. A community where DIYers and professional designers alike can gather to help and encourage each other!
I’m curious to hear which one you like the best? Team Showit or Squarespace?
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