Starting your own website can be a daunting task. Thankfully, website builders have made even the least experienced capable of creating professional-looking websites on their own. This is what platforms like Squarespace does best. With its high-quality templates and intuitive website editor, you can launch and manage a blog, portfolio, or online store even without writing a single line of code.
GoDaddy, which is more popular for its web hosting services, also brandish an easy-to-use website builder with exceptional e-commerce features. Customization is a little more restricted compared to Squarespace, but if you want to launch a website fast, it’s definitely the tool for you. However, is it the right one for you? Below, we compare these website builders across key areas to help you decide.
Squarespace vs GoDaddy Comparison Chart
|Price||Check Squarespace plans here||Check GoDaddy plans here|
|Standout Feature||Intuitive website builder and stunning website templates||Guided website-building and solid e-commerce features|
|Templates||60+ templates||100+ templates|
|Mobile Friendly Templates||Yes||Yes|
|Payment Processing||Stripe, PayPal, Apple Pay||Venmo, PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay|
|Transaction Fee||3% transaction fee; applies only to Business Plan||2.7% + 30¢ for PayPal payment processing|
|What Can You Sell||Products, services, and digital stuff||Products, services, and digital stuff|
|Social Media Syncing||Sell products on Instagram||Sell products on Facebook and Instagram|
|Customer Support||24/7 email support and live chat, help center, community answers||24/7 phone support, live chat, help center, community|
While Squarespace has a more intuitive interface, it’s faster to start a website on GoDaddy.
Squarespace is quite similar to other website builders like Weebly and Wix. The platform, for instance, uses a drag-and-drop editor to add content to your site. Moving these blocks or page elements around is fairly straightforward, too. You literally just have to drag them into place. In addition, all the tools you need are neatly organized in a minimalist left-side panel. This makes it easy to navigate between pages and features.
What makes Squarespace different, however, is its section-based editing approach. Wix, for example, allows you to work on an entire page, dragging and dropping content as you please. Squarespace essentially just allows you to work on one section at a time. It’s not as cumbersome as HostGator’s manual editing tool. But it does require a bit of a learning curve, especially if you’re coming from a platform like Wix.
GoDaddy, on the other hand, is all about speed. The platform uses ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) in creating websites. Users simply need to sign up, answer a few questions (like what Squarespace does), and the next thing you know, a pre-built website is ready. GoDaddy is lightning-fast and hassle-free.
Personalizing your website, however, is a different matter. GoDaddy’s website editor looks plain compared to Squarespace. The drag and drop feature feels basic, too. While adding content isn’t too much trouble, dragging and dropping page elements — as opposed to clicking add buttons — feels more natural. As such, GoDaddy comes across as a bit more restrictive compared to other site builders.
Templates and Customization
GoDaddy has more website templates but Squarespace has better designs and more room for customization.
Squarespace has the advantage when it comes to templates. Its catalog isn’t as wide as GoDaddy’s — 60 plus templates versus the latter’s 100 plus. However, Squarespace’s selection feels more carefully curated. Although most of the templates follow a minimalist design, there’s enough variety between them that choosing the right one can be both fun and difficult.
That isn’t to say GoDaddy’s templates won’t give you a professional-looking site. With more choices available, you’re bound to find one that will lend your online presence a level of credibility. Overall, however, these templates are less sophisticated compare to what Squarespace offers.
Of course, you can always customize your design. Like most site builders, GoDaddy allows you to modify your website’s color, change font pairings, and resize content blocks. You can quickly personalize your website, too, by changing your template’s theme.
But the level of creative control you get pales in comparison to Squarespace. The latter simply has more style options, whether it’s for a page configuration or content block. Plus, you can make deeper customizations with the platform’s built-in CSS editor.
What both Squarespace and GoDaddy do really well is organizing their templates. Designs are simply categorized by industry. This makes it easier to look for a template suited for your product or service. It also gives you a peg or model to follow when building your site, which is useful if you’re not a designer by profession.
Features and Tools
Both Squarespace and GoDaddy come with a plethora of SEO, e-commerce, and marketing features.
Managing and growing a website, however, isn’t just about good design. If you want more people visiting your page, solid SEO tools are important. In this line, GoDaddy has a lead over Squarespace. The web hosting company’s platform allows users to submit a sitemap to Google, which should help enhance your site’s rankings.
Squarespace does have better social media integrations. GoDaddy’s social media links are limited to a few buttons you embed in your site. With Squarespace, the social sharing tools allow users to push fresh content across different accounts, pull content from social media to your site, and even link your social media to specific elements on your website.
When it comes to e-commerce and marketing, Squarespace and GoDaddy are pretty even. Both platforms have flexible payments and the option to sell unlimited products. Standard e-commerce features like abandoned cart recovery, tax and shipping rates, as well as the ability to offer discounts are also available.
For the data-driven, website analytics are built-in. In addition, Squarespace and GoDaddy also come with their own email marketing campaigns, so you don’t have to spend extra on integrations. If you do want the added functionality of a third-party app, Squarespace will give you that via Squarespace Extensions. Keep in mind, however, it isn’t as extensive as what WordPress or Wix offers.
To make the most out of the platforms, you can choose from the different Squarespace and GoDaddy plans.
As is typical of most website builders, Squarespace and GoDaddy are subscription-based platforms. This means you get more advanced features as you move up the pricing ladder. You also get discounts if you opt to pay annually.
Currently, Squarespace has four plans: Personal ($12 per month), Business ($18 per month), Basic Commerce ($26 per month), and Advanced Commerce ($40 per month). Do note these rates are for annual subscriptions. Expect to pay more if you decide on a monthly payment scheme.
GoDaddy, on the other hand, similarly offers four plans. Their current rates are also less expensive across the board compared to Squarespace. The monthly cost of their plans is as follows: Basic is at $9.99, Standard is at $14.99, Premium will set you back $19.99, while Ecommerce comes in at $24.99. Again, these figures represent monthly fees billed annually.
While Squarespace doesn’t have a free plan, the platform currently offers a 14-day free trial. This should give users more than enough time to test the platform’s features. In contrast, GoDaddy does have a free-forever plan. The option includes access to templates and analytics. If you want to start selling, however, you need to sign up for Ecommerce.
Creative professionals and businesses stand to benefit from Squarespace more. Beginners, on the other hand, will find GoDaddy easier to use.
The main draw of Squarespace has always been its templates. In the market today, it’s hard to find a website builder with designs as good as what Squarespace offers. This makes the platform ideal for creative professionals or businesses who prefer websites that have a strong, visual appeal. Blogs, creative portfolios, online magazines, beauty shops, and retails stores — all stand to benefit from Squarespace’s features.
Beginners, however, will probably like GoDaddy a bit more. The web hosting company’s no-nonsense website builder requires little tinkering to create a site. Once you’ve answered the guided prompts, a functional website is just about ready. Of course, the tradeoff of speed is a lack of deeper customization features. But if you don’t really mind not being able to modify certain page elements, GoDaddy is good enough.
Squarespace and GoDaddy are both easy-to-use website builders. Squarespace offers better-looking templates and more customization features. However, GoDaddy is easier and faster to use in starting a website.
Yes, GoDaddy’s free plan includes an SSL certificate for your website’s security.
Squarespace’s blogging features are better than GoDaddy’s. After all, the platform was originally conceived for content-based websites. Squarespace’s blogging features also include extensive social media integrations, customizable layouts, and support for podcasts.
GoDaddy supports on-the-go editing. This means users can edit their website with their smartphones or tablet device.