Webflow vs.

Squarespace

Which platform is better for the non-coding designer?

Joe Dakroub
Dann Petty
Twitter Icon

@webflowapp is the greatest thing

March 20, 2017

The designers' alternative
to Squarespace

Webflow combines a fully customizable CMS with powerful, totally visual web design tools. And since it gives you the power to start from a blank canvas — and not be constrained by a template — it’s the Squarespace alternative you've been looking for.

Make the switch from Squarespace to Webflow — painlessly

Read more about CSV import

Just export your Squarespace site's XML, convert the XML into a CSV file, then import your CSV to Webflow CMS and you'll have all your real content, ready to design in Webflow.

Design freedom

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Start with a blank canvas or one of over 100 templates and customize everything visually.

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Squarespace is template-driven, limiting its flexibility for those of you with a strong design vision.

Code quality

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Webflow outputs code that's as clean and semantic as you can make it.

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A peek at any Squarespace template’s source code presents a mind-bogglingly dense wall of code we wouldn’t want to parse.

SEO

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Fully customizable SEO settings that are easy to setup. Webflow sites are built for the modern internet and search engines gives you extra points for mobile friendly design and performance.

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Seems pretty solid, at least after version 6, though it lacks the dynamic options you get with Webflow CMS.

Site security

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Free SSL on all sites, backed by constant threat monitoring.

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Also offers free SSL on all hosted domains.

User-friendliness of CMS

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Simple on-page editing, minimal dashboard UI.

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Squarespace’s design and CMS UIs seem clean and cool at first, but are packed with modals and contextual toolbars that can make it a little overwhelming.

Support

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Regularly cited as one of the best features of Webflow. See our Facebook reviews.

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Squarespace offers 24/7 support, along with a fairly detailed help center.

Collaboration

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Client billing built right in, easy collaboration between design and content.

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Great built-in editorial collaboration with several levels of permissions so you know who can do what.

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Over 1,000,000 designers can't be wrong.

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Break free from templates. Design your vision.

Squarespace boasts a selection of deservedly celebrated design templates, so it's a solid option for those without strong design chops. But for a professional web designer, templates prove more limiting than enabling.

Webflow caters to the passionate pro by letting you start from a blank canvas, so the only limit is your vision. Combine any font from Google, Typekit, or your own collection with any color, and arrange it using powerful layout tools like flexbox to achieve exactly the look you’re envisioning. Then layer on box or text shadows, CSS filters, robust interactions, even 3D transforms, to bring your design to life. 

All without writing a line of code. 

> Complete design freedom — without templates or the need to write code

> Easily add delightful interactions and animations without touching code

> Turn design elements into Symbols you can reuse across your site

> Completely customizable templates when you need them

Joe Dakroub
Jane Portman
Twitter Icon

As a non-coding designer, I get visceral pleasure from honing responsive typography to perfection with @webflowapp.

April 25, 2016
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1.0_design

Create Webflow CMS Collections by
combining various data types

Easily create custom structured content

While Squarespace might work fine for your average blog, restaurant, or portfolio site, you’ll quickly run into its content limitations if you need something a little more custom. 

This is where Webflow’s CMS comes into its own. Its pre-built content types cover a wide array of needs — including blogs, portfolios, restaurants, and much more.

And if those aren’t enough, it’s super easy to create completely custom Collections (like the page you’re reading right now, actually). That’s because Webflow lets you mix and match 14 fundamental content types to create exactly the structure your content needs.

Plus, each Collection you create can easily reference elements from other Collections, so it’s simple to list things like author bios, other posts by an author, related content, and so much more. 

And once you’ve created your Collections, any design element can reference them, so your design is shaped by the content — not by some generic template we’ve all seen before.

> Build custom content types without writing code

> Design dynamic page templates around your content

> Make your content future-friendly and reusable via our API or Zapier integrations

2.0_content_structure

Clean, performant code

Webflow was built with web standards and best practices in mind. That means that, unlike most website builders, the code Webflow produces is clean as you can make it.

What’s that mean for you and your website’s visitors? Super-fast page loads for users, and easily-crawled pages and site structures for Google’s spiders. And all that means better performance in search and on user’s devices.

> No “spaghetti” code causing problems across browsers and devices

> Faster page loads on every device

> More control over the various views and breakpoints of your site

This is the exact HTML from this section.

3.0_code
Joe Dakroub
Tony Vila
Twitter Icon

@webflowapp Guys, awesome work! Very impressed, and such clean code, I'm a fan :) just amazing

April 6, 2016
Joe Dakroub
Twitter Icon

@webflowapp is a complete game-changer for designers. this is how web design was meant to be.

October 7, 2016
4.0_SEO

Powerful SEO tools — on autopilot

Core elements of Webflow like its clean, semantic code, free SSL certificates, and blazing-fast page loads ensure your sites are as easy to read for people as for Google’s spiders. The fact that you can set Collection fields to automatically generate page titles and descriptions helps too. Auto-generated sitemaps and customizable Open Graph data come in handy as well. Oh, and did we mention that all Webflow sites are not only mobile-friendly, but actually let you customize how your design displays on every device?

> Easily edit every SEO element that matters, from page titles to alt tags

> Create dynamic meta titles, descriptions, and Open Graph data so you never have to handwrite them again

> Mobile-friendly designs with free SSL

5.0_SEcurity

Rest assured — your website’s secure

Because Webflow — like Squarespace — is a hosted service, we’re constantly monitoring our sites for threats and intrusions. Plus, we provide free SSL certificates so every page shows up “Secure” in Chrome (and every other browser), and your site’s visitors can share their information confidently.

And when sites go down, as almost inevitably happens on the web, we’re open and honest about the problems — and what we’re doing to fix them.

> Free SSL/HTTPS for all hosted sites, so your sites are secure

> Secure, speedy Fastly CDN for fast page loads

> Enterprise-grade security with ISO 27018 compliance

6.0_USER_FRIENDLINESS

A more intuitive content management system

Like most web content management systems, Squarespace gives you access to add, edit, and update content across your site. And it does that in a “back-end” system that bears little to no resemblance to your site.

Not so with Webflow, which lets you write and edit right on your live web page, so what you see is what your site visitors see. And even when you do enter the “back end,” the user interface is clean, clear, and uncluttered — and crafted to match your site’s content, so there are no useless links or pages you don’t need.

> Edit content right on live pages, so you see what your site visitors will — immediately

> Easily find the content you need with streamlined navigation and search tools

> Never get another “I broke the site” message from a client again

7.0_Support

Help is always just a couple clicks away

We’ll be honest: because of its strong foundation in web standards, Webflow can take a little getting used to. That’s why we have tutorial videos right inside the Designer, a Help Center packed with hundreds of detailed how-to articles, a lively Forum filled with helpful designers, a support staff that regularly gets kudos from our customers, and a blog filled with pro tips and guidance on best practices in UX design. Stick with it, and you’ll succeed.

> Responsive support via email, chat, and social networks

> Large, very active community forum

> A huge library of videos and tutorials to help you achieve just about anything

8.0_collaboration

Bill clients right from Webflow — and add a little profit

Squarespace lets you add a client to a site as a “billing” contributor, so they pay for the website directly. At Webflow, we handle things a little differently: when you set up Client Billing for a site, you define how much your client will pay per month, so you can add maintenance fees, asset purchase costs, whatever.

> Set up Client Billing to automate client’s hosting payments

> Easily add any ongoing costs in addition to hosting — including pure profit

> And use Webflow for free