Why we chose Squarespace over a custom-build
I thought that I would be the last person to endorse website builders, let alone use them. I've been designing custom-built website for years and, as a designer, I'm enchanted by the nuances provided by a custom-built website. But, here we are: Meraki Concept Studio is living inside a heavily-customised Squarespace template, and I love it.
Whenever we design websites for our clients, I always suggest the utilisation of a website builder in our initial consultation. I'm often met with disdain from the client. I've spent the past few weeks trying to unpack this reaction and understand why people often have this response. I've concluded that people are reluctant to believe that designing, building and managing websites can be an easy and simple task. It sounds too good to be true. There are people who spend their lives building custom-built website, so surely a website builder won't afford the same loveliness? I too asked this question. When I made the migration, I made a list of pros and cons. The pros far outweighed the cons, and I've listed the most important ones below.
SCALABILITY AND SPEED
Rewind back to December 2017. Meraki Concept Studio was growing. We were expanding our project- and retainer-based remits and delving into the world of online resources. This reorganisation of our brand, of course, prompted a redesign of our website. I was already in the midst of rebranding our company (more on that in a few weeks) and I began designing something custom in Illustrator, which I intended to give to a developer in Wordpress. The main problem was that I didn't know the direction I wanted to take the business. How many online resources would I offer? What would they look like? I realised that a custom-built website wouldn't do because I wasn't ready, and I never will be. Squarespace's flexibility enables me to make these large-scale business decisions as I go. It allows me to easily add and remove online resources, change page layouts and add new pages without having to go through the development process over and over again.
SIMPLE AND STRAIGHTFORWARD
The first pro leads neatly into the second. Squarespace's interface is simple and straightforward, which means making changes to the website is easy. We had a lot to learn when we first signed up, but it doesn't take long. Their built-in drag and drop feature is especially good for our clients, since most of them aren't familiar with managing and/or updating websites. Squarespace has refreshed the way we think about and interact with our website. We apply minuscule changes to our site every day. If a button is niggling me, I'll change it. If I don't like the colour of my cart, I'll change it. The flexibility afforded by a website platform cannot be rivalled.
IT'S WHAT PEOPLE WANT
For clients who aren't interested in getting something completely custom with Wordpress, Squarespace offers an alternative. They've made it so easy for anyone to have a handsome website without paying an arm and a leg to get there.