A little bit ago, I actually said on the phone to a client, while walking into a meeting “no, I don’t do website design. I hire that out to a marketing guy”. Two hours later I walked out of said meeting with a seed in my mind from a colleague who mentioned a website called “squarespace.com” where he and a ton of other legit photographers were building designing and managing their websites on their own. I signed up for an account by the end of the night. One week later my new site had been launched. I did it. I love it. Here are five things that are amazing about Squarespace.com .
1. Customer service. I could take two out of the five spots here to talk about them, but let’s just talk first and foremost about their customer care. UNREAL. It is very obvious upfront when you look into this company that they pride themselves in their customer service. I used it a few times, either through an email ticket or live chat. They were always knowledgeable, always direct, and always solved the issue immediately. For me, it was always a style/design or functionality question. It was never a real problem with something not working right. I just couldn’t figure out how to get something to work and they solved it. Clear replies usually with a screen shot of how to act on the issue or even a video of step-by-step instructions using my actual site as the example. I cannot get over how well they look after you. I always got a reply within 45 minutes of sending the email. Oh, and I wasn’t even a paying member yet. I was still on a trial membership, poking around seeing if I liked the site.
2. The predesigned templates were as advertised. Clear, clean, crisp, minimalist. Perfect. I was able to find at least three templates where I could see my site working with. I eventually worked it down to one that was perfect, and like they also say, its 100% customizable. Add things, change sizes, move placement of elements, I could do anything I wanted with any element. Perfect. I wanted to make this my own. My photos are now big and beautiful. My work is clearly prominent from the minute you sign into the site. I love it.
3. Easy learning curve. Remember when you first started playing with your first Smartphone? You thought it was so cool because of all the things it could do, but you were just poking at it and knew you were scratching the surface and didn’t REALLY know what you were doing? Then an hour or so later, you’re flying around on the thing like its second nature? That’s how I felt with Squarespace. At first I was impressed with how easy things were working and how immediate the changes were, but I didn’t know what I was really doing. By the time I realized it was time for bed, I had a pretty good idea of my layout plans and had drop down menus functioning. Sweet. I felt accomplished. The next day I had things pretty much down where I wanted them. I felt really accomplished. Then over the next few days was tweaking where their customer service jumped in and soon I was live. Awesome.
4. Mobile/tablet support built right in. In today’s photography market, viewing images on any device is very important. You want to show your friends or clients, you want to view the link form Facebook or Twitter, and you want it all to work seamlessly. Squarespace does it perfectly. Everything you do and manipulate with your site automatically adapts to any platform you may be viewing the site on. Exactly what I was after
5. SEO and Analytics built right in. It was bothering me that my site wasn’t optimized to be found when searching on Google for Niagara/GTA wedding photogs. These guys have that built right in to all their sites/templates and they allow you to really customize how you are found online. I can tag categories, tag locations and really make myself visible and pronounced in the field I am competing against online. I can even manage how each page or blog post on my site is now found online. It’s a very valuable asset to have access to.
I could go on to 8, 9 or even ten. But it’s only Top 5 Tuesdays. www.squarespace.com Is everything you are looking for. Start and stop there.
Oh. And it only cost me around $200 to have this site live. Bet you didn’t see that one coming.