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In our alternatives series, we help buyers identify the differences between Contento and other CMS like Squarespace so you can decided which will be the better fit for your business.

Looking for an Alternative to Squarespace?

Squarespace is an excellent starter option for those looking for a basic but professional website to get started. The user interface is intuitive and it is possible to get up and running without external support. It offers several beautifully designed templates that you can choose from (Bedford is a popular one).

Headless CMS like Contento are not designed as starter websites as they are intended for a bespoke website, but represent a natural upgrade option for those who have outgrown Squarespace. A Headless configuration is a more enterprise grade option for more mature websites that need to support growth objectives.

Contento vs Squarespace

Contento and Squarespace are not alternatives in that they are designed for very different purposes. Despite both being Content Management Software applications they occupy different ends of the CMS spectrum. Squarespace is an entry-level CMS and thus a more common scenario is someone looking to migrate their site off Squarespace when it hits the limit of its capability. Upgrading to a modern CMS that aligns with growth expectations will likely bring a Headless CMS into play.

The following represents some key areas to consider when evaluating your upgrade options.

1- Content Management

With a Headless CMS the content takes priority. A Headless CMS configuration is a decoupled one where the front-end and back-end are separate. A traditional CMS like Squarespace bakes the front-end and back-end together as all-in-one solutions. 

There are of course pros and cons to the different approaches. Again context is everything when assessing which route makes most sense for both your current and future requirements. Squarespace can get you up and running quickly, but after some time you’ll likely outgrow it at which point you’ll likely look for alternatives to it.

2- Ease of Use

There is no doubting the simplicity of Squarespace in terms of it offering a clean intuitive UI. It can deliver impressive results without needing specialist tech skills. The flip side of course is you are constrained by your template and pixel perfect design will be out of reach. 

On the other hand most Headless CMS are challenging to use (despite the fact the front end is accessed elsewhere). They tend to be very developer centric, and while they meet the needs of the website build part of the process, they can be challenging to build out and maintain without specialized developer input. Contento, is trying to bridge the gap between pure play Headless and the design simplicity of the likes of Squarespace.

Browser showing Contento Live Preview

Contento content editor and live preview

3- SEO

SEO is not a strong point of Squarespace and there is a limit to what you can manipulate. Many Headless CMS also offer limited SEO capabilities without some custom work being done. Again this is an area where Contento excels with a dedicated SEO module that helps ensure your SEO is optimized. Headless configurations can also be blazingly quick and as speed is a ranking factor this helps ensure that Headless CMS backed sites can deliver strong SEO results.

Browser showing Contento SEO Module

Contento SEO Module

4- All in One Platform

Squarespace is an all-in-one platform that enables you to manage both design and content elements (i.e. the front end and back end are tightly coupled). This is not the case with a Headless CMS like Contento. Squarespace provides hosting, domain registration, and website building tools as part of an all in one package which makes it easy to get going.

However, as your site matures, and you need to use it to drive growth, other elements become more important and it is at that point that companies often look to migrate off the likes of Squarespace and Wix to a more enterprise grade modern website architecture underpinned by a Headless CMS.

5- Cost

Squarespace is very much at the entry level end of the pricing spectrum especially when you consider the ability to build yourself is a credible one for most people without needing external support. This is not the case with a Headless CMS. Again this is not an apples to apples comparison as a Headless CMS is a more powerful, flexible and scalable offering. 

Investing in a visual identity (or brand identity) is important for your Squarespace website to ensure it looks professional (this cost will be incurred regardless of the route chosen).

In short, if you are budget conscious then Squarespace is a better option.

6- Vendor Lock In

One of the attractions with a Headless CMS backed approach is that it is very much intended to be flexible. The various constituent elements are interchangeable so you can swap various elements in enabling you to avoid vendor lock-in. Data portability is more of an issue with Squarespace  and exporting your content to move to another platform can be challenging.


Squarespace and Headless CMS offerings like Contento are not really alternatives. They are for very different contexts. The former is an entry level option to get you going, which has a limited shelf life. If you want a bespoke design, want content to feed various channels, or need a specialist design then a Headless option like Contento is a better fit. Similarly if you are a growing scaling business dependent on your website to support business growth objectives then Headless represents a better fit.

Contento Vector 1

Our customers say it best

Kevin Magee CTO, Zyte

Kevin Magee

CTO Zyte

One of our goals was to ensure our Marketing team was not held up by the Engineering team on a daily basis. We achieved that and empowered Marketing to maintain the site at a speed aligned to our business requirements. Content creation and Engineering have been decoupled.
Philipp Maucher Chief of Staff & SaaS Network Ireland Coordinator

Phillip Maucher

SaaS Network Ireland Coordinator

We moved from Wordpress to Contento and have been delighted with the move. I no longer have to get developers to update the site - I reckon it's reduced my site 'admin time' by over 70%.
Ryan Crowley, CEO of Kore Systems

Ryan Crowley

CEO Kore Systems

The migration to Contento was seamless - the results have justified the decision to replatform to Headless.
Contento Vector 7

Making the Switch to Contento is a Breeze

We offer migration support from many of the other well known platforms. Get in touch to talk to one of our technical team.

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Frequently asked questions

What are the main advantages of Squarespace?


Is Squarespace expensive?


How does Squarespace compare to WordPress?


What use cases does Squarespace work well with?


What is the main disadvantage of Squarespace?


Where can I learn more about the differences between Contento and Squarespace?