RIP Squarespace

My squarespace website has finally come to an end after only one year so I wanted to make a post of what I thought was good and bad and why I let it expire.

As an amateur photographer I wanted to share my work with the world and what better way than having your own website with a personal domain name, doing it right with a high end glossy feel can make even a mere amateur look like a seasoned professional.

I have tried a couple of methods, the first was a basic template site called clikpic which was a great entry level website creator, but unfortunately it didn't have the high end glossy feel and the variety of templates that I wanted, this was a few years ago and clikpic may have changed since then and upped their game.

I then tried WordPress which was the next big thing when starting your own website, you had massive control over your design and options with an endless number of templates to choose from.
To be honest WordPress caused me nothing but stress and headaches.
If I remember rightly you had to rent a server from your chosen company to host your WordPress website, this wasn't expensive and once paid for you just downloaded the WordPress software to your server and you was basically up and running, well you would think so wouldn't you, but no me personally I didn't find it that straightforward.
You had to download your template which could be a free version or paid version, I tried both but had problems with both.
I struggled setting up the site spending hours and hours trying to sort it out constantly getting errors or conflicts, uploading pictures was a nightmare especially if you got the picture dimensions wrong.
In the end I gave up and I am quite capable with computers, once again this was a couple of years ago and things may have progressed to make starting smoother and easier.
One word of warning which I suffered was I paid for and downloaded some WordPress templates and without realising I was subscribed yearly to them, they drew money from my account for a couple of years, I had to track down the website I downloaded the template from and cancel the subscription.
The subscription was to keep the template updated and to give access to their forums and support.
It wasn't a lot of money but it still stung a bit like I had been defrauded, so be very careful and read the small print even downloading a paid for template.

Squarespace website
I finally started up a website again, so what made me do this and what made me choose Squarespace.
Well Squarespace is very clever with their advertising, they basically sponsor any high profile YouTube photographer who in turn blurts out nothing but praise for Squarespace and in turn offers a 10% discount on the first year using a special code linked to that YouTuber.
I decided to take the plunge after watching Karl Taylor's YouTube channel, to take advantage of the discount.
Squarespace is a template site which has a limited amount of templates but they feel very high end and had that glossy professional feel I was after, also they gave me a free domain name for the first year which on top of the discount was pretty damn cool.
The website was easy to set up, looked great and there was loads of online help from various sources if you got stuck, even the Youtubers who promoted Squarespace made some videos on how to get started.
So I was up and running in no time with a high end site that made me a photography enthusiast have the look of a professional photographer, for this I highly recommend Squarespace.

The only problem I had with Squarespace was with their twitter feed, I tweeted Squarespace and asked them to retweet my Squarespace website with my website address link in the tweet.
I had to tweet Squarespace quite a few times with this request but they ignored every request until other people jumped into the tweet timeline to prompt Squarespace.
Squarespace basically said they don't retweet these types of requests, now this infuriated me on a couple of parts.
  • Why not just tell me this the first time I made the request as I would have understood, ignoring my request just made me angry and lose confidence in Squarespace customer support.
  • Squarespace do retweet customers websites, but most of the time only famous people, so as a paying customer Squarespace made me feel unimportant.
  • As a paying customer why not retweet your customers website, surely this is great advertising for both parties by supporting your customer base and having confidence in your product.
Anyway that's just a quick rundown of a bad experience I had with Squarespace, now that whinge has been aired I shall move onto why I let my website expire.

Even though my Squarespace website offered pretty much everything I needed, I didn't really gain anything from it that I didn't get from a free social media site such as Flickr or 500px ,all I was doing was showing off my images.
Me personally I didn't know what I wanted to to do with my website, did I want to sell pictures, did I want to advertise myself for hire etc.
As a family man with a full time job I find it hard to commit time to something apart from actually getting out and taking pictures when I can, plus I didn't know what direction to take my photography in so my website was just left sitting in cyberspace as a gallery that people could visit.
So with this in mind did I want to renew my website and hand over money for something I didn't actually get anything back for, I decided no not really, especially as the renewal price increased and then I would have to pay for the domain name on top.
On the basis of everything I've said I let my Squarespace expire for now and spent the money elsewhere.
If you have a game plan or a goal in mind and you need a website to achieve that goal then apart from the customer service not being up to scratch sometimes I would say the product itself is pretty damn good and you wont go far wrong for a good looking easy to build website.

Me personally, when I decide what my goals and game plan are I may renew my website but until then you can visit me on all my social media linked below.

Don't forget to follow me on twitter Click Me
Check out my Flickr stream Click Me
My YouTube channel Click Me
My 500px Click Me

My Instagram Click Me
My Facebook Click Me