7 Mistakes DIY Squarespace Websites Make- And How to Fix Them

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Are you a DIY-er with a Squarespace website or looking to design one?

You’ve got this!

The beauty of Squarespace is that there’s no code involved (unless you want there to be!), and it’s an all-in-one platform, meaning your hosting and domain is all within Squarespace.

Whether your website is up and running, you’re in the process of designing it, or haven’t even begun, read through these seven mistakes DIY Squarespace websites make so you’re sure to avoid them! But no fear, even if you have a few on your site, this post will show you how to fix them.

1. Having a busy design.

Is your website a traffic jam of images, multi-colored text, dark backgrounds, and scrolling pages of words? Not only are busy designs unattractive, they’re hard to navigate.

The most important tip to keep in mind when designing your website is to keep it simple. You want information to be easy to find and you want your website to draw your potential customers in.

How to fix it:

• Establish your brand and apply it to your website; stick to three fonts and one color palette.
Design -> Site Styles
• Opt for a white website background. Your text, images, and branding will pop.
• Break up text into numerous paragraphs for easy reading.
Utilize the Header 1, Header 2, Header 3, and bold text options.
• Include white space, or “breathing room,” on your site.

2. Not changing the Squarespace box favicon.

Have you ever noticed the little icons that appear in the tabs of your web browser? These are favicons, a nickname for “favorite icons.”

Whenever you create a Squarespace website, the default favicon is Squarespace’s black box. And it reduces the brand awareness and professionalism of your website.

How to change it:

Log into Squarespace.
Logo & Title
Browser Icon (Favicon)

Note: Be sure your favicon has square proportions and is sized between 100px by 100px and 300px by 300px, png format.

Need help sizing? Try Canva!

3. Leaving “Powered by Squarespace” in your footer.

The footer of your website is the very bottom of the site. Your footer is global, meaning it will stay the same throughout all of the pages on your website.

On Squarespace, the default footer is “Powered by Squarespace.”

How to change it:

Login to Squarespace.
Pick a page. Any page!
Scroll to the bottom and hover until you see “Footer.”
Delete text and add your own!

But what should I put in my footer?

• Your business name and current year with the copyright symbol.
• Contact information.
• Quick links to pages on your site.
• E-newsletter subscribe box.
• Linked social media icons.
• Short bio and headshot of yourself.
• Recent posts from Facebook or Instagram.

The possibilities are endless, but be sure not to have a footer that’s longer than your page.

4. Not having a clear navigation.

The navigation is the tabs towards the top of your website that link to your pages. It’s the quickest place for people to navigate your website, and if it’s crowded or confusing, potential customers are likely to click away from your site.

How to fix it:

• Place your navigation in a standard space, such as a horizontal bar across the top of your website or a vertical bar along the side. You want it to be super easy to find. (Navigation placement is often determined by your template.)
• Stick with no more than five main navigation links (such as Services | About | Blog | Contact), and use folders to add up to three sub-pages (such as Testimonials | Press | FAQs).
Pages -> + -> Folder
• Be clear with your page names and try to limit them to one word. It’s easier for our brains to quickly process “Services | About | Contact” than it is “What We Do | Who We Are | Contact Us.”

5. Having few (or no) calls-to-action on your pages.

When designing your website, you want your calls to action (CTAs) to be as obvious and easy to find as possible. Sure, you probably have your contact page in your navigation, but - let’s be honest - people are lazy.

Think of the steps you want your potential customers to take on your website. Here’s an example:

  1. Your homepage has a “Work With Me” CTA that links to your services page.

  2. Your services page has a “Testimonials” CTA that links to your testimonials page.

  3. Your testimonials page has a “Contact” CTA that links to your contact page. (Bonus points if there’s a freebie to entice a potential customer into contacting you, such as a 20-minute consultation.)

Where to add CTAs:

• Have a CTA on the homepage of your website, above the fold.
• Include a CTA on each page, such as “Add to Cart", “Shop Now,” “Learn More,” “Contact.”
• Use the banner function to display a CTA at the very top of your site.
Marketing -> Announcement Bar
• Include an e-newsletter subscribe CTA in your website footer.
• Include a specific CTA in your blog posts, whether you link to a specific service, product, or class (see my CTA at the bottom!).

6. Using your email address instead of a contact form.

Spam bots are constantly scanning websites for email addresses, so not only will listing your email address on your website lead to more spam, it could also lead to fewer actual inquiries.

As revealed above, people are lazy. They don’t want to copy your email address and then paste it into a new message, and pop-up email windows don’t always connect to the right inbox. Instead, have a simple contact box on your contact page that includes a space for their name, email address, and message.

How to add a contact form:

Select your page.
Insert a block.
Select “Form” from the options (under More).
Edit the form.
Storage (top of form, middle option).
Be sure the sending to email address is accurate.

7. Not activating your SSL Certificate.

All Squarespace website plans come with a free SSL Certificate, which secures all of the content on your website, preventing hackers from accessing and stealing it.

Not only is activating your SSL Certificate good from a privacy standpoint, it can also boost your SEO. (Not sure what SEO is? Click here!)

But why?

Google stated that secure websites will rank higher than unsecure sites. So get your SSL Certificate!

How to get it:

Login to Squarespace.
Be sure “Secure (Preferred) is selected.

Next Steps

Ready to dive deeper into Squarespace? Check out an upcoming Intro to Squarespace class, or attend a monthly Website Workshop.

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MarketingMeg BrownComment