Portfoliobox and Squarespace are two popular cloud website builders used for the same purpose – development, customization and promotion of portfolio websites. Offering an extensive feature set, abundance of designs and customization tools, the systems make it possible to run professional projects for photographers, models, artists and other creatives. At the same time, there are important nuances that differ the platforms from each other.
While Portfoliobox is a specialized DIY portfolio website builder that positions itself as a high end service for the creation of this type of projects only, Squarespace is the all-in-one website builder used to design all kinds of websites, including portfolios.
Website Builders Comparison Chart
|Best for:||Portfolio websites||Blogs, small business websites, professional portfolios, web stores|
|Templates:||Multiple page templates||Dozens of free responsive templates|
|Technical Support:||Knowledge Base, Live Chat, Ticket tracking system, blog, community forum||Live Chat, Email Support, Community Forum, Ticketing System, FAQ section|
|Blogging Options:||Advanced blogging feature||Integrated blogging CMS|
|SEO Options:||Standard SEO settings||Advanced SEO parameters|
|Pricing:||Starts from $0.9/mo||Starts from $12/mo|
|More info:||Portfoliobox Review →||Squarespace Review →|
Both website builders are worth the attention of users, who intend to run quality portfolio projects. They have much to offer in this respect, but there are still crucial aspects that make each platform stand out from the crowd and, thus, may affect users’ choice. Take your time to read the detailed comparison of these systems to define the one that complies with your current web design needs and requirements.
Portfoliobox vs Squarespace: General Overview
Portfoliobox is a cloud website builder, which is used with the only purpose – to start and manage professional portfolio projects. The system works best for artists, architects, musicians, bands, photographers, designers, models, make-up artists and other representatives of creative professions, who intend to showcase their masterpieces and offer them for sale to the target audience.
The website builder comes with integrated eCommerce and blogging engines and it also has a simple editor that ensures smooth and hassle-free web design process without the necessity to write a line of code.
Created in 2012, the website builder has become quite popular with the target audience. It is now in demand in over 190 countries of the world. According to recent statistics, the number of the system subscribers has exceeded 20,364 users, while the amount of live portfolios the platform powers has reached 15,494 projects.
Squarespace is a contemporary DIY website builder, which covers an extensive variety of users’ web design needs. The system works best for the development of small business projects, digital stores and portfolios. It does not require any programming proficiency to start professional full-featured problems.
Thus, it works equally well for first-timers and web design experts. This one one of the reasons that have made the platform one of the most popular representatives of the modern web design niche.
The foundation of the platform dates back to 2003 – that’s when the website builder was introduced to the market. Since that time, it has gained worldwide popularity and it’s now extensively used in all countries of the globe. Statistics tells that the overall number of the system users has overcome 4,092,388 subscribers, while that of live websites the platform currently powers constitutes 2,583,557 projects. These numbers are really impressive.
Portfoliobox and Squarespace can both be used for portfolio development as each system comes with a distinctive feature set and design customization options to let everyone complete the task. However, the only look at statistics makes it obvious that Squarespace is currently more popular and feature-rich as compared to its rival.
Portfoliobox vs Squarespace: Which One Is Easier to Use?
Portfoliobox is quite a simple website builder as it is not focused on professional website developers. Created as a handy tool for non-coders looking for an easy portfolio creation platform, the system comes with intuitive editor and understandable dashboard, where all the elements and tools are in their places. This means that no coding expertise is required to work with the system, while the web development process itself is hassle-free, convenient and smooth for everyone.
What you need to get started here is to sign up for the website builder to create a user account and access the dashboard to proceed to template choice and editing. The system is block-based, which implies the need to pick, arrange and customize content blocks with regard to your needs. All in all, it takes a couple of hours to start a quality portfolio even for a beginner, not to mention an expert.
If there is still anything you don’t understand about the platform, you can contact the customer support team of the service any time. There is an extensive Knowledge Base, an informative blog, a community forum, multiple video tutorials and articles here. Additionally, the system allows getting in touch with its team members via the Live Chat, online forms or ticketing system that helps clear out technical/billing issues.
Squarespace is not quite simple for beginners, but it is still possible to explore and master the platform in quite a short period of time. The website builder offers a fast and simple sign up procedure, after which you will be redirected to the dashboard. It is also quite understandable, while the interface of the system is clean and intuitive.
Squarespace comes with a handy WYSIWYG editor, which simplifies the process of website creation. Just pick a suitable template and use the integrated tools to customize it as required. Mind, however, that the website builder does not offer a preview mode, which makes it impossible to see the project until its publication. This is not quite convenient, especially for beginners and this also requires more attention during the process of website customization.
The website builder offers quality customer support assistance. There is a Help Center here that offers multiple manuals and video tutorials on how to properly work with the platform. What’s more, one can read informative blog posts, how-to guides and other resources to get answers to all the system-related questions. Finally, there is an opportunity to use the Live Chat and email support that are offered in the form of the ticketing system here.
Speaking about ease of use, Portfoliobox seems somewhat simpler than Squarespace at first glance, but this is because of its narrow specialization. As you explore Squarespace, you will realize that the website builder is quite easy to work with after you get used to its dashboard and editor.
Portfoliobox vs Squarespace: Design and Flexibility
As a specialized portfolio website builder, Portfoliobox delivers an extensive set of integrated tools and features that are a must for the development of a quality project. Squarespace, in its turn, has a more universal web design approach, making it possible to start all types of websites, including portfolios.
To define the system, which works best for your portfolio web design needs, it makes sense to compare the major functionality aspects of both systems. That’s what we are going to do right away.
Portfoliobox comes with an integrated eCommerce engine, which allows starting and managing digital stores to offer your works of art for sale. To launch a shop with the system, you should pick a theme, make up a name for it, add and customize products.
The website builder lets you add product descriptions, prices and photos. It is also possible to adjust advanced product settings to add extra info, namely label, product category, release date, shipping/payment/tax rates info and more.
Squarespace stands out from the crowd due to its powerful eCommerce platform. The website builder lets you start a professional portfolio with an integrated digital store to sell your masterpieces/services to the target audience (see Squarespace eCommerce examples).
All in all, the website builder makes it possible to sell up to 100 products with the system, assign several payment options, create and update product lists, add and manage orders, adjust pricing/tax and other parameters for quality web store management. Finally, web store owners have an opportunity to import products from global marketplaces like BigCartel and Shopify.
When it comes to the eCommerce aspect, Squarespace has more to offer. The website builder allows launching and managing small and medium web stores to sell digital and physical items/services. Portfoliobox also has an eCommerce engine yet its functionality somewhat lags behind the competitor.
Portfoliobox has a quality blogging engine that offers a set of pre-designed image-based layouts used for blog development. Users are allowed to choose any web page structure they like, starting from standard blog pages and up to half/full-screen headers. To run a blog with the website builder, you just have to name it and proceed to the process of design customization in the corresponding section.
This is where you will be able to adjust the major blog parameters, choose publishing tools and other features required for effective post management and publication. Additionally, you will be able to configure SEO parameters for each article published (metadata, URLs etc.) to boost the efficacy of your project promotion.
Squarespace blogging features are above the average. The system supports article scheduling options, URL customization, geo tagging and other blog-related settings. What’s more, the website builder makes it possible to use Google Analytics to track your blog statistics, adjust display parameters and show window options, enable commenting and multiple author support features.
Speaking about blogging, Squarespace unveils more powerful settings. The website builder grants access to multiple blog development/customization tools that contribute to more efficient project creation. Portfoliobox also has a blogging engine that lets you connect a blog to your website yet it still lacks flexibility to reach a worthy result.
Portfolio Management Options
Portfoliobox is initially a portfolio website builder, which explains its deep and versatile functionality. The system allows starting different types of portfolios with regard to your niche specialization. Although, there is no standard drag-and-drop functionality here, the system allows picking and adjusting content blocks to form layout structure. With Portfoliobox, you can create personalized collections of images and works to further send them to those people, who are interested in your creativity.
There is also an opportunity to edit welcoming email and use authorized access to the created collections. This helps build your own customer base to avail more advantages. Finally, the platform grants access to a separate toolset that lets you integrate social accounts and track portfolio/order/customer statistics by various parameters by means of using the merits provided by Google Analytics.
Squarespace has much to offer in terms of integrations. There are multiple widgets and add-ons to choose from here. They are meant to boost your project functionality. Thus, users may select and integrate Google Maps, contact forms, Google Analytics and other tools and metrics to track website statistics, social sharing buttons and other useful extensions/applications.
There is also an opportunity to launch email campaigns here to enhance your portfolio promotion. One of the undeniable highlights of the website builder is its Unfold App – a free advanced storytelling tool that lets you create and share impressive and visually-appealing stories/posts in social networks for more effective user engagement.
Thus, Squarespace obviously has more portfolio management features and tools as compared to Portfoliobox. This concerns marketing, web development, promotion, integration and analytic tracking options. No coding skills are needed to work with the system, which is also an advantage for beginners.
Portfoliobox is not similar to the majority of standard website builders, when it comes to design customization options. This is because the system does not offer an overall theme to get started. Instead, users can independently create websites using various web page templates and their combinations. This eventually allows starting stylish and even unique portfolio designs.
Thus, users may choose from blog themes, music bands, architecture and design services, text-based themes and other samples. Combination of these designs lets you demonstrate creative approach to the portfolio creation process.
Likewise, it is possible to combine various gallery styles, add slideshows, upload video/images etc. Whatever layout you will go for, it will be absolutely responsive and dynamic to match various screen sizes and dimensions. smartphone/tablet preview option is available here as well.
Users are offered to select the preferable Font styles that will further be applied to all the newly-created pages. There is also a possibility to pick content type (content forms, link section, testimonials, About Me page, cover etc.), when adding new pages here.
Each page comes with a set of must-have sections and separate control panels, where you can make the required modifications (change colors, fonts, text size, apply visual effects, add animations etc.). These features contribute to the development of truly impressive and visually-appealing portfolios.
Squarespace excels at design customization settings, which make it a worthy pick for portfolio creation. The website builder has a rich template gallery, encompassing over 105 free, high quality and mobile-responsive themes. To simplify the choice of the most suitable design, all the templates fall into a number of categories with regard to the niches they belong to.
Generally, Squarespace does not imply coding awareness or customize the selected template. However, if you possess programming skills and web design background, you can use the knowledge to edit website codes and create truly unique portfolio websites. The website builder comes with a Cover Page Builder, which allows choosing from 29 pre-designed themes for professional portfolio development.
Unlike Portfoliobox, Squarespace has an integrated drag-and-drop editor, which ensures convenient, smooth and intuitive website development process. Additionally, there is an integrated Style Editor here, which offers deep design customization options. Along with standard features like addition/adjustment of website elements, it is possible to modify backgrounds, fonts, colors, images and other items here.
When it tackles the design customization process, Squarespace is on the top of the comparison list. The website builder has a rich template gallery, abundance of tools and website editing options to let you create personalized portfolio design. Portfoliobox, in its turn, offers quite a limited design-related toolset, which is explained by the narrow system specialization.
Portfoliobox vs Squarespace: General Pricing Comparison
Portfoliobox has a free plan, which resembles a trial version, though, as its features are not enough to launch a full-featured portfolio website. Having tested the system and its functionality, you will have to upgrade to one of the paid subscriptions. There are three of them here, namely:
- Light (from $0.9/mo) – for projects with up to 10 pages, 10 products, 10 client gallery images and 100 photos. The plan does not include a free domain;
- Pro ($7.9/mo) – for projects with up to 50 pages, 10 client gallery images, 10 products and 500 photos. The plan comes with first month free application, activated advanced styles, 24/7 support, no ad banner and free domain;
- Pro Plus ($14.9/mo) – for projects with up to 1000 pages, 1000 products, 5000 client gallery images and 1000 photos. The plan offers 24/7 support, no ad banner and activated advanced styles.
Squarespace also provides a free opportunity to explore and test its feature set. Upon the end of the trial, you will be able to pick one of the paid subscriptions to deeply customize your portfolio website and go live with it. Have a look at the plans (there are 4 of them here) and their features now:
- Personal ($12/mo billed annually) – 2 contributors, free custom domain, SSL Security, SEO features, 24/7 customer support, integrated website metrics, unlimited bandwidth and storage;
- Basic Commerce ($26/mo billed annually) – customer accounts, powerful eCommerce analytics, Instagram synchronization, domain checkout feature etc.;
- Advanced Commerce ($40/mo billed annually) – abandoned cart recovery, advanced shipping and discounts, APIs for order and inventory, gift cards, limited availability labels etc.
Speaking about pricing policy, Squarespace is a bit more expensive as compared to Portfoliobox. At the same time, it offers more versatile subscriptions and unveils more features for professional portfolio creation. The prices the system charges for its subscriptions are moderate and absolutely comply with the range of features provided.
Portfoliobox vs Squarespace: Which One Is the Best for SEO?
Portfoliobox allows for the adjustment of SEO settings to make your project rank high in the search engines. Everyone can reach the corresponding SEO section in the dashboard of the website to configure standard SEO parameters there. Thus, you can add metadata here, change URLs for each published material, enable/disable the commenting feature, edit image settings and dates to optimize your portfolio for the search engines as required.
Squarespace is also good at SEO optimization. It makes it possible to fill out SEO boxes that come with baseline parameters. These include website/web page descriptions and major meta tags. The system automatically generates headings for products and posts published at the website that are further used as SEO titles for more effective project promotion.
Likewise, it is possible to adjust social media integration parameters. What’s important, Squarespace does not let you set up titles and SEO settings for your project in the manual mode yet there is an opportunity to hide it from indexing until it is completely ready for publication.
When it concerns the Search Engine Optimization aspect, Portfoliobox and Squarespace are both SEO-friendly systems that allow for DIY adjustment of the main SEO parameters. Squarespace, however, offers more extensive and versatile SEO settings. There is also an opportunity to hide your project from indexing by the search engines here. This eventually ensures more effective website promotion.
Which One Is the Best for Portfolio Website – Portfoliobox or Squarespace?
Portfoliobox is a portfolio website builder and this is the fact that speaks for itself. The entire functionality of the system is all geared towards the development, customization and effective promotion of these projects. Lacking drag-and-drop editing tools and features, the system offers a convenient block-based website building approach.
There are multiple portfolio layouts here that can be effectively combined to get truly unique and personalized portfolio project design. Likewise, it is possible to create personal collections of works and images to further send them to the target audience to build customer base. Portfoliobox also comes with built-in blogging and eCommerce engines as well as high end marketing, statistics tracking and portfolio management features that maximize the result.
Squarespace is also a great pick for portfolio website creation. Even though this is the all-in-one website builder that is used for building all types of projects, the system still comes with extensive and quite powerful functionality, which allows starting feature-laden portfolio projects. Squarespace offers integrated eCommerce and blogging options along with free, responsive and customizable templates (see Squarespace portfolio examples).
There is an extensive choice of marketing and design customization tools here, including an opportunity to embed online forms and Google maps, adjust design customization parameters, start quality email marketing campaigns, integrate analytic and statistics tracking tools here. The highlight of the platform are its advanced Unfold Storytelling App, Logo Maker and a powerful image Editor to mention a few.
When it comes to starting portfolio websites, both Portfoliobox and Squarespace work well for this purpose. The systems come with distinctive portfolio-related functionality, which lets you start quality projects. While Portfoliobox has narrow niche specialization, Squarespace unveils more extensive features and powerful settings to start a professional portfolio website.
Key Differences Between Portfoliobox and Squarespace
|Ease of Use:||Portfoliobox is a specialized portfolio website builder, which is convenient and easy to use. However, beginners might require more time to get used to the system because of its narrow niche focus.||Squarespace is a DIY drag-and-drop website builder. It allows starting all types of websites, including portfolios. The system does not require coding proficiency, which matters a lot for first-timers.|
|Functionality:||The website builder has everything you might require to showcase your services and works of art to the target audience. The platform allows building trendy portfolios featuring responsive design and distinctive functionality. It comes with blogging/eCommerce engines, social account integration, niche layouts etc.||The system is known for its integrated WYSIWYG editor, social integrations, Logo Maker, blogging and eCommerce engines. Users can also use a Cover Page Builder, statistics tracking and SEO tools as well as high end marketing, Google Maps embedding features. Unfold App and Acuity Scheduling platform also belong to the list of the system highlights.|
|Design:||The website builder doesn’t offer a single theme for customization yet there are several portfolio designs to choose from. They are free and responsive by default to be viewed on any mobile and desktop devices. Users can effectively combine these themes to get a completely unique portfolio template.||Squarespace has a rich collection of free, responsive and customizable templates. There is also access to powerful design customization tools, Logo Maker, Image and Style Editors here that let you create one-of-a-kind designs.|
|eCommerce:||Portfoliobox comes with a built-in eCommerce platform that lets you run a small-to-medium digital store to sell your products/services on the web.||Squarespace eCommerce engine makes it possible to launch and update small and medium online stores, assigning their special parameters.|
|Blogging:||The website builder also comes with a blogging engine. It allows connecting and managing a feature-rich blog to your portfolio, adjusting its major configurations.||With Squarespace, users can start and customize quality blogs. It’s up to you to update it when required as well as to customize its design with regard to your portfolio preferences.|
|Small Business:||Portfoliobox is initially meant for portfolio creation only and, thus, it can’t be applied for business website creation. The only exception is that a business is related to the niche specialization of the website builder.||Squarespace works great for small business website development. It makes it possible to integrate business widgets, media files, Acuity Scheduling Platform as well as effective statistics tracking and email marketing tools.|
|Pricing:||The website builder has a free plan and 3 paid subscriptions. Their cost starts from $0.9/mo.||The platform has a free 14-day trial and 4 premium subscriptions. Their cost starts from $12/mo.|
|SEO:||Portfoliobox makes it possible to set up baseline SEO configurations of your portfolio website. By filling out corresponding fields, you can provide metadata for the entire project or its separate pages.||Squarespace is a SEO-friendly website builder. Apart from the opportunity to fill out the main SEO parameters for better portfolio promotion, it also makes it possible to hide your website (or its pages) from indexing by the search engines.|
|Customer Support:||Knowledge Base, Live Chat, Ticket tracking system, blog, community forum||24/7 Live Chat, Email Support, FAQ section, Ticketing System, Community Forum|
Comparison Conclusion: Which One Is Better?
The idea to start a portfolio website is a good one, when you need to showcase your creative works or services to the target audience. There are many web design tools you can use to get started with your project, but not all of them are actually worth your time, effort and budget investment. Portfoliobox and Squarespace are two systems, which can help you complete the task in the best way possible yet they also differ in terms of functionality and design customization.
Portfoliobox – is a specialized website builder, the integrated functionality of which goes down to the completion of a single goal – portfolio development and customization. The system works best for artists, models, photographers and other creatives, offering a broad spectrum of portfolio-related features/tools.
Squarespace – is the all-in-one DIY website builder applied for a variety of web design services. Along with other types of web projects, the system makes it possible to run professional portfolios. The system comes with contemporary features used for the development of advanced projects.
When choosing between two platforms, mind that Portfoliobox comes with somewhat limited portfolio creation options. This is explained by the narrow niche specialization of the platform. Squarespace in its turn, is a more preferable solution for portfolio development as it delivers advanced functionality and flexibility to comply with special user requirements and expectations.