Squarespace Email Campaigns — Review

Squarespace Email Campaigns

Squarespace is one of the world’s leading website building platforms; with its easy-to-use interface, comprehensive feature set and its slick templates, it’s easy to see why so many people love it.

And in recent years, Squarespace has gradually been adding interesting new functionality to the platform, aiming to transform it beyond being a tool for creating simple brochure websites to one which allows users to sell products and offer subscriptions.

Now, with the introduction of its latest feature, Email Campaigns, it’s clear that Squarespace is heading in the direction of being an all-in-one marketing and e-commerce platform: one that allows you to manage your content, store and email communications all in one place.

A laudable aim.

But can Squarespace Email Campaigns really replace established emarketing products like Aweber, Getresponse, Mailchimp or Campaign Monitor?

In this short review, I’m going to try to answer this question with a look at the pros and cons of Squarespace’s new email marketing tool.

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Pros and cons of Squarespace Email Campaigns

Pros

Let’s start with the reasons why you might want to use Email Campaigns:

  • That Squarespace style: the e-newsletter templates are all very ‘Squarespacey’ — attractive in nature and providing brand consistency between your site template and your newsletters.

  • You can use the product to manage your e-communications and your website in one place, which is very convenient.

  • You can import content from your Squarespace site straight into your email templates.

  • It is extremely easy to use (as you might expect from Squarespace). I’d say it’s possibly one of the best email building interfaces I’ve used (if not the most fully-specced).

  • It integrates neatly with Squarespace’s newsletter sign-up forms, making data capture a breeze (there’s no messing about with embedding HTML forms onto your Squarespace site, or setting up zaps to get Squarespace talking to a third-party email marketing tool). Similarly, it’s tightly integrated with Squarespace e-commerce features, making it easy send post-sales emails to your customers.

  • You can host an infinite number of subscribers on it! This makes it a very reasonably-priced option for business owners with large lists. Hosting a list with 100k subscribers on it can cost a lot of money on other platforms — you’re talking hundreds, if not thousands of dollars a month to do this on some competing solutions. But with Squarespace Email Campaigns, the most you’ll pay for this is $68 per month.

While you’re here…

If you’re a Squarespace user, you might be interested in checking out our new Squarespace plugins section. This contains a libarary of some of the most useful Squarespace add-ons on the web:

View Squarespace plugins here.

Cons

And here are the reasons you might want to avoid it:

  • The number of templates available is a bit limited — at time of writing, there are only around 50 (Mailchimp by contrast offers around 100; Getresponse 500 and Aweber 700). That said, the templates that are on offer are very contemporary in design, and easy on the eye.

  • The automation features are limited by comparison to a dedicated email marketing app. Essentially, you can use Squarespace Email Campaigns to send simple automated follow-up emails based on somebody subscribing to a list or buying a product — professional email marketing solutions like Mailchimp or Getresponse, by contrast, allow you to make use of a much larger (and sophisticated) range of triggers.

  • The send limits may not work for some users — particularly those with larger lists. The maximum number emails you can send a month with Squarespace is 250,000 — and if you hit that limit, you’re blocked from sending any more emails until the start of your next billing period. So, if you need to send 3 emails per month to a 100k list, you won’t be able to do this with Squarespace.

  • The segmentation options are extremely limited — you can create different lists which you can associate with different activity, but the only subscriber details you can capture are name and email address, meaning that you can’t segment your data in a particularly meaningful way.

  • By using it, you’re putting all your eggs in one basket — your website and email list will be in one account. This could be a serious issue if you ever lose access to it (particularly if you also have your domain registered with Squarespace — if anything happens to your account, you could be without all the key assets of your business). If you do use Email Campaigns, make sure you back up your list periodically.

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So, should you use Squarespace Email Campaigns?

So what to make of all this?

Overall, there is a LOT to like about Email Campaigns, not least the price — if you have a very large list, you’ll be able to host it much more cheaply with Squarespace Email Campaigns than most other email marketing solutions.

Creating emails with Squarespace email campaigns — the templates are high quality and the interface is easy to use.
Creating emails with Squarespace email campaigns — the templates are high quality and the interface is easy to use.

Additionally, the templates are excellent and the integration with the Squarespace platform in general is top notch.

For users who need to send an occasional email to their mailing list (particularly if it’s a large one), Squarespace Email Campaigns is a great option.

However, if you’re somebody who needs to segment their mailing list in various ways, or requires more advanced email marketing automation, you’d still be best off with a dedicated email marketing app.

You can find out more about Squarespace Email Campaigns on the Squarespace website.


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Comments (4)

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Hi there! I’m very new to Squarespace and am currently working with a client to set up an e-commerce site. We decided to go with Squarespace over a pure e-commerce site because we also want to host content via a blog regularly. Our instinct was to use MailChimp for monthly newsletters and eblast but a question that arose was how to segment our audience. Some are customers and some will be purely here for the content. I’m considering the squarespace email campaigns because I imagine it’d be easier to move users from one list to another or avoid any legal issues with adding a customer to our newsletter mailing list. There’s also a matter of the messaging customers get after making a purchase. Wouldn’t that come from our squarespace site? In the end it sounds like too many list to manage. In this scenario, would you still recommend avoiding Squarespace email campaigns? (Please note, a bit new ecommerce as well, background is mainly in digital and content marketing).

Hi Orlando, the main advantage of Squarespace Email Campaigns is that it’s very tightly organised and easy to manage. It certainly does tie in nicely with Squarespace’s e-commerce and allows you to insert blog posts and other content directly into your e-newsletters.

As far as legal issues go though, I can’t see any major advantage to Squarespace Email Campaigns. You need to gain adequate permissions regardless of what platform you’re using for email marketing.

And dedicated email marketing solutions will ultimately give you more control over how you communicate with your audience – they are much more fully-featured, especially in the automation department.

For me, the showstopper in Squarespace Email Campaigns is that it forces you to use a double opt-in approach to subscriptions, meaning that people have to sign up to your list on your site, and then click a link in a confirmation email to finalise their subscription. This can reduce sign-up rates considerably and is the main reason why we don’t use it.

Hey… Just wanted to say that this post could do with updating in light of the recent (horrific) changes with Mailchimp that happened round about the time you wrote this post recommending people should still use if over Squarespace.

They’ve basically killed what has been for decades a great email marketing system (am sure you’ve seen the posts all over the internet about how people with smaller businesses are best moving away from Mailchimp). I’d say that due to these changes it makes Squarespace a much more viable offering for small/medium sized businesses. If you’re at the size for their largest package I’d suggest that you’d be needing a much larger and specialised email marketing system and will probably be paying somebody else to do the work for you 🙂

Thanks Ra, I totally agree with you that Mailchimp is not remotely as good as it used to be since they changed the pricing structure. However, it does still offer a reasonably generous (and functional) free plan, and, unlike Squarespace Email Campaigns, doesn’t force users to adopt a double opt-in approach (somthing that KILLS sign up and conversion rates). So, for now I’d recommend it over the Squarespace option.

That said, we prefer other email marketing solutions to Mailchimp (Getresponse is probably our favourite product on this front).

Cheers! Chris