Over the course of writing this blog, I’ve been lucky enough to meet some truly talented women. Melanie Craft is certainly one of them! She’s mentioned that this little space inspired her to develop her own blog, and every time I think about that I feel truly blessed to have had a part in someone else’s story. I’m thrilled to bring her story full circle today and have Melanie write to you guys about how Squarespace and Canva can help you DIY your brand!
The end of the year is fast approaching, which means that a lot of you are going to be looking to hire a designer to design your brand or website for you so that you can get the look and feel you’ve always dreamed about.
But with Christmas coming up, all of your money is being spent on gifts and traveling. That also means that hiring a brand and web designer isn’t exactly in the budget. They do really great work, but for a hefty price! Your average brand and web designer will cost you anywhere between $500-$3000. I’ve even seen it go as high as $6500 – That’s an insane price! Lucky for you, my friend, you have another option!
What if I told you that your dream website wasn’t too far out of your reach and didn’t require a designer to do the work for you?
What if that designer was YOU, and the only tools you needed was little to no CSS knowledge, Canva, and Squarespace?
That sounds crazy doesn’t it?
Let me explain that a little more!
WHY CHOOSE SQUARESPACE?
Squarespace has been a quick growing platform since it first started in 2004 and is now the host of over millions of websites – some of the most popular ones being Target, HBO, V Magazine and more.
Bloggers and business owners have been making the switch from other platforms for so many reasons (here’s why I decided to make the switch), but the most popular being the following:
1 | It’s User-Friendly
Creating your website with Squarespace is really simple for everyone – especially those who know absolutely nothing about CSS. It has the drag and drop feature, which basically allows you to add or rearrange any of your content anywhere you want.
Squarespace really allows you to make any website your own by using the Style Editor. Here you’re able to customize your fonts, colors and the layout of your website so that you can create any look you would like. There are so many more awesome features that don’t require any kind of tech knowledge for you to choose from.
2 | It’s Flexible
What’s great about Squarespace is that their web developers create tools specifically designed for their platform. All of these tools are always closely monitored and tested on their own website to ensure that it works properly. Even though Squarespace creates their own tools, you’re still able to use those that are designed for other platforms.
3 | There’s Really Awesome User Support
What I love about Squarespace is that they provide really great 24/7 support to answer any questions you have – whether it be inquiring about a product or service, needing help transferring your website, etc. You can reach them through email, where they respond within the hour, as well as they have a live chat from Monday to Friday between 3am and 8pm EST. On top of the 24/7 support, they offer really awesome user guides that can walk you through anything you need help with.
4 | Truly Great Maintenance
With every platform comes those awful glitches, which means that they need people to maintain and fix those issues. When there are issues with anything on their website they always inform you about them.
What’s also great about Squarespace is that if there are any updates to be made, they will do it for you – Yes, that means there are no update buttons, and you won’t need to update any other tools that Squarespace has designed.
5 | Really Low Prices
Squarespace recently changed their plans, and now only offers two different website plans – personal and business, both which you can pay monthly or yearly and stop your service at any time.
The personal plan is geared towards bloggers. You pay $12/month or $96/year. In this plan, you get 20 pages, galleries, and blogs with unlimited bandwidth and storage, 2 contributors. You also have access to a mobile friendly website, powerful metrics (also known as analytics). When you purchase annually, you get a free custom domain, you receive 24/7 customer support, fully integrated e-commerce, you can sell 1 product and accept donations, and has a 3% sales transaction fee.
The business plan is geared towards small business. You pay $26/month or $216/year. In this plan, you get unlimited pages, galleries, and blogs with unlimited storage, bandwidth, and contributors. You also get a mobile friendly website, powerful metrics and a free custom domain (only when you purchase annually).
You also have access to the 24/7 customer support, professional email from Google and $100 Google AdWords credit. When you purchase annually, you get fully integrated e-commerce, you’re able to sell up to 25 products, has a lower transaction fee (2%) and is a developer platform.
Both plans include a fully managed cloud hosting that ensures your website remains available at all times.
WHAT’S SO GREAT ABOUT CANVA?
Canva is a free graphic design and photo editing tool that is aimed for beginners or professionals to use. It’s super, easy drag and drop features allows you to create any design you wish.
You can choose different types of templates, either already designed or you can custom design your own. I love this design tool! It’s basically how I created all graphics on my website, especially because I knew very little about how to do things in fancy software (photoshop/illustrator) when I first launched AND I didn’t have the funds to purchase them to begin with.
SO WHAT’S THE CATCH?
I know the main reasons for you to consider DIY branding with Squarespace and Canva is because you have low funds, little to no CSS knowledge and you have no idea where to start with your branding and/or website design.
That’s a huge part of why I’m creating Revive Your Brand, a self-paced online course designed to help guide you through figuring out who you are, what you do and creating an epic brand and website that shows it off. You can sign up here to get more details on when it launches!
What’s great about all of this, is that you don’t have to be spectacular at design, know anything about web designing or even have a lot of money to hire a designer. You can really have fun designing your own website the way YOU want.