How To Switch From WordPress To Squarespace

Squarespace modernizes your web infrastructure and provides intuitive site management plus powerful native features for business owners versus WordPress’s outdated technical overhead.

  • Thinking of moving your website from WordPress to Squarespace but unsure where to start? 
  • What challenges might you face with migrating content and retaining search engine ranks? 
  • How long could such a transition take? 

We’ll tackle these key questions and more in the A-Z guide on how to switch from wordpress to squarespace.

Read on as we walk through preparation steps, setting up your new Squarespace site, exporting WordPress content, redirecting URLs, launching successfully, and optimizing the new site for search rankings. With proper planning, you can change platforms while keeping site disruptions to a minimum.

How To Switch From WordPress To Squarespace

How To Switch From WordPress To Squarespace

Here are simple steps to switch wordpress to squarespace:

Step 1: Preparing to Switch from WordPress to Squarespace

Before jumping straight into Squarespace, take time upfront to set your transition up for success. Moving platforms will temporarily impact traffic and search visibility if not handled carefully. Follow these preparation best practices first.

Map Existing WordPress Site Structure and URLs

Start by auditing your current WordPress site structure and cataloguing all page URLs in a spreadsheet. This serves two purposes:

  • Match up existing URLs to new Squarespace pages to retain search equity.
  • Identify and clean up outdated, underperforming content.
  • Comb through Google Analytics to see which blog posts, landing pages, and other WordPress content still drives significant traffic. Document these URLs to recreate as close as possible in Squarespace.

Pro Tip

You can export URLs automatically using plugins like Screaming Frog or the Google Search Console. Manually going through pages however gives more insight into what to keep vs. cut.

Step 2: Clean Up Your WordPress Site

Take the audit opportunity to update or remove irrelevant, dated WordPress content. Eliminating cruft improves site speed and the overall user experience while reducing migration workload.

Pro Tip

Set 301 redirects for deleted pages pointing users and search bots to relevant sections of the new Squarespace site. More on redirects in a bit.

Step 3: Plan Your New Squarespace Site Structure

With fresh eyes from the WordPress audit, map out how you want pages, posts, and galleries to flow in your new Squarespace home. An organized sitemap and content architecture from day one prevents future rework down the line.

Think through what content works best on your homepage, nested layouts for portfolio galleries, blog post hierarchies, and how to highlight your most valuable material upfront through the Squarespace UI.

Pro Tip

Use web design mockup tools like Mockflow or Balsamiq to visualize your ideal Squarespace layout before setting up pages.

Step 4: Migrating from WordPress to Squarespace

Once prep work is complete, it’s time to dig into your new Squarespace site foundations while safely transporting existing content from WordPress.

Set Up Your Squarespace Trial Account

Squarespace allows a 14-day free trial to build out your site. You can extend trials as needed if more time required.

Choosing Your Squarespace Template

All Squarespace templates share fundamental building blocks so start by picking the design that best fits your industry and site needs. You can customize further later.

Browse Photography, Retail, Restaurant, or other industry-specific templates. Or install a 3rd party template built on Squarespace for more customization flexibility.

Step 5: Migrating WordPress Content to Squarespace

Now the fun begins! Here are key options for transporting blog posts, pages, media, and other data from WordPress into your chosen Squarespace template:

Blog Posts: 

The Squarespace Importer plugin can automatically pull blog content from WordPress into your new site, retaining most text formatting and images. Some tweaking may be required but it’s a huge head start. Use it for blog archives at minimum.

Pages: 

Unfortunately no bulk page import exists between WordPress and Squarespace. For key information pages with significant traffic, manually copy over content fresh in Squarespace using similar titles and URLs so search rankings persist post-move.

Images: 

Download your WordPress media library to your local machine using plugins like All-in-One WP Migration first. Then upload galleries/images manually into relevant Squarespace page templates and reused blog content. This retains image names, alt text etc.

Ecommerce products: 

No automated migration path exists currently. Set aside time to manually recreate product listings if selling items online.

External links pointing to old content will naturally redirect to relevant new pages over time as the Squarespace site launches.

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Pro Tip

While tedious, manually moving flagship content from WordPress to Squarespace guarantees you optimize it for the new platform versus automated content transfers.

Step 6: Building Out Your New Squarespace Website

Your blank Squarespace canvas awaits! Use the default page templates within your chosen design theme as a foundation. Tailor the layout blocks and structure to align with the sitemap you blueprinted earlier:

  • Rearrange top navigation order or embed key landing pages for easy discovery
  • Populate homepage hero blocks with eye-catching graphics
  • Construct portfolio, blog, and events page galleries to showcase content
  • Publish rebuilt blog posts into categories and add email signup forms

You control page hierarchies, URLs, and layouts in Squarespace far easier than wrestling with WordPress. Keep site migration notes handy to retain important URLs and metadata during content recreation.

Pro Tip

Install Annex Core and other custom Squarespace add-ons to amplify options for dynamic page elements, background animations, hover effects and other unique flair.

Squarespace makes it easy to craft beautiful pages out the gate. Now to transport the remaining critical items from WordPress.

Step 7: Promoting Your New Squarespace Site

With your core pages and templates now built in Squarespace, seamlessly direct traffic from WordPress to this new hub using the following tactics:

301 Redirects from Old URLs

Install the 301 Redirect Manager extension in Squarespace. Then set up specific WordPress URLs to point visitors, search engines, and backlinks to your relevant new Squarespace URLs preserving search equity.

For example:

yourdomain.com/blog/2019/wordpress-post maps to yourdomain.com/new-blog  with a 301 redirect

Must see: How To Start Niche Website To Make Money In 2023?

Pro Tip

Set up redirect chains if you need to temporarily mask a Squarespace URL that won’t be live for a bit.

Step 8: Managing Email Newsletter Lists

Import your Email subscriber lists directly into Squarespace so existing readership stays intact across the move. Avoid mass email migration tools that could flag you as spam.

Link Building

Conduct blogger and webmaster outreach to high-authority sites linking to outdated WordPress URLs. Ask them kindly to update links to point at the new Squarespace destination pages.

Transfer Domain Registration

The final vital step – point your old domain name registration towards Squarespace nameservers. This connects www.yourdomain.com permanently with your migrated Squarespace site files.

Pro Tip

Temporarily place Squarespace site on a subdomain (e.g. sqs.yourdomain.com) first if needing to delay cutting over the primary domain.

Watch traffic smoothly shift over to Squarespace as DNS changes propagate globally over the next 48 hours once committing your primary domain.

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Step 9: Optimizing Your Squarespace Site Post-Launch

Congratulations – your website migration to Squarespace is complete!

Assuming you retained similar page titles, URLs, and redirects during the move, rankings should persist or only slow temporarily before recovering. Continue optimizing the new site for maximum search visibility.

Step 10 : Expand link building to boost domain authority

Create fresh, engaging content to capture new audience share. Prominently display best WordPress blog imports to keep accruing traffic. Implement structured data for job postings, events, etc to stand out in SERPs.

Install Generous custom Squarespace SEO modules for added site search optimization. Having moved host platforms, be patient as metrics require 3-6+ months re-stabilize post domain switch before assessing final impact.

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Pro Tip

Lean on Squarespace’s superior speed, uptime and built-in mobile responsiveness versus WordPress’s legacy platform constraints. This avoids the need for complex site performance plugins going forward.

Key Takeaways(How To Switch From WordPress To Squarespace)

How To Switch From WordPress To Squarespace

Here are the key recommended steps again at a high level:

  1. Thoroughly audit and document your existing WordPress site structure, content and URLs to replicate in Squarespace.
  2. Clean up outdated or irrelevant WordPress pages and posts to simplify what requires migration.
  3. Map out an ideal sitemap and page layouts for launching in Squarespace.
  4. Sign up for a Squarespace trial and choose a suitable template/design.
  5. Utilize the Squarespace Importer to automatically bring blog posts over from WordPress.
  6. Manually rebuild key site pages such as About, Contact, Service etc. in Squarespace by referring back to your audit notes. Retain similar URLs and metadata for search visibility.
  7. Download then upload WordPress media into Squarespace galleries and blog posts to retain filenames, alt text etc.
  8. Thoroughly test new Squarespace site on desktop and mobile before launch.
  9. Set up 301 redirects from legacy WordPress URLs to relevant new Squarespace pages.
  10. Transfer email lists into Squarespace Email Campaigns keeping subscribers intact.
  11. Update any links and references across the web pointing at old WordPress URLs to now reference relevant Squarespace URLs.
  12. Initiate domain registration transfer so your domain connects with Squarespace nameservers.
  13. Monitor traffic in Squarespace post-launch and focus ongoing optimization efforts into new content creation, link building and leveraging built-in SEO tools.

Have a look: How To Move WordPress Blog Post to Shopify?

FAQs About How To Switch From WordPress To Squarespace

You will need to manually migrate email accounts and point MX records to your new provider. Popular paid options include G Suite, Zoho and Rackspace to keep emails external from your core site hosting provider.

Allocate 2-4 weeks from start to finish when factoring proper website migration preparation, content rebuilding, thorough testing and email/domain transitions. Bear more time if your WordPress site runs ecommerce functionalities to recreate from scratch.

There will be a temporary dip lasting days or few weeks as DNS changes roll out before stabilizing. Retain search visibility through 301 redirects to relevant Squarespace page URLs, plus refreshing existing links referencing your domain across the web. rebuilt site traffic and rankings.

Conclusion 

Transitioning web hosting providers involves tackling UI changes, content migrations, hooking up domain registrations and more. Give yourself ample time and use this guide to reduce any disruptions when undertaking a WordPress to Squarespace migration. 

Execute each step carefully according to the guide on how to switch from wordpress to squarespace, and you can expect minimal disruption throughout your transition. 

Let us know if any other questions come up when undertaking your own WordPress to Squarespace website migration!

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