Four Little Ways to Customize Your Squarespace Site

Squarespace is a template driven platform, which means that each website starts out with one of dozens of templates. They’re all nice looking, but the goal is to take that template and use it as a jumping off point to create something that’s customized and optimized for your brand and your goals.

Incidentally, this is also why people hire designers to build their site even though Squarespace started out as a DIY platform; because building a site that’s streamlined and works for your business is much more than just adding your logo and changing fonts.

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Anywho, I’ve spent a massive amount of time thinking about all of this lately as I finish up The Squarespace Course, which is all about walking you through DIYing your site like a professional. So I thought this would be a great time to share some of these wee little things you can do to make your site your own. Think of them like nice throw pillows or a fuzzy blanket draped across the back of the couch; the room will still work without them, but they pull everything together just right. 

Add your own favicon

You already know you need to add your logo to the site, but what about the favicon? Not even sure what that is? I got you.

The favicon is the little tiny icon that shows up in your browser tab, in the address bar, and sometimes when you bookmark or favorite a site. It’s usually the graphic element from your logo, or it could be the first letter(s) of your business name, or just an icon that represents your brand. You can add a new one by going to Design -> Logo & Title and scrolling down to Browser Icon(Favicon). You can’t just use any old JPG for this, but luckily there are plenty of websites that will create favicons from your image for free. Try this one to start: http://www.favicongenerator.com/.

Sprinkle in some photography

A lot of Squarespace templates have a focus on photography, using large header images or even full page photos. It’s part of what makes the platform so popular with photographers and makers.

If you aren’t a photographer there are plenty of sources for great stock photos out there, even free ones. Just make sure you read the license agreement before you use anything on your website. If you can add your own photos that's even better, but make sure they look really, really good. Squarespace tends to have a clean, airy design naturally, so not-so-great photography will stick out like a sore thumb.

Related >> Where to find free stock photos that don’t suck

Change the footer content

Make sure you change the default “Powered by Squarespace” text at the very bottom of your site by editing your footer content. Use this area to add your own copyright statement, link your legal or terms of service pages, and share your social media links one more time.

Don't forget the “hidden” pages

There are a few pages your site visitors might see that may not have crossed your mind. Do you know what your checkout page looks like if you have an ecommerce shop? You can customize that by clicking Design from the main menu and then Checkout Page Style Editor.

What if someone tries to visit a page on your site that isn’t there? They’re going to see a generic 404 Page Not Found page, which is super uninspiring. Turn the tables and make the error work to your advantage by adding a newsletter signup, some snark, or a list of your most popular blog posts to your 404 page instead. First create the page under the Not Linked section, then go to Settings -> Advanced -> 404 Error/Page Not Found and choose your page from the dropdown list.

What do you struggle with in building your website? Is there something you want to do but just can't figure out how? Let me know below!