Aug 4, 2009  •  In Blogging, Web

Squarespace: SEO Gods?

I don’t know how they do it, but Squarespace never ceases to amaze me when it comes to SEO.

Before switching over in September ’08, I hosted my blog on WordPress which seemed to be the de facto standard for serious bloggers. After befriending some internet marketers, I read up on numerous articles, blogs, and e-books on how to best optimize my blog for search engines – essentially, how to “trick” Google into placing my posts at the top of targeted search queries.

I re-worded my titles and posts. I tried my best to utilize meta tags and keywords to my best advantage. I installed numerous SEO plugins.

It wasn’t all for naught. I saw some improvement in traffic; I’ll grant you that.

However, just a short while after switching to Squarespace, my traffic improved drastically…and kept growing. I must acredit some of this growth to Facebook, Twitter, and internet friends (thanks for the link love!). However, I couldn’t ignore the fact that the largest percentage of my traffic increase stemmed from search engine queries.

Just yesterday, I wrote a post about the possiblity of a The Office Monopoly game. Today, less than 24 hours after writing the post, my little blog comes up as the third hit on Google when you search “the office monopoly” – out of 3,270,000 hits.

(click to enlarge)

Here’s another example from a post I wrote last year, titled Top Ten Pantone® Inspired Products. When you search for “pantone products,” this page comes up as the fourth hit on Google:

(click to enlarge)

Now, with the massive weight that the Pantone name has on the world of designers, I can’t help but feel a bit giddy about this.

I know that the first rule of thumb when it comes to SEO is to write good content. And perhaps the quality of my content has improved since I made the switch. However, looking at the timing of my traffic records, I cannot help but credit at least some of my search engine rankings to the clean XHTML that is generated by Squarespace.

For more on Squarespace and SEO, read:

What are Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services?

Are spiders ignoring my site because of < insert mythical SEO practice >?

have been hearing bad things about squarespace and SEO work!

Kudos to Squarespace on all your hard work!

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12 Responses to “Squarespace: SEO Gods?”

  1. Hubby says:

    wanna hook your hubby up for an account? 😀

  2. Geek in Heels says:

    Maybe one of the Squarespace guys will read this and hook up my hubby since I’m such a fervent supporter.

  3. Dane says:

    Of course we read lovely post like this. How is your husband not already on Squarespace?

  4. Geek in Heels says:

    Thanks Dane! I’ve been trying to get my husband to create an account since he started “shopping around” for a blog platform last week but at the moment he’s unemployed (stupid economy!) so every penny counts. He just created an account on WordPress…the horror!

  5. Hi, I’m intrigued with Squarespace and SEO and appreciate your post. However, in your screen shots, you are also logged into your own google account. I don’t know how/why it works, but apparently if you are logged in, google attempts to customize search results for you. If you log out of your google account and repeat the query, it would be intersting to see if the ranking is the same (and make your screenshots even better). Of course, I found you b/c you were in the top 10 serach results for “Squarespace SEO” so good job!

  6. Geek in Heels says:

    That’s an interesting thought, Suzanne! As you can see I just posted an update which confirms that logging out of my Google account hasn’t made much of a difference to the Google rankings.

  7. DrDeMarco says:

    Maybe I’m doing something wrong, but I feel like I’m trying to do SEO all the time with my Squarespace site, and I’ve seen very little response. Though again, it could be me. (Damn it, Jim, I’m a shrink, not a web designer!)

  8. Jason Berry says:

    I'm an old school developer/designer that just got on with a search marketing firm after flying solo for the last 10 years. Although I understand the dynamic of your post, in a saturated market there's no way you could rank for a term based solely off of squarespace's publishing engine and developing a single post for it. We're using squarespace and so far I'm happy with the results (lack of customization aside), but I have yet to see an in-depth SEO analysis of the software. Guess I better get to creatin'.

  9. Fish'n Life says:

    I recently jumped to squarespace from WordPress and I’m so happy with the jump. I started off on Blogger and did pretty well before deciding to jump ship to something that could more easily grow with my niche and be more reliable. I thought WordPress was going to do it for me but after a frustrating time with it, I jumped to Squarespace and so far, I’m very happy with it. I’m still waiting to see if it can get me to where I was with traffic as I had in Blogger, but I have high hopes it will get me there.

  10. Carlsbadd says:

    No matter if you use Blogger, wordpress or squarespace your SEO results will be mixed and not be as good as a structured website built on server. I have lots of sites all with different IP addresses and love it when I see a wordpress blog or square space platform in a niche. It’s so easy to out rank them its not fair.

    I am not a expert by any means but any website built on a “platform” like WP, Square One, WIx, weebly or the the thousands of others will never compete against someone who has some basic skills and understanding of SEO. Proper SILO structure and a decent amount of backlinks.

    Square one is a great platform if you want to develop beautiful looking sites but I will go for the traffic over beauty every time.

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