Squarespace Courses vs Podia: Side-by-Side Comparison

Squarespace Courses vs. Podia

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Squarespace Courses vs Podia: Full Side-by-Side Comparison

Squarespace Courses vs. Podia

Published by Today Testing Team

Last Updated on January 20, 2024

The eLearning market was valued at $399.3 billion in 2022 and is expected to grow at an annual rate of 14% over the next decade. In other words, it’s a great time to create online courses and share your expertise with the world while earning a steady income for yourself. However, a key aspect that can make or break your courses is the platform on which you choose to host your course.

In this guide, I’m going to compare two popular platforms – Squarespace Courses and Podia. As an experienced creator who’s tried just about every platform out there, I’m going to compare these two online course platforms on a wide range of aspects related to course creation and marketing, so you can decide which of the two is a better fit for you.

Table of Contents

Squarespace vs Podia - A Summary

Podia is a user-friendly online platform that’s I’ve often described as a Swiss Army knife for creative entrepreneurs and educators. It’s where you can bring your big ideas to life, whether that’s through crafting engaging online courses, setting up digital downloads, or even running your own membership site. Think of it as your personal digital storefront, where you can connect with your audience, sell your knowledge, and grow your community, all in one place. It’s designed to be super intuitive, so you don’t need to be a tech wizard to make your mark in the online world. You can see our Podia review for more info.

Squarespace Courses is a newer offering from the Squarespace family, designed specifically for those looking to dive into the world of online education. It’s a sleek, intuitive platform that lets you create, launch, and sell your online courses with ease. With Squarespace’s signature stylish templates and user-friendly interface, you can craft a learning experience that’s as visually appealing as it is educational. 

With this background, let’s delve deep into how the two platforms compete with each other.

Course Builder

Creating courses should be easy on the platform you choose. Also, your platform must support a wide range of formats like videos, audio,  text, and more. Let’s see how the two platforms score on this aspect.

Squarespace Courses

I see Squarespace Courses as a platform that strikes a unique balance between aesthetic appeal and functionality. It’s a natural extension of Squarespace’s core philosophy – simplicity and elegance in design. 

For course creators who prioritize a visually stunning and cohesive brand experience, Squarespace Courses seamlessly integrates with the broader Squarespace ecosystem, offering a level of design coherence that few other platforms can match. Its drag-and-drop builder, while basic in terms of interactive learning features, is intuitively designed, making it accessible even to those new to digital course creation. The platform excels in delivering a polished, professional look for course content, which is a significant draw for creators who value brand aesthetics highly.

However, when it comes to advanced functionalities like quizzes, interactive elements, and detailed analytics, Squarespace Courses doesn’t quite measure up to some of the other platforms out there. There are other platforms that offer a more robust set of tools for engaging students and tracking their progress, which are crucial for a more interactive and immersive learning experience. 

While Squarespace Courses is a strong contender for creators focused on delivering content-driven courses with a premium look and feel, those seeking comprehensive educational tools and deeper student engagement might find it lacking. 

In other words, Squarespace Courses is ideal for creators who are already comfortable with the Squarespace environment and are looking to extend their brand into the realm of online courses without needing highly interactive course features.


Podia is a solid platform for its versatility and user-centric approach. It shines as a course builder for its straightforward, no-frills interface that caters to creators of all skill levels.

It’s particularly appealing to those who are venturing into the digital product space for the first time, as well as seasoned creators looking for a hassle-free way to launch and manage their courses. The platform’s strength lies in its ability to simplify complex processes, making it easy to upload content, organize courses, and interact with students.

Podia supports a range of multimedia formats, which is a boon for creators looking to offer diverse and engaging content.

Where Podia really sets itself apart is in its all-in-one approach. It’s truly a comprehensive solution that includes email marketing, membership sites, and digital downloads, all integrated into a single dashboard. This integration eliminates the need for multiple tools, streamlining the course management process.

Podia remains a top choice for creators who value ease of use, community building, and a platform that grows with their business, offering a balance between functionality and simplicity.

Website Building

Website design is a key aspect because your landing pages are the first point of interaction with your customers. You want to have beautiful landing pages to create a great first impression and the platform you choose must enable you to create web pages the way you want with little effort. Read on to know which of the two platforms can give you such eye-catching and attractive web pages.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace started as a website designing platform and eventually added memberships and courses to its offering.  Due to this transition, Squarespace comes with some stunning templates that you can customize to reflect your brand logo and theme. Its drag-and-drop builder makes it easy to customize any template, and your web pages are ready for the world within just a few minutes. Also, Squarespace offers 100+ templates across all industries, so you’re sure to find something you love.

When it comes to web design, particularly in crafting landing pages, Squarespace is one of the best platforms out there. The platform’s strength lies in its intuitive design interface, which allows even those with minimal technical expertise to create professional-looking pages.

The level of customization, combined with the platform’s renowned drag-and-drop builder, means that creating a landing page that resonates with your audience and embodies your brand can be achieved with minimal effort.


Podia’s website builder is good for creators who don’t want to get bogged down in technical complexities. It’s designed with the non-tech-savvy user in mind, making it incredibly straightforward to set up a functional, aesthetically pleasing website that serves as a digital storefront for your courses, memberships, and digital products. The platform’s emphasis is on simplicity and efficiency, allowing you to focus more on content creation and less on the intricacies of web design.

While it may not offer the extensive range of design templates and features found in platforms like Squarespace, it provides enough customization options to create a clean, professional-looking site. You can easily add your branding elements, such as logos and color schemes, to personalize your site. The platform also includes essential features like email sign-up forms and product listings, seamlessly integrating your marketing and sales efforts.

All in all, Podia is easy to use and can help you customize and build landing and checkout pages in under 10 minutes. However, its templates are a bit limited and the level of customization is basic. You can take the Podia templates and change buttons, add sections, and alter other design elements, but beyond that, customization is limited.

Product Fit

While choosing a platform, consider not just your current needs, but also your future plans. Though it’s not possible to account for all the changes that can happen over time, make sure to plan for the next five years, and pick a platform that will scale and adapt to your growth.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace is a highly versatile and flexible platform, as you can sell anything you want through this platform. Along with digital products like webinars, ebooks, and courses, you can also create a digital store for your physical products. For example, let’s say you have an idea to take some pearls of learning from your courses and convert them into bookmarks, coffee mugs, etc. You can implement such out-of-the-box ideas on Squarespace.


Like I said earlier, Podia is like a Swiss Army knife for selling digital products. It’s incredibly versatile, allowing you to sell a wide range of digital offerings, from online courses and downloadable resources to membership subscriptions.

What I particularly love about Podia is how it simplifies the entire process. Whether you’re a seasoned creator or just starting out, Podia makes it easy to get your products out there and start generating revenue.

The platform shines in its ability to handle various digital product formats. For instance, setting up an online course is a breeze. You can upload videos, PDFs, and other resources, and organize them into modules and lessons. The membership feature is equally robust, enabling you to create exclusive content areas for your subscribers. And if you have eBooks, templates, or other downloadable content, Podia’s got you covered there too.


Building a community is like creating your tribe of followers who will promote your offerings and answer questions on your behalf. A vibrant community can bring in more customers as it reflects a strong reputation and brand image.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace offers a feature called Member Areas, where you can curate and offer content to only those users who pay a subscription for them. You can use this feature to build an online community and provide a personalized experience for your followers.


Podia, on the other hand, offers more flexibility with online communities. You can decide how you want to build and run a community. For example, you can set up topics for your members to discuss, provide a private news feed, or even provide access to exclusive products and services. All your members can interact with each other too.

It’s a great platform for creators looking to launch and nurture an online community. You don’t need to be a tech guru to get your community up and running because Podia makes it straightforward and hassle-free.

The platform allows you to create a membership site, which acts as the heart of your community. Here, you can offer exclusive content, courses, or resources that are only available to members.

The beauty of Podia’s community feature is its integration with the rest of your digital products. Whether you’re offering courses, downloads, or webinars, everything can be tied back to your community, creating a cohesive and immersive experience for your members.

Engagement is key in any online community, and Podia provides the tools to keep the conversation going. You can set up discussion boards, host Q&A sessions, and even send out newsletters directly through the platform. This level of interaction not only fosters a sense of belonging among your members but also provides you with valuable feedback to tailor your content to their interests.


Marketing is as important as course creation because it’s the way to showcase your efforts to the world. Ideally, the platform you choose must provide extensive marketing tools, so you can leverage the ones that are most aligned with your business.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace offers a plethora of tools to ease your marketing efforts. Its SEO tools ensure that your landing pages are optimized for search engines, so your pages are displayed in the search engine for relevant keywords. Similarly, these SEO tools also make your paid advertising more effective and relevant.


Podia’s marketing tools are limited to just embeds and affiliate marketing that rely on other users and websites to promote your products on your behalf. While this is a proven marketing approach, there are no built-in tools that can boost the SEO rankings of your web pages.

Blogging and Email Marketing

Email marketing and blogging are proven channels to increase your reach and bring more customers to your platform. Both these tools help you to engage with your audience, remind them of your presence, and even offer exclusive discounts and coupons through them. Given the importance of both these marketing avenues, let’s see how the two platforms fare on this front.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace comes with native blogging and email marketing tools that can take your products to a global audience. Its blogging tool in particular is highly intuitive and can be a part of your website. Similarly, the email marketing tool is also built-in and you can leverage the stunning email templates to boost the open and click rates of your emails.


Podia doesn’t have a native blogging tool, so you’ll have to integrate with other tools to offer this functionality. But, it has a native email marketing that’s simple to set up and use. It is easy to create campaigns, send broadcast emails to your subscribers, and track their engagement rates.

Analytics and Reports

Analytics help you understand the behavior of your customers and accordingly, the actions you must take to bring in more customers and boost your revenue. The wider the analytics are, the better for you. If you’re an organization, you also want a platform that generates shareable reports, so you can keep your stakeholders abreast of your performance.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace provides extensive analytics to understand the source of your traffic and what your customers do on your website. Specifically, you can get information on the number of visits, bounce rate, number of unique visitors, page views, top sources, devices, geography, and more. Squarespace also displays trends to help you understand how your courses have fared over a given period. Also, it provides user engagement statistics like views, exit rate, time on each page, and more.


Squarespace provides extensive analytics to understand the source of your traffic and what your customers do on your website. Specifically, you can get information on the number of visits, bounce rate, number of unique visitors, page views, top sources, devices, geography, and more. Squarespace also displays trends to help you understand how your courses have fared over a given period. Also, it provides user engagement statistics like views, exit rate, time on each page, and more.


Along with features, pricing is an important consideration. Ideally, you’d want a tool that will provide excellent value for the monthly or yearly subscription you pay. Here’s the pricing structure of both platforms.

Squarespace Courses

Squarespace Courses pricing includes four plans:

  • Personal: $16 per month. Limited access to only templates. No additional features.
  • Business: $23 per month + 3% transaction fee.
  • Commerce Basic: $27 per month.
  • Commerce Advanced: $49 per month.

The two higher plans have no transaction fees and come with many tools to help sell your courses. A key difference between the Basic and Advanced plans is that the latter supports advanced discounting and selling subscriptions.

Besides this, you’ll have to pay extra if you want to sell any digital or physical product. There are three digital add-on plans:

  • Starter: $9 per month + 7% transaction fee.
  • Core: $34 per month + 3% transaction fee.
  • Professional: $119 per month. No transaction fee.


Podia pricing includes three plans:

  • Free: 8% transaction fee. Supports only one course.
  • Mover: $33 per month.
  • Shaker: $75 per month.

There are no transaction fees in the paid plans and no limits on the number of courses or downloads.


When weighing Squarespace Courses against Podia, it’s clear that each platform caters to distinct needs and preferences in the digital content creation space.

Squarespace Courses excels in offering a visually stunning, design-centric approach to course creation, ideal for those who prioritize aesthetics and have a need for a powerful website builder integrated with their course platform. It’s perfect for creators who are already comfortable with Squarespace’s ecosystem and are looking to extend their brand into online courses with a focus on design and simplicity.

On the other hand, Podia is a more versatile and user-friendly platform, especially suited for creators who seek an all-in-one solution for selling a variety of digital products, including courses, memberships, and downloads. Its strength lies in its ease of use, community-building features, and integrated marketing tools, making it a go-to for creators who want to focus more on content and community engagement rather than on the technical aspects of website and course design.

Both platforms offer unique strengths, and the best fit depends on your specific goals, audience, and the type of digital presence you wish to establish.

Click here to try Squarespace Courses for free.

Click here to try Podia for free.

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