The domain is the address that people have to enter in order to visit your Squarespace website. It's an important part of your branding and customers will make a judgment about a brand based on your domain. If you’re looking to start a Squarespace website now, but don’t want to be tied to the platform, to move later on, then you might be concerned that buying your domain from them means that they keep control of your domain.
However, this is not the case as we describe here.
The Difference Between Domain and Website
The website is the set of files and folders that create the look, content and other features of a website that customers can look at. The domain is the address that your users will enter to access the website. The two combined create your website that people will interact with.
Any set of website files can be attached to a domain name, in theory, as long as the settings within the website files associate the files with that domain name and the files are on the right server.
Therefore, a domain is not a website and you can change the website design, platform and anything else on a domain at any time.
Buying a Domain From Squarespace
There are several registrars that you can buy a domain name from. Squarespace is one of the registrars that allow you to buy a domain name. These are bought on a license for a certain length of time. This could be for one, two or another few years. These domains are, therefore, not owned by you, but rather leased to you.
Why you buy a domain from Squarespace, you are still technically the owner of the domain. You’re in control of it. Squarespace is only the middleman that enables you to buy the use of the domain and will register it for you.
Moving from Squarespace
The biggest problem with Squarespace is that people are concerned that if they move from Squarespace to another platform that they will not have access to their domain any more. This is not true. You will still have control of the domain and can have the domain point to other website files on a folder.
You will still need to use Squarespace for renewing your domain regularly. But this can be done automatically for you on an auto-renew. There also might be an option to transfer your website’s domain to a new registrar.
Final Word: Does Squarespace Own My Domain?
No, Squarespace does not own your domain. You have complete control over your domain and can use another platform with the domain if you wish. There are also possibilities of you transferring your domain from Squarespace to a new registrar. All Squarespace does is act as a middleman allowing you to buy a domain and registrar it with the appropriate organizations.