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Über dieses Buch

Utilize the power of Squarespace to create custom professional websites. Learn the principles and tools used by Squarespace’s most successful web professionals to take your skills to the next level.

Beginning with an overview of the Squarespace interface and template selection guidelines, this book shows you how the key web languages work together within Squarespace. You'll also see how to use the Custom CSS Editor, Code Injections, and Code Blocks to customize Squarespace templates and how the Style Editor selections affect the template's structure.

Learn the accommodations that must be made in JavaScript for the customizations to work correctly in AJAX-based templates. Finally, discover what Developer Mode is, how to use it, and when to use it. The Definitive Guide to Squarespace is the only book you need to get up and running with Squarespace web development.

What You'll Learn

Choose the right selectors for your CSS or JavaScript customization.

Understand what AJAX is and how it impacts the templates that use it.

Explore the structure of Squarespace templates

Who This Book Is For

Web designers, developers, digital marketers, and advanced personal-use users



Chapter 1. Introduction to Squarespace

The Squarespace platform is a powerful and flexible tool for building beautiful and compelling websites. The user-friendly system allows small businesses and individuals to easily maintain their online presence. Millions of websites have been built on the Squarespace platform, with more being added every day. The real strength of the Squarespace platform is the flexibility and range of control. A user with no coding knowledge can create a well-designed website using the built-in tools. Users with coding knowledge can harness the full power of the platform to produce highly customized websites.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 2. Getting Started on Your Site

In this chapter we will begin putting content into the website that we created in Chapter 1. For all my website projects I put together a sitemap and an overview of what content goes on each page prior to designing the site. This helps me ensure that the design takes into account all of the content. For the book’s example website, we will work through creating a site for a Houston, Texas, area organization: PAWsitive Connections TX. PAWsitive Connections seeks to connect homeless pets with new owners and provide pet owners with resources to care for their animals. Figure 2-1 shows the sitemap that was created for the PAWsitive Connections TX site website.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 3. Styling Your Site

In this chapter we will explore the built-in styling tools that Squarespace offers. These tools are user friendly and require no custom coding. The styling tools are all found in the Design panel. The main style tool is the Style Editor. The Style Editor contains different settings based on the template. Each of these settings is called a Tweak. Tweaks can be anything from layout options to colors and fonts. The newer template families have more Tweaks than the older templates. Older templates can usually achieve the same style customization using CSS if the template lacks a Style Editor Tweak. We will discuss customizing the site using CSS later in this book.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 4. Site Settings and Best Practices

In this chapter we will explore some additional site settings. We will take a closer look at commerce, analytics, and advanced settings within Squarespace. Then we will explore SEO best practices and security options. Finally, we will wrap up with the process for launching a site. Squarespace is actively updating its commerce options with new capabilities. You can get the latest information and how-to documents on Squarespace’s website.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 5. HTML, CSS, and JavaScript

This chapter begins the second portion of the book, custom code! A solid understanding of the Squarespace platform is vital to writing custom code. High-quality code works with the Squarespace platform rather than around it. Working with the platform means that you use the built-in Squarespace tools to get as close as possible before adding custom code. If there is a Style Editor Tweak or Block setting to adjust something, use it! Writing custom code when there is already a provided Tweak or setting only increases your workload. Squarespace has detailed documentation on all features and settings on their website. You can also refer back to earlier chapters of this book.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 6. Code Injectors—Add Custom Code

The previous chapter explored the different programming languages used in Squarespace websites. You learned to recognize the difference between HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and the different roles these languages have within a website. This chapter will explore the tools for working with custom code and the Squarespace code injectors. There are many different places to inject, or add, custom code. However, before we can add custom code you need the right tools for writing the code.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 7. AJAX and AJAX Enabled Templates

In this chapter we will explore AJAX and how it is used in Squarespace templates. AJAX is a common source of confusion among novice web developers. The scenario usually goes like this: The web developer has added custom code to a particular page in the site. The customization looks great when the browser is refreshed. However, when navigating between pages the customization no longer works, or worse, the customization now runs on the wrong page altogether. What happened? The answer lies in understanding how AJAX is used in Squarespace templates.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 8. Popular Customizations

These customizations will provide a solid framework for beginning to create your own custom code. Each customization will be approached using a Structure, Style, and Interactions analysis. Structure changes indicate we will be manipulating HTML. Style changes require CSS coding. Interaction changes need JavaScript work.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 9. Respecting the Limits

Every web platform was designed with specific users, and specific use cases, in mind. That means there will be cases where Squarespace isn’t the best platform to use. It is very easy to determine whether or not something is possible with Squarespace and custom code. The harder question to answer is, is it a good idea? The rest of this chapter will discuss how I determine if a customization is a good idea to suggest to a client. We will also cover some of the hard limits within Squarespace, where I recommend doing the project on a different platform.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 10. Third-Party Tools

When I talk about third-party tools, I am referring to any code from an outside source that you will add to a Squarespace website. There are many different words that get used for this type of code: plugin, widget, add-on, and code snippet. A lot of these terms have platform-specific meanings, which is why I will avoid using them.
Sarah Martin

Chapter 11. Developer Mode

Developer Mode tends to seem very mysterious to new Squarespace users. There isn’t much documentation on Developer Mode, and web developers often learn how to use the system as they go. It does take a serious understanding of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to safely use Developer Mode. Even if you don’t plan on using Developer Mode, it is good to understand the capabilities of the system! By the end of this chapter you should have a solid understanding of what Developer Mode is, how to use it, and when to use it.
Sarah Martin


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