Ben Manley — Squarespace Circle: Build your web design business

Web design agency

Ben Manley

Ben is the founder of Knapsack Creative, a web design agency based in Lynchburg, Virginia. He and his team have built hundreds of client websites on Squarespace.

Circle: What makes your business stand out?
Benjamin: The thing we’re probably known for the most is our one day website build package called the “Daypack.” Because of the speed and flexibility of building with Squarespace templates, we were able to create this productized service where we can build a website start to finish in one day, while the client watches live and gives feedback.

C: What’s your favorite thing about working on the Squarespace platform?
B: As Squarespace's templates started to evolve and become more and more powerful, we realized we didn't even need to use coding anymore to get the results that we wanted for a lot of our customers.

C: What made you decide to build your practice around Squarespace?
B: The platform is built by top-notch designers, and it really shows. Squarespace’s mission and values align with my own. It’s a platform I can confidently hand over to a client. It’s very low-maintenance so it keeps my overhead low long-term. Squarespace removed the roadblock of needing to know how to be a developer in order to build great websites.

C: What's advice would you give other web design agencies who are considering a Squarespace practice?
B: It's a lot more powerful than you realize. And once you get in there and start using the tools, you'll realize you may not even need development anymore.

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We’ve built over 300 total websites which is about 80 per year.

C: What do your clients think about the final website you give them?
B: Our clients are blown away by how unique each website we build is, even though we’re starting with a Squarespace template. Most people don’t realize how flexible the templates are. Often they’ll comment on how easy it is to edit their content once we’ve designed the site.

C: How do you engage with the Circle community?
B: I interact on the forums from time to time, but since I’m a more face-to-face kind of guy, I especially enjoy the in-person meet-ups. So far everyone that I’ve interacted with has been helpful and willing to contribute.

C: What’s the role of customer care in your business?
B: Squarespace Customer Care is great because I can assure my clients that there is built-in support with their Squarespace website for any technical issues or questions that they have about the platform.

C: How has your personal life changed since you’ve become a Squarespace professional?
B: It has changed so much! Some of my goals with starting Knapsack were to have more time with my family, make better income, have more control over the creative process, and have more personal freedom. I’m so grateful to say that I’ve gotten to achieve all of these goals and more in the past 6 years. I’ve had a goal since starting Knapsack to keep the amount of time I spend on my company at 40 hrs/week or fewer. There have been a few times where I’ve had to go over that limit, but it’s the exception to the rule.

C: What does it mean to you that Squarespace is fostering and supporting a creative professional community?
B: It really shows that Squarespace is a company driven by values, and that it’s values align with my own. I think that Squarespace is a platform that is really good for the web, and that it’s helping people succeed with their businesses.

Special thanks to Ben for sharing his story.
Find out more about Ben’s work on
his website.

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