Changing site ownership

Each Squarespace 5 site has an owner who can’t be removed by other users. If you're the current site owner and are ready to hand over the site to a client, or if you run a site for an organization and are leaving your position, you can transfer ownership of your site to another contributor. 

Note: To give a user access to edit content on your site without transferring ownership to them, add them as a member. To learn more, visit Creating member accounts.

In Squarespace 5, there isn't a way to directly transfer ownership from one site contributor to another. Instead, you'll replace your account information with the new site owner's. When the new owner logs in, they'll take over your position as site owner.

Before you begin

Before transferring ownership, consider transitioning the site to Squarespace 7. The process for transferring ownership of a Squarespace 7 site is more straightforward than in Squarespace 5. The new owner will also be working on a clearer, more intuitive interface.

To learn more about transitioning to the Squarespace 7 platform, visit Moving from Squarespace 5 to Squarespace 7.

The steps below explain how to transfer ownership for a Squarespace 5 site.

Step 1 - Update the email address on file

The email address on file is where we send all email notifications for the Squarespace account, including replies to any support tickets and password reset requests. Keeping a valid email address on file with your account is required per our Terms of Service.

To replace your email address with the new owner’s, click your display name in the top-left. Then click Member Profile.

Click on your login name In the Email field in the Member Information section, and replace your email address with the new owner’s.

Note: Once the new owner's email address is the email address on file, they'll be able to use the Forgot Password link to log in and change the site password.

You may also want to update the email address for any forms on your site, so that responses no longer forward to you.

Step 2 - Add yourself as a member (optional)

If the site is on the Unlimited plan, you can ensure you'll retain access and certain editorial privileges to the site by adding yourself as a member to the account.

Note: Only the site owner is able to add new members, and update the site password and billing information.

To create your member account, navigate to Website Management, and click Member Accounts under Members & Access. Then, click Create Account and enter your Login, Display Name, and Password. 

For further instructions on this process, visit Creating member accounts.

Step 3 - Change site login name (optional)

You may need to change the login name if the new owner needs their name reflected in the URL instead of yours, or if the name of the site’s organization or company has changed.

Note: Changing the account login name will change the built-in URL for the site. This will break any external links, such as ones pointing from other websites. Links to a custom domain will continue to work.

To change the login name, open the Website Management bar and select Member Accounts. In this section, select your login name and add the new name to the Login field.

Step 4 - Update card details

If your credit card is the card on file for the site, update the card details so that you're no longer charged for the site. If the billing information will be staying the same, skip this step.  

There are two ways to switch the card information:

  1. The new owner replaces the card details themselves. They'll see some of the existing billing information and replace it with their own. The site will remain active on the previous credit card until the end of the billing period, at which point the new billing information will take effect. 
  2. You cancel the site, and the new owner reactivates it with their own billing information. The site will be closed and unavailable to the public until the new owner reactivates it. Canceling the site issues you a refund for unused time in the annual billing cycle.

Which option you choose depends on whether the site can be closed temporarily, and whether you're comfortable with the new owner seeing some of your billing information before updating it with their own. They’ll see:  

  • The last four digits of your credit card
  • First and last name
  • Company name
  • Card type
  • Expiration date
  • Billing address and phone number

Option 1 - New owner updates the billing information

Once you hand off ownership, the new owner can update the existing card details.

Once they've logged in, they should: 

  1. Open the Website Management bar.
  2. Click Account Center under Billing & Support, and then click Billing Information.
  3. Enter the new details in the available fields.

For detailed instructions, visit Update your billing information

Option 2 - Cancel and reactivate

To cancel the account, open the Website Management bar and click Account Center under Billing & Support. On the Account Center page, click Cancel Account. For further details on these steps, visit Cancelling service.

Once the site is cancelled, it will be closed and unavailable to the public. To reactivate the account, the new owner should follow these steps:

  1. Log into the site from this URL: http://xxx.squarespace.com/display/Login (replacing xxx with the login name).
  2. Click the green Reactivate button and enter the password again.
  3. Click Proceed.
  4. Select a billing plan.
  5. Select the billing cycle, apply the payment information, and complete the purchase.
Note: Legacy plans aren't available once a site is canceled. For more information about our current plans, visit Squarespace 5 billing plans.

Step 5 - New owner login

After you've finished adjusting the login name, email address, and billing information, the new owner can log in to take ownership of the account.

When logging in for the first time, the new owner should access their site through http://xxx.squarespace.com/display/Login, replacing the xxx with the account name.

Note: If you’re not comfortable providing the current password to the new owner, they can click Forgot Password? on the login page and follow the prompts in the email to create a new password.

Once they've logged in, they should follow the steps in Step 4 to update the billing information or reactivate the site. 

Help resources for the new owner

If the owner is new to using Squarespace 5, the following resources from our Help site offer step-by-step guides and walkthroughs for using our platform.

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