Web Design and Development Services

A Bit of History

Around 1999 Keith and I started designing and developing websites for people and companies in the days when the standard screen size was 800 x 600 pixels, dial up modems were the norm and putting just a few images on the website would seriously impact page loading time.

Global internet users numbered around 280 million, increasing to 500 million by 2001, the 1 billion mark in 2005 and doubling that by 2010.


The Netscape browser was running version 4.5, Opera 3.6 and IE had released version 5 in March. Safari was not due until 2003, Firefox the following year and Chrome in 2008.

Ajax, (asynchronous JavaScript and XML) not to be confused with what Mum bought at Safeways, was exciting because it meant that you did not have to reload an entire page when changing the content. Seriously it was just fabulous at the time, it meant that all the static content and imagery on the page stayed there and just the relevant content changed - completely awesome!

It seemed to us that a lot of the small to medium companies only got a website because their immediate competitors had got one and as for adopting a company email address that featured on their letterheads, well ..... you simply didn't do business that way.

Search Engines

We were pretty good at SEO, well, very good in fact and got good rankings for our clients, lots of key terms on page 1 of Google, who at that time were still pretty new in the market. Google was the new pretender and MSN (supported by search results from Inktomi and a search advertising platform from Looksmart)

There was the Yahoo! free search, but you really wanted to be in the paid directory where your submission was checked by a real human being. Inktomi at the time was offering early versions of what would later become Pay Per Click.


About Us Image


us robotics 56k dial up modems

Dial Up vs Broadband

Dial Up vs Broadband

You might have had a compuserve email address, or an AOL account and definately a 56k modem and an old 33k modem in the cupboard and used perhaps Pipex or Demon Internet as your ISP.

First broadband service available in the UK

Mark Bush of Basildon was the first person in the UK to receive Broadband during the test period run by Telewest (Now Virgin Media) in March 2000 and on successful completion Gillingham across the river became the first town to have it installed post trial.

And in the USA

At the same time in the USA 34% of americans had dial up at home and just 3% had broadband. By 2013 dial up had diminished to 2% and broadband up to 70%.
(source: Pew Internet & American Life Project Surveys March 200-2013) and in the UK BT actually turned off its dial up service in the September of 2013.

Big businesses were paying tens of thousands for a website (our jaws would drop when we heard what they had paid and drop even further for what they had got).

Dot Com Bubble

The .com boom was turning to bust with firms that had previously been worth millions falling by the wayside with massive losses to shareholders

  • Boo.com – spent $188 million in just six month in an attempt to create a global online fashion store that went bankrupt in May 2000.
  • Broadcast.com – Acquired by Yahoo! for $5.9 billion in stock, making Mark Cuban a multi-billionaire. The site is now defunct and redirects to Yahoo!’s home page.

And you probably remember the publicity around lastminute.com who went public just at the time when the bubble burst.

We got business by word of mouth ( just the best ) and client referrals (even better) and we were generating enquiries from our website.

Web Design for Marketing

The online marketing business has changed dramatically in the intervening period and compared to 1999 the market is extremely competitive.

Screen sizes grew and website standard width sizes went up pro rata, then the initiative of having one website for desktops and a different one for smaller screens came about until finally we now have responsive design for all screen sizes.

The advent of broadband, 3G and 4G is with us allowing not only large imagery, but video as well.

TV Advertising Eclipsed by Internet

When the IAB first measured internet advertising in 1998 UK just 19.4 million was spent on advertising.

In 2009 the figure was 1.75 billion for just the first six months ending in June of that year.

The significance of the date is that it was the point at which internet advertising eclipsed that of television advertising and more so in that the UK was the first major economy to do so.

Taking Google Search engine results for our own business

  • "Web Companies" generates 713,000,000 results
  • "Web design Companies" generates 75,100,000
  • "Web Design Companies Surrey" generates 1,170,000

We are still ranked on page one of Google for "web designers surrey", "web design surrey" and "web design companies surrey".

Though SEO (search engine optimisation) is essential we deploy it as a component part of a larger arsenal of measures in developing online business strategies.

Our aim is not simply to build a website. The website is the vehicle, but we look at the business strategy when developing the website relevant to the current and evolving business model, providing options to our clients to deliver results.


About Us Image


About Us Image

A Bit About Us

Bill Blackie ( left) has been fully immersed in the website design and marketing business since 2001 with many clients retained since then. He previously worked in mgt operational roles in contract catering, five star hotels and the hospitality industry at unit and area mgt level.

When not immersed in web design and development, optimisation and marketing initiatives he is an avid reader, delights in cooking when afforded the opportunity and produces a healthy vegetable and salad crop each year from his "potager".

Married with two children who don't allow him to work on Sundays, he drives an ageing but reliable 5 series BMW which simply refuses to breakdown.

Keith Williamson (right) graduated from Leicester Polytechnic in 1984 and worked as an Interior Designer in the UK and the Middle East until 2000, when he was gripped by a sudden urge to jump on the Internet bandwagon. He is an accomplished designer and developer, and his hobbies include cooking (he runs a YouTube cooking channel), reading, writing and, coincidentally, playing the ukulele. He has no interest whatsoever in cars, but would quite like to drive a dumper truck.

Bill and Keith have worked together since 2001.

Talented Individuals 

We have some wonderful web designers developers with serious in depth commercial experience some of whom have worked with us, left to pursue other avenues and returned to us who take design + front end coding + back end coding + concept + UX (user experience) to a new level.

Graphic Design for Print

Richard Jordan has been in the advertising and design industry for over 35 years, developing and implementing marketing strategies for clients in a cross section of industries. Involved in developing newspaper advertising campaigns, local marketing initiatives and winning awards for exhibition designs.

Richard focuses on offline initiatives, brochures, leaflets which compliment and synchronises with many of the ongoing internet based projects.

Richard, is a keen Ukulele player and plays in a Ukulele band (ukulele music is now banned in the office) and is a classic car enthusiast.


About Us


About Us

What do we actually do?

Initially we listen to you, to see what you want, what your vision or expectations are. Building on that we dig a little deeper to get more detail and add more substance to the scope of the project and then break it down into bite sized chunks and discuss further adding our input and the rationale behind it to arrive at a broad based plan from which to progress with.


You could add labels to our activities such as Marketing, Graphic Design, Web Development, Search Engine Optimisation all of which apply, but essentially what we want to arrive at is the strategy in which the app, website or software will serve you best and in the most lucrative fashion and harness other tools, such as social media and analytical monitoring software to benchmark and measure success with a view to maintaining progress.

We are fortunate to work in numerous business sectors with small, medium and corporate sized companies and have gained invaluable experience and insight over the years.


We built our first content management system in 2001 and have online shops that are 10 years old and still working in more or less their original format.

In the meantime we are working hard to make our websites and content management systems as user friendly as possible, mobile responsive and SEO friendly.

From a technical perspective, it’' an ongoing process in this business, but we are experienced in working in PHP, Dot.NET, ASP and use MySQL and MSSQL databases.

We have designed, developed and incrementally upgraded shopping basket platforms with numerous features in respect of functionality, and bespoke apps as required by our clients.

Credits & References:

Dot Com Bubble
2016 Internet Users and Website Numbers
Browser and Search Engine History
USA Dial Up and Broadband Stats