Oxford Startup Takes On Web Giant Wix

City Of Oxford

As a nation, we’ve learnt a lot over the last six months. One day in March 2020, the world shrank before our eyes and we had an opportunity to see our local area from a new perspective. We turned to the Internet for information on opening hours, delivery slots and Corona restrictions. We suddenly needed technology in a way that we hadn’t and businesses came to rely on their digital shopfront. If you were a business without a website, then you appeared closed to the world around you.

The Oxford-based company making sure that local businesses could stay open and running business as (new) normal is S9 Web Design Oxford. Run by Alex Baker, S9 has also had to morph and adapt to new circumstances but it means the brand is emerging from the lockdown with a new business model – and it sees S9 taking on the biggest web developers in the world.

As an SME, the team behind S9 have been able to create a new place for themselves in the web development market and – quite simply – delivers tailored, business-focused websites to small and micro businesses for the same cost as a template from the big brands.

Founder, Alex, could see that businesses needed to up their game and upgrade or develop new websites quickly. Alex also saw that the one element that came up in his consultations was the fear of a large up-front cost to get the website up and running. Clients were also concerned about keeping their sites up to date and didn’t have time to ‘fiddle’ behind the scenes. With a clear understanding of what businesses needed, Alex simply made a change within his own business and is now delivering more than the global web development brands while hitting the sweet spot for businesses’ cash flow.

The team at S9 will design and deliver a website from £35 per month, with no upfront payment. Including design, development, hosting and amends once the site is live, Alex and the team can have new websites up and running in a matter of weeks.

By changing his business model, Alex has created a powerful and compelling offer for businesses – to have a tailored website built from scratch with absolutely no templates at all. The website can be changed and updated at any time for the cost of an ‘off-the-shelf’ site from Wix or GoDaddy. An S9 website also means an end to trying to get the attention of customer service attendants as businesses have their own S9 project lead to talk to any time they need to.

This is not a Covid-19 offer, but rather a new approach for S9 clients that will stay in place moving forward. As part of the commitment to long and enduring client relationships, the S9 offer also includes an entirely new redesign of the website created after 18 months for no additional fee (and the monthly price will remain the same).

Alex Baker, Founder, S9, said, “There was a time when a website was optional; it was for big, corporate businesses, while micro businesses and SMEs had to live without or swallow huge costs. While the emergence of WixGoDaddy and other global web development brands has made it more affordable to have a website, you can only work within a set of tight parameters and then update the site yourself. At S9, we’ve broken through both these barriers and deliver bespoke websites that don’t cost the earth. We want to work with businesses and our offer of a monthly payment instead of a one-off chunk of budget means that more businesses can have a digital presence for less – at a time when the economy is in trouble, S9 offers a valuable lifeline to small businesses.”

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