The Early Days

Following the financial crisis in 2008, Marketrix struggled and eventually had a close, which lead me into a whole new phase of my career.

I started off working for the NHS. This is where I developed the skills I was introduced to during my Multimedia Computing course in uni. I kept the website updated and developed some new features for the website, mainly using PHP and mySQL. After a couple of years at the NHS, I was offered a job at a small finance firm called Marketrix as an in house web designer working in an agile environment to create lead generation websites and a CRM system along with two backend developers.

This is also where I was introduced to online marketing, something I've done to some extent ever since, either for clients or for side projects I've worked on. I learnt a lot about SEO and I was introduced to paid search and email marketing.

Following the financial crisis in 2008, Marketrix struggled and eventually had a close, which lead me into a whole new phase of my career. Looking back, this is one of the best things that happened for my career.

The Agency Days

Although I enjoyed front end development, I wanted to learn more and develop my web design skills.

I was lucky enough to quickly land a job at a rapidly expanding digital agency specialising in web development called Psycle Interactive. Over the 2 and a half years I spent there as a front end web developer I learnt more than I could imagine about front end technologies like jQuery. This is also where I started working with WordPress, although I was still only working on the front end code at this point.

Working at Psycle was a great experience. I found out how a very successful online agency operated and had the chance to work on lots of major projects for brands like Google, Boots, Nokia, McLaren, The Open University and Next.

Although I enjoyed front end development, I wanted to learn more and develop my web design skills so eventually the time came to move on find a role that fitted my interests better.

I developed a framework for optimising clients websites and attended courses and workshops to learn more from some of the best known conversion rate optimisation and UX practitioners in the industry.

I had the opportunity to join a small marketing agency in Chester who were looking for someone to lead the new web department there. I jumped at the chance because I knew I would learn more and get a chance to input far more into the business than I was as a front end developer. The agency was called Inside Online and I had a great three and a half years working there.

At Inside Online I was responsible for planning and executing all aspects of web projects for clients. I wrote the specs and proposals, met the clients and carried out the web design and development. This is where my WordPress knowledge really took off. I needed to choose a reliable platform that we could use for our CMS and WordPress was the obvious choice.

It was at Inside Online that I developed skills in conversion rate optimisation. I developed a framework for optimising clients websites and attended courses and workshops to learn more from some of the best known conversion rate optimisation and UX practitioners in the industry.

The Freelance Days

I started my freelance career in 2015 and it's been a great journey so far.

Somewhere along the line whilst at Inside Online, I developed the bug to run my own business. I loved the idea of less comuting, more flexibility and the ability to choose which projects and skills I wanted to work on. I started my freelance career in 2015 and it's been a great journey so far.

I'm now focusing on web design, conversion rate optimisation and WordPress development for clients who are serious about getting the best out of their website.

Working for myself also means I get more time to work on various side projects. One of those projects is a small WordPress theme shop selling and blogging about premium WordPress themes. I've also contributed a number of themes to the WordPress repository which have been downloaded thousands of times and are currently used to power the websites of over 1500 users.

So there you have it. Now you know my story, so why don't you get in touch so I can help you develop yours.

Clients Say...

I don't mind telling you, a lot of the success of my business is down to Andy. It's this simple: if you own a business - you need to talk to Andy.

Rob Oates: ARBTECH
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