The Urban Element Story

We've come a long way since our launch in September 2003 (3 original founders from marketing, design and technical background), and the company has evolved through significant changes in technology, changing customer expectation of websites, our market, and some major economic events. Here's our story...

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2003 - From Humble Beginnings

Two young entrepreneurs working from the basement of one of their houses. Tim Vaines, founding the company, with a background in programming and ASP development. Malcolm Maclean co-founder, background in CD-ROM training and web design. Our very first website is shown; believe it or not our Domain and hosting prices have not changed since.

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Lotus london

2004 - 2005

Jon Ellard joined Urban Element in 2004. Having run a direct marketing company for the hospitality sector, he brought with him a considerable wealth of knowledge. This knowledge laid the foundations that allowed marketing to become one of our primary services. In these early years a lot of our initial websites were designed in Flash. However as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) became more important to businesses, the demand for Flash websites fell.

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Millingbrook Lodge

2006

In 2006, 75% of our business was coming from enterprise level bespoke web applications We still continue to deliver bespoke applications for Smiths Group PLC to this date. Our technology was advancing down the Microsoft route with .NET. This focused our recruitment drive on back end and .NET developers and the remaining 25% of our business was coming from brochure websites such as Millingbrooke Lodge.

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Pilgrim Walks

2007 – The Rise of the CMS

In 2007 the internet was changing. Users demanded fluid websites that provided up to date information on events, promotions, and sales. Instead of being updated year by year, websites now needed to be updated monthly. Clients looked for providers who could offer them more control and so we launched Web Control, a bespoke Content Management System (CMS). This CMS wasn’t to last, but by the end of 2007 we had fifty small to medium businesses on board.

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Oxford Carriers

2008 - The Impact of the Financial Crash

The huge financial crash of 2008, hit with a ferocity nobody could have imagined. The crash directly impacted our financial services client base which in turn affected their investment with Urban Element. Furthermore the ramifications of the crash led to the credit crunch leaving many businesses unable or wary of expenditure. Despite the hit, we retained all of our staff. Client retention was key and we survived through our close working relationship with clients. This was built on managing small budgets and continuing to provide a return on their Investment.

Meanwhile the back end development team worked with our design team to develop creative front end websites with data base driven elements from e-Commerce and quote builders, to secure client zones.

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The Daffodil

2009

Following the credit crunch came the lasting financial crisis, the impacts of which we are still feeling today. In this time we lost three of our biggest clients and our founding director left the company. We went into a period of restructuring and market identification. We invested in a senior graphic designer, with the intention of pushing our web design services using HTML and CSS3.

Let’s work together...

If your current website isn't providing the right results for you, if you are looking to take the next step forwards with your online business, or if you are launching your business online we'd love to talk to you to discuss how we can enable you to reach your business goals.