photo of ferns

We are The Smart Bear

Providing website design and development since 2013

The Smart Bear is a WordPress website design and development company based in Urmston, Trafford and covering Manchester and the North West (although as we’re digital we do have National and International customers!).

We pride ourselves on being ethical – never outsourcing to low-waged, non-UK developers to make more money or overselling products that the customer simply doesn’t need – or purposely overcomplicating websites to force the client to return to us (although we love it if they decide to come back to us, of course!).

Supporting small businesses

We create websites to help build businesses grow which engage with, and sell to, the digital generation. Our packages combine website design and development, starting with the basics which can be built upon as and when the business needs to expand. All our websites are built to a professional standard and we build with your future in mind.

Or, if you already have a website, we can help your business thrive and succeed online by improving your current digital presence with a range of tools from Search Engine Optimisation to digital mentoring and development ideas.

Only pay for what you need

We don’t have huge overheads; we’re not a big design agency with lots of staff to pay or a huge office in a big city like Manchester or London. We keep our costs low, by providing only what you need to make you a winner online, from our small office in Urmston. We like to consider ourselves a ‘non-agency agency’ as we have a network of tried and tested subcontractors to call upon to provide you with what your business needs when you need it.

There’s no hard sell and there’s no hidden charges; we’re always clear on our pricing from the start and bring you varied solutions that fit your budget and offer better value for money.

It is our goal to be an ethical business

The Smart Bear Vision

The Smart Bear seeks to create and promote professional websites and provide quality training for small businesses, B Corps, charities, and non-profits with all levels of budget.

We strive to grow our business with honesty and integrity; never selling an unneeded product, and always looking at the long term goals not just short term solutions. We don’t believe in hidden or over-inflated charges.

Mission Statement

Our mission is to help small businesses, charities and not-for-profits improve their websites and search engine ranking by providing affordable, impactful and professional website design and development, maintenance, and training/mentoring services.

Ethos and Values

  • image of a tick or check Use ethical business and marketing practices
  • image of a tick or check Offer products/services to suit the budget
  • image of a tick or check Be upfront about costs and fees
  • image of a tick or check Be efficient and timely
  • image of a tick or check Be trustworthy
  • image of a tick or check Help the clients’ business grow
  • image of a tick or check Always look at the bigger picture
  • image of a tick or check Keep the long-term goal in mind at all times
  • image of a tick or check Use green business practices where possible
  • image of a tick or check Offset our carbon emissions through Ecologi
  • ❌ Never outsource work to underpaid or undervalued sub-contractors
  • ❌ Never over-complicate a website to make money
  • ❌ Never use technical terms just to confuse clients
  • ❌ Never oversell products or services
  • ❌ Never use harassing sales techniques
Tree bark and ivy background (1940 × 800px) (1940 × 1940px)

Meet The Smart Bear

The founder and owner of The Smart Bear – and author of the book Website planning from Concept to Launch -Suzi Brown

Fun Fact: Suzi used to be a qualified Door Supervisor (a.k.a Bouncer)

Suzi Brown says;

“My mission is to demystify and simplify website design, development and search engine optimisation. As an entrepreneur myself, I understand that getting your business online with a professional website is an important step and yet, as many can’t afford, they’re left to try to do it themselves – which can often work against them and stunt the growth of their company, completely.

I have over a decade experience in the industry, in Wordpress and in social media and business consultancy. I am trained to the highest level, including a qualification in adult training.

I’ve taken the pledge for transparent, responsible, and honest marketing. Learn more about The Ethical Move and join me in our commitment.

I am neuro-diverse and use that to my advantage; I am detail-focused, a problem-solver, and I can be hyper-focused which means I put my all into a project.

So, if you’re looking for consultancy, web design or development, SEO or WordPress training in Manchester that is both professional, ethical, and value for money, get in touch for a free consultation.”


  • WordPress Specialist
  • Website Development
  • Website Design
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  • Training and Small Business Mentoring
Suzi Brown facing forward and smiling (2)

Suzi Brown BA (Hons)

Founder, Website Developer and Trainer

Meet our Freelance Team

We didn’t plan for a women-led team, it was just a happy accident!

These are the team members you’re likely to speak with at The Smart Bear.
Shelley provides cover and provides the odd bit of design work whilst Ashleigh helps with admin and liaising with clients.

Shelly Upton

Shelley Upton

Web Designer and Developer

Fun Fact: I am an avid crafter and make Steampunk inspired jewellery, as well as needle felting Fae creatures like fairies and goblins.  I also have an online Belgian Chocolate Shop.

Ashleigh Hall

Ashleigh Hall

Virtual Assistant

Fun Fact: I used to work in Disney Land in Florida!

Meet our Associate Team

All these sub-contractors and freelancers are people we’ve used before; we trust them to deliver their services but feel free to contact them directly to ensure you are happy to work with them.
I’m always looking for new trusted suppliers, so get in touch if you’d like to connect.

Hazel Woodward Lift Social

Hazel Woodward

Queen of Social Media

FUN FACT: Hazel likes cheese almost as much as she likes social media!

Victoria Murray

Victoria Murray

Graphic Designer

Fun fact: As a child I was a hand model and my hands featured on the front of kids games boxes in the 80’s!

Janine Friston

Janine Friston

Small Business Mentor and growth expert

Fun fact: Janine originally trained as a Lawyer

Julie Harris

Julie Harris

Personal Brand Photographer

FUN FACT: I used to own a Virago535 Motorbike which I successfully fell off twice. Both times I was lucky that there was a passing motorist who stopped to help me. It was far too heavy for me to pick up by myself  !!!!!

Helen Osborne

Helen Osborne


Fun fact: I used to get mistaken for Monica Lewinsky when I was younger and studying photography in London.

Debbie Evran

Brand Strategy Expert

Fun Fact: Debbie used to play Ice Hockey for Northern Ireland’s only girls team!

Fiona Frayne

Fiona Frayne

Copywriter, and Administrator

Fun Fact: I am an avid crafter and Fun fact: Fiona loves making things with Origami

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