Good design lowers the 'bounce rate'. More traffic, more interest, more business.


* ‘Bounce Rate’ is the percentage who see the homepage and don’t stay. Clear and fast information plus simple navigation lowers bounce rates - equals more people looking at your site.




The idea of reponsive sites has been around since 2010. In 2014 when I first started building them, the desktop or laptop screen still was the primary size. Phones were an afterthought.

But now I notice how the phone dominates. It’s quite usual for two-thirds of traffic to be with mobile users. It’s a ‘mobile first’ web world, live with it. 

Responsive sites don’t mind what screen they’re on. Adjust to fit. On a wide screen elements go side by side, and on narrow screens they stack up in a nice logical order. In simple terms, that’s it. 

But that can make for very long pages and mega-scrolling on small screens. So now we carefully allocate phone real-estate, and limit the content on mobile pages. And we make sure navigation is easy. Usability rules.  

And watchful of what the world wants, Google likes mobile. And what they like, we generally do too. And they really like responsive sites. To the extent that they now openly state they give preference to mobile-friendly sites. And site loading speed is critical too.

I’ve not built a static non-responsive site since 2017. Responsive and the small screen has won.

“We’d both like to thank you for your help and hard work over the years. Your input has been over and above just the standard web design service and your tips and insights have been very much appreciated.”

Hari and Colin Fell,, Tudor Farmhouse Hotel

Designing and maintaining web sites as a business, began in 2004. We have in-depth web design and skills experience. Please see our…

Croque-en-Bouche was our restaurant name for many years. We offer serious business knowledge. We’re not just techie designers. More…

“Your enthusiasm for our work and commitment to helping us has been appreciated. You have unfailing in responding quickly to our pleas for help and moved mountains when it was needed.”

Bridie Sullivan,

CEO, Herefordshire Community Foundation

“A quick note to add my personal thanks. One of the consistent themes of my tenure has been the regular commentary in the office about how helpful and responsive you have consistently been.”

Frank Myers MBE,

Chairman, Herefordshire Community Foundation

Web sites are a lot about cost. The budget will dictate what you get. DIY is obviously cheap, but do you really have the skills? I liken it to restaurants. You may love cooking and go to restaurants, but could you run a restaurant? Much more than just the grub!

You may recognise the qualities of a webpage, but there’s a mass of stuff going on you don’t see, and it may look OK on your screen, but what about all the other devices it might be viewed on? And try and avoid cheap hosting. This means you’re sharing an IP address (like a phone number, how your site is found) with maybe several thousand other sites. If one of them ever gets blacklisted for something dodgy, you get caught too - same IP address.

If you can afford a few hundred pounds, a decent web site can be yours. Responsive is today’s standard, prices start at about £500. And on-going it isn’t just hosting, there’s updating the system structure, security and back-up to factor in.

Big point. Web sites are never finished. We should always be reviewing them in the light of customer usage, tweaking and developing. If only because technology is always moving along.

Below we offer a sample of sites, to show what we do. They can be sorted by category.


BUSINESS. Sites out there to directly make money, or as a ‘shop window’ for business wares or services. Any sort of business, these days, must have a site.

CMS. Means Content Management System, but really it’s about sites that you, the client can add to and edit the content, to a greater or lesser extent. Everyone likes the idea of it, but do you actually need it, or how much do you need? Restaurants say, need to update their menus, but maybe not much else on a regular basis. Remember, folk don’t read any more, they scan, keep it brief and to the point. And folk like pretty pictures.

HOSPITALITY. Restaurants, hotels, bed-and-breakfast places, outside catering. A special area for us because we have the skills, knowledge and experience.

NOT-FOR-PROFIT. Typically charities and voluntary groups and clubs. You can expect some kind of discounted deal. Flat-rate not-for-profit hosting is £5/month.


For a basic website, the minimum is around £500 (+VAT, as on all these prices). That is going to be a simple one-main-page responsive site, not a lot more. But often that is all that is required.

The techie stuff of setting up takes a slug of time for starters. Beyond that depends not just on the number of pages but also on the complexity e.g. custom on-line forms, and how much you give me of the text, pictures, logos, etc.

Our base charge currently is £56.00 per hour for the work we do for you on an ongoing basis. We are generous with our time. Charities and not-for-profit groups get discounts.

Hosting on a my own superfast dedicated server: from £15.00 per calendar month, quarterly in advance, plus back-up and maintenance. £29 - 40 is the usual total monthly fee.


The deal for websites is that we work on the theme and a look for the homepage. When you are happy with that, we ask for 33% of the quoted total. The rest is due twenty-one days after going live. By the way, all things being equal, we always stay within the quote price.

Search engine work,

Domain names. For a .co.uk domain, £7.00 per year, and £14.00 for a .com. Domains transferred in free. I charge you only the actual cost to me, which I know is about as cheap as you can get it. Setting up email through your site - included.

All-singing spam filtering if you need it, through Gmail. Gmail is free to use and provides excellent on-line backup as well as taking out 99% of spam. We get your messages routed via Gmail and back to your mailbox. Your phone and tablets can synchronise with the Gmail account easily. Costs about £60 in time to set up.

The key to keeping website costs down, is to do your homework ahead. Think about the pages you might need, which means working out what you want to really say, and write some text in say, Word. Do a very basic layout on a sheet of A4 paper with blocks named for each section or page you think you’ll want. I can take that stuff plus as many pics (the quality can usually be worked on!) as you have, and start from there.

And tell us which sites (not necessarily in the same business as you) appeal to you re. colour and style. This is very important. The site must reflect you and your business or organisation.




Croque-Web is the name for our web design, now the major part of the business. As Croque-en-Bouche we advise on restaurant menus and such. We were known by our diners, as the ‘Croque’ for decades as a restaurant and can’t lose it now.

After college, I was a Unilever trainee, in advertising and marketing in London. In the ad world for three years (did eat in a lot of good restaurants; why I went for the job?). But the restaurant world beckoned and I opened a bistro in Battersea in 1972.

Met my now wife, Marion in 1976. She’d done office work until she got fed up and decided to train to cook. Cordon Bleu took her on, and she was top student. We were like minds, food nuts!

In 1978 we started Croque-en-Bouche, on the side of the Malvern Hills in Worcestershire. It was a small restaurant, just myself and my wife, and a washer-upper. We weren’t fancy, but we were good.

Michelin Star for 22 years, and always in the top ten of the Good Food Guide. And won all the UK wine awards. Our enthusiasm for wine grew, bought more stock than we ought, and became wine merchants alongside the restaurant business.


In the end, we got too old to be polishing glasses at 2.00am, and decided to quit restaurants while we were winning! Carried on as wine merchants, and consultants, and then into web design.

The ‘Croque’ had its own home-made website early on in 1997. We did our first commercial sites for restaurants and hotels, dating from 2004. We built up and widened from there and cover all-sorts these days, but our specialist catering knowledge is often still useful.

We’ve seen the whole Internet world blossom. In 2011 we decided to leave the wine world too, and concentrate solely on web and design work. And hope to do that for many a year still.

We don’t have opening times as such. We’re available most days, including early evenings up to about 7.00pm (drinks time!). Pleased to talk with you, by e-mail, here by appointment, a visit to you, or on the telephone.


The Old Post Office Cottage, Putley Green, Ledbury HR8 2QN

Contact Robin Jones: mail@croque.co.uk

t: 01531 670809


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