If you’ve already visited our About Us page, you’ll know that Garry Stewart is your local it’seeze consultant for York, Harrogate and Wetherby. But in business, we think it’s important to really know who you’re dealing with. So we interviewed Garry, who has nearly 300 local company websites under his belt, to get the lowdown on his business and find out what makes him tick. Without further ado… 

What did you do before running it’seeze York? 

Before it’seeze, I had a long career in business development and marketing. The roles included branding work and new product development, working for clients like Molson Coors, Parmalat and Kellogg’s to develop and launch new food and drink products for some of the nation’s favourite brands. I also worked in licensing and often travelled to the far east to source products and work with manufacturers out there. I briefly tried to learn Cantonese - but was really bad at it! 

Why did you decide to start your own business? 

I’d reached a point in my career where I needed a change. I enjoyed my work, but I had a personal ambition to run my own business by the golden age of 40. As it happened, while with my last employer, a major website redesign project was undertaken. I saw how the process was overly complicated and drawn out, and I remember thinking that there must be an easier way to build a website! 
So I started looking for new opportunities, and that’s when I came across the it’seeze franchise. I found that it’seeze was all about helping small businesses grow their online presence with bespoke yet affordable web design, complemented by local technical support. The franchise had national exposure but with a local outlook. 
With my existing business experience, the desire to help small firms grow and the knowledge that there was an easier solution for bespoke web design, I knew that it’seeze was right for me. And so I took the plunge and set up as it’seeze York & Harrogate. 
I’ve been running the business for eight years this summer! I’d definitely recommend the it’seeze franchise as a business model; it’s been a great experience so far. 

What business challenges have you faced over the years? 

In the beginning, I had to be very proactive and take on a sales-based role that involved cold-calling companies on the phone, and through walk-ins, to see if they needed my services. It was hard-going at first, but I gradually built up a reputation for delivering top quality websites, and I started to get word-of-mouth referrals. I was very active in business networking too, which helped with further recommendations. 
More and more businesses want a professional online presence to help their business to survive, and of course grow, particularly so in the face of COVID-19. Nowadays, I don’t have to work so hard to get new business, but you can never become complacent. 

Have you had any business achievements? 

Yes - my business has been voted as one of the three best web designers in the area for five years in a row, including this year, 2021! The award was issued by ThreeBestRated, a business recommendation website that uses criteria such as business reviews, ratings and general excellence to determine the winners. 
Then, of course, there’s the number of business websites my team and I have delivered - nearly 300 and counting! Lastly, I’ve won an internal national (it’seeze) award for client retention. Many of my clients like to stick with me for the long term. 

What are your future business goals? 

I get a lot of satisfaction from my job, and I’d like to help more businesses. I have a personal target of helping 500 local companies achieve their ideal website. 

What makes you tick outside of work? 

I’m a fan of trivia and quiz shows. My claim to fame is being a previous winner of The Weakest Link with Anne Robinson! I’m also a keen poker player and was lucky enough to have been sponsored several times to play poker in the World Series out in Las Vegas! No, I haven’t won anything out there. 
And that concludes our interview with Garry. With his extensive experience and long track record in building beautiful, responsive it’seeze websites, you know you’re in safe hands! Ready to talk about your project? Get in touch today. 
Tagged as: Garry Stewart, Interview
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