Working with Maraid on our new website

Posted News

Maraid Portrait by YUKFUN  

Our shiny new website is here! Thanks to funding from AD:VENTURE, SAIL’s new online home is faster, *prettier* and more sustainable than ever before, and as we grow our offering to the sector, we’re looking forward to filling it with all of the sustainability sector-support that our members need.  

We are delighted to be partnered with Maraid Design, a Leeds & Glasgow Web Design Studio, on this project: because of their passion for working with like-minded, social-good focused collaborators. The websites Maraid create are beautiful, clever, accessible, and intuitive.   

To celebrate the launch of our new website, we sat down with our the Maraid team to ask them a few questions about the process, and sustainability in the context of web design…

What inspired your decision to collaborate with us on this web development project?

We specialise in education, heritage, the arts, cultural & not-for-profit projects, collaborating with like-minded organisations whose activities positively impact society – working with SAIL ticked all our boxes! We were impressed with SAIL’s work and excited to share our knowledge of making sustainable websites.

In the process of creating our new website, did you encounter any innovative, challenging, or particularly enjoyable aspects that you’d like to highlight for our new users?  

We make quite a lot of websites with network or member areas. Each one has a unique brief, which brings new and interesting challenges! 

Can you share any insights into any low energy technologies or practices that have been integrated into our website to ensure it is sustainable?

At the outset of all web design projects, we consider how much energy emissions a site will use through design, build and speed, and we look to mitigate impact across all elements.  

With SAIL’s website, we have carefully designed the information architecture and user experience to ensure a speedy and efficient user journey and to conserve energy.The website is custom-built with efficient, streamlined code rather than using pre-made themes or code libraries, using the open-source software WordPress.  

We have created a dark design that limits the use of bright blue, all images have been appropriately resized and compressed for optimal performance, and the use of video is limited. We advised SAIL on how to create accessible and sustainable content for the website, and we have taken accessibility into account at every step. 

We then consider Storage and data transfer. SAIL’s website is hosted on, a provider that uses 100% green energy in their data centres and is actively working towards decarbonisation. Their data centre is located in the UK, where the primary audience is based, resulting in faster and more energy-efficient data transfer. 

To enhance the website’s security, performance, and reliability, we rely on Cloudflare. It accelerates website loading efficiently and caches data for future visits, reducing energy consumption. Additionally, Cloudflare is dedicated to powering its network with 100% renewable energy and aims to eliminate all greenhouse gases emitted since its inception in 2010.

"It’s a misconception that accessible and sustainable websites are less visually exciting or harder to create."

Were there any challenges or trade-offs you faced while prioritising sustainability in this project, and how did you address them? 

It’s a misconception that accessible and sustainable websites are less visually exciting or harder to create. It would make the design easier to drop a huge image or video on the home page, but good web design and branding can work around this! 

From your perspective, how significant is the role of sustainability in web development as an industry, and what trends or developments do you anticipate in this area in the future? 

As web designers and developers, we need to take responsibility for the environmental impact our work has. Research estimates that by 2025, the IT industry could use 20% of all electricity produced and emit up to 5.5% of the world’s carbon emissions.  

Recently, we’ve been sent quite a few web briefs that request sustainable solutions, which is really exciting. Looking forward, we think sustainability in web development will be hugely significant to the future of the industry – perhaps not with a big change in design trends, but we hope that sites will get faster and more efficient. Websites are a collaboration between the web designers and the client, and at Maraid we try to encourage only for succinct and valuable content to be included online. In the future, we would really like to see more accessible and sustainable branding.  

It’s important to share knowledge amongst our community, so here’s some relevant links that you might find helpful for your next web design project: 

Maraid have been a brilliant team to work with, and we can’t recommend Jane & Richard enough for your next web design project.  

Visit the Maraid Design website or email them at [email protected]


From hosting enlightening workshops to rehoming unused resources, from equipping individuals with Carbon Literacy Training to partnering with local organisations for greener events, SAIL is taking the lead in West Yorkshire’s creative and cultural scene. But we’re not doing it alone. Our strength lies in our community, in the passionate and dedicated individuals and organisations committed to fostering a more sustainable future.

We’ve made a significant impact, but there’s still much to be done. We need you to join us on this journey. As a member of SAIL, you’ll not only gain access to our network and resources, but you’ll also play a vital role in driving the sustainability movement in our local creative and cultural industries.