website design
& development

web hosting, S.E.O and website support

logo design
& branding

graphic design and print services


web software & smartphone applications

graphic design
& web design

Christchurch based - since 2003

Welcome to Activate. We are a trusted, friendly, and professional Christchurch Web Design and Graphic Design agency.

We specialise in responsive web design, graphic design, logos, branding, smartphone apps, software development, We also design and supply branded print material.

We have been providing these services since 2003, and work with a variety of businesses in Christchurch, throughout New Zealand and in Australia.
Contact us today!

Logo Design and Branding

Logo design is about solving a communication problem between a specific entity (you) and a specific group of people (your tarket market).

Logo design is not about having your company name displayed nicely at the top of a letterhead. It is about establishing a brand identity that sets you apart from your competitors. One that communicates to a specific group; your industry,  personality and identity of your business in a simple, unique and memorable logo design. 

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Jon Tarr our brand designer and creative director, has more than 15 years in the industry and has even written articles on logos published by international design magazines. He will work directly with you to create a logo that captures the essense of your business in a unique and memorable identity that sets you apart from your competitors.

Jon is very passionate about logo design and solving communication problems for companies of all sizes, from New Zealand and even across the ditch. He has designed brands for the health and medical fields, beauty industry, trades, industrial / engineering firms and several iconic brands in hospitality that you might recognise. Take a look at some of our logo designs.

For efficiency and to ensure that nothing is lost in translation you can liaise directly with Jon. No in-between buffers like time-wasting sales reps or marketing people. We offer free consultations, free advice and quotes, all before any work commences.

Our logos are simple, unique and memorable designs and we analyse all our work through TradeMark Vision to ensure authenticity against registered trademarks. Click here to find out more about logo design.

Online Marketing Services

Activate Design offers a variety of web services to complement your new website such as Search Engine OptimisationWebsite Content Writing and Email marketing. Not only that, Activate also provides managed website hosting, emails, domain registration and contactable, friendly tech support to make sure everything is working smoothly on all your devices. 

We make sure your website is mobile responsive so it is optimised for smartphones and we have our very own content-management-system developed specifically for easy website editing by our clients.

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If you are not sure where to start or are just starting out, why not have a look at our new business launch pack, combining logo design, business card design and print, website design and development, email and web hosting, and domain registration all into one discounted package. Everything to get you started if you are launching a business.

If you’re looking for a local web design and graphic design agency that’s big enough to get the job done but still small enough to care, pick up the phone or contact us now and let's get the ball rolling. Here’s to your success online!

Website Design Christchurch

Web design christchurch - Activate Design are the leading Christchurch Web Designers. A bold statement, but you can see the proof for yourselves in our website portfolio. Websites shouldn’t just be something pretty to look at - they have a greater purpose. Whether it’s to increase your leads, brand awareness, sales, or to help educate your clients, we ensure that your website will exceed your goals and expectations.

Activate is trusted and proven, a reliable, honest christchurch web company. No expensive hoardes of sales reps, socialites or marketing people. Just a small team of professionals who can get things done for an affordable price. 

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If your website isn’t already a responsive website or a mobile friendly website, then Google may have recently demoted your website in search results on mobile devices. With mobile and tablets now accounting for more than half of all Google searches, having an out-dated website that doesn’t function properly on these devices can be very damaging to your business. Take a look at the responsive websites that we have designed. If you would prefer a simplified, mobile version of your website instead then we can help with that as well.

We focus on two core components - Form and Function. Through our six stage website development process we are able to uncover the best possible approach to ensure we design a website for you that is not only visually stunning, but also intuitive and easy for your customers to use.

Stage 1: We start our website design process with an initial meeting (this can be in person or via Skype/conference call). In this meeting, we will discuss what you want to achieve from your website, how you envision your website will look, any special requirements you may have for your web design, timeframes, and who your target market is.

Stage 2: Once we have all of the necessary information, we will create a proposal that will demonstrate how we can craft a custom web design that will meet and exceed your objectives.

Stage 3: Should you accept our proposal, the next stage is creating content for your website. Having content aids us in the design process, as we can figure out what to put where, what menu items to include, and in general makes the design process more efficient. The team here can write content for your site, or you can provide your own content. This can also include photos/images.

Stage 4: This is where the fun starts - we will mock-up our first design of your website for you to approve and/or make comments on.

Stage 5: Once you are happy with your design, we will move on to the development stage. This is where we make your website work, and fortunately for you, our developers are so good that it really just feels as easy as flicking on a switch.

Stage 6: Go live! Once you are happy with the look and feel of your new website we can put it live. Using your Content Management System, you can add your own pages and content as needed. We also give you a free run-through of our CMS to show you how easily you can add and edit your own content.

And there you have it - our six stage bespoke web design that not only matches your branding, but delivers an incredible and intuitive user experience.
With our websites, you will experience better rankings in Google which means more traffic to your website (if you are in a competitive niche we recommend further online marketing such as SEO to increase your rankings further).

Get in touch with us today to discuss how we can help your business grow and be successful online!

Graphic Design and Print

Graphic design is the art of intertwining images with text to communicate a message. Activate provides graphic design for both web and for print and has been doing so since 2003. 

There is a significant benefit in brand consistency and general efficiency working with a company who is skilled in both these fields. Business managers who are too busy to bounce between a graphic designer, a printer, a web developer and a web-hosting company - can just contact Activate

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Whether you need an advertisement designed, some business cards printed, a logo created, a webside or smartphone app designed or anything in between the team at Activate Design have got your graphic design needs covered.

Contact us for a no obligation chat about how we can help.

Our Work

Responsive website design for Max People

“I have worked with Activate in the past and was more than happy to engage with them again for our new website. This project started with me looking at ‘award-winning’ websites for inspiration so I had created a high benchmark for Matt and his team to achieve.

Working with Activate was hugely collaborative – they were very accommodating in terms of iterations which were always performed in a timely fashion, provided me with excellent back-end training and were just a friendly, approachable team to work with.
I am really ecstatic with the finished website! It really hit the nail on the brief’s head.”

- Tara Connon - Max People

Logo design and branded print material for The Craft Embassy

I'm over the moon with it, you hit this out of the park. Thank you for all your help and support

- Seth Hamilton. The Craft Embassy

'Skool-Loop' Communication App for Schools across Australasia

Having an idea for an app and finding developers who believed in our vision was a tough call, but Activate believed in our app idea. They provided the Skool Loop App team with insight, vision and expertise. Skool Loop App is now a multimillion-dollar business and in part due to the expert advise and skill of the Activate team.

- Sharlene Barnes Managing Director Skool Loop App

website design and development for Najib Real Estate

Website and Print Materials for NZSI Tours

We would like to thank you all for getting our website, brochures and business cards ready well in time. Everything looks great and we appreciate the hard work that each one of you have put in. It was great working with you all. Thanks and regards.

- Anuj Kapahi, NZSI Tours & Travel

Logo design for SnakeBite Brewery based in Franz Josef

"Thanks Jon we really like the design you have done! ...Actually we were all a bit blown away by it to be honest."

- Adam Haugh SnakeBite Brewery

Responsive website for Starfish Swim School

Thank your team for the hard work they put in on the website. We had, within the first week of the website going live, six people book lessons through the website which is amazing! Have had lots of great feedback as well so thank you!

- Corinna Franssen, Starfish Swim School

Brown & Company Planning Group

Just wanted to let you know that we have had 5 new clients come on board in past week and all have said that they chose us because of our website so just thought I’d a pass the feedback on to you and your team and say thank you for doing such a good job!

Kind regards

- Rachel Albers, Office Manager, Brown & Company Planning Group

Branded materials and website development for Farrow Jamieson

Realtime bus tracking smartphone application developed for Connexionz, an intelligent transportation systems company based in California, Virginia and here in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Graphic Design, Illustration and Print Supply for King Tiger Restaurant

logo, branding and website design for Makingtrax Inclusive Tourism New Zealand

"Our Makingtrax logo designed by Jon from Activate, represents what our company is about as New Zealand's Adaptive Adventure Travel Specialists & Inclusive Tourism Experts. It shows action and energy with culture through the koru. It stands out and is very easily recognised. We use the logo on all our media and also as a "seal of approval" for adventure tourism companies to display representing their support of Inclusive Tourism.
We absolutely love our logo it represents Makingtrax perfectly."

- Jezza Williams CEO Makingtrax

Award winning website design for The Mill House

Thanks for the awesome website! It just picked up a Top Tourism Site Award." "The fully responsive layout and the fantastic home page imagery adds to the quality use experience.

- Malcolm Fagerlund, The Mill House

Responsive website design for The Loft in Christchurch

Thanks guys, it looks amazing!

- Nic Furlong, The Loft Co-location Project

Our Team

Activate Design is a compact, specialised group of individuals with unique skills and strange hairdo’s… much like the original A-Team. Our rag-tag Activate team includes our gung-ho designers, our slightly mad yet enthusiastic programmers, and our planning brainiacs to ensure that every website design or project we undertake is completed to the highest specifications and to our client’s complete satisfaction.

Each member of our team has something special to offer, whether it be project planning and problem-solving, copywriting, graphics and logo design, branding and website design, software development for websites and smartphone applications, search-engine-optimisation to increase website rankings and traffic or juggling print schedules so you get those business cards you have run out of.

So we are not a crack commando unit delving into international espionage and wanted by the Government, but we are a slick website design company delving into all aspects of website creation, online marketing, design and development and wanted by you, our clients.

Jon Tarr

Creative Director - Graphic Designer

Jon has been in the graphic design industry since 2003 after completing his Bachelor of Arts and a Diploma in Graphic Design. Firstly working in print and advertising design for ACP Media he then joined Activate as a designer in 2006. A few years later he somehow managed to wrestle the controls off his boss to take management of the company.

Jon's our creative director overseeing the design aspects of our projects. He is also our branding guy and handles all the branding and logo design work. He lives, breathes and eats logos. When he is not doing that he also likes riding his motorbike, boxing and playing video games on our arcade machine. 

Matt Mabley

Digital Director

Matt often arrives at work with coffees, and that’s all we really care about. But for you, Matt is the guy to tell you all about websites, apps and all things digital. Matt has a substantial background in web project management for over 800 successful websites. He will develop and plan digital projects, keep tasks on schedule and manage hosting support for clients. He knows all the latest techniques and is adept in keeping down costs for the client as he has a personal vendetta towards companies over-charging.

Matt is pretty much happy if he is talking about websites. He can, and does, talk about websites all day. Matt also has a young family to manage in his spare time - he probably talks to them about websites as well.



Robert is our website programmer. He is a 30-something white man with an irrelevant degree in Chemistry and a slightly relevant Diploma in e-Business support. He drives a Prius. Rob works with the standard array of PHP, HTML, CSS, Javascript and MySQL. He hasn't touched Flash in a long time and intends it to stay that way.

In his spare time Rob enjoys playing TRPGs (Tabletop Roleplaying Games with real dice, paper, people and imagination). So it turns out that programmers do have an imagination!


Tech Support

Chevonne is our new James, less manic than James, but just as capable and just as fun. Chevonne is here to support you with all your technical issues. Unlike most IT support people, we actually trust Chevonne completely to interact with our customers on a personal basis, and so far she’s been a hit. (We know this because we can hear the laughter in support conversations from the other side of the room.)

With a background in accounting, Chevonne understands the pressure in keeping all aspects of a business running smoothly, and this includes your emails and website functionality, so you’re sure to have a dedicated specialist on the case.



Callum is our programmer with a Bachelor of Science, Computer Science that is, black gold, PHP. (That was a Hillbillies reference in case you missed it.) Constantly updating his skills in jQuery, XHTML, CSS, PHP, Javascript, MySQL and more, to keep ahead of the industry in web development and mobile applications. With Callum on the team we can assure our customers that if they want it - we can do it! It's just a matter of how long and how complicated the process may be to get there.

Callum is an undervalued, overachieving part of our enthusiastic Activate team. From his dark, cobwebby corner comes quality programming, smart remarks, and a quick answer for everything. His hobbies include video games, reading, Sci/Fi & Fantasy, and making fun of James.



Meet Frank; a top-performing employee who consistently exceeds expectations. With his exceptional attention to detail and unparalleled organizational skills, he is the epitome of efficiency and effectiveness. Frank consistently demonstrates a can-do attitude and a willingness to take on new challenges, making him a valuable member of any team. His positive and approachable demeanor makes him a joy to work with, and his unwavering dedication to his job inspires those around him. Frank's creativity and innovative thinking often result in new, improved processes and procedures, making him an invaluable asset to the company. He truly embodies the characteristics of a great employee, making him a valuable and beloved member of the team.

Frank isn't so good at talking about himself though, this was all written by the artificial intelligence chatbot; ChatGPT.



Saphi is our import from Germany, brings a positive attitude and a love of coding in PHP and Java. Our team has spent considerable time introducing her to the kiwi love of sarcastic humour and when to know we're joking (we're always joking).

Saphi is the outdoor type and loves anything to do with climbing and running (so far we've managed to avoid challenges with office-furniture-stack climbing and enthusiastic sprint laps of the staffroom), and even though she's a dedicated plant-based food enthusiast she won't work for peanuts (we tried).


SEO Specialist

Chris is the inhouse digital marketing guru. Once the websites are built, Chris is the go-to guy for getting your site swamped with potential leads.

Chris specialises in SEO, Google AdWords and overall digital marketing strategy and has worked with many leading New Zealand and international brands.

Some trivia - Chris loves cats... However his girlfriend is as terrified of them as she is allergic to them... Therefore Chris no longer has cats. This makes him sad, but so long as he can bury his head in the latest digital marketing news, he'll be ok.


Web Designer

Dan has a Bachelors Degree in Graphic Design and we reluctantly admit that he designs very smart, modern looking websites that we don’t want him getting a big head about. He has worked for award winning web design companies around the world, none of which we know about so we’ll believe it when we have the evidence.

He has created well over 1,500 websites in his 18 years of experience and several have won the iBest (Oscar of the Brazilian Internet), which sounds like bikini-clad brazilian beauties handing out mock awards but is actually quite legit. Dans creative talent certainly doesn't stop at websites, he is also an amazing sculptor, illustrator, and painter... and he would like to draw you, wearing that.

Activate 205 Durham Street (top floor) Christchurch central 8011
PO Box 3871, Christchurch, NZ
Email: [email protected]    Freephone: 0800 30 8996
(03) 964 5305 - Reception

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