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¡Viva Mexico! Showcase Of Web Design In Mexico

This post is the third article of our new series “Global Web Design“. Throughout this series we’ll be covering various continents, featuring web developers and web designs from different countries of the world and taking a close look at what’s happening in the web design scene worldwide. We started with Russian Web Design1 and Web Design in Ireland. We continue now with Mexico and next week with Israel. If you would like to prepare an article for this series, please contact us so we can discuss the details.

Land of tequila and mariachi, home of Chichén Itza (one of the new seven wonders of the world), amazing beaches, cheerful people, beautiful women… and last but not least, inspirational and creative Web designs for the entire world. Ours is a great country, with more than 110 million inhabitants, over 30% of which to date are connected to the Web.

Design has always been integral to our culture: the majestic pyramids built by the Aztecs; the numeric symbol “zero” created by the Mayans (who, by the way, were the architects of the great Chichén Itza); the colonial buildings influenced by the Spaniards and French; beautiful paintings by well-known artists such as Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo; and now today’s great architects and artists, design firms, interactive agencies and software engineers.

The portfolio of Roberto Avila3, a designer from Mexico.

To gain greater insight into Web design happening in Mexico today, we interviewed many people in the industry: freelancers, digital marketing managers, creative interactive agency reps and a few bloggers.

State Of Affairs Link

A lot is going on in our country, and many companies and brands in Mexico are definitely noticing the impact of great Web design. Digital marketing is growing fast. People working in this industry have not had to face a crisis. Mexico grew 20% in the first quarter of 2009. Why? Because everyone recognizes the importance of shifting to digital.

According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau of Mexico (IAB), in 2008 only 4% of budgets were designated for digital marketing. If we compare this to countries like the UK, where digital marketing budgets were bigger than TV budgets, then we have a good reason to be optimistic about the future of digital marketing and Web design in Mexico. Bianca Loew, Managing Director of IAB Mexico, states, “The Internet is the ideal platform for companies to interact with consumers.”

DesignWeek Monterrey 2009, an original design from Mexico.

Most companies understand the value and power of good design. We have seen different brands try out a lot of digital marketing strategies, but still much work is to be done on coding standards, usability and persuasion. Few websites are truly prepared for the social media revolution. But great agencies are willing to provide quality information to help everyone get ready!

“Near-shoring” has become a must for many US and Canadian companies. A lot of work is being outsourced to Mexico for digital marketing and Web design and development. We have seen a lot of Argentinean agencies in our market, which has been a very good push for competition, and this will surely drive innovation and creativity.

Voices of People In The Industry Link

To gain some insights from the people working in the web design industry in Mexico, we asked Miguel Calderon (founder of Group W), Gustavo Ross (founder of Activamente) and Rodrigo Gama (founder of to share with us some insights about the current state of web design in Mexico.

Q: What is your perception of the Web design environment in Mexico?

Miguel: It’s improving, perhaps slowly, but there are interesting developments. What happened with traditional design years ago is happening with Web design today: we are following international trends instead of creating new and better proposals. We’ve missed our identity as a country. Therefore, there is a big opportunity to create proposals that will be followed abroad in the near future. However, the incursion of big designers and illustrators from traditional media to digital media will trigger great websites.


Gustavo: With the introduction of pre-fabricated and self-service platforms, such as WordPress and Joomla, designers must become more specialized. Whether they start by creating professional templates aimed at the Mexican public or with professional design interfaces for business applications and portals, deeper knowledge is needed to improve usability and front-end technologies such as AJAX.

Some time ago, we left behind websites for which only graphic design mattered. Today, designers have to be much more comprehensive and knowledgeable about technology and the needs and habits of the common consumer.

Rodrigo: The market for Web design in Mexico is growing significantly every year. The quality in design is improving fast, but the larger companies are the ones willing to invest in and pay for experts who develop attractive Web designs. Websites for small companies and independent projects are usually made by students, independent designers and freelancers, and their owners do not yet have a comprehensive understanding of attractive Web design: usability, programming, social networking, search engine optimization, etc.

Carrera bonafont
Carrera Bonafont

A lot of effort needs to be made by organizations such as AMIPCI (Mexican Association of Internet) and IAB Mexico (Interactive Advertising Bureau Mexico) to publicize the benefits of digital marketing. This causes the market to mature, and developers are taking advantage of this knowledge. I strongly believe that in a couple of years, the quality of many Mexican websites will have a greater impact in Latin America.

I would like to stress that many of the Web design projects in Mexico are done by traditional advertising agencies. Most of the time, such agencies have neither the knowledge nor experience of the Web to develop effective websites, and they work only on what they have committed to their customers. Most of the time, they don’t introduce best practices or standards or even do usability testing.

Monterrey Fashion

Q: What makes an outstanding design agency in Mexico?

Miguel: Fortunately, designers and illustrators are already becoming vital for Web design environments. Every day, traditional and digital design become more integrated. It is a broad topic, but I encourage you to look deeper into Alberto Cerriteño & Zoveck. They do very few Web projects, but their websites could not be understood if it wasn’t for their extraordinary work and creativity.

Rodrigo: In my personal opinion, the best agencies are the ones whose core business is the Internet. They usually have a team of experts in different areas, such as design, programming, usability, marketing and online advertising.


Gustavo: I am thrilled to see that website producers have become more professional, leaving behind the Flash and intros in favor of functional pages designed for the user rather than the designer.

Outstanding design agencies… Those with a more holistic view of the needs of their clients, notwithstanding conflicts of interest, and who focus on generating good business results. The best designers are those who think of the end user, not of the prize.

Enough! Show Me The Good Stuff Link

Tequila can really fuel creativity, as you’ll see! Web designers and interactive agencies here have done a great job. Here is a taste of what we Mexicans are capable of.

GOAL by Gonzalo Alonso8, a Mexican in Argentina. What’s really cool about his blog is that he has two skins: one of Asterix and another of Star Wars.



Tu Deseo Bon O Bon11


Alberto Cerriteño13




Detective Stripes




Face Face Face17




Ed Fladung19




Campus Vida23


Catalina Estrada Paralevis

Catalin Estrada



Bicentenario Nuevo Leon

Bicentenario Nuevo León





Nextel Rock


Poster Media29


Showdown Interactive31


Energy Lab


Rexona Clinical


Oscar Carnicero33


Ivana Breu35




Interactive Agencies In Mexico Link

High-quality interactive agencies can be found all over Mexico. Some have won prestigious international prizes, including the acclaimed Cannes Lions. Here are some of our most renowned agencies, listed in alphabetical order.







D10 Studio43

D10 Studio44

Element Studios45

Element Studios46







IA Interactive53

IA Interactive54



Kansei Lab57

Kansei Lab58



Media Agency61

Media Agency62

Design Bloggers in Mexico Link

Blog Vecindad63








Infected FX




Asfalto Tecnicolor71




You may be interested in the following related posts:

Footnotes Link

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Pablo Hernández O’Hagan is the CEO and founder of Ingenia Group, an interactive agency with more than 60 employees and offices in Mexico City, New York and Montreal. He is passionate about his personal life, his companies and, of course, the improvement of digital marketing and entrepreneurship in his country. You can follow him on Twitter @pablohernandezo for great entrepreneurial and digital marketing advice.

  1. 1

    Very nice showcase. Some very inspiring stuff here. Thanks a lot!

  2. 2

    Some really great stuff there! Thanks.

  3. 3

    Some really inspiring stuff here. Its always good to see some new sites.

    Anyone else notice how similar the illustration on Roberto Avila’s site is to the one on FreelanceSwitch?

  4. 5


  5. 6

    Very nice… there is a coffee cup on desk themed design… i like the colors in it… unique… love this collection. Cheers guys.

  6. 7

    Really? A showcase of Mexico sites?

  7. 8

    Well there are so many creative websites but I see lots of Flash! What about it?
    Viva Mexico!! :)

    • 9

      We have some interesting web development companies in Mexico … even though I agree with Willy on lots of flash usage… people and companies are starting to understand web usability and we are encouraging them to do so with all of their benefits.

  8. 10

    Wow! excelente, mexicanos que ejemplo para el mundo del diseño… felicitaciones – Smashing > how´bout pumping up on this latin american design showcases – really insightfull inspiration and impressive talent

  9. 11

    There is one web agency that use a template from Themeforest :D

  10. 15

    Amazing! Love them all, me gusto mucho que hayan escrito este artículo sobre México! There’s a lot of talent around.

  11. 16

    The Art of Alberto Cerriteño it’s truly remarkable, indeed there’s a lot of talent in Mexico, we have a long way to walk, but if we stay true to our sometimes dusted roots, we will find our way. Congratulations to all Mexican Designers and Developers keep on the good work!

  12. 17

    Besides the language, I don’t really see any difference between Mexican websites and…any other professionally designed/developed websites.

  13. 18

    Andrew is right, I mean, being honest.

    Maybe Alberto Cerriteño, because his kind of illustration keeps a mexican/personal essence. He is truly original.

    The others, I don’t know, they are what most call “the standard”, but hey maybe this article is like “mexican curious” stuff, like “take a look mom, mexicans can do it too”

    These are some talented guys and a lot of not so talented guys mixed in between (like a friend says, some were at the top of the wave in the right moment).

    Trying to not be naive: A few mexicans do not represent mexican design. They represent themselves.

    But hey, what I can expect from Smashing Magazine if they post a “beautiful icons” article an mix some really bad ones between the really good ones? Happens the same to your “examples of great photography” articles.

    Lowering standards?… maybe.

    • 19

      Smashing Editorial

      December 12, 2009 10:27 am

      CyberGus, you need to pay more attention to the content of our articles. Can you please tell us what you expected to see on a showcase of designs from Mexico? Believe it or not, the goal of this article was to feature some Mexican designers and their work. Maybe you would like to write a similar (better) article for Smashing Magazine? That would certainly help us to improve the quality of articles published here, don’t you think? And it would certainly help the community to get a new perspective. If you are complaining about low standards, please help us improve the quality of the magazine by a constructive, helpful criticism. What about writing a “proper” article about your country? We are looking forward to your reply.

      • 20

        @Smashing Editorial Got it, I will. I can help too with articles related to photography

        Just to be clear with my point of view in this article:

        The list herein is not about right and wrong, I mean is not black and white, but a few mistakes that can be misunderstood for new learners.

        I think Adan Avelar has an interesting opinion here. Mexican designers are following mostly other countries trends. But as he says, that is not precisely wrong because design tends to be global, but we are losing the point here.

        If a mexican wins the olimpic games or any soccer world cup, they say “we win”. If a mexican team lose a game, most mexican say “they lose”.

        A blog, magazine or any other media with many visitors, have the responsability to be objective because you are visited by people “learning” what seems to be best or worse.

        One mexican, or african, or chinese… or american guy is not our whole country representative. This seems very obvious but every article that tries to fit in a group of agencies or designers by their countries, is like giving a tag/categorization that can’t be broken, is giving homogeneity instead of diversity.

        Andrew is right, if most but not all works here look like made by designers from any country, then telling if they are or not mexicans, is pointless. Maybe they are great, good or bad, but mainly designers.

        Among the voices interviewed:

        “I am thrilled to see that website producers have become more professional, leaving behind the Flash and intros in favor of functional pages designed for the user rather than the designer.” – Gustavo

        Indeed, that’s something that is happening here (slowly), but this article is showing a lot of flash screen captures, not precisely the functional pages and not precisely sites focused on the end user. Most agencies here are creating a lot of flash websites campaigns, one hit wonder with no ROI, no relation between visitors and product/services sales.

        A great design sells when it’s invisible or when design itself is the subject to sale.

        A great design is not pure eyecandy, it needs to work.

        I think we all know that but… something happens that in the end we drown the user with a lot of bells and whistles.

        If we sell art or illustration, great, illustrators or artists can do whatever they want.

        Designers have an obligation with the final consumer.

        Are these examples of best practices or most original ones? that’s a question for SM and the readers. I see a lot of common place designs, and I’m not talking about the functional ones.

        I see a lot of eye candy, expensive eye candy and some plug and play templates mixed here.

        If you mix great web design or illustrators with people at the top of the wave, then you vanished the possibilities to identify quality and real design. So if they are mexicans, who cares?

        By the way, Smashing Magazine have a lot of great articles, but if you start posting in order to get clicks instead of quality, you can lose credibility.

        Greetings from Mexico City.

      • 21

        For instance, you start this article with Roberto Avila’s website, it is nice, but made with tables…
        That was first thing I noticed.
        @Smashing Editorial
        I think that your post here “sounds” pretty angry, you just can’t afford to write such post, next time take deep breath and count to 25, than write your post. :D

  14. 22

    Activamente uses a template from, so I’m not sure if Activamente is a proper example of web design in Mexico…

  15. 23

    Muy buenos ejemplos. No solo de diseño, sino de interactividad en los sitios.

    Saludos, desde México.

  16. 24

    Felicidades a todo el talento mexicano, yo soy diseñador web y en mexico sí se hacen muy bien las cosas

    siganme en twitter @j0rch.

    Congratulations, in Mexico we have tons of talent, there is the proof.

  17. 25

    In Mexico we are working to improve everyday.
    We are conscious that we have great influence from the U.S., but every day we have more organizations and communities bonding us to learn how to work together.
    It would be very naive to speak of a “Mexican design” because the design must be Global, but here you can find very good designers from Mexico.
    Let us take a mention in Smashing Magazine like a challenge, to engage and create more content, quality, improve user experience, manage web standards, better interaction, and so on.
    We have to believe in us as Mexicans, We can succeed and be among the best in the world.
    Thanks for the mention.

  18. 27

    es cierto, tal vez muchos sitios de este post no tengan 100% la escencia mexicana pero tal vez no era esa la finalidad de sus creadores, creo que esta lista mas bien representa lo que se esta haciendo en Mexico actualmente y no al diseño mexicano en si, para eso, habria que crear otro post que creo yo tendria una lista de ejemplos interminables.

    este post mas bien, muestra la calidad que nosotros los mexicanos tenemos en nuestro trabajo!! y a lo que hemos llegado en tan poco tiempo, estamos apostando mas por la creatividad y siento yo aun tenemos mucho que aprender en otros rubros, como todos, siempre seguir aprendiendo cosas nuevas de aqui, de alla!

    el diseño en mexico creo yo esta re-naciendo! y de la mejor manera :D
    viva mexico cabrones!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. 28

    I’m mexican and I must say it’s a nice selection, even though I think some of the examples wouldn’t deserve be considered as part of “the best” and some others are really old… by the way, shame on the guys that used a template for their own site!!!
    And honestly, I don’t understand what some readers here are expecting to see, obviously it looks like the web design they know, just like the russian or irish showcases presented here previously, trends in web design are global…

    saludos desde México, DF

  20. 29

    Enrique Ramírez

    December 12, 2009 12:48 pm

    Glad to see some nice examples here of what we can do.

    Unfortunately, web design in my country is being held back not by the developers, but by the clients. People here expect to have a whole site designed with 300 bucks, including hosting. There’s a long way to go, but I’m really happy to see that I was wrong assuming that there was pretty much no one interested in good web development.


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