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Having fun at Zao is one of our values. We’ve put limited animated flourishes throughout our site to communicate our love of levity. We also recognize that onscreen movement is not fun or possible for everyone. We've turned off all our animations for you per your browser's request to limit motion. That said, we don't want you to miss out on the party.

Here's a funny joke to enjoy!

Where does the General keep his armies?

In his sleevies!

Your Search for a Reliable WordPress Development Agency Ends Here

We eat complex WordPress challenges for breakfast

Zao partners with organizations, online retailers, and publishers to solve head-scratching technical problems. We build delightful digital experiences for boundary-pushers like you who refuse to tone down their aspirations — and need a development team that’s just as ambitious as they are.

The kind of team that really “gets” their vision and is fun to work with, too. Whatever your custom WordPress development needs are, we’re here to rise to the challenge and put scalability, accessibility, and reliability first.

Custom WordPress development services and open source solutions built for big ideas

API Integrations

Connect visitors with data and apps from other sources right on your website. We create seamless integrations to keep visitors on your site.

Custom Plugins

Need to add a specific function to your site? We create custom plugins that keep site speed lightning fast. Already have a plugin? We can audit it to fix bugs and enhance features. 


Make it easier for your visitors to shop. We help you create robust payment gateways and inventory management that grows your sales on autopilot. 

Search Capabilities

Give your visitors the power to find what they’re looking for quickly. We help make your website easier to navigate with custom search tools built on technologies like Algolia and ElasticSearch.

Membership Sites

Need a user-focused membership platform or subscription site? From different tiers of access to engaging social features and member profiles, we rally all the moving parts to automate your community experience.


Wondering how your website SEO, security, performance, and accessibility could be better? Let us get code-y with it! We’ll offer a game plan for improvements or tackle fixes from an existing audit.

Awesomize Your Digital Experiences

You have crazy ideas for what you want to build. We make them happen with WordPress.

Optimize Performance

We consider performance before we write a single line of code, so what we create doesn’t slow page load times or squander server resources.

Backend Development

As your business grows, we ensure your site’s backend can handle anything you throw at it. Bring on all the extra traffic, users, and transactions!

Proactive Communication

When you work with us, you get your own Slack channel connected to our team. Ask us anything, anytime. (Except how to make stepping on a Lego hurt less. We haven’t figured that one out yet.)

Why Choose Zao?

If you’re tired of highbrow agencies, disappearing acts, and developers who speak one language: obtuse — we’re the WordPress development team for you. 

Our clients come to us because we find solving complex technical problems as exciting as one-day Amazon deliveries. 

Whether it’s scaling eCommerce sites to sell millions per hour in inventory, simplifying complex wholesale systems for internal departments, creating custom payment gateway builds, or improving accessibility and SEO for content creators, our favorite line is: “We’re on it.” 

  1. We started developing for WordPress before it was cool
    WordPress has existed since 2003. Zao’s been rocking the WordPress rodeo circuit since 2005 — and worked with big names like Disney, Amazon, and the Oprah Winfrey Network. Give us one day to play in your code, and don’t be surprised to see us fix something that’s been bugging you for months.
  2. We value long-term, collaborative partnerships
    You can count on us to do what we say we’ll do. No matter how awesome your development team is, their skills shouldn’t hide behind two-syllable project updates and flippant deadlines. Our jam is exploring every possibility to find solutions that help you crush your business goals.
  3. We offer big smarts and hearts in a small package
    As a close-knit team of WordPress experts, when you partner with us, you know exactly who’s working on your project. We care so hard about every single client — you become a part of our extended family. (That means you have to pretend you find our jokes funny at least 10% of the time.).

Meet Your Team

The most fun you’ll ever have working with tech geeks.

Proactive technical strategists. Aspiring daymakers. And the next best thing to having your own in-house development team — only we won’t polish off your break room coffee and donuts. (You’re welcome.)

Justin Sainton, our lead WordPress Development expert and fearless founder.

Justin Sainton

Founder / Lead Developer

Zao started with an 18-year-old Justin printing grainy flyers on his home printer and knocking on doors to land his first few jobs. Now his version of fun is juggling five kids and annoying his wife with Instagram quiz filters. He’s come a long way.

Liz Karaffa

Frontend Developer

Liz has been a part of the Zao fold since 2014 — and none of her opinions are loosely-held. She’s passionate about creating accessible websites, advocating for social justice issues, and adventures that require a paddleboard or kayak. 

Tim Jensen

Tim Jensen


Tim is the quintessential outdoorsman who knows the backwoods like he knows backend development. Throw him on any survivalist reality TV show — and we’d bet our entire retirement savings on him.

Hasnain Ashfaq

Hasnain Ashfaq


Hasnain travels the world by road (preferably in a vintage car), climbs mountains like a boss, moonlights as a night owl fitness freak, and has an unflappable work ethic. He’s either the most interesting coder in the world or James Bond. We’re still deciding.

What our awesome clients say…

Cancer Tutor

We get a lot of crazy ideas for things we would like to build. It takes a very special combination of developer and people-person to really understand what and how we want to do certain things.

Zao seemed to get “it” instantly. Even from the first wireframe we sent over, they understood our vision and direction. They were the first developers we had spoken to that took a genuine interest in understanding our project from day one.

Reggie Black
Founder, Cancer Tutor

Liquid Web

The number of people I trust to work on a serious eCommerce store can be counted on one hand. Justin and the Zao team are at the top of that very short list. From custom payment gateways to full site builds, you’re in good hands.

Chris Lema, VP of Products & Innovation
Liquid Web

Bill Erickson

Justin and his team at Zao are true WordPress development experts. Any time we have a complicated problem to solve, we turn to his team and have never been disappointed. They are fast, knowledgeable, and excellent at communicating throughout the project. Zao is one of the few agencies I recommend to my clients.

Bill Erickson
WordPress Developer