Review of 99designs

April, 2013

Rating: 5/5

I really like 99designs - it’s a great way to get a large number of design proposals in a short space of time. 99designs is a leader in crowdsourced design, I’ve found the service, and the design process, to work well.

99designs is the undisputed leader in crowdsourced design. Their nearest competitors are much smaller - DesignCrowd and crowdSPRING.

It’s most often used for logo design, but you can also use it for designs of clothing/merchandise, websites and apps, art/illustration, advertising, books, packaging and more.

Before you choose 99designs, here are the key things you need to know.

First, understand how design contests work. Most design on 99designs is done via contests. You submit a short design brief explaining your needs. Over the next few days, all of the designers are free to submit designs to you. At this point you shortlist the best designs, and those designers will revise their work and submit final designs for you to select a winner. You will be working with many different designers over the contest.

Second, design contests require your work. You’ll probably need to review and provide feedback on many different designs. This can be time consuming to do properly.

Third, be aware that 99designs’ huge number of designers has both benefits and drawbacks. When you submit a design competition to 99designs, you will attract a large number of designs (the average contest receives over 120 entries). This is great in that you’ll have a lot of choice… however it also means that many of the designs won’t meet your quality expectations. To counter this, 99designs allow you to pay extra for their gold package, which allows only the best designers to submit entries.

Finally, consider alternative options instead of design contests. You can work 1-on-1 with a designer through 99designs (rather than work with dozens of designers at once). You can also purchase pre-drawn logos from the 99designs logo store - which are then customised with your company name and tagline as required.

I recommend 99designs for most businesses needing design work - small, medium or large.

The Sales Pitch

99designs is the world’s leading design contest marketplace, powered by a massive community of designers and business owners.

Small businesses and startups everywhere use our service to get graphic designs for logos, business cards, t-shirts, websites, and more.

Designers from all over the globe compete with their peers in design contests to win prizes, improve their skills, and establish relationships with new clients.


Money back if you don’t receive a design you like, Escrow service, Private contests


99designs targets startup companies and small businesses

Tech Information
Launch Date
Total Payments
Medium - $50,000,000 +
Number of Providers
Large - 200,000+
Logo design, Business card design, T-shirt design, Postcard or flyer design, Brochure design, Illustration, Web page design, Mobile app design, Icon or button design, Banner ad design, Product packaging design, Book cover design