Have you ever needed a simple graphic design job done, and found yourself overwhelmed by the process of narrowing down a graphic designer?
DesignCrowd and 99Designs are two platforms that help mitigate this. These crowdsourcing services both have a global presence and hundreds of thousands of designers. By using the available options, you can either connect one-on-one with a designer or start a design contest.
With a design contest, you'll pay a certain amount to have many different designers participate. Every one of them will submit a design based off of your brief. Then you can pick the one you like best. All contests for both platforms include a 30 day money back guarantee.
Though each platform serves the same basic purposes, there are also some significant differences between the two. I've taken a look to help you understand which will work best for you.
Overview of DesignCrowd and 99Designs
Unique DesignCrowd Features
Unique 99Designs Features
DesignCrowd is based on the ability to get more submissions per posting than other services. The business model is best for those who believe that having a large quantity to choose from is a better investment than having just a few high-quality options.
Each design category has different costs when you run a contest. Because the cost of getting just a few submissions is comparatively high, it's most economic to use DesignCrowd when you want a lot of varied options instead.
For example, if you run a logo design contest, the base prices are as follows:
With this model, the most economic option is to opt for more than 100 designs. That's less than five dollars per design - it's pocket change.
99Designs doesn't have flat fees based on quantity. Instead, their fee structure is based on a combination of quantity and quality.
To get 90 designs from Gold level designers, you have to pay $799. Just 60 designs from Platinum designers costs $1,299. The cheapest tier, Bronze, has a price of $299 for thirty designs.
You can get a much larger quantity of submissions through DesignCrowd for the same amount of money as with 99Designs. Even the lowest quality 99Designs tier is more expensive than a DesignCrowd contest.
DesignCrowd doesn't have a system for separating artists by quality level. However, freelancers do receive visible star ratings from other customers based on their previous work.
Because there aren't separated tiers for artists, you can't guarantee the submission quality of work you're sent. You can run contests and only invite five-star freelancers, though.
99Designs, on the other hand, has an extensive process for measuring artist quality. In addition to star ratings, each artist is sorted into one of four tiers: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. There are also written client reviews.
The 99Designs staff gives each artist a personal assessment and quality rating. You can also view the designer's profile to see information including:
The better a person performs with their clients and in their staff evaluation, the higher their quality will be scored.
There are also more specialized freelancers, so if you're in a niche industry, you're more likely to find people who know how to design for your specific needs.
99Designs has an extensive rating system for artists based on their past performance and a staff evaluation. This allows you to run contests that narrow down the quality of designers. If you want just three designs from top professionals, this service is the main way to make that happen.
DesignCrowd's interface isn't well-suited to one-on-one freelancing. You can search for designers to invite to your contests based on their star quality rating. But the search parameters aren't extensive.
If you find an artist you want to work with one-on-one, you can click on their profile. Their fees and one-on-one services will be listed at the bottom of their page.
99Designs is more geared toward one-on-one postings than freelancing. Each artist has an accessible bio that has all the information listed above. The home page immediately gives you access to a one-on-one search tool.
In addition, there are a ton of filters for narrowing down the available designers. You can find specific options based on the following:
This means that if you have more specialized work that needs doing, you're more likely to find a designer attuned to your specific needs through this service. You're also more likely to get a high-quality end result and need fewer revisions thanks to the much more detailed briefing process.
Although both platforms have options for one-on-one projects, 99Designs is set up for one-on-one freelancing. You have access to more detailed user profiles and detailed search parameters when looking for an artist. You can even search artists by industry to narrow down the best marketing choices.
If you want a long-term relationship with a single designer, this is the website to use.
Pros and Cons of DesignCrowd
Pros and Cons of 99Designs
Final Thoughts: Which is Better?
Both of these crowdsourcing platforms are an excellent way to find graphic designers that can meet a variety of different needs. Regardless of which you choose, the contests feature allows you to compare many designs to choose the one that's best for your business.
DesignCrowd is best in terms of overall quantity and affordability. The structure does allow one-on-one work, but it's based more in contests. You can search freelancers to invite them to your contests. In addition, you can get a lot more submissions for much lower pricing, and the briefing process is fast and simple.
99Designs is the best place to go if you want to find freelancers to work with one-on-one. The search feature lets you find people suited to your needs based on a variety of parameters. In addition, you can host contests that only allow submissions from top-quality designers. The designer rating process is very involved, so you know an artist's exact quality level.