Brand marketers and designers across the world know something – something very important – so important that it could actually make or break a brand. Though it may sound really simple to you but it can be as complex as it gets. So what is it they know? Here it is – people usually judge things by what they see! You knew that right? We’re sure you did but not as nearly as brand marketers or graphic designers do.
You are definitely going to need a graphic designer or an illustrator at some stage when starting your business. How does a designer help you? A designer can help you with an awesome looking logo, perfect business card, billboards, website landing page, and the list goes on. If you have conducted any kind of research online, you have already heard of 99designs. You might even be considering hiring a designer or running a design contest in the world’s biggest creative marketplace. But wait awhile! You should probably think of other options if you are to invest your hard-earned money somewhere.
Well, you already know how finding the right information online might get time consuming – it is like looking for a needle in a haystack. This article simplifies things, and brings you the top alternatives to 99designs on a silver platter. Read on!
Why considering an alternative to 99designs is a good idea?
The truth is there are going to be better and more attractive plans available on different platforms providing similar services to 99designs. This article aims at providing an in-depth analysis of top alternatives to 99designs based on five major criteria, namely how it works, process, pricing, design categories and plan value.
How it works: This will allow you to gaze at how the platform works in different ways which in turn will help you make an educated decision on which platform works better for you.
Process: Every design request you put forward will be processed differently from service to service and so will the platform you use.
Pricing: The payment options and price criteria may vary depending on the platform you choose.
Plan value: Every platform has tailor-made plans that offer different services. Depending on what you need, you can select the plan of your choice.
Before we get into the ‘best 99designs alternatives’ let’s take a quick look at what 99designs has to offer.
99designs is an international platform which brings clients and designers together and provides a favorable environment to work together online. Founded in 2008, the company can boast of being the largest creative marketplaces in the world and has over 1.4 million registered designers in its community.
Watch the video to learn more about how 99designs works:
Process: The design process has three major steps – Brief, Connect and Collaborate.
Creating a design brief is the most important step of the design process since it involves you explaining exactly what you want in terms of the design. You explain how you want the colors, shape and other visual elements of your design to be through the design brief.
After filling the design brief you head to the Connect step. You either hire a designer or create a design contest in this step.
Collaborate is the step where you actually work closely with the designers, reevaluating and making changes until you are fully satisfied. Following which you get production ready files and a full copyright of the design.
Pricing: 99designs has a wide array of plans and packages with varying price tags. Prices for various projects are designed in a way that everyone can buy them. The price is set depending on the plan and the kind of project you select. However, most projects at 99designes range from $299 to $2,500.
Here are some popular packs along with their price range available on 99designs:
- Logo Design: $299-$1,299
- Web Page Design: $599-$2499
- WordPress Design: $599-$2499
Design categories: 99designs provides design services under various categories, from logo design and brand identity to web page and book cover design.
Hundreds and thousands of freelancers are available to work once you request projects for designs and other interactive media products.
Plan value: You can select from four different payment plans depending on your design needs. You get expert designers and more submissions with the more expensive plan you choose.
The four plans available on 99designs are: bronze, silver, gold and platinum. One of the most attractive features about these plans is that they come with a 100% money-back guarantee.
Questions to ask when looking for 99designs alternatives
While the five criteria mentioned above can provide enough information on which platform would suit you best, answering the following questions will provide you with additional insights on how different platforms function:
- How are the designers selected? Is there a filtering process?
- Is there a secure payment gateway available?
- Do they provide ownership and copyright of the final work?
- Is assistance available in case you run into trouble?
- What is the level of customer support? Are they available 24*7?
Additionally, you could read reviews and ratings of clients and customers to get a clear picture of these platforms.
Alternatives to 99design
Time is money! And this article helps you save plenty of it by narrowing down your search for graphic design services online. While there are plenty to choose from, here are top 5 best alternatives to 99designs.
Designhill is one of the top creative crowdsourcing platforms and one of the top competitors of 99designs. The platform “caters to the creative needs of businesses and individuals alike who can source high-quality designs from professional designers and unique products created by independent artists.”
How it works: The way Designhill works is pretty similar to 99designs – you could either launch a design contest or go for a one-to-one project. In case of logo designs, they have an additional choice of a readymade logo store.
Opting for a design contest allows you to compare designs from different designers competing to emerge victorious. Once you submit your design brief, designers from across the world compete for the prize.
One-to-one project is best suited for the person who has a big project in mind or knows exactly what he wants. So if you think you know what you want and are looking for 24*7 support plus price flexibility, then one-to-one project is best for you.
Readymade logo store: This is an added feature that can work wonders for a person looking to get a logo done in quick time that too at incredibly low prices. The readymade logo store has a great collection of ready-to-use template based logos which can be customized according to your taste and preference. The prices for these logos start only at $49.
Process: The design process in Designhill involves three steps –
- Fill out design brief
- Receive submissions
- Pick your favorite
The design brief involves you filling out crucial details like your preferred shape, color palette and various other visual details. Based on the design brief, designers from across the world will make their submissions to you.
The next step in the process is the ‘receive submission’ step. This step involves designers submitting their designs according to the brief you filled. You can reevaluate designs and “get as many revisions as you want.”
Pick your favorite is pretty self-explanatory – you choose your favorite design as the winner. Once you pick the winning design, the designer hands over the full copyright along with the ownership to you.
Pricing: Just like 99designs, Designhill has a wide array of packages available at different prices. Given below are some popular design categories along with their price range:
- Logo Design: $249-$999
- Web Landing Page Design: $499-$1099
- Logo & Brand Identity: $599-$1999
Design categories: From brand identity and logo designs to website and social media, Designhill offers services under various design categories. Though designer count at Designhill may be less compared to 99designs, they have designers who are known to produce great work in a short span of time.
Plan value: There are four different payment plans available on Designhill, each with varying features. The payment plans available are: Fast Track, Standard, Executive and Premium.
99designs vs Designhill: While the two offer almost identical services; there are subtle differences, especially while considering the price factor. Basic logo design, for example, costs $299 on 99designs while the same is priced at $249 on Designhill. So, if you are looking for high quality design similar to 99designs but at lower prices than Designhill is your go-to platform.
One of the cheapest alternatives to 99designs, Fiverr is seen as one of the leading creative crowdsourcing platforms. One of the reasons for Fiverr’s success is that they do not use any middle-men between the client and the designer.
Process: You can select from the wide variety of services they provide by navigating their homepage. You can also filter your selection according to your taste and preference by setting style, budget and delivery time. Once you select the kind of service you want, a list of designers who can work on what you require will be provided.
Pricing: One of the best things from a buyer’s perspective is the fact that you are not required to pay a fixed monthly payment. However, if you buy Fiverr Business, the only plan that Fiverr offers, you are required to pay $149 annually.
There are no fixed prices on services – you only pay what the graphic designer proposes.
Design categories: Fiverr is the winner hands down in this category. They have such a wide variety of design categories that can put the best to shame. From Logo brand identity to gaming and from video & animation to music & audio, you can find everything that might be useful to your brand.
Plan value: You will attract some of the best designers if you select the Fiverr Business plan. That said, Fiverr is known for providing the best designs at low costs where buying the plan is not completely necessary.
99designs vs Fiverr: Both 99designs and Fiverr provide services in a wide variety of categories; however, services provided by Fiverr are cheaper. So, if you are looking for a complete design experience at low cost, Fiverr could be your best bet.
Designcrowd, like 99designs, “is an online creative marketplace that helps startups, businesses and entrepreneurs connect with a global network of designers.”
Designcrowd also follows a similar model to 99designs where graphic designers from around the world submit their designs to you.
How it works: Like most creative crowdsourcing platforms, Designcrowd lets you run a design contest. However, you can choose your own prices for every project. This feature makes Designcrowd more flexible.
Watch the video to learn more about how Designcrowd works:
Process: You require launching your project after you fill in the creative brief. Designers from around the world start submitting their designs based on your creative brief. After going through the designs, you select the one of your choice and make changes according to your requirements.
Pricing: Designcrowd allows you to set the budget for the designs, but a non-refundable transaction fee of up to $129 has to be paid for posting your project. Additionally, the platform exacts a 20% project management fee. If you think of upgrading your project by using one of their add-ons, be prepared to pay another non-refundable amount.
Design categories: From logos to billboards, Designcrowd offers their services in over 50 different design categories. Though they don’t quite match up to 99designs in terms of providing services in different design categories, they definitely overcompensate it with their amazing designs.
Plan value: There are no annual or monthly plans in Designcrowd. The platform does not guarantee expert designers to you since all the designers in Designcrowd are on an even playing field.
99designs vs Designcrowd: Though the two platforms follow a similar business model, they also have visible differences making them both unique. While 99designs might have an upper hand in terms of the number designers in their community and the varied design categories they provide services in, Designcrowd offers an even playing field to designers: new and experts alike.
As the name suggests, Freelancer is a freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace. Apart from providing design services in various design categories, the platform is also known for providing its expertise in the fields of sales & marketing, data entry & design, and accounting & legal.
How it works: Freelancer works just like any other crowd-sourcing service. You can post a project describing exactly what you want and designers from around the world will begin submitting their designs to you.
Process: The design in freelancer involves three steps. The first step involves you submitting a design brief, followed by the second step where you are required to pick a winner from the submissions made by the designers. The third and the final step involve you making the payment after making all the desired changes.
Pricing: Freelancer has varied pricings for designs under various categories. They have amazing offers such as providing logo design within a day for just $30 or creating a package design in just 4 days for $280.
Design categories: Freelancer lets you run design contests under many different design categories such as logos, websites, mobile apps and t-shirts among others.
Plan Value: Freelancer offers various monthly and annual plans. They also offer a one-month free trial of their $9.95/month plan. Freelancer offers 5 plans and with every subsequent plan you get added features.
99designs vs Freelancer: Apart from providing services under conventional design categories, both these platforms provide a multitude of services under various other categories. From providing accounting to legal services, these platforms have truly developed a niche for themselves.
Like most other alternatives mentioned above, the price factor is the key differentiator between the two. Freelancer is more cost-effective as opposed to 99designs plus they offer a one-month free trial – an exciting feature to have!
DesignBro, at the first glance, may appear to be like other creative marketplaces, but once you navigate through their site and read the client reviews you quickly realize that they are the only true competitors of 99designs. Designers that apply to work on DesignBro have to go through an intense filtering process and only 5% among them make the cut.
What does this mean? Unlike other similar platforms, Designbro has some of the world’s best designers ready to work for you.
How it works: There are two ways DesignBro works – you could either start a design contest or hire a designer.
Launching a design contest would involve you creating a design brief, making your payment and launching the contest. Designers then start submitting their designs according to the design brief.
All design contests in DesignBro are “blind” – designers don’t get to see what the others have designed. “The generic contest lasts for 7 days.” Unlike 99designs you won’t have to be an existing customer to start a blind contest
Hiring a designer involves you choosing a designer to work directly for your project. You can hire a designer after going through their portfolios.
Now this is one of my favorite parts with DesignBro – They plant 1 tree for every design project they start. This truly sets them apart from their peers.
Process: DesignBro has a simple 4-step process to get you started:
Step 1 involves you filling out a simple creative brief.
Step 2 is where DesignBro connects you with top designers. The platform will assign you 3-10 designers based on how much you have paid.
Step 3 involves you rating the designs and giving feedback to designers.
Step 4 is the final step where you make final changes and pick a winner. You receive product-ready files along with the full copyright once you have picked the winner.
Pricing: The pricings are different for different projects. However, all prices include DesignBro’s fees.
Given below are DesignBro’s popular pricing packages:
- Logo design: $199 – $479
- Packaging design: $499 – $1034
- Brand identity design: $399 – $799
Design categories: From brand identity to packaging and label, DesingBro provides design services under a wide variety of design categories.
Handpicked designers are available to work for your project once you request project designs.
Plan value: There are four different kinds of payment plans available on DesignBro, each with additional features. The payment plans are: Starter, Business, Pro and Full Agency. With every subsequent plan, you get better features.
99designs vs DesignBro: DesignBro truly is a superior alternative to 99designs. In comparison to 99designs, DesignBro emerges victorious in most counts. From superior quality designers to unbeatable pricings, DesignBro can be your go to design platform anyday.
According to Lancer Review, DesignBro is the best alternative to 99designs. Customers and clients have awarded Designbro an overall 4.7 star rating on Trustpilot, a prominent review site. Click to read some of the amazing DesignBro reviews on trustpilot.
- Package selected
- Only pro designers
- Private or blind contests
- Estimated # of designs
- Quality of designs
- gold package
- (only on gold pack)
- (but not first project)
- 10 designs
- their popular package
- (extra $150)
- gold package
- (extra $199)
- (extra $49)
- executive package
While there are plenty of creative crowdsourcing platforms doing an incredible job, 99designs is seen as one of the best. However, newer platforms such as DesignBro have the potential to reach the number one spot. At the end of the day, it is your hard-earned money; therefore, having a clear understanding about what works for you will truly go a long way.