DesignContest Review & Alternatives | Similar to 99designs

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DesignContest Review

DesignContest is a design crowdsourcing site which currently has a designer base of more than 210K designers. This is more than most of the crowdsourcing sites. DesignContest is known to focus solely on design competitions. Design competitions have been picking a lot of pace lately with the world becoming a smaller place. Businesses hold competitions on design crowdsourcing platforms and freelance designers participate by submitting designs in the quest to come out on top as the contest winner to take home the prize money. Along with English, the site is also available in Spanish, French, Russian, German and other languages, making it a global choice for businesses seeking graphic designs.


History of DesignContest

DesignContest dates back to 2003, which makes it one of the oldest in the industry. It was founded by Sergey Epifanov, and currently running under Sergey Nekipelov. Till date they’ve served over 50K design competitions with over 2 million designs produced submitted through design contests. They credit their success to their affordable pricing, speedy turnarounds and heavily talented designer fraternity.


Design Contest Process

DesignContest operates very similar to the other major design contest websites in the industry. When you try to place a design request through design brief, the site pitches you to hire a graphic designer rather than going for a design contest. The walkthrough or support for a user to go for the one-to-one designer hire is very less and a user may feel lost in the middle without much direction on how to proceed further. The user is provided with a list of designers and their respective rating for you to peruse. Some support at this stage would have been better. Design contest on the other hand, is a better designed product and they have implemented it well through and through. It is a simple process with the following steps for a user.

Write a Design Brief : As we discussed above, this is one of the simplest steps on DesignContest, though we wished it was a little more detailed. It asks for your company name, design project details and then just rate their brief parameters on five distinct scales (modern to classic, minimal to complex, loud to subtle, playful to serious, and luxury to budget). Then you get to select a package and you also get to fix your prize money for the same. You also get to add extra options like contest add-ons and you could also add prize money for 2nd or 3rd design winners as well. (Let’s you take home designs from all the winners you selected)

Contest Run & Feedback : Usually contests last for about seven days, and once it is started, you should start receiving submissions after just a few hours. The number of design entry submissions is directly determined by your contest pricing and your design brief. The platform provides you an estimate of how many designs you can anticipate to receive for your contest.

In this time, you can provide feedback to the designers as your contest progresses. You can eliminate designs, vote for the ones you like, suggest changes and corrections to the designers.

Select a winner : At any given point before the contest comes to an end, you have the option to choose a final winner from the design submissions. From the moment you finalize a winner, you have seven days to request changes and finalize the design. You also have the option to buy any other design from the contest for a price of $99, which also starts a one-to-one job with the designer.

Final Design Handover : Once you finalize the design (or the seven day period is over), the designer sends you the final source files of the design. All file formats including high resolution JPG, PNG, AI, vector, SVG, etc are provided to you. Once you both confirm the completion, the copyright of the files is transferred to you and the designer is paid the prize money of the contest. You must have commented at least 80 percent of those designers that have submitted a design)



  • High rating contest entries (4.8/5 ratings from most customers).
  • Multi-language platform support (Spanish, French, German & Russian Support).
  • Large designer base of 210K freelancers.
  • Option to choose 2nd or 3rd price winners, which helps to attract more designers and in turn more designs.
  • Real time interaction with the designers during the contest
  • Protection of contests by NDAs and not listing on search engines.
  • Over 50K+ Happy Customers.
  • Free design consultation for all customers. Handy for customers new to design process.
  • Inbuilt contest poll function helps to get feedback from friends and family which helps in judging the design submissions.



  • The design brief is very short and offers minimal guidance to participating designers.
  • The option to set a variable prize money can increase the price of a contest variably.
  • The moneyback guarantee is only applicable if the user has commented or rated on at least 80% of the designs submitted.



Our DesignContest review came to a conclusion that it is a very well deserving option when you want to crowdsource design. If you are clear about what your requirement is, or you want to give designers complete freedom, the clear and simple brief is a blessing. This however is becomes a pain too, since you will need to give more feedback during the contest run time for the designers to be able to reproduce designs close to your requirement.

The large number of designers and extra options for the contest offer a good motivation for designers to participate, and the privacy policy is solid, but the higher prices and lack of guidance during the brief process may be the deal breaker for few. Also, please be sure to read between the lines for the moneyback guarantee as the platform is pretty strict and requires you to follow certain mandatory steps in order for you to be eligible for refund.

Its time to give one of the best design contest sites a try. Click below to go to DesignContest & get that perfect graphic design for your business.

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7 Responses

  1. Fantasic experience. Second time through and I got a wonderful set of options this time. Very appreciative of all the artists and designers who submitted very unique ideas.

  2. I love the idea of the Design Contest and I was really surprised how well it worked. We got many ideas and designs from different designers, much more than we expected. Everything went smoothly and the service is great. I would absolutely recommend it.

  3. Definitely worth trying out. I got a great deal on Design Contest. Got my Logo Design & Business Card Design in less than $350. And having tried a couple other design platforms earlier, I must say there interface is one of the most easy to use. Happy with the results I got.

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