Michael Wong Academy

Logo Design Contests

Do you know how to make money online with logo design contests? What are logo design contests? Are all logo design contests scams? How much money can you make with logo design contests? Read on for all the answers.

Quick links

Logo design contests quick facts

* PayPal, Bank account wire transfer (local and international), Moneybookers (changing its name to Skrill), AlertPay, and Western Union.

Available
Work where?
Time?
Pay
Pay by
Status
Experience
Qualifications
Joining fee?
Minimum age
Gender
Worldwide
Online
Contests
$89 to $3,000 (winning entry)
See payment methods above *
Independent contractor
No experience required
No experience required
No
18+
Male/female

What are logo design contests?

Can you draw? If you can, then you could make money with logo design contests.

Logo design contests are marketplaces for crowdsourced logo design.

Crowdsourced means an open invitation for anyone to contribute to the project.

Customers seeking quality, affordable logos can post logo design contests inviting designers worldwide to submit their logo designs.

The average logo design contest attracts dozens of designers and just over 100 designs.

The winning entry wins the prize on offer.

Logo design contests pros and cons

Pros:

Cons:

Copyright

If the contest holder selects your design as the winner, you give up the copyright to the design when you hand it over at the end of the contest.

You do however keep the copyright to all losing designs you entered into the contest.

Sometimes the contest holder will want to purchase the rights to variations of the winning design that you created that wasn't selected as the winning design.

Are all online logo design contests scams?

I did a lot of research on this topic. And here's the conclusion I came to...

Logo design contests are a legitimate way to make money online.

Companies offering logo design contests don't charge for entries. If you come across a logo design contest website that requires payment for entering or more information, run the other way! :-)

If you have any opinions or experiences with logo design contests, please post your comments at the bottom of this page.

How much money can I make with logo design contests?

How much money you make with logo design contests depends on your talent for designing logos and how many logo design contests you enter.

I've seen prizes from as little as $89 to as much as $3,000. The most common prizes are between $200 and $500.

I'll share with you ten logo design contest websites further down this page, along with their range of prizes on offer.

Interesting entries to wins stats

I came across this list of top designers in the DesignContest.com website.

I divided the number of entries by the number of wins. It gives you a rough idea as to the average number of designs these top designers needed to enter for each win.

Remember that the first column is the number of entries/designs. It's not the total number of contests entered.

A designer can submit a number of designs/entries in a single contest. Some designs may only contain a slight change.

Here are the top 5 designers with the highest win to entry ratios:

Entries
703
617
962
509
765
Wins
18
15
22
10
12
Win ratio
1 out of 39
1 out of 41
1 out of 44
1 out of 51
1 out of 59

The top designer on average won a contest for every 39 entries submitted.

The majority of prizes are between $200 and $500. Let's take $350 as the average $350 prize money.

If we divide $350 by 39 entries, that means the top designer makes about $9 per submitted design.

Does that make sense?

Don't take those figures literally. I just wanted to give you a rough idea as to what you could make with logo design contests.

Remember, the $9 per entry figure is what is possible. It's not what you're likely to earn.

If you're just starting out, it will take you a while to get anywhere near those impressive stats.

Top 5 logo design tools of the trade

If you're just starting out, here are two graphics design tools of the trade you'll need:

  1. Vector graphics or logo design software.
  2. Graphics tablet.

What are vector graphics?

Before I discuss the vector graphics software, you should understand what 'Vector graphics' are.

Vector graphics are one of the two most commonly used graphic formats in design, the other being bitmap (or raster) graphics.

Vector graphics can be resized with no loss of quality. This means a logo design can be resized to different sizes to be used online, on a business card, on a poster, or even on an outdoor billboard.

Vector vs bitmap graphics

The example on the right (courtesy of Wikipedia) shows the effect of vector graphics versus bitmap graphics.

On the left is the original vector-based image. The upper right image shows what magnifying the image 7 times as a vector image looks like.

The lower right image shows the same magnification as a bitmap image. You can clearly see the difference in quality.

If the contest holder only requires the logo for online use, then you can get away with just creating a bitmap PNG or JPEG image.

Vector graphics software

Vector graphics software has all the features you need to create professional looking logos as well as other graphics.

Free vector graphics software

Free vector graphics software will have many, but not all, of the features available in commercial vector graphics software, such as Illustrator.

It should be more than sufficient though if you're just starting out.

Vector logo design software

If you prefer software that doesn't require as much effort to learn to use, then try the two logo design software listed below.

The downside is that these logo design software offer limited features compared to full-featured graphics software such as Illustrator and Inkscape.

Logo design software

Software that permits you to sell your designs

One important feature about LogoSmartz and The Logo Creator is that they both allow you to sell the designs you create with the software.

Some other logo design software don't allow this. So make sure the software you use does allow you to sell your creations.

Graphics tablet

A graphics tablet consists of an electronic pen and touch sensitive surface.

It enables you to hand draw images and graphics, similar to the way you draw with a pencil and paper.

It's a more natural way of drawing: much easier than using a mouse.

Graphics tablets can cost anywhere from $30 to several hundred dollars.

If you don't have a graphics tablet, I highly recommend you get one.

Logo design contest tip

Here's a tip to help you protect your work from being used by other designers and shady contest holders.

Add a light watermark to all images that you submit. If one of your designs is chosen as the winner, only then do you remove the watermark for the contest holder.

Top 20 logo design inspiration websites

Here are my top 20 logo design inspiration websites:

My top 10 websites offering logo design contest winning entries

Browse winning entries from logo design contests that have ended for design ideas. It'll also help you get a feel for what clients are looking for.

Here are my top 10 logo design contest websites, ranked by the number of ended contests.

Contests
53,150+
19,800+
16,480+
6,900+
6,600+
5,950+
5,300+
3,850+
740+
840+

My top 10 logo galleries

Another great place to get ideas and inspiration for your own designs are logo galleries.

Here are my top 10 logo galleries, ranked by the number of logos in their collection.

Logos
110,000+
44,000+
4,300+
3,800+
3,300+
2,100+
2,000+
1,600+
1,000+
880+

Logo design contest availability and prizes

Here's a table of my top 10 logo design contest websites, ranked by the number of open logo design contests at the time of writing.

The 'Prizes' column shows the range of prize money offered by all open and ended contests.

The 'Payments' column shows the methods that you can receive payments via:

Contests
670+
340+
110+
70+
70+
60+
50+
20+
10+
Prizes
$299-1,050
$200-900
$275-625
$200-750
$89-550
$200-700
$100-500
$223-500
$150-240
Payments
P, S, A, W
P, S
P
P, B
P
P
P
P, S, A, W, M
P, B

* Google has shut down Prizes.org.

There are over 1,300 open contests at the time of writing. As you can see two websites dominate the market.

But don't totally ignore the smaller sites. You may find they have less competition.

Before you sign up to a website make sure it offers a payment method that is available in your country.

Other logo design contests

Here are a few other logo design contest websites. I didn't include them in the list above because they all had less than 10 open logo design contests at the time of writing.

Top 9 logo design contest websites

Here are my top 9 logo design contest websites, ranked by the number of open logo design contests.

  1. 99designs: is the most active logo and graphic design contest marketplace online.

    They have over 670 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $299 to $1,050.

    99designs host more than just logo design contests. 99designs also host:

    • website design contests.
    • business card design contests.
    • mobile app design contests.
    • t-shirt design contests.
    • icon or button design contests.
    • postcard or flyer design contests.
    • banner ad design contests.
    • brochure design contests.
    • illustration contests.
    • product packaging design contests.
    • book cover design contests.

    The minimum you can cash out is $50 USD. 99designs offer 4 payment options:

    • PayPal: no fee.
    • AlertPay: $10 withdrawal fee.
    • Moneybookers (changing its name to Skrill): $10 withdrawal fee.
    • Western Union: $25 withdrawal fee + third party fees.

    99designs has some impressive stats (correct at the time of writing):

    • 1,565 open design contests.
    • 137,687 total design contests to date.
    • $485,212 in prize money on offer.
    • $1,454,735 paid out to designers last month.
    • $34,192,106 paid out to designers in total.
    • 159,300 designers in their community.
    • Average of 108 designs per contest.
  2. 99designs has been featured in major news outlets such as The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch and Forbes.

    Based in Melbourne, Australia, they have a team of over 50 staff in Melbourne, San Francisco and London.

    99designs raised $35 million in funding in April, 2011. Wow!

    I think you can safely say 99designs' logo design contests offer a legitimate marketplace for you to make money online. :-)

  3. DesignCrowd: is an online marketplace for logo, website, print and graphic design contests.

    They have over 340 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $200 to $900.

    It's free to join DesignCrowd. You get paid via PayPal or Moneybookers (changing its name to Skrill). They charge a flat 15% fee of all payments.

    DesignCrowd stats (correct at the time of writing):

    • 7,608 logo design contests to date.
    • 15,106 total design contests to date.
    • $3,815,234 AUD in project payments.
    • 73,277 designers from around the world.
    • 165 countries represented.
    • Average of 103 designs per project.

    DesignCrowd has been featured in major news outlets such as Yahoo! Finance, TechCrunch and Mashable.

  4. LogoTournament: is an online marketplace for logo design contests only.

    They have over 110 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $200 to $900.

    All prizes are pre-paid through PayPal.

    Once the Client approves the files, you'll receive the payment via the following schedule:

    • 0 to 5 wins: payment held for two weeks.
    • 6 to 10 wins: payment held for one week.
    • 11 or more wins: paid immediately.

    LogoTournament has been featured in major news outlets such as The Washington Post, PCWorld and Entrepreneur.

  5. CrowdSpring: is an online marketplace for logo, graphic, web, industrial and mobile design contests.

    They have over 70 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $200 to $750.

    Once you've been awarded a prize, you can receive the payout via:

    • PayPal.
    • Bank account wire transfer: $7 fee locally, or $17 for overseas transfers.

    For new designers, payments are held back for 30 days after completing your first project.

    CrowdSpring stats (correct at the time of writing):

    • 233 open projects.
    • 28,884 projects to date.
    • Over 28,500 small and large business customers.
    • 115,302 creatives.
    • 3,006,415 entries to date.
    • 165 countries represented.
    • Average of 122 entries per project.

    CrowdSpring has been featured in major news outlets such as The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Forbes and The Wall Street Journal.

  6. LogoMyWay.com: is an online marketplace exclusively for logo design contests. They have over 15,000 logo designers.

    They have over 60 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $200 to $700.

    LogoMyWay.com is free to join. They keep a 10% administration fee of the total prize.

    Payment is via PayPal only. You receive payment within 48 to 72 hours after the client approves the files.

    LogoMyWay.com has been featured in major news outlets such as CNBC, CNN.com, The Huffington Post and AOL.

  7. 48HoursLogo.com: is an online marketplace exclusively for logo design contests. They have over 15,000 logo designers.

    48HoursLogo.com have over 60 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $89 to $550.

    It's free to join. But they deduct a $29 commission from each project.

    You receive the prize money immediately after the project is completed. Payment is via PayPal only.

    Interestingly, 48HoursLogo.com pay $1 each time you make the finals in a contest. Small compensation if you don't win, but better than nothing I guess.

    48HoursLogo.com has been featured in major news outlets such as CNBC, CNN.com, The Huffington Post and AOL.

    48HoursLogo.com stats (correct at the time of writing):

    • 21 new contests today.
    • 74 open contests.
    • 8,587 contests to date.
    • $37,096 in prize money on offer.
    • $41,054 paid out to designers last month.
    • Top designer has earned $18,892.
  8. HatchWise: is an online marketplace for logo and graphics design contests. They also host naming contests for company names, product names, etc.

    HatchWise have over 50 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $100 to $500.

    It's free to join. Payment is via PayPal only. You're charged a 10% processing fee on all winnings.

    HatchWise stats (correct at the time of writing):

    • 63 open projects.
    • 11,533 creatives.
    • 535,697 total entries.

    HatchWise has been featured in Inc., Mashable and Yahoo! News.

  9. Design Contest: is an online marketplace for logo and graphics design contests.

    Design Contest have over 20 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $223 to $500.

    It's free to join. The minimum you can cash out is $50 USD.

    Design Contest offer 4 payment options and charge the following 'handling fee' when you withdraw money:

    • PayPal (USA): no handling fee.
    • PayPal (outside USA): no handling fee + 2% PayPal transaction fee (max $20).
    • AlertPay: no handling fee + AlertPay transaction fee
    • Moneybookers (changing its name to Skrill): $15 handling fee + MoneyBookers transaction fee.
    • Western Union: $25 handling fee + Western Union transaction fee.
    • MoneyGram: $25 handling fee + MoneyGram transaction fee.

    Design Contest has been featured in major news outlets such as Fox News, NBC, ABC News and CBS News.

  10. Choosa: is an online marketplace for logo, graphics, print, identity and web design contests.

    Choosa have just over 10 open logo design contests at the time of writing. Logo design contest prize money ranges from $150 to $240.

    It's free to join. Payment is via PayPal and bank transfer (local and international).

    Unlike many other online design contest websites, Choosa doesn't charge any fees when you withdraw your winnings.

    Choosa offer phone and email support in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. It's available 24 hours a day, during business days.

    Choosa stats (correct at the time of writing):

    • Average of 103 designs per project.
    • 1,215 total contests.

    Choosa has been featured in the BBC, Apertura and Fortuna.

Logo design contests forum

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