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99designs vs fiverr: What is Better for Design?

Looking for graphic design help? Our 99designs vs Fiverr review pits two of the most popular freelance marketplaces against one another in a battle of quality and affordability.

When looking to hire a graphic designer, most people turn to the Internet to seek the help of independent contractors.

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The biggest freelance platforms like Upwork or Guru have their fair share of talented designers. Still, those looking for quality or affordability mainly turn to either 99designs or Fiverr for graphic design.

99designs vs Fiverr:  Which platform is best for recruiters?

Laptop And Graphics Design Tablet On Wooden Table

99designs is a freelancer platform that specializes in connecting graphic designers and clients. The platform has a massive pool of professional designers and graphic artists.

Graphic design has always been the website’s focus, so 99designs has always been committed to hiring the best designers. However, this quality comes with a price, as most freelancers here are priced higher.

With that said, are 99designs freelancers worth the bang for your buck? On the other hand, Fiverr is renowned for its pool of affordable freelancers.

While you’ll find thousands of graphic artists on this platform, Fiverr is also home to thousands of other independent contractors in almost every nature of business. Affordability is Fiverr’s main selling point, but does this come at the expense of quality?

For recruiters, even more questions arise:

  • Which freelancer platform allows you to hire freelancers faster?
  • Is one easier to use than the other?
  • Finally, which is better, Fiverr or 99designs?

This comprehensive review explored the difference between 99designs and Fiverr while offering actionable tips for first-time recruiters. Here’s an overview comparing the two platforms:

Aspect 99designs Fiverr
Pricing Model Contest-based, tiered packages Gig-based, set prices
Service Fee 5-15% of earnings 20% of earnings
Project Types Design contests, direct hire Variety of freelance services
Quality Control Higher quality, vetted designers Varies widely, open to all
Client Interaction High, through contests and direct projects Minimal, predefined services
Payment Protection Payment upfront, released upon approval Milestone-based

See Related: 7 Best Article Writing Services for Your Business

What is 99designs?

99Designs Website

Those looking to compare 99designs vs Fiverr must know how each operates first. 99designs, as its name expresses, is all about graphic design.

You’ll find thousands of graphic designers on this global platform with features that help match the perfect designer to a client’s style and project criteria.  Since its development, the company has had multiple designers and paid over $200 million to its vast pool of designers. The platform was one million strong in 2016.

A big part of 99designs’ business is working closely with designers so clients can find what they’re looking for quickly and easily.

99desgins is a platform that puts designers first among all others, with rates that help it attract top-tier designers. This may lead some companies to look for cheaper alternatives like Fiverr.

How 99designs works

How do you hire freelancers in 99designs? Our 99designs vs Fiverr review will walk you through your choices.

1. Select a graphic artist and work with him directly.

99Designs Find A Designer

99designs‘ Find a Designer search tool allows you to find the right freelancer for your next design project.

As opposed to Fiverr’s more general search function, 99design offers a more robust search tool that categorizes their designers with more specific filters, including the type of media (e.g., business card, web design, clothing and merchandise, book & magazine) and industry (e.g., food and drink, business and consulting, technology, retail).

99designs only features graphic designers, so recruiters can see multiple samples from the same designer without navigating to each designer on a new page.

2. Start a design contest

99Designs Contest

Design contests are 99designs‘ most popular feature – something Fiverr doesn’t offer. Think of design contests as a type of crowdsourcing activity. Here, recruiters answer questions to pinpoint their branding and the best style that matches it.

Next, a design briefing must be filled out, which explains what the design should look like. The platform then shows your answers to their community of designers who submit original concepts based on your briefing.

Recruiters will then be able to look through all of the submissions, rate the designs, and finally choose the submissions that they like best. Since contests have a money-back guarantee, they’re a great way to know what you’re getting before you purchase.

99designs Pricing

99Designs Contest Pricing

At 99designs, you can hire a graphic designer directly or choose to commission a design contest. Both methods generally run into the hundreds. For example, the most affordable cost of commissioning a new logo via a design contest is $299.

While this is the cheapest package, it still grants you full ownership of the work produced and a money-back guarantee. It’s worth noting that this also gives recruiters access to the work’s digital files (which you’ll need to pay extra for on Fiverr).

The Platinum Package deals with Top-Level designers only and costs $1,299. You’ll notice that top-level designers on Fiverr also charge around this much.

Pros of 99designs

Our 99designs vs Fiverr review found several strengths that make it a better choice for businesses looking for graphic designers. Here are some of them.

Choice of designs

99designs has over a million designers – that’s plenty to choose from. Unless you’re looking to build a relationship with a single designer, you’re probably looking for a choice of designs and not a few designers only.

The platform’s contest format offers recruiters more designers the versatility of choosing from various designs.

Turnaround time

99design’s contest packages assure fast turnaround time. After submitting your brief, you’ll receive submissions within 24 to 48 hours. After selecting one, you can immediately move forward to the revision phase.


99designs gives recruiters more confidence about the work they purchase thanks to how logo design contests are structured.

If you run a contest and don’t like any of the designs the platform’s graphic artists make for you, you don’t have to pay a penny.

Cons of 99designs

All companies have room for improvement. Our 99designs vs Fiverr review discovered the following to be 99designs‘ greatest weaknesses.

Tedious writing briefs

When it comes to 99designs, a bad brief will almost always produce a bad design. The success of your design projects in the platform largely hinges on your capability to provide a comprehensive design brief.

This means communicating your design requirements accurately (and in a way designers will most likely understand).

While giving a rundown of your favorite colors and offering examples are easy, communicating symbolism, logo concepts, and abstract ideas can be challenging, especially when working with designers who do not speak your language.

Loss of Client-Agency Relationship

The benefit of hiring a single graphic designer is establishing a client-agency relationship. A devoted artist considers more than your brief and list of visual elements and preferences while trying his hardest to tell your brand’s story with effective design.

This necessary back and forth between client and freelancer is often eliminated in 99designs’ design contests.


See Related: 99designs Review

What is Fiverr?

Fiverr Website

Founded in 2010, Fiverr is a freelance marketplace focusing on affordable services. Freelancer rates in this platform begin at $5 (hence, the name) and can go up to thousands of dollars.

Unlike 99designs, which focuses only on design work, Fiverr lists “gigs” (one-off services) freelancers offer. These gigs run the gamut from service jobs like lawnmowing to specialized work like programming and graphic design.

Fiverr’s business model undercuts traditional industry costs by cutting out the middleman and allowing freelancers to set their rates. This, however, comes at the expense of deregulation, where scammers and plagiarized work abound (though these instances are few and far between).

If you are searching for a good but not expensive logo design, Fiverr can be the perfect solution.

How Fiverr works

How does one go about hiring a graphic designer on Fiverr? Continue reading our 99designs vs Fiverr review to find out.

1. Select a gig.

Through the years, fiverr has shifted to more business-oriented operations, with sellers adopting a makeshift organization. Freelancers can post a gig about a general service (i.e., “I will design a website for you”). The buyer must then offer more information about their requirements once they hire.

The platform is broken down into umbrella categories to add more organization to the site. If you’re looking for graphic design work, for example, you’ll have to click on the graphic design category.

Fiverr Graphics Design

Here, you’ll have even more chances to narrow your choices (e.g., web design, infographic). You can filter your results by seller level, price range, time frame, or features.

Some of the most popular categories, like logo design, have short questionnaires that offer even more guidance in narrowing down your search results. These are optional, but they give you more personalized results.

2. Post a request

Posting A Request On Fiverr

Businesses may also post a custom request once they become a registered member of Fiverr. To do this, you must request your account menu and describe what you’re looking for while selecting the best category.

A member of the Fiverr staff will review your request before it goes live. Once approved, sellers may send you bids and offers you can accept or reject.

Fiverr pricing

Lower prices have always been Fiverr’s unique selling point. While prices vary depending on the project and the seller, the platform’s competitive market has encouraged most freelancers to offer low-cost services.

You’ll still be able to find top-level designers here who’ll charge premium rates, but in general, most services are priced considerably cheaper than other freelance platforms.

Hidden fees

Fiverr Pricing Sample

When looking for services in fiverr, you’ll find workers who’ll charge considerably low rates only to find out that there are hidden fees.

The “starting at” price is often a sales gimmick that only offers bare-bones services. If you’re looking to get graphic design work done, you’ll most likely have to pay more for essentials and add-ons.

Tiered packages

Fiverr Tiered Packages

Most designers in fiverr offer a tiered package system where the cheapest packages won’t include the most crucial features (e.g., revisions, ownership to copyright, access to the editable file).

You’ll have to select higher tiers, which may cost you extra (sometimes hundreds of dollars more).

For example, a logo’s “starting at” price may only be $25. If you read the seller’s description more, you’ll find that $25 offers a mere hand sketch. The fully-designed digital logo actually costs $110 or $150.

Despite the clickbait, the price for a full-fledged logo is still relatively affordable. Businesses are still advised to be wary of ridiculously low prices.

For example, a full-treatment logo for only $40 must be questioned. If it looks too good to be true, then chances are high that it is.

Pros of Fiverr for design

Fiverr outshines 99designs in a variety of ways. Our 99designs vs Fiverr review found the following to be the platform’s strongest points.

Better agent relationship

Hiring a graphic artist to work directly on your projects may guarantee a better outcome than running contests and letting strangers submit their work.

Working with a devoted graphic artist ensures he knows your preferences better.

More affordable

While top designers on Fiverr mostly charge the same prices as 99designs, you’ll find cheaper graphic design services overall on Fiverr.

Designers on Fiverr are more likely to negotiate their rates than 99designs, which offers flat rates.

Cons of Fiverr for design

First-time Fiverr users are advised to be careful when shopping for services on the platform. Our 99designs vs Fiverr review found the following to be the platform’s most concerning drawbacks.

Scammers abound

Since Fiverr is deregulated, you’ll likely find a freelance graphic designer or artist who provides dishonest services. This is most common with designers who offer unreasonably cheap services. Some of the most common are graphic artists who offer plagiarized work or use copyrighted images.

Misleading prices

You’ll most likely encounter graphic designers here with many hidden charges, and you won’t know for sure until you thoroughly scrutinize their offerings. When shopping for services on Fiverr, always take extra steps to ensure you get exactly what you’re paying for.


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Pricing Structure: Comparing the cost models of Fiverr and 99designs

Regarding pricing, there are notable differences between Fiverr and 99designs. Here’s an analysis of their cost models:

  • Fiverr: On Fiverr, freelancers set their prices for services offered, ranging from as low as $5 to several hundred dollars. This allows flexibility in choosing a budget-friendly option or investing more for higher-quality work. Additionally, clients may encounter additional fees on Fiverr, such as transaction fees or charges for extra revisions.
  • 99designs: Unlike Fiverr’s variable pricing structure, 99designs uses a fixed-price model based on pre-determined packages. Clients can choose between different package options that offer varying levels of service and the number of designs submitted by designers. Prices start at around $299 and go up depending on the complexity and scope of the project.

Both platforms offer clear pricing upfront, but understanding these key differences is essential when deciding which platform best suits your needs.

Quality Control taken by Fiverr and 99designs to ensure the quality of work

Quality Control Measures

Fiverr and 99designs have implemented various measures to ensure the quality of work freelancers produce on their platforms. These measures aim to maintain the reputation of these platforms as reliable sources of high-quality services.

Strict Screening Process

Fiverr and 99designs subject freelancers to a rigorous screening process before allowing them to join their platforms. This process typically involves reviewing portfolios, evaluating skill sets, and verifying qualifications. By carefully vetting freelancers, both platforms aim only to accept those with the necessary expertise to deliver top-notch work.

User Ratings and Reviews

User ratings and reviews are vital in maintaining quality on Fiverr and 99designs. After completing a project, clients can rate and leave feedback on the freelancer’s performance. This system encourages freelancers to strive for excellence consistently, as positive reviews can lead to more job opportunities.

Dispute Resolution Mechanisms

Both platforms offer dispute resolution mechanisms to protect clients from subpar work or potential conflicts with freelancers. Clients can raise a complaint through designated channels if there is an issue with the delivered work. The platform’s support team will mediate between the client and the freelancer until a satisfactory resolution is reached.

Continuous Monitoring

Fiverr and 99designs employ ongoing monitoring systems that track freelancers’ performance throughout their tenure on the platform. Any decline in quality or breach of trust may result in penalties or removal from the platform altogether. This constant vigilance ensures that high standards are maintained across all projects.

By implementing such stringent quality control measures, Fiverr and 99designs demonstrate their commitment to providing top-quality services while building trust among freelancers and clients.

Communication Tools and Features

Both Fiverr and 99designs offer a range of communication tools and features for clients and freelancers to interact effectively.

  • Messaging Platforms: Both platforms provide messaging systems where clients and freelancers can communicate directly. These messaging platforms allow for real-time conversations, enabling quick clarification of project details or requirements.
  • File Sharing: Fiverr and 99designs allow users to share files easily. This functionality is crucial for designers who must send drafts or receive client feedback. It ensures the project progresses smoothly without any delays caused by file transfer issues.
  • Video Calls: While Fiverr doesn’t have an integrated video call feature, it allows users to connect through external video conferencing applications if they prefer face-to-face communication. In contrast, 99designs offers in-platform video calls, making it convenient for clients and freelancers to have virtual meetings directly on the platform.

Overall, Fiverr and 99designs prioritize efficient communication between clients and freelancers by providing various tools necessary for smooth collaboration.

Payment Process on Fiverr and 99designs

Both Fiverr and 99designs offer multiple payment options to accommodate freelancers and clients.

  • Fiverr: Users can choose from various methods, including credit or debit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Wallet, or bank transfers. Payments are made through Fiverr’s secure platform, ensuring a safe transaction for both parties. Freelancers receive their earnings once the client marks the order as complete.
  • 99designs: This platform supports payments through major credit cards or PayPal. Clients can fund their accounts upfront using these methods and release funds to designers upon project completion. The advantage of this escrow-based system is that it protects both parties by keeping funds securely withheld until satisfactory work is delivered.

Delving into the user experience and satisfaction levels of clients on Fiverr and 99designs

Fiverr: Users on Fiverr appreciate the platform’s simplicity and ease of use, allowing them to browse through a wide range of services offered quickly. Clients enjoy the streamlined process of hiring freelancers for various tasks and the ability to communicate directly with sellers during project execution. However, some clients have expressed concerns about inconsistent service quality and difficulty finding trustworthy freelancers amidst such a large pool.


Clients using 99designs praise the platform’s unique concept that allows them to crowdsource design work from a global community of talented designers. They appreciate having access to multiple design options and collaborating with designers throughout the creative process.

Nonetheless, client satisfaction levels vary due to factors such as longer project turnaround times and potential disagreements over design choices.

Several factors influence client experiences on both platforms:

  • Quality Control: While Fiverr offers ratings and reviews for each seller, ensuring some level of transparency, it remains challenging for clients to sift through numerous sellers without clear indicators of their reliability or expertise. Conversely, 99designs leverages its contest model where only one winning designer is chosen per project, potentially guaranteeing higher standards.
  • Communication: Both platforms offer messaging systems for clients and freelancers/designers. However, Fiverr’s direct communication feature enables smoother collaboration compared to 99designs’ more structured workflows.
  • Pricing Structure: On Fiverr, fixed-price packages are commonly used for services across different categories. At the same time, 99designs relies heavily on competition-based pricing models like contests – both approaches cater differently towards budget flexibility.

Freelancer Opportunities on Fiverr and 99designs

Wide variety of job opportunities

Fiverr and 99designs are freelance platforms that offer a wide range of job opportunities across various industries. These platforms cater to different skill sets, from graphic design to content writing, web development, and many more fields.

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced freelancer, a global creative platform, you can find gigs that match your expertise. With diverse jobs, these platforms provide freelancers with an excellent opportunity to showcase their skills and grow their careers.

Building a thriving freelancer career

Both Fiverr and 99designs can serve as stepping stones for building a successful freelance career. By consistently delivering high-quality work, establishing positive client relationships, and receiving good reviews on these platforms, freelancers can gradually build their reputation in their respective industries.

This reputation can open doors to lucrative projects outside the platform as clients recommend them or gain visibility through portfolios showcased on external websites.

Flexibility and independence

One major advantage for freelancers working on Fiverr or 99designs is its flexibility. These platforms allow individuals to set their rates, choose the projects they want to work on based on personal interests or expertise levels, determine their working hours, and adjust their workload according to personal schedules.

Freelancing via these platforms provides an opportunity for professionals seeking more independence in deciding how they want to pursue their careers without constraints imposed by traditional employment structures.

Platform Reputation and Trustworthiness of Fiverr and 99designs

Regarding freelancing platforms, reputation, and trustworthiness are crucial in attracting clients and freelancers. Fiverr and 99designs have built up their reputations as reliable platforms in the freelance industry.

Fiverr Review of Reputation

Fiverr has been around since 2010 and has gained a solid reputation among freelancers for its ease of use and wide range of services. With over 11 million registered users, this platform provides opportunities for freelancers from various fields, including graphic design, writing, programming, and marketing. Fiverr boasts positive reviews from many satisfied clients who have found success on the platform.

99designs Review of Reputation

99designs is specifically tailored for designers looking to showcase their skills in logo design, web design, packaging design, and more.

As one of the largest online design marketplaces with over one million designers onboarded globally, 99designs vouchs for quality designs and their credibility by ensuring that only top-notch talent can participate in competitions. Clients benefit from access to a vast pool of talented designers who compete to deliver the best designs.

Fiverr and 99designs prioritize maintaining strong reputations by implementing user review systems that provide feedback on the quality of work freelancers deliver.

The Verdict: What is better, Fiverr vs 99designs?

Laptop Featuring Graphic Design Software

Our 99designs vs Fiverr review found strengths and weaknesses in both platforms, so the best depends entirely on your requirements and expectations.

If you’re looking for affordable freelancers who offer more than just graphic design, Fiverr is a great choice. If you’re looking for the best quality graphic designs, 99designs is the better choice.

Regardless of which you choose, there will be tradeoffs. While Fiverr’s services are cheaper, you may risk receiving poor-quality work. You’ll have more luck with 99designs in terms of quality if you’re willing to shoulder the hefty fees.

If you are looking for graphic design for your business, these two platforms, Designhill and Design Crowd, are online graphic design marketplaces from which you can get ideas.

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