For crowd sourcing basically there are two main contenders, crowdspring and 99designs. I know they are both good and we can't go wrong with either one, but I am sure we can find out which one is better. What are your experience with these two? Which one would you recommend and why? I have no experience with these two, and I am very limited in budget so I would like to get people's recommendation first before deciding to choose either one.
We've used 99designs, making your contest private and having a good brief will help with the quality of the submissions (as will a higher listing price), as for crowdspring haven't used them yet - might give them a try next time.
I just had a good experience on crowdspring.com. I ended up with 600 entries for my logo design and while a lot of it is noise you get some good results there too. You just need to be prepared for the noise and you'll do fine.
I have used crowdSpring for a webpage banner. The result was ok with a loootttt of hand holding and feedback. I am now considering 99designs for website design. The problem I am having is $$ cut to either of the sites is $39 + 15% which ends up to over $100 for a very small site. Given the fact that threshold to enter a website contest is $500, I believe the total cost outlay is NOT that lower that Agency based custom design. Am I wrong here?
I have only had experience with 99designs, so cannot compare the two. I did however have a very good experience with 99designs, and would recommend them (and will reuse them myself). I am not affiliated with them in any way.
I think also very relevant to your questions is how to get the most out of a contest, as no doubt you could get a good result in any contest if you make the effort. Some tips I would give are (these are skewed towards my experience with 99designs, but I assume other sites are similar):
Using the above strategies, we received many designs for our logo and are very happy with the winner.
The upside of crowdsourcing a logo is the cost and the variety of designers you can access. The downside is that the designer you use will have had little opportunity to learn about you and create a design that truly expresses your company's brand, products, and practices, and communicates to your target audience. That means you'll have a logo, but you won't have your logo.
So, with that said, go for whatever's cheaper!
We are using 99designs right now for crowdsourcing a redesign of a website. It seems to me that the quality of our "instructions" to the designers is the most important part of the process. "Quality" can be relative though, I guess. Hopefully, we will get several good designs to choose from. I'll report back after the contest is over.