99designs, the world’s largest design marketplace, has gone and got itself a localised website.
99designs.com.au allows Aussie businesses to crowdsource all manner of design-related magic. Fancy a new logo? Consider it done. How about a facelift for your website? No worries, mate. Just post your project and you’ll receive, on average, 90 designs. Plus, projects are pitched in AUD, with local customer service and account management.
99design’s site is the first step in the Australian company’s new localisation strategy. It comes snapping at the heels of its whopping $35 million first-round capital investment from Accel Partners – the fellas what invested in Facebook, Dropbox and Etsy — and shortly after the launch of local rival DesignCrowd.
Australian businesses embrace design crowdsourcing
99designs founder Mark Harbottle says: “Australian businesses have already used 99designs to hold over 3,500 design contests in 2011.”
“We’re here to foster new relationships between businesses and designers and we’re thrilled to be able to launch a local version of the site.”
For businesses, using 99designs means you’ll receive designs in days, not weeks. Plus, it’ll cost you less than the traditional design route and comes with a 100 per cent money back guarantee.
While 99design’s model isn’t without its fair share of haters, the company claims it compliments an increasingly freelance industry.
CEO Patrick Llewellyn says: “The great thing about 99designs is that it’s a true fair go.”
“It doesn’t matter how many designs you have in your portfolio, it doesn’t matter whether you live in South Melbourne or Mirboo North, or whether you’re 25 or 60 – with 99designs your work speaks for itself.”
Currently more that 1,000 new projects are posted to the site, while over 6,000 Australian designers are registered. Llewellyn’s looking to grow both numbers.
“99designs.com.au is about making even more connections between businesses and designers while getting more businesses using design services – especially small businesses who might previously have dismissed professional design as unaffordable,” he says.
“We offer a great platform for designers to earn money, hone their skills and gain exposure.”
“While they focus on what they do best, we help them with finding customers, invoicing, payments, contacts and workflow management. They work how and when they want, and by winning customers from around the world, they’re able to buffer themselves against local economic conditions.”
But 99designs isn’t the only one to watch
Just when you think 99Designs has the local design crowdsourcing market all stitched up, new(ish) kid on the block DesignCrowd has gone and posted record sales.
In the last six months alone the company tripled its revenue and nearly doubled the peeps using its service.
Are you listening, 99designs? Quite possibly, given the timing of your local site launch, me thinks?
DesignCrowd founder Alec Lynch predicts the good times will continue to roll, despite the ho-hum economic outlook.
“We’ve been able to grow during the downturn because we save businesses money and because we offer and innovative service and that’s not going to change.”
Like 99designs, DesignCrowd’s model appeals to international folks too.
“We now have more than three times as many designers on DesignCrowd as there are in Australia,” Lynch says.
“There are 11,000 designers employed full-time by design agencies around Australia but on DesignCrowd we’ve got 40,000 from around the world.”