More and more people are having their website logo designed in a design contest rather than going to a design company directly with a proposal. SitePoint was one of the first marketplaces to offer design contests when they moved their design contest section from their marketplace to 99Designs. Since then many other logo and design contest websites have appeared.
The latest logo contest service on the scene is Cullogo. The site is completely brand new so in this review I will be looking at the potential of this new website (rather than compare it’s current state to alternatives).
How it works
Cullogo works the same way as most other logo design contest sites. You write your brief, explain to designers what you are looking for and determine how much they will earn if you choose their design (i.e. determine the prize money).
After that designers will submit their logo designs so it is your job to give feedback to them and rate them so that they know whether they are on the right track or not. Finally you choose the design you want and the prize money is sent to the designer.
As I mentioned at the start of this post, Cullogo is very new. The only project on the site just now is the one for the Cullogo logo itself. However, as you can see, the whole process is the same as other contest sites.
The minimum prize for most logo contest sites is $200 however on Cullogo it’s only $100. This suggests that they are trying to target the lower end of the market as few top end design companies would design for that price.
On top of the prize money you need to pay a $25 listing fee and 10% of the prize money. So if you offered $100 for a logo design your final cost would be $135 and if you offered $200 prize money your final cost would be $245.
Popular logo design contest sites like LogoMyWay only charge 10% of the prize money and don’t charge a listing fee so although Cullogo lets you offer a smaller prize to designers, it offers much less value for money. In my opinion, if they want to be a viable alternative to 99Designs and LogoMyWay they need to remove the $25 listing fee, at least until they have enough traffic to justify it.
If you want to highlight your contest you can pay a little extra by highlighting the project in bold or having a blinking star next to it. There would be no point doing that just now since the site is still new but it may be worth doing in the future.
Cullogo also offer a no fuss money back guarantee if your contest receives less than 30 entries.
Needs more work
I spoke with Faisal Anwar, the owner of Cullogo, about reviewing his site. I mentioned that his site was new so I could not give a complete review as one of the most important aspects of a design contest site is it’s traffic i.e. it’s ability to match webmasters with designers. Therefore in this review I have tried to look at the process of holding a contest and the potential of the site.
That being said, the site has been officially launched. Which surprised me a little as the sites documentation, which is very important for a site such as this, is incomplete.
If you check out their help section you will see that most questions only have one sentence answers and pages like Community Guidelines and Contest Holder Guidelines have a message saying that they are still under construction. This is a big no no for any website; no website of this kind should be launching without a full comprehensive help and frequently asked questions section and no website whatsoever should be linking to pages which are incomplete.
I also found that all pages on the site load really slowly. The site went down a few times for me too which suggests that the site needs to be moved to a faster more reliable hosting package.
Cullogo is a professional looking site and from a designer/coders point of view, everything seems to be in place for the service to be a success. Though in order for anyone to consider Cullogo for hosting their logo contest they need to bring in more designers as the main selling point for hosting a logo contest rather than hiring a designer directly is choice. And with no designers, you have no choice.
However, to get to that stage I believe they need to improve on a few things. Firstly they need to move to a more reliable server as the site went down a few times for me and the rest of the time pages were taking an annoyingly long time to load.
Secondly they need to remove their $25 listing fee. They don’t have the traffic just now so charging more than their direct competitors who have thousands of designers on their books is madness.
Lastly, they need to complete the sites documentation and make it clear to everyone how the site works. I’ve used logo contest sites before so I understand how the process works but I imagine those who haven’t will want answers to some basic questions. It might be worth creating just one F.A.Q. page with answers to all questions. Currently there are several questions and each answer is only one sentence long, so why do we need to visit another page for an answer that short? By putting all the information on one page it would be much easier for users to get answers to the questions they have.
In our email conversations Faisal Anwar came across as a nice guy. So I hope he takes my suggestions on boards and improves Cullogo. Though Cullogo will not be a good choice for a logo contest until it has established itself and got more designers on board. One for watching.