Best Practices

Freelance Design Websites for Every Project

The freelance design world is hot with talent waiting for your project—you just have to know where to find it. We’ve marked out 10 platforms with freelance designers available for hire. Each one differs in price, client leg-work and expertise. So, jot out your priorities and see which fits your project best!

Fiverr

Fiverr is a popular choice that’s easy to navigate and works great for small businesses. Paired with its adjoining app, Fiverr makes it easy to search and select the services you want, or post a job. When selecting a designer you can view their packages and star ranking, which is given to them after each job they complete. The platform includes international users offering an array of budget types and is free to use. All purchases are subject to a $2 service fee for projects under $40. That price then jumps to 5% for services above $40. But for the flexibility and ease to use, Fiverr comes in great for offloading design projects.

Heads Up:

Fiverr takes 20% of commission from designers, that’s a pretty high cut. That doesn’t directly impact you as the client, but it could mean more proficient designers will go to a site where they can make more.

Freelancer.com

Freelancer.com is a global platform with over 55 million registered users. It operates similarly to Fiverr in that clients can search for a service or post a job. Freelance offers a third option to conduct contests. There, freelancers can pitch ideas to you for selection. And while that may be a good option for a project with flexibility, it may not be necessary if you are looking for pre-concepted ideas.

Freelancer.com has a free plan available, and has a surplus of affordable freelancers.

Heads Up:

Freelancer.com offers clients designer portfolios for review. This expedites your selection process because samples are public. 

Upwork

Upwork is the largest freelancing platform out there. It departs from its budget counterparts and has worked to bring the scale of a huge platform but with a more elite feel. With Upwork you can toggle if you want to view Freelancers globally or U.S. only which allows you to be even more selective. Tracking hours and invoice fulfillment can be processed within platform, and they have a great app.

Similar to others, Upwork allows you to search designers and select them based on skill and ranking or post a job to let freelancers come to you. Upwork is also where membership plans begin to increase in price, but they do have a free plan available.

Heads Up:

Upwork also has an “Upwork Enterprise” Plan as an option for companies looking to build out their contract services through an Upwork Hub. Boasting Microsoft and Airbnb both utilize Upwork Enterprise, this could be a valuable option for bigger budget clients.

DesignCrowd

DesignCrowd is a contest-based freelance platform built to crowdsource design work. Your budget determines how many entries you will receive and from there you can share designs with the rest of your team. Because DesignCrowd is built for design work, the clarity around assets and industry standards is set high. The best part: if you don’t like any of your designs you receive a 100% refund.

Heads Up:

By most accounts, DesignCrowd is a fast and high quality platform. Because of this it seems, there are no free plans available, the first contest tier beginning at $99.

99designs

99designs is Vistaprint’s design service. They either connect you with a designer from a creative brief, or you can start a contest. Their lowest pricing tier starts at $299 a month and only the best designers will work on your briefs. Most reviews noted that the monthly cost is worth the time you would have spent sorting through designers on other platforms.

Heads Up:

You can’t hire an “expert” graphic designer in the basic plan. They are available only in Gold and Platinum ranges.

Toptal

Toptal is a highly selective freelancer platform in which they do most of the work. Once you submit your job posting, Toptal contacts you with options they think match well. When moving forward with a designer, you pay the designer’s hourly rate and $500 refundable deposit to the platform. Toptal screens all freelancers and claims to only accept the top 3%- so, you get what you pay for. Even so, some reviews note that the process takes a little too much time to select your designer.

Heads Up:

With Toptal you can also find on-site talent. Meaning, yes, your freelancer can come into the office. This approach is more like a traditional consulting agreement, with Toptal handling the details.

Dribble

Dribble is an invite-only platform for designers which automatically gives this one a boutique feel. You submit your brief and Dribble suggests freelancers that fit. Plans start at $99 a month and all designers house a portfolio on-platform.

Heads Up:

Dribble seconds as a sort of social network for the design community. It’s easy to peruse work and engage with designers there. Designers can also sell pre-made designs which could be a quick solution to light projects.

DesignHill

Similar to DesignCrowd, DesignHill is a crowdsourcing design platform. To submit a design contest, your membership will start at $249 a month. Or, to hire a designer one-to-one, you’re met with a 5% fixed DesignHill commission cost. It’s a smaller site with great talent.

Heads Up:

DesignHill offers a 100% money back guarantee if you don’t like any of your design submissions, and allows for unlimited revisions. We wanted to include this because typically design revisions are limited by the platform or the designer.

Guru

Guru is one of it not the most affordable options out there. There is no membership fee and as an employer you pay 2.9% in commission to Guru, so you can get started today. Likely due to the lower pricing, finding your freelancer might take a little longer and a little more leg-work. Guru also isn’t limited to designers.

Heads Up:

Guru reviews are hit or miss. We would suggest trying it with a smaller project first before locking in project timelines and budget.

LinkedIn Profinder

LinkedIn Profinder is a freelancing platform, born from LinkedIn, that connects you with Freelancers who are often already in your network. Once LinkedIn shares potential freelancers with you, they submit proposals. Every designer may not be in your network, but the in-network feature does create a sense of trust when choosing to work with someone you might already know.

Heads Up:

LinkedIn Profinder does not offer a way to pay in app. This is a pretty big let down since many freelancing websites offer multiple. Profinder’s price tag begins at $60 a month.

Conclusion

Finding a designer for a one-off project or for many is totally within reach. Understanding your budget and your design details will be key in making a snag-free decision. So what are you waiting for? Your company logo, brochure, or website are about to get an upgrade.

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