What’s Wrong with the Web Design Contests?
Many aspiring web designers have fallen prey to web design contests. They seem to be an excellent opportunity to gain skills and earn some money, but do they actually help web designers? Do they bring value to clients? This article answers all questions below.
Explaining Web Design Contests
Design competitions lure newbies with opportunities and monetary prizes. They offer designers a chance to develop a design following a specific task. Those coming up with the most skillful and high-quality design may even win small cash prizes. Everything seems fair – designers get an opportunity to advance their skills and create a portfolio while companies get many design options almost for free. But is it actually as good as it seems?
A No-Win Situation for Designers and Clients
A chance to win web design contests is irresistible for young designers who lack experience and skills but have enough zeal to compete. However, they fail to consider one important issue – the time and effort they will have to invest in a design project far outweigh the potential gains. Winning is not guaranteed, so you end up working for free. This situation may turn out to be frustrating and unfair, draining emotional resources needed for career growth.
Victims of web design contests are usually naïve, inexperienced designers who are willing to let the world know about their talents. However, participation in such competitions seems to be not the best way to develop one’s expertise. Instead, web designers can find low-paid freelance projects. The benefits of this option compared to contests are as follows:
- Web designers can receive feedback and adjust their work accordingly
- Payment for their work may be small, but it is guaranteed
- Designers can develop a variety of valuable work skills, from client communication to time management
Web design contests are not good for clients either. They exchange quality for quantity and may end up having many poorly designed projects. They also do not have an opportunity to communicate with contestants and get the personal touch needed for the final project to be relevant. Inexperienced designers also tend to use unoriginal work, which makes it useless to clients or, on the contrary, get too creative and present unrealistic projects.
So, whether you are a designer or a client, web design competitions can hardly bring you much value. Opt for options that treat all parties equally and justly and ensure that everyone gains something in return.