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If you are looking for a unique way to get a new logo designed, 99 Designs should be at the top of your list. Instead of working with in house designers, this company makes your request visible to thousands of free lance designers who then compete for your business. 99 Designs even refer to the process as a “contest”, and in many ways it is.

The process begins when you complete a brief about your needs. You will answer questions about the desired logo – everything from color preferences to ways in which the logo will be used. This brief then becomes visible to the thousands of designers that have accounts with 99 designs. Individual designers can choose which contests they enter and then have 7 days to produce the logo. During that week, designers will begin to upload their final concepts and you have the opportunity to leave feedback. By leaving feedback you are helping the designers get a better feel for what you like and what you don’t like. Once the week is up, you get to select your winning design. You get the high resolution image and the designer is paid the pre-determined fee. Prices for logos begin at $295. The more money you offer, the more designers you’ll attract. A typical contest will have about a dozen designers who each produce several concepts.

The thing we like best about 99 Designs is the extreme variety of options you’ll have in front of you when it comes time to make your choice. Unlike other companies where you work with a set of in house designers who may have a similar eye, 99 Designs allows you to connect with designers from all over the world. Imagine the range of logos that you will have to select from. It’s also a good chance for designers without an extensive portfolio or fancy office space to find work. These are often very talented people that would otherwise be hard to find.

The one downside is that the website is not quite as straightforward as other competitor sites. We found it a bit more difficult to gather information and get a clear understanding of the process. The concept alone makes up for any frustration that you’ll have navigating the site. The bottom line is that this is a fun way to get a logo. The concept of creating a contest makes the whole thing more exciting and engaging. Your contest page even has its own discussion board where you can communicate with the designers.

This is just another example of how the web is making it easier for businesses with limited resources to connect with talented, creative and high quality service providers. According to the Wall Street Journal, 99 Designs investors have also been connected with the social phenomenon Facebook Inc. and more recently Groupon Inc. 99 Designs has received a significant amount media attention and won a prestigious Webby People’s Choice Award for Best Web Service and Application of the Year in 2010.

[Try 99 designs now!]