99designs Tackling eBay Logo Design with Contest

If you haven’t heard, eBay recently announced a new logo. It’s, well, interesting to say the least. If you haven’t seen it, open up a tab and Google a photo of it. Does it look like any other logo you’ve seen before? Like the one you used to search for the image? Yeah, I thought so too.

Yesterday, my article on eBay’s new logo was posted on the CEM blog. I wrote about how I thought the new logo is a mistake, and betrays the brand and image of eBay out of a desire to look more contemporary. Plus, it’s just too darn close to Google’s logo, which hasn’t changed in years.

99designs Agreed

It turns out the good people at 99designs also thought the logo needed to be revamped. Upon hearing of the logo change, they shared a response similar to mine. On their own, they decided to put together a contest to see if designers could produce a better logo for eBay. They’re trying to create one that captures the spirit of the old logo while also demonstrating a more professional and connected aura.

99designs is a business on the net built around crowdsourcing graphic design projects. When I found out about the contest and the company, I was pretty impressed. The idea is great, and they’ve been quite successful since being founded in 2008. They’ve discovered a way to use technology to empower companies and design artists to work together so that artists get paid and companies get exactly what they want, and they made it competitive. Good for them.

Vote for Your Favorite Alternate eBay Logo

The contest finishes at the close of business today. You’ve still got plenty of time to vote from the eight finalists that 99designs has chosen. They received quite a few submissions; I guess I really wasn’t alone in my critique of the new eBay logo! The link to view and vote for your favorite choice is here.

Which one do I think captures what I would expect from a new eBay logo? I wouldn’t want to influence your vote in any way. Who am I kidding? You’re going to vote for whichever one you think looks good, as you should! To be honest, I’m stuck between #380 and #312.

#312 captures that contemporary look that it seems eBay is going for with its own new logo. But it does so in a unique way that separates eBay from the competition. The circle is simply a great added touch. #380, on the other hand, captures everything that the old logo exemplifies, but it sharpens the image and manages to get the wavy letters to look pretty professional. It’s definitely a logo indicative of a welcoming and open company that should make you feel comfortable and relaxed.

Logos are a Big Deal

If the success of 99designs isn’t an indication of how important design and logos are for a company, I’m not sure what would convince you otherwise. Building your brand has a lot to deal with your customer service, your product, and how you handle problems. But it also has a lot has to do with image. Your logo is the frontline of how you portray your image to the world. 99designs has built a business from this idea, and they’re doing very well. Maybe eBay should pay attention to this contest and make a few changes to its logo before it becomes 100% official. It’d be even better yet if eBay adopted the winner’s logo as its own.

Do you feel the same way about eBay’s new logo? What’s your favorite logo on the 99designs site?

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Patrick currently lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, where he is studying for a Master's Degree in Intercultural Relations. Upon graduation from Penn State in 2008, he spent two years overseas in Kyrgyzstan with the U.S. Peace Corps. While writing is currently his chosen way to put food on the table, he loves fitness and exercise, which he believes makes up for his avid computer gaming habit.

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