The world of online reviews is polarizing. You love a company or you hate it — that’s why you leave a review.
And this reasoning is why it’s not particularly surprising that 32 percent of our reviews for the logo design category are one-star reviews. If you have one negative experience with a company, you want to shout it from the rooftops.
But what’s really informative — and sometimes surprising — is the reasoning behind these reviews. We want to save future consumers from the same headache, so here are our data and insights on the most common logo design complaints.
*Because we will be reviewing general complaints, all specific company and reviewer names are removed. To better understand a specific company’s feedback, read their reviews.
Most customers expected more bang for their buck; they wanted an eye-catching logo design that encompassed their brand message. It makes sense that quality is at the forefront of reviewers’ minds, and it’s the factor most likely to guarantee a one-star review if quality is poor.
But a good logo design isn’t a shot in the dark, and poor quality designs aren’t unavoidable. Designers have portfolios for a reason. Here are some tips for avoiding this pitfall:
“Make sure that the contract they send you very clearly outlines the revision process,” Jared Cohen, Product Development Specialist of Falcon Marketing, warns, “and be wary of any companies that limit your number of logo revisions without switching to an hourly rate past a certain mark.”
What you see is what you get. Don’t expect the designers to pull off a logo of much higher quality compared to their previous work.
Most refund guarantees, even “full money-back guarantees,” include fine print. Refunds may exclude posting fees or a percentage of the upfront cost retained by the company as a commission.
Unfortunately, some companies aren’t transparent or forthcoming about this fine print, despite putting a money-back guarantee proclamation on their front page. In these instances, it’s up to you to read the fine print and reviews.
Conversely, some consumers don’t perform their due diligence in researching the refund policy. It’s likely that many clients don’t think they’ll have to use it, and so they don’t pay attention to it.
To avoid getting shortchanged in a refund, here are some pointers:
It’s unlikely you’ll work with a company that offers full refunds. “The amount that you can be refunded for shoddy work is also dependent on numerous factors,” Jaykishan Panchal of E2M Solutions Inc. explains, “and most likely you will need to offer some compensation unless the designer has refused to complete a project. . . . Unfortunately, just because you do not like something is not a reason to receive a full refund, especially if the designer put in a lot of hours to create a logo for you. Instead, it may be better to ask them for one last edit or to take their work to another designer and see what else can be done.”
We arrive at a universal complaint across all industries: poor customer service. Communication is key to a good logo design, and it’s understandable that poor communication in this industry is particularly frustrating.
Some companies offer design services from creatives around the world, which can lead to language barriers and inconsistent response times. Other companies can’t be reached by phone, or their responses are delayed. And other companies can’t intervene when a designer on their freelance platform has failed to uphold a contract.
Avoiding this one can be tricky. Sometimes it can depend on which medium you use to approach the company; other times it can depend on how well you explain the issue. Then again, there’s also the problem of a company’s fine print — some companies aren’t transparent about how they can help their clients if a conflict arises.
While your results may vary by company, here are some tips to prevent a customer service mishap:
“If customer service is an essential factor in the logo design process or you have concerns about this issue, then it may be better to work with a design company instead of an individual,” Panchal suggests. “These businesses will have a designated department to handle any issues and answer questions you may have, which could result in a better experience.”
Test out their response time through your chosen medium of communication. If you don’t like their phone trees or their automated responses, see what other companies can do for you.
Clients aren’t always the ones being ripped off — sometimes it’s the designers.
Keep in mind that our Best Company reviews include reviews from both designers and clients. If we collected data separately from the two groups, the negative response toward crowdsourcing platforms from designers may be even stronger and more statistically significant.
So what’s remarkable about this is that even among a mingling of client and designer reviews, there’s a significant negative response to this method of logo generation.
And think about it: if you became an expert in your field and were asked to apply your skills with no guarantee of compensation, pitted against hundreds of other experts for hours of your time, with the contest judge being a client who might not understand or respect your work, it makes sense that you could be unhappy.
Designers beware: design contests might not be worth your effort. You’re likely able to tell whether a client will be difficult or dismissive based on their brief, so read it carefully. And make sure you’re working through a site that you think respects your time and experience.
But an admonishment for clients: you could try harder to make your contests worth the effort. Here are some tips for getting better results from a design contest (it might not always be the fault of the company that you received low quality submissions):
Thinking you’re going to get a special deal on a logo design is not recommended. As the saying always goes, “You get what you pay for.”
Beyond these primary concerns, reviewers also complained about some miscellaneous issues that occur in the logo design industry.
Some logo design companies have subscription services or hidden, recurring fees that frustrate their customers. Make sure you receive an invoice you can archive, so you can dispute any charges that aren’t documented.
Because communication is so important for creating a good logo, it’s frustrating when designer response is slow. Between concepts, feedback, and revisions, the design process could take months. Be clear about what schedule you expect, and ask them to be clear about what schedule they can deliver.
Read also: 7 Ways to Protect Your Company Logo
Reviews are an important element of consumer research. They can steer customers clear of truly dishonest or unhelpful services. They can also give consumers a chance to air their complaints in a public forum where they are more likely to be addressed.
But keep in mind that not every reviewer understood their service or performed adequate research before jumping in; not every 1-star review is the fault of the company, and many companies respond to these reviews to quickly solve any issues.
Putting some data into your decisions will help you better understand your choice, and that’s what we’ve done for you. Knowing these factors, your review of any logo design company is likely to be more well-informed and balanced.