Design awards have become a ‘note of prestige’ in today's digital landscape.
They provide a sort of instant credibility, online recognition, and coveted distinction from the rest of the crowd. For freelancers, studios, and agencies, standing out and making a name for yourself is absolutely vital.
And there’s no better way to gain online notoriety than through website design awards. They give you the means to showcase your skill, flex your creative range, and demonstrate your unique expertise.
Here are 9 website design awards platforms that’ll allow you to do just that, if not more.
9 of the best website design awards
1. One Page Love
Launched by Rob Hope back in 2008, One Page Love is the leading showcase of one-page websites, templates, and resources. Functioning as part “site of the day” meets online visual design resource platform, here you’ll find an endless catalog of beautiful single-page websites.
If you’re looking to showcase your one-pager — website or template — and you meet Rob’s criteria, you should definitely consider submitting. Even better, submissions are free with a $20 fee if accepted.
Submit to One Page Love (paid upon acceptance, $20)
Another popular ‘website of the day’ showcase platform is Siteinspire. Curated by Howells Studio of London, Siteinspire features the finest web and interactive designs. Projects of all kinds are found on this platform, each with a unique visual design and a focus on cleanliness and simplicity — criteria defined by Daniel Howells and his team of curators.
With over 7,500 sites featured on their platform, Siteinspire opens submissions to all upon registration to their online showcase.
Submit to Siteinspire (free, signup required)
3. The FWA
Next, we have The FWA — awards that have a focus on showcasing innovation and cutting-edge creativity. Founded in England, The FWA (or Favourite Website Awards), boasts an international team of 500 judges, who cast their votes live on a daily basis (check out Live Judging to see this in action).
There’s a category of 4 awards presented on this platform: FOTD (FWA of the Day), FOTM (FWA of the Month), PCA (People’s Choice Award, yearly), and FOTY (FWA of the Year). FWA awards websites, apps, physical installations, VR, and AR alike — with submissions open to all creative work that ‘pushes the internet generation forward.'
Submit to the FWA (paid, £70.50 GBP)
Perhaps one of the most known awards showcase platforms on the list is Awwwards. With over 2 million unique monthly users, Awwwards is the platform ideal for recognition and promotion for digital creatives agencies and freelancers. Some of the best websites and digital projects are featured on this site with categories spanning from ecommerce, art & illustration, web development, and more.
Like FWA, Awwwards presents a standard rotation of awards, such as Site of the Day, Site of the Month, and Site of the Year. Additionally, award-winning websites can show off an Awwwards badge on their site and nominees can also receive recognition from being featured on their nominees' page.
2022’s site of the month features projects Welcome to the Continent by Media.Monks (March), as well as Magical Reflections (February), and The Unconventional Gallery (January) by Makemepulse – each of which is spellbinding.
Submit to Awwwards (paid, $65 submission only or $165 yearly for 3 submissions plus access to the Awwwards directory)
5. CSS Design Awards
CSS Design Awards is another web development and website design showcase awards platform open to “digital folk, UI/UX peeps, and inspiring leaders of the web.” Launched in 2010, CSS Design Awards has grown in recognition and prestige in the website design, web development, and user experience (UX/UI) communities.
Like the other showcase awards platforms on our list, CSS Design Awards gives awards for categories such as Website of the Day, Website of the Month, Website of the Year, Public Awards, and Designer of the Year — with finalists awarded Best in Class (DOY) and nominees given Special Kudos (WOTM). Check out 2021’s WOTY winners — you’ll find a catalog of digital works and corporate websites alike demonstrating creativity, sublime beauty, and ultimate functionality.
Submit to CSS Design Awards (paid, $50 per site)
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6. CSS Winner
Next is CSS Winner, a showcase awards platform ideal for freelancers, studios, or agencies seeking an awards program that focuses exclusively on HTML and CSS. With submission costs capped at $9 (refunded if rejected), CSS Winner is also a great way to gain a bit of recognition without breaking the bank.
Like the other showcase awards platforms on the list, CSS Winner presents Site of the Day and Site of the Month awards. They also feature nominees and ‘Stars’ on separate nominations and Stars pages. Check out their homepage to see the lineup of their current stars, nominees, and award winners.
Submit to CSS Winner (paid, $9)
7. Clio Awards (Digital/Mobile)
For the agencies looking for an awards program beyond the website of the day formula, we have the Clio Awards. Founded in 1959, Clio Awards celebrates and awards the “bold work that propels the advertising industry forward, inspires a competitive marketplace of ideas, and fosters meaningful connections within the creative community.”
Each year, Clio awards some of the biggest and most groundbreaking creative advertising agencies across the globe with categories that both include and extend beyond website design. Specifically, within their digital/mobile category — advertising agencies are welcome to submit their most compelling case studies for apps, ecommerce, landing pages, websites, and more.
Submit to the Clio Awards (paid, starting at $525)
8. Webby Awards (Websites and Mobile Sites)
Following Clio, we have The Webby Awards — another awards program that extends beyond the showcase platform standard.
“Honoring the best of the internet since 1997,” The Webby Awards annually opens submissions to, well, the internet’s best. In taking a look at their 2022 winners catalog. you will find the caliber of work awarded by The Webby Awards.
Applications for entry are exclusive to a phone call, yet the public is open to submit their information to receive such a call.
9. Shorty Awards (UX/UI)
What, the Shorty Awards? Yes, you read correctly. While this platform is commonly known for its influencer and social media awards categories, it, too, opens submissions to user experience and interface design.
Founded in New York back in 2008, the Shorty Awards is the first-ever award show honoring social media, and now digital media. They open entries to agencies, brands, and non-profit organizations creating corporate websites, online platforms, and mobile apps. Notable brands from 2021’s entries include L'Oreal, Lifesum, and IBM – just to name a few.
Submit to the Shorty Awards (paid, starting at $399 or $299 non-profit)
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