The Awards

y design awards

The Y Design Awards

The Y Design Awards feature 10 categories listed below.

We're looking for the most innovative and compelling examples of Web design on the Web under each of these category headings.

Each category winner will receive the stylish Y Design Awards trophy, plus press.

The lead designer of the People’s Choice Award will also win free flights, accommodation and a place at next year’s Annual Award Ceremony up to the value of $4500.

We welcome nominations in the following categories:

  • Best game design
  • Best interactive site
  • Best application
  • Best online campaign by an agency with less than 5 employees
  • Best online campaign by an agency with more than 5 employees
  • Best not-for-profit campaign
  • Best viral campaign
  • Best video
  • Best technical achievement
  • People’s Choice

Select the category that you feel best describes the work. The judges will reassign entries into a more appropriate category if we feel it is better suited.

The Y Design Awards Annual Party

  • The winners of all categories will be announced at an exclusive invite-only party in February.
  • Invitations will be extended to all finalists once they have been selected by the panel of judges in December.
  • If you like more information about the Awards Party, please contact Jonathon Jones by email at

Award Process


The panel of 5 judges will be announced during November. Please come back soon for further information.

Award process

  • All work submitted during the open submissions period will be considered for an award, provided it meets the eligibility requirements.
  • Upon completion of the open submissions period, submitted work will be referred to a panel of 5 judges. These judges will then perform the first round judging process to determine a list of finalists, which will consist of four different submissions of work per category (except for category 10: The People’s Choice Award).
  • Finalists for categories 1-9 will be announced in December and will be listed on the Y Design Awards site. Additionally, finalists will be notified by email and telephone. Further information/materials may be requested of them at that time, including the provision of a 3 minute (maximum) acceptance presentation. The acceptance of each category winner will be displayed at the Awards party.
  • These same 5 judges will then begin the second phase of judging for categories 1-9. After this second round of judging, one winner per category (except for category 10: The People’s Choice Award) will have been chosen by the judges.
  • At the end of judging, all finalists will also automatically be entered into category 10: The People’s Choice Award. At that time, the online community will be able to vote from this list of category finalists to determine the winners of the People's Choice award. The People’s Choice Award voting will take place. Top 3 winners will be selected based upon the largest number of online votes received from the online community.
  • All winners, chosen by either the panel of judges or by the online community, will be first announced at the Y Design Awards party. No finalist will be notified of the outcome of the awards prior to the Awards party.
  • If you have any questions, please email YDA at before submitting your entry.

Acceptance of Award

  • Finalists for all categories will be listed on the Y Design Awards site.
  • Further information/materials may be requested of each finalists at that time, including the provision of a 3 minute long acceptance presentation.


There are numerous benefits to participation in the Y Design Awards

Everyone who enters the Y Design Awards benefits from involvement. All entries will receive:
Criteria scoring – You will receive feedback in the form of the average scores on each of the judging criteria for your submission as well as your final score.
Benchmark data - You will be able to compare your scores with the other sites entered in your category.
Judges comments – While not required, judges often can leave you valuable comments to help your future development efforts and to provide additional insight into why certain scores were received.

Category finalists

Category finalists (4 per category) will each receive a Y Design Awards framed certificate of achievement and promotion on the Awards website during the run up to the Awards party and presentations. Additional certificates can be ordered to reward individual team members and clients.

Category winners

If your Web site is selected as a winner, you will also benefit from the following:

Trophy - Each category winner will receive their own Y Design Awards trophy. Additional trophies can be ordered to reward individual team members and clients.
Media coverage - The media sponsors will highlight each category winner in both print and online after the Awards party.
The lead designer of the People’s Choice Campaign will also win free flights, accommodation and a place at the next annual award party up to the value of $4500.
Online - A winners link for each People’s Choice Campaign winner will be created on the Y Design Awards web site.
P.R. – The organizers of the Y Design Awards scheme will submit press releases regarding the winners to relevant industry media.
An exceptional marketing opportunity – There are hundreds of ways to promote your winning a Y Design Award in sales materials, presentations, catalogues, press releases and on your Web site.
Proof that your work meets or exceeds industry standards - A Y Design Award demonstrates that the highest standards have been met for your site. This is an exceptional way to demonstrate your professionalism to clients or senior management. The award will help you differentiate yourself from your competition.


  • All works must be created predominantly in HTML5.
  • All works must be currently available on the Web to any visitor.
  • A work may be nominated in all categories for which it qualifies.
  • An award-winning work cannot be considered for an award in future competitions.
  • When nominating a single piece of work amongst many in a site, please submit a URL which brings you directly to that piece or describe on the nomination form exactly how to find it. If you do not indicate a particular work, the judges will evaluate the entire body of work hosted at that URL.
  • The person submitting the entry will be considered the "nominator" and will receive all communications regarding the Y Design Awards. All changes to an entry can only be made by the nominator or by the designated back-up named in the entry.
  • All sites must have been launched online after January 1st of the award year.
  • All sites must be online. No offline projects will be considered (i.e. cd-rom/dvd)
  • All sites must be live and accessible to the general public to be considered eligible for submission into the Y Design Awards. Sites spotlighting live or limited-time events are eligible for submission, but there are no guarantees that judges will be able to properly view site content.
  • Sites requiring registration are permitted, providing judges are granted with special access permission in order to view the site.
  • Sponsors and affiliates of the Y Design Awards (corporate sponsors, partners, etc.) may submit sites for consideration. Please note, these said sites are in no way given preferential consideration.
  • Any site containing pornographic, or otherwise blatantly objectionable content or material, is ineligible for consideration. The Y Design Awards retains the right to disqualify entries which offend national, religious, cultural or racial feelings.
  • There is no submission fee
  • Non-English entries should include an English translation. Please see the ‘How to submit’ section for further information.
  • Submission of any entry acknowledges the right of Y Design Awards to use it for exhibition and publication in any medium. Note that Y Design Awards will not take credit for such work, and will only present it as an award finalist or winner. The entrant agrees to hold the Y Design Awards and any of its affiliated companies exempt from any costs or expenses of any claim arising out of any such use.
  • Copyright infringement and/or plagiarism (be it intentional or unintentional) will result in the disqualification and, if applicable, removal of awards from any entry deemed in violation.
  • The Y Design Awards assumes that all entries are original and are the works and property of the entrants, with all rights granted therein. In the event that an entrant without such rights submits a site, both the entrant and the owner of the site will be contacted. If the owner or representative of the site denies consent, the submitted site will be removed from consideration.


What We're Looking For...

The Y Design Awards’ primary goal is to recognize and promote excellence in digital creativity & design. Online projects require many skills to be applied for true excellence to emerge.

This year the judges will be awarding pieces that, by achieving a balance between these core skills, provide a truly excellent creative experience for the user, regardless of subject matter or platform.

The judges will look at the following when considering submissions:

The underlying strategy
Why was the project created? What is the concept? What are you trying to achieve? What problem are you attempting to solve and, in the opinion of the judges, did you solve it?

The creative idea
Is it actually interactive or just online? Is it using the chosen medium to good effect? Is it original or innovative or just a rehash of ideas in another medium? Has it really been thought through?

The quality of production
How well has the project been put together? What is the quality of visual and technical design? Did the concept translate into an effective design? Does it work as expected or does it contain bugs? Is it easy to use (good usability and information architecture)? Does it meet accessibility or web standards guidelines?

The level of user experience
How well does it fulfill its purpose? Does it inform, educate or entertain? How enjoyable was it to use? What depth of immersion was there?

Other criteria used may include:
Technical sophistication, playability, video integration, backend/database integration, interface design, composition/layout, graphic quality, story development, integration of image/type/movement/sound, typography, navigation, writing, art direction, features, interactivity, functionality, overall effectiveness, overall usability & overall experience.

To learn more about the Y Design Awards judges, please visit ‘About Our Judges’. If you are an experienced Internet professional and would like to be considered as a potential judge for future awards, please email

Judges access to entry
The Y Design Awards judges will be evaluating all entries. If your site is password protected, please make sure the site is accessible to the judges during that time period. In the event that a judge cannot access a site to evaluate it, we will make every effort to contact the nominator by email and ask for the site to be checked. If the judges are unable to review the site in a timely manner, the Y Design Awards reserves the right to disqualify the site from the competition.

Award plaques and certificates
Y Design Award trophies are granted to the sole winner of each category (except in the event of a tie) and will be presented in person at the Awards Party.

Additional copies of the Y Design Awards plaques and certificates, which can be personalized to recognize individual contribution, will be available to award winners at the conclusion of the competition. If you were involved with an award winning entry and would like to order a personalized Y Design Awards plaque or certificate, please email

The Y Design Awards has 10 categories. For a full list of the categories, and a description of the intention of each, please visit the Categories page.

See the ‘Rules’ section for the terms and Conditions of Entry

For questions or comments related to the Y Design Awards, please email Jonathan Jones at

Y Design Awards

Recognizing and celebrating leading creative talents demonstrated through the use of digital technology.