Design Directory: FAQs

About the Site

Q:

What is the Core77 Design Directory?

A:

In 2003, Core77 partnered with Bloomberg Businessweek to produce the Core77 Design Directory, a comprehensive database of design firms, launched in conjunction with the release of the new Design and Innovation Channel on the BusinessWeek.com website. At Businessweek.com, a highlighted Design Directory box is integrated into the channel home page, alongside a host of other content discussing the strategic importance of design to businesses. The Design Directory site is co-branded and promoted extensively by Core77 and BusinessWeek. With a total audience of 4 million users monthly, design firms listing in this directory enjoy an unprecedented opportunity to gain exposure to a global audience of business and design leaders in a cost-effective manner.

Q:

Why should I list in the Design Directory? My design firm already has a website—a nice one!

A:

The Core77 Design Directory is an apples-to-apples way for business leaders and hiring managers to put together a short list of design firms they're interested in working with. Your firm's website is a great thing, but if nobody visits it, it's not doing you much good. Your Profile page in the Design Directory can contain a link to your site, so anyone interested in learning more about your firm can get to your site right from your Profile. The Design Directory is prominently promoted at several spots within Businessweek.com and Core77.com—your firm's website is not.

Q:

Who is Core77?

A:

Since 1995, Core77.com has served a devoted global audience of industrial designers ranging from students through seasoned professionals. Core77 publishes articles, discussion forums, an extensive event calendar, hosts portfolios, job listings, a database of design firms, schools, vendors and services. Core77 provides a gathering point for designers and enthusiasts alike by producing design competitions, lecture series, parties, and exhibits. It's sister site, Coroflot, focuses on design portfolios and design jobs, and boasts a population of over 235,000 portfolios, all searchable from anywhere on the internet.

Q:

Who is Bloomberg Businessweek??

A:

Bloomberg Businessweek's award-winning web site Businessweek.com provides users with daily perspective, unique insights, breaking news, and in-depth analysis of the latest trends in the business world. With continuous coverage of today's business issues, Businessweek Online is a leading full-service Web site for senior-level executives. At Businessweek Online, users find eight channels replete with trusted information and resources to help manage their personal and professional lives. From small business to global business, personal investing to corporate strategies, Businessweek Online provides insight and perspective on all topics relevant to today's business professionals. In addition to unparalleled journalism, the site also offers interactive tools, reports, data, forums, and newsletters.

Listing Your Design Firm

Q:

How much does it cost to list my design firm?

A:

There are 2 plans for listings at the Core77 Design Directory:

Basic Plan: Free

This is a free account which includes your firm Profile and 1 public project, unlimited private projects, account activity stats, and a customizable URL at DesignDirectory.com.

Premium Plan: $85/mo

The Premium listing gives you all the features of a Basic listing plus:

  • Primary Placement in search results—Premium listings are larger, have more information, and are displayed first in all search and browse results
  • Your newest Projects featured—on the Design Directory home page and the Core77 Network
  • Better Analytics—integrate your Design Directory Profile and Projects into your firm's Google Analytics account
  • Your Logo—prominently displayed on your search result listing and the Design Directory homepage
  • A Project Portfolio—20 public projects with up to 8 images, supporting documents, links, and descriptions to showcase your firm's work
PremiumPlus Option: Customized

For firms who want even more exposure, talk to us about how to get featured in Bloomberg Businessweek and the Core77 Network with PremiumPlus.

Find out more on our Plans & Pricing page.

Q:

How do I get listed?

A:

Its easy to apply for inclusion in the Core77 Design Directory by going to the Get Listed page and filling out a short form describing your firm. We'll review your application and firm's details against our approval criteria and get back to you within 1—2 business days.

Q:

Will my listing need to be approved before I can sign in?

A:

Yes, our staff personally reviews all new listings before we accept them into the Design Directory. This helps uphold the Directory's overall quality as a resource, which in turn leads to better opportunities to match your firm with appropriate, qualified leads. Just fill out the quick Get Listed form to start the process.

Q:

How long will it take to get my listing approved?

A:

New applications are usually approved within 24 hours, but since we personally review all new listings it could take up to two business days. The more accurate and complete your submission is, the quicker we can move it through the review process. We will notify you via email once your listing has been approved (or if there are any issues).

Q:

What happens after my listing's approved?

A:

Once your firm's been approved, your Design Directory account will be created as a Basic listing, and we'll send you a notification email with your new account information. You can sign in and upgrade to a Premium plan listing anytime, and start filling out your firm's Profile and portfolio of projects. Your account's privacy will be private (invisible) until your firms's Profile and Search Criteria section and main office location are filled out and you're ready to make it public.

Q:

What criteria do you use to approve listings?

A:

During the application process, you are asked to enter information about your firm that is critical for it to be approved for the Design Directory, particularly a description about your firm. You also need to identify the primary field (or industry) to which your firm belongs and your firm's website (if you have one).

Based on your information we use these guidelines to evaluate your listing approval:

  • Clearly fits within the selected field
  • Has a well-defined firm description written in English
  • Has a compelling, well designed website, or at least website placeholder at a registered domain

The Core77 Design Directory is not intended for listings that:

  • Do not offer design services (ie. exclusively offering manufacturing or prototyping services)
  • Offer a limited scope of design services not reflected in one of the Design Directory's fields
  • Submit a personal portfolio
  • Have a generic, template-driven website offering web design services and SEO
  • Represent an information resource site (ie. network, directory, blog)

Note: The Core77 Design Directory reserves the right to deny listing approval for any reason.

Q:

How can I get my listing to appear on the home page?

A:

Firms with the PremiumPlus option receive placement in the slideshow at the top of the Design Directory home page, as well as on Core77.com pages and Bloomberg Businessweek. Talk to us about PremiumPlus if you want more exposure for your firm.

Additionally Premium firms' new projects and logos are featured included on the home page:

  • Recent Projects by Premium Firms—shows the newest public projects from Premium firms
  • Browse Firms—logos of Premium firms are placed in random rotation once they're uploaded
Q:

How can I get my listing to appear on Businessweek.com?

A:

Firms with PremiumPlus options receive placement on select high-traffic BusinessWeek.com pages. Inclusion in these spots is available on a monthly basis. Talk to us about PremiumPlus if you want to find out more.

Finding Design Firms

Q:

How do I search for design firms that match my needs?

A:

Use the green search bar at the top of most pages in the Design Directory. Start your search by selecting the design field you need, the general location (or drill down to a specific city) you want, and the closest range your project's budget fits into.

You can start a keyword search under the search bar where it says "Looking for Something Specific? Click Here" and entering a word or phrase into the search box that appears. Or click the links under "Popular Specialties" and "Popular Locations" for a quick tag search from the home page.

Q:

There are too many results; how do I refine my search?

A:

Use the search bar menus on the search results page to change your selections or narrow down your location. Use the keyword search box to get more specific, or click the "x" next to your search terms on the left to remove them. If you still have difficulty, give us a call at +1-212-965-1998 and our helpful staff will take care of you.

Q:

What does the keyword search do?

A:

The keyword search looks through all of the public firm profiles and tries to find matches for you from the:

  • Firm Description
  • Firm Locations
  • Firm Website
  • Firm Design Directory URL

The search term you entered will show up on the search results page under the search bar on the left side. Use the keyword search box on the right to modify your search term, or click the "x" after it to remove.

Q:

What if I just want to browse firms or look for inspiration?

A:

The home page is a great place to start browsing firms by:

  • Recent Projects—the newest projects created by Premium firms are featured
  • Firm Logos—randomly displayed logos of Premium firms
  • Popular Specialties—Profile specialties act like tags, click them to see all the firms that have that specialty
  • Popular Locations—click to see all the firms with an office in these areas

Keep using the search bar to modify or refine the search results.

Signing In/Signing Out

Q:

How do I sign in to my firm's account? Or sign out?

A:

Sign in to your account by clicking the green Sign In link in the upper right hand corner of every page. When you're signed in, click the Sign Out link in the same place.

Q:

I can't sign in to my account. What should I do?

A:

The welcome email contains your username and account information. If you do not have your firm's welcome email, use our Contact form or call us at +1-212-965-1998 and we'll be happy to help you.

Q:

I forgot my password. Help!

A:

You can have your password reset by going to the Forgot Password page or clicking the "Forgot your Password"" link on the Sign In page and entering your email address. You will be emailed a reset link that will allow you to reset your password (the link automatically expires if not used). If you're still having trouble then call us at +1-212-965-1998 and we'll be happy to help you.

Managing Your Account

Q:

What is the difference between "EDIT FIRM LISTING" and "MANAGE ACCOUNT"?

A:

The EDIT FIRM LISTING section focuses on the public facing section of your account, chiefly your Profile and projects, and the stats that are tracked in them. The MANAGE ACCOUNT section handles details that will not be made public, such as your account contact information, Google Analytics integration, and of course your billing information and password.

Q:

What is the Account Overview?

A:

The Account Overview is a dashboard look at what's happening in your account.

Q:

I want to change plans. How do I upgrade to a Premium or downgrade to a Basic listing?

A:

Go to Manage Plans in the account menu to upgrade or downgrade your plan at any time. Upgraded Premium features take effect immediately. If you downgrade to Basic, your Premium features stay in effect until the end of your current billing cycle. You can upgrade again before the end of the billing cycle to resume uninterrupted Premium service.

Q:

How is the Account Contact different from the Inquiries Contacts in the Profile?

A:

The Account Contact's information is not publicly shown, and is person we at Design Directory can contact about any support issues. Inquiries Contacts are publicly displayed on the firm Profile and are the people or departments site visitors should get in touch with—at a specific location or for the whole firm. The Inquiries Contact have the same information as the Account Contact, you'll just need to enter it in both places.

You can also save information for a second, optional contact, in case there's any trouble getting in touch with the person who set up your Design Directory account originally. Go to Edit Account Contact Info to set it up.

Q:

How can I change my password?

A:

Under the MANAGE ACCOUNT section click Change Password. You must first verify your current password and then type and re-type a new one. Passwords are case sensitive and must be at least 6 characters long and contain a number.

Editing Your Firm Listing

Q:

How do I update my Profile page?

A:

It's easy. Simply Sign In to your account using your secure name and password, and you'll be automatically redirected to the Account Overview (or if you're already signed in, click on your username in the upper-right corner). Click the Edit Profile button in the middle of the page, or the Edit Profile link in the account menu on the right. Everything you need to update your Profile is right there, with a fast and user-friendly interface, and suggestions to help you get the most of your Profile Page. All of the Profile and Search Criteria section and the Main Office Location must be filled in to when you save.

Q:

Can I link to my firm's website?

A:

Yes—go to the Further Details section on the Edit Profile page. Fill in the Firm Website URL and Firm Website Link Text fields to add your firm's website to your Profile.

Q:

Our firm has several offices throughout the country/world—is it possible to list more than one location?

A:

Yes—go to the Locations section on the Edit Profile page. You must provide at least a Main Office location. Click the ADD ANOTHER OFFICE button to include additional locations and corresponding Inquiries Contacts for each if needed.

Q:

How do I know how many people have viewed my profile page?

A:

Your Account Overview page shows an overview of recent traffic to your listing, while Statistics Details contains your full, traffic history.

Additionally, Premium listings can add Google Analytics tracking to their pages or you can Contact us if you need more detailed reports.

Q:

What are the Google Analytics settings?

A:

Premium listings can easily integrate their firm pages with their Google Analytics account for additional tracking.

Q:

I have a Premium listing—how do I set up Google Analytics?

A:

Its a simple 2-step process:

Step 1—add your Design Directory URL to your Google Analytics account.

  • Sign in to your Google Analytics account: http://www.google.com/analytics
  • Click "+ Add a new profile"
  • Select "Add a Profile for a new domain"
  • Under "Add a Profile for a new domain," paste your Design Directory URL provided in Google Analytics Settings
  • Set your time zone and click the "Finish" button.

Step 2—add your Google Analytics Web Property ID (UA code) to your Design Directory account.

  • From the Google Analytics Tracking Code screen, copy the Web Property ID (UA-#######-#)
  • Paste the Web Property ID into the "Your Google Web Property ID" field in Google Analytics Settings and click the "Update" button.
  • Select "Add a Profile for a new domain"
  • Under "Add a Profile for a new domain," paste your Design Directory URL provided in Google Analytics Settings
  • Set your time zone and click the "Finish" button.

Once both accounts are set up, sign into your Google Analytics account to see your Design Directory Website Profile: http://www.google.com/analytics

Q:

I don't want people to see my firm Profile or projects right now, how can I temporarily deactivate my listing?

A:

In the account menu click Edit Profile. To temporarily hide your listing (make your pages invisible and excluded from search results), select the Private option under "Privacy" and then Save.

CREATING AND MANAGING YOUR PROJECTS

Q:

What are projects?

A:

Projects show off your firm's services—by letting your work speak for itself!

Every Design Directory listing gets at least one public and unlimited private projects with their own URLs featuring:

  • Photos and images of the project
  • A description
  • Related documents
  • Links to articles and websites
  • Team members
  • Awards or other recognition
  • Descriptive tags

All of this comes together in the project page, becoming an informative destination that showcases your firm's work and links back to your Profile.

Q:

How many projects do I get?

A:

Premium listings can have up to 20 public projects which are also presented on an additional Projects page, while Basic listings come with one public project. All listings receive unlimited private projects.

Q:

What's the difference between public and private projects? How do I change a project's privacy?

A:

Public projects are visible to anyone on the Internet (as long as your firm's Profile is also public). Private projects are invisible to everyone except when you're signed into your firm's account. Using a direct URL link to a private project will send the user to a Not Found page.

Change a project's privacy by going to Manage Projects in the account menu and dragging the project from one column to the other—the new privacy setting will be saved automatically. New projects are created private, so make sure you drag new projects to the public column once they're ready for the world to see. Premium listings can have up to 20 projects in the public column. If you hit your public project limit, you must move a project to the private side before you can add another to the public side.

Q:

How do I make a new project?

A:

Sign in to your account and go to Manage Projects and click the blue ADD A PROJECT button in the upper right. Enter a project name and click the SAVE button to get started.

Q:

How do I change the projects that are in the slideshow on my firm Profile?

A:

If you have a Premium listing, the first 4 projects in the Public column on the Manage Projects page get included in the slideshow on your Profile. The 1st public project is also used as your search result image. A Basic listing's single public project is displayed on the Profile and search results too.

Q:

How does the image upload work?

A:

In the Media section of your Edit a Project page, click the gray ADD IMAGES button and an "Upload Images"" popup will appear with "Add an Image" fields for as many images as there is room left in the project. (You can upload up to 8 images in every project, so if you've already uploaded 6 images, the popup will offer only 2 upload fields).

Use the Choose File buttons to select the images you want on your computer. Once they're selected they will start uploading automatically. When all of your images have uploaded and display green checkmarks, click the BACK TO PROJECT button and they will appear in the Media section.

If you haven't already uploaded a Project Thumbnail image, one will automatically be generated from the 1st image you uploaded to the Media section. We strongly recommend uploading Project Thumbnail images that are 824px wide by 466px high for best results in your Profile slideshow and search results.

You can delete or replace an image in the Media section by clicking the "Remove" or "Edit" links on each image.

Q:

How do I prepare images for the web?

A:

Select the project images you want to include—we recommend images at least 824 pixels wide (larger images will be resized to fit for you). The image height is variable, but we recommend making them at least 466 pixels high.

Images should have a resolution of 72dpi and can be .JPG/.JPEG, .GIF, .PNG, or .BMP files types—we recommend moderate compression in jpg form. That way, they'll download fast and still look good.

Q:

What types of image files are acceptable?

A:

Accepted image file types are .JPG/.JPEG, .GIF, .PNG, and .BMP. And don't use spaces when you name them, please.

Q:

What if I don't want to put up 8 images?

A:

No problem. We have provided eight spots for images so that you can create a very quick yet very broad impression of your project and work. You don't need to use them all, the page will resize to fit the number of images, related documents, team members, etc. that you have and you can add, delete, or edit images at any time.

Q:

The maximum image width is 824 pixels, what is the max height? The minimum size?

A:

The height is variable, so concentrate on making your image look good at that width. Images narrower than 824px will have white padding added to their sides.

The key image to size correctly is the Project Thumbnail—make it 824px by 466px for best results and additional versions will created from that.

Q:

Can I replace the auto-generated project thumbnail image with my own? What size should it be??

A:

Yes. Click the gray CHOOSE THUMBNAIL button to upload a different thumbnail that is 824 pixels wide by 466 pixels high for best results. Project thumbnails can only be replaced, not removed.

Q:

Why isn't my project showing up on the home page?

A:

Newly created project by Premium firms are featured on the homepage, so make sure your Premium listing is active and public, and that your new project is also public and has at least one image with a project thumbnail.

Q:

Why isn't my project showing up on my firm's All Projects page?

A:

Only Premium listings have All Projects pages. All projects that are public and have at least one image with a project thumbnail appear here. Go to Manage Projects and drag your public projects to change the order in which they appear on the All Projects page.

Q:

What are Related Documents?

A:

We know that most projects don't arrive in a vacuum, so related documents are intended for files like press releases, case studies, media kits, white papers, and any other documentation that you release to support your project.

Q:

What kinds of files can I upload as Related Documents?

A:

Accepted image file types are .PDF, .RFT, and .TXT. Please don't use spaces in the file names—you can give each document a name or title when you upload it. (We are working on adding support for .PPT and .DOC/.DOCX files soon.)

Managing Your Search Results Listing

Q:

How do I change my search results image?

A:

The project thumbnail in the 1st public project (in upper left public column on the Manage Projects page) is used for your firm's search results image. For Basic listings, this is the single public project.

Q:

How do I know how often my firm is turning up in searches?

A:

Go to Statistics Details in the account menu to see how often your firm has turned up in search results by month. Premium listings can also add Google Analytics to their pages for additional tracking.

Q:

I want more exposure. How can I get my firm included above the search results and on Core77.com?

A:

Talk to us about PremiumPlus—our online advertising program designed to increase your firm's visibility across multiple, high-profile design websites.

Q:

Why is my listing smaller and below other listings?

A:

Basic listings are shown after Premium listings in search results. If your Basic listing doesn't have any images, it will appear after Basic listings with images in searches.

Billing Details

Q:

I just upgraded to a Premium Plus listing, when will I be charged?

A:

Your card is charged immediately upon purchase completion, and all Premium plan features are available right away. You may downgrade to Basic at any time, but Premium listing purchases are non-refundable so after downgrading you will retain the Premium features until the current billing cycle ends.

Q:

I just downgraded my listing to a Basic plan—why do I still have Premium features?

A:

Plan downgrades take effect at the beginning of your next billing cycle, so until then you will retain all the benefits of a Premium plan. If you don't want to interrupt your Premium services, go to Manage Plans and reactivate your Premium plan.

Q:

What happens when I reactivate my Premium plan? I don't get billed twice do I?

A:

No, by reactivating before your current Premium plan expires, your account will resume billing at end of the current billing cycle, as if there had been no downgrade.

Q:

What happens when I downgrade? Do I lose all my public projects?

A:

Accounts downgraded to Basic retain all associated information and flies, but all public Projects (except the 1st one) will default to private status. Your card will not be charged when your billing cycle ends. You can upgrade your account again by going to Manage Plans.

Q:

I received a promo code. How do I apply it?

A:

When you upgrade to Premium you have to provide your billing information. At the end of that form is a place to enter the Promotional Code. If you already have a Premium listing, go to Billing Details and click the UPDATE BILLING INFO button. At the bottom of the form add your promo code and it will be applied the next time your card is charged.

Q:

How long is a billing cycle? Is it the same as a month?

A:

Yes, a Design Directory month is 30 days—which is the length of our billing cycle.

Last Resorts

Q:

This FAQ isn't helping me. Is there somebody I can contact?

A:

Yes. Contact us, or call us at +1-212-965-1998 and our staff will be happy to assist you.

Q:

It isn't you, its me. How do I close or delete my account?

A:

We know the only way to show how much we care is to set you free. Contact us if you need to close or delete your Design Directory account.

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