Create Business Cards
Edited by Emmanuel M. Lardizabal, Eng, Olivia, Shelley and 1 other
Designing the perfect, eye-catching business card is still one of the most essential ways to market your business and bring in new customers. Oftentimes, your business card is one of the first things a potential new customer will see related to your company, so you need to make it a good first impression. The goal is to present a lasting, professional image that provides just enough information about the company to incite interest. The card should fit your company's style and industry, supporting the image you want to project without detracting from it in any way. Check out the article below to learn how to create a signature business card that gets your company noticed.
Business Card Styles
Before you decide what to put on your business card, you should familiarize yourself with the various styles available. Most of your choice comes down to personal preference, but consider the industry you're in and what type of message you're trying to convey with the card.
- 1Basic.Basic business cards are some of the most common types, but that doesn't make them any less effective. A simplistic but well-designed business card gets the point across when additional details and designs aren't necessary, appropriate or appreciated. Sometimes all you need is a clean design with black ink printed on white card stock.Advertisement
- 2Multipurpose.Multipurpose business cards provide more than one function. Some have coupons or a calendar on the back, while others include some type of helpful information that would be relevant such as a small map of the area with directions to your location or an appointment reminder. If you're including additional information, you can make use of a foldable business card so you'll have more space.Advertisement
- 3Picture.Picture cards should show a picture of you, a drawing or a picture indicating the service that your company provides. This helps people remember you or what your company represents, so it's a good way to stand out. Just remember to keep the picture side free from excess words or clashing colors.
- 4Tactile.Tactile business cards use texture to add a unique design element to the card. This can be through the use of embossing, die cutting, foil stamping, silk finish, special paper or other media such as wood. These offer a rich and elegant feel that helps your card stand out among the rest, but they often cost more than other types because of the unusual processing methods involved in production.
- 5Creative.While these aren't usually designed in the traditional business card format, they do convey contact information in a unique and original way while doubling as something useful. The sky is the limit when choosing a creative business card style. This can be something as simple as a card that folds into a box for storing tiny items, to a fortune cookie with contact info inside. Matchboxes, condiment packets, nail files, combs or rulers are all possibilities, but it's best to stick with something relevant to your industry.
What to Include on Your Business Cards
What you put on your business card is the most important aspect of its creation. You need to include essential contact information, but providing other relevant details is also a good idea. A good business card shows what you do and why customers should choose your company. Remember that you have a limited amount of space to work with, so choose the information and design carefully to avoid a cluttered look.
- 1Contact information.Your name, job title, email address, company website and telephone number are the essentials, but you might also wish to include the company's physical address if there's enough space to fit it. You can also include social media information, but don't clutter up the card.Advertisement
- 3Business hours.You might wish to include your business hours on the back of the card so customers know when to contact you.
- 4Summary of services offered.You can include a short list of the basic services you or your company offers on the back of the card.
- 5Map.You might want to include a map of your office's location on the back of the card if it's important for your type of business.
Basic Design Elements of Business Cards
Once you've chosen a style and decided what to include on your business card, there are a few more choices you'll have to make. The paper type and finish, color, print type, size and quantity are all important considerations that will help your card design stand out from the competition.
- 1Weight.Card stock usually weighs between 80 and 110 pounds, and most business cards weigh 80 pounds. The heavier the weight, the sturdier and more costly the business cards will be.Advertisement
- 2Finish.There are several different types of card stock finishes to choose from, such as matte, glossy, silk and photo finish. Matte stock has a non-shiny finish, and is the most commonly chosen type because it prints cleanly and allows people to easily write on it. Glossy stock is shiny and smooth, and it works best with bright colors. It's also ideal for cards with photos. The coating on glossy cards helps protect them from tears or water damage. Silk-finish cards have a matte but very smooth finish that provides an elegant look and feel. They're quite durable and water-resistant, and they can be written on. Photo card stock has the same quality as a professional photograph, so it's ideal for people who work in the fashion, acting or real estate industries that want to include a high quality photo. You can even find cotton, suede, wood, metal and plastic cards available at many printing companies. Textured stock can be made from a variety of different finishes but includes stamping, embossing, cutting or other means to create a tactile feel to the card.
- 3Ink type.You'll need to choose a font, font size and ink color. You can also add foil, spot gloss and other details to make certain parts of the card pop.
- 4Size.Most standard business cards are 3.5 by 2 inches. You can choose other sizes, but keep in mind that many customers like to keep them in their wallets, so if they're too big to fit, they might just end up in the trash.
Business Card Etiquette
You can have some of the best business cards ever made, but if you don't know how to use them properly, they'll be of little to no value to you. Learning how to network and project a positive impression while maintaining good etiquette is key to creating new business contacts. Exchanging business cards the right way can turn them into powerful marketing tools.
- 1Carry your business cards with you at all times.Keeping them in a business card holder makes them easy to access, and make sure to carry several cards so you don't run out. A holder also keeps them neat and clean so they look professional. Remember where you're keeping the card holder so you don't have to dig through all of your pockets to get to them.
- 2Don't pass out business cards to everyone that passes by.Avoid offering your business card to someone who is in a much higher position than you, unless they ask for it or offer one first. If you're discussing business with someone and they seem interested in your product or service, offer your card. If you want to stay in touch with someone, ask them for their card rather than offering yours. You'll get their contact information, and they might also ask for yours in return.
- 3Don't give people more than one card.While it might seem like a good idea, this can come across as unprofessional because it can seem like you want the other person to do your marketing for you. Give them one unless they ask for more.
- 4Present your card so that it faces the other person and they can read it without having to turn it or flip it over.This is just common courtesy.
- 5When you receive a business card, take a moment to admire it.Don't just shove it directly into your wallet or pocket. It's also polite to comment on a detail or design that catches your eye. Place the card into a card holder, notebook or folder. Don't write on it unless the person gives you new contact information or something else of importance that you'll need to remember.
- 6Keep the information on your cards up to date.If your contact information, logo or any other details about your business changes, get new cards. It doesn't look as professional when you're crossing out details and filling in new ones with a pen.
- 7Send a business card with all of your business correspondence.Include a business card with every invoice, note or material that you use when corresponding with customers or potential leads. This makes it easier for customers to contact you.
- 8Don't ask for another person's business card unless you plan to follow up with them.If you're asking for their card, it's only polite to follow up by contacting them through email or a quick phone call. Use the contact to your advantage, even if it's just a quick update about new products, services or developments related to your company.Advertisement
- Don't overcrowd the card with logos, pictures or information. The card should be easy to read and understand. If your card looks too cluttered but you don't want to lose important information, try including it on the back.
- Don't use clashing colors. Complimentary colors work well. Try using your logo colors as a theme for the card. For a professional look, stick with no more than two colors.
- Avoid using fonts smaller than 7 points since they're too small to read comfortably.
- If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.
Categories : Business & Management
Recent edits by: Shelley, Olivia, Eng