Are business cards out of style? Absolutely not! You could even say that business cards are more prevalent now than ever. Sure, you don’t have to go to great lengths like that American Psycho scene to have ivory or embossing on the cards. But business cards still pack quite the punch, and in a lot of cultures all over the world, even Japan, they’re still heavily ingrained. But when it comes to modern-day business cards, what makes one good?
While thirty years ago, all you need to have is your name, position or business, and phone number, is it still like this? To a degree, it still is! But nowadays, there are a few more expectations, so here are some features that help make a great business card. Whether you’re a business owner or an employee, here are some features you can count on for the perfect business card.
The Design and Layout
When it comes to networking, you’re going to want to ensure that everything on your business card is crystal clear. The design and the layout is going to help. In fact, you basically need one in order to have the other. Text, fonts, sizing, and space all play a role in your business card design. Remember that legibility is key, so experiment with text sizes to find a balance between readability and visual appeal.
Also, try mixing traditional and playful fonts. For example, pairing serifs with sans-serifs helps add contrast to your business card. While this is standard graphic design (something you could even do on Canva), the layout is another thing. Everything clearly needs to be in the middle, or at least have the eyes drawn to it properly.
While this didn’t necessarily exist maybe twenty years ago, nowadays, thanks to the advancement of custom business card printing and just the advancement of printers alone, you can print on so many different types of paper now. When designing a business card, it’s important to consider what the sense of touch will feel like for the holder. A soft texture can invoke feelings of luxury, while a rough one can communicate durability and quality. For the most part, you’re going to want this to be smooth to the touch, unless you’re going for something more rustic.
It’s All in the Colours
While white is timeless, it can be considered fairly boring; plus, at one point in time, this used to be the only option for business cards. Colours create a subconscious impression on the viewer, and can influence their decisions. Choosing the right colours is vital to your business, as it can help you stand out from the competition and attract new customers. The colour you choose for your business card should complement the logo and theme of your company.
It should also be compatible with the paper type you are using. For example, if you are printing on thick stock, vibrant colours may not be the best choice as they can easily fade. On the other hand, if you are using glossy stock, dark colours might not be readable under certain lighting conditions.
The Material Counts
It’s not too often thought about, but even the material that’s used is going to make a difference. Choosing the right material for your business card is an important part of a great design. Cheap paper or flimsy cardstock can make your business cards look unprofessional, so choose a higher-quality option for a premium feel. Consider adding textures or effects to your business cards for an extra visual pop.
For example, a designer can add a watermark to their contact information for an elegant touch, or an acupuncturist can use perforated text to represent their acupuncture needles. Sure, while all business cards are made from card stock, depending on the company, or even if you’re DIYing it, you could still make an impact.
While you can technically never go wrong with the classic square, sometimes, it doesn’t hurt to go outside this, especially if you’re a business owner that doesn’t do anything over-the-top corporate or stiff (such as running a craft store, for instance). While most business cards are rectangular, you can get creative and make them any shape you want, including round or square. This allows you to stand out and be more unique. You can also try different framing options for your images to convey the tone of your business. A great example would be rounded corners, as they are ideal for a luxury brand trying to project an image of elegance and opulence, while a monochrome palette adds a clean feel.