How to Design Your Own Business Cards

When it comes to promoting your business, your business cards are often your potential customers’ first experience with your company. Whether you’re handing it directly to them or grabbing one from a display, you want to make sure that their first impression is strong enough to get them in your door.

That’s why it’s important to create a card that accurately represents you and your business. You want people to know at a glance exactly who you are, what you do and how they can contact you to satisfy their needs.

Follow these guidelines and you’ll be able to create a card that does all of that, and more:

Step #1: Decide on an Overall Feel

Woman with Blue Eyes Holding Business Card

When your client first looks at your card, what do you want them to see and feel? For example, do you want their first thought to be that you’re creative, or professional? Fun or serious?

If you’re not sure what this means, take out some business cards that you have. Quickly glance at some of them. Instantly you gain some sort of impression of the business and the person, right?

This is exactly what your card recipients are going to do as well. So the question is, what do you want them to experience the first time they look at your card? This is going to be the basic overall concept to keep in mind as you progress further into the process.

Step #2: Contact Information

What does your potential client need to know about you? While most cards have names, titles and phone numbers on them, is there more information you should include that would assist them in making it easier to contact you?

For example, would it benefit you to have your web page on there? At least then they can check you out and see that you’re the real deal. Maybe you have information on your site that would help them get to know, like and trust you – the three keys to gaining a new and potentially life-long customer.

Some additional information you’ll want to consider is office number, cell number, fax number and office hours. Depending on your line of work and how much you use the cards for networking, you may also want to consider adding website addresses to things such as your blog, LinkedIn profile and more.

Once you know what information you want on the card, you’ll also have to decide how you want to display it. Do you want it left justified, centered or right justified? And, in what order do you want the information displayed?

Also, you’ll have to decide font and font size. It’s recommended that you limit yourself to one or two fonts and not to get too decorative unless your business calls for it. You want the information easy to read at a quick glance.

Step #3: Logos and Pictures

Woman with Black Business Card

The next thing you have to decide is whether you want to add your logo to the card. Logos are great in that they connect your client base to you immediately. They start to see you and your logo as one, which is how you want it to be. So, putting this icon on your card is highly recommended.

If you take that route, you’ll have to figure out how to display it. Do you want to use it as a small image in one corner of the card, for instance, or would it work effectively as a light, background imprint?

If you decide to not use a logo, you may want to use your own photo on the card. If your business is about selling you, like if you’re a writer, personal trainer or in any other service-based industry, then you may want to add a photo so that it connects you with your product or service.

Pictures also help your potential clients remember who you are. Have you ever looked back at a business card and forgot what the person looks like? It won’t happen if your smiling face is right there in front of them.

Step #4: Slogans

Slogans are discretionary. If your slogan is a huge part of your business, you’ll want to find a way to incorporate it somehow. If not, or if you already have a lot of information on your card, then you may choose to leave it off.

Step #5: Pick Your Colors

Business Cards Colors

When it comes to effective business card design, experts recommend using no more than two colors for your card background. You don’t want someone to look at your card and be distracted by a bunch of different color patterns.

And, you’ll want to be choosy with the color of the wording as well. Again, sometimes it’s best to keep it simple. Experts recommend using no more than 3-4 different colors on wording.

One thing to keep in mind is what colors your business name and/or logo are displayed in right now. It doesn’t matter if you have a store front or just a website, you may want to consider keeping with the same color scheme so that your customers recognize you immediately.

Step #6: Design Your Card

Now that you know in the back of your mind what you want, it’s time to begin the actual designing of your card. There are hundreds of sites out there on the internet that will help walk you through the process if you’re a do-it-yourselfer. Or, if you’re more comfortable, go to a local print company and let them help you finalize your vision.

Some Extra Do’s and Don’ts:

– Don’t use non-typical size cards. If your card doesn’t fit in someone’s business card filing system, they’re likely to just get rid of it.

– Use paper that is thick enough to stand up to normal wear and tear from someone pulling it out of their wallet a few times. You want to protect the integrity of the card as much as possible because if you use cheap paper on your card, it projects the image that you’ll cut corners elsewhere too.

– Always, always double check your information before you give the final okay. If your cards are printed and your phone number is off, it’s not going to help you get business. Before you give your stamp of approval, ask someone else to look at it first to make sure that you’re not overlooking a simple and costly error.

Now you have the information you need to design your business cards in a way that reflect you and the service or products you offer, the next step is to get them out there and just stand to the side so you don’t get trampled by people rushing to do business with you. How sweet is that image?

About the author

Christina DeBusk

Changing careers mid-life from law enforcement to writing, Christina spends her days helping others enrich their businesses and personal lives one word at a time.

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