Create a memorable first impression: 7 customers’ tips for a great business card design

Kyra Harrington

Despite the wave of digitalization, business cards are still key in creating a memorable first impression of you and your business. Handing out a well-designed card to a potential client or business partner can pay off big time; it might very well seal the deal.

At 99designs, we believe a business card design shouldn’t just pass on your contact details, but should also function as a badge of authenticity and an extension of your brand. To be sure, that’s a lot of pressure to put on a piece of paper. That’s why we’re happy to announce the launch of our Business Card design category, which will allow our community of talented designers to rise to the occasion and give you a card you can be proud of.

We went out to gather some tips (and great designs!) from seven customers to get you inspired and prepared to make a move toward a great business card.

 

#1 Define your business’ vision
Tameka Graham – LocalMagnifier

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Design by sony

“When getting a business card designed it is very important that it represents your company image. If your business is fun and lighthearted, your card should reflect that. It should also be designed with your target market in mind. Understanding fully what your market is will ensure your business card contains the proper balance of attractive design and contact information. Always remember that your business card is the first contact many potential customers will have with your business, so it must convey the right message.”

 

#2 Keep an eye on the future
Steve Jernigan, Bear-Eco

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Design by SloveT

“Once you get the card, make sure you try to change the name, phone number, and other details. Sometimes designers provide “rastorized” text on the card, which might work for other types of design, but not for a business card. You need to make sure that you can edit your card for when you get more employees or if your details change. Along with this, make sure you ask the name of each font and purchase them if necessary. Even if the font is free, you’ll still need it if you want to update details.”

 

#3 Consider alternative uses
Dr. Niman Shukairy – Flushing Family Dentistry

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Design by TSUdesign

“For me, the card had to have a simple design. The back of the card had to be a light color or white as we write the patient’s appointment information on it. This is a key element if someone were to use their card to write appointment information. I made sure the card worked well for my purposes.”

 

#4 Think of the bigger picture
Ben Lavender – BuyMex

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Design by satura

“Other than my website, I never really considered what platforms my logo would be on. It would have been good to approach someone who designs business cards and get an idea as to what to consider when designing a logo. This was suggested to me after I started the process, so I was a little worried. Thankfully, it didn’t matter.

My design has led the way for my other marketing material. It is the template for the color and ‘feel’ of other collateral.”

 

#5 Stand out in the crowd
Cameron Gibbs – Phew!

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Design by tofik concept

“I frequently attend trade shows where I come home with dozens of business cards in hand. Most of the cards I store away along with all of the other cards I’ve picked up from other shows. Months later I will have a certain job where I need to contact someone I ran into at one of these shows. Unfortunately the card they gave me wasn’t memorable so I’m forced to go through the stacks of cards one by one to find the contact I’m looking for. Oftentimes, I don’t find the contact even though I know their card is really there. The problem is that their card had such a typical design that I just didn’t recognize it.

At Phew!, we decided to make our card solid orange, our company’s main color. It’s the only orange business card in all my stacks of business cards so its very easy to find.”

 

#6 Commit to your colors
Teri Freedman – MyPerfectGift

new front

Design by jaguart

“I wanted my business card to incorporate the aqua/teal colors from my website, MyPerfectGift. The designer sent me files in .ai format that I was not able to open and when I had my cards printed up they came out a green color.

Colors look different on different computers so make sure to consult standardized color charts before finalizing any project.”

 

#7 Allow yourself to be wowed
Lisa Cronkite Sinkler – QueenB Collection

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Design by zha

“Don’t tie the designers’ hands too much, even if you think you know what you want at the start. There are very talented people out there who will probably wow you with their own ideas if you let them.”

Got any tips of your own? Share in the comments!

The author

Kyra Harrington
Kyra Harrington

Hailing from Amsterdam, she brings along a healthy obsession with stroopwafels and Dutch grandma-bikes. In her spare time, you'll find her riding around the city (enjoying the views more than the hills) and reading tacky crime novels.

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