15 Mistakes You’re Making When Designing Your Business Card

Designing a business card that won’t get thrown away immediately is no easy feat. Avoid these mistakes to keep your cards out of the trash, and to get your name into their contacts.

Even in 2023, business cards are still relevant, but only the best business cards will see results. With 88% of business cards ending up in the trash within a week and only 9% making it to the recipients' contacts, it can be a difficult feat to get your business card noticed.

Your cards could be making their way to the trash for a number of reasons, and thankfully, many of them are easily fixed. Keep reading to learn what information you should never include on your business card and find common mistakes to avoid. 

What information should you not put on a business card?

Having the wrong information on your business card can have a serious impact on the perception of you and your business. A simple spelling error or the wrong address could result in negative brand sentiment. Be sure to avoid these six pieces of information. 

1. Spelling errors

One study showed that over 42% of people chose not to do business with a company due to a typo on their business cards. Double-check your business card for spelling mistakes before sharing it with potential connections. 

Always check for spelling errors on business cards
Photo by charlesdeluvio on Unsplash 

2. Outdated information

If your phone number, email, or address change, but your business card doesn’t reflect that, how will people find your business? Outdated information isn’t only confusing—it’s also unprofessional.

Try digital business cards if you don’t like shelling out every time you need to update your information. It is free to update your information, you can update your information whenever you need to, and live contacts will always receive your updated information.

3. Low-quality images or videos

With the quality of cameras today, there is no excuse for a blurry image or video on your business card, but a low-quality image can give the impression that your company is not high-quality either.

never use blurry images or logos

4. Unprofessional profiles

While including social media links on your digital business card is something you should do, ensure you pick the right ones. Link to your business profiles, and make sure any personal accounts are appropriate to share with business connections.

5. A home address

Sharing your business location is excellent, but consider omitting your complete address if you operate out of your home. Instead, list the city or state. Not only is this a safety concern, but it can also be perceived as less professional.

6. Information not meant for the recipient 

Most people only carry one version of their business card. However, you don’t always want to share the same contact information with everyone you meet. Some people shouldn’t have personal contact information, while others should, and some may be interested in your company information. 

The best way to combat this is to create multiple business cards for networking, sharing company information, and whatever else you might need. If you don’t want to create multiple cards or worry about carrying them all around, digital business cards allow you to create multiple cards so that you can customize a card for every interaction. 

Common business card mistakes

7. Going black and white

Black and white business cards are ten times more likely to be thrown away than colorful cards. Add some color to make your card more exciting and memorable. 

8. Not listing your business clearly

A surprising number of business cards don’t clearly list the business name. Make sure your business name is listed front and center so people can easily recognize your brand. And remember, a logo is often not a clear representation of your business name. 

9. Not including a website

We are living in the digital age. Nearly every business has a website, so don’t forget to include it on your business card. 

Always include websites on business cards
Photo by karina zhukovskaya from Pexels

10. Not including a call-to-action

When you hand someone a business card, you hope they will do something, like meeting with you again or perhaps purchasing something from your business. Make the purpose of your business card clear. Direct them to your website, a sign-up page, or include a calendar link to set up a meeting in the future. 

11. Unreadable or small print

Even the most beautiful business card will fail if it’s not readable. Make sure all of the content of your business card is easy to read and not too small. 

12. Not matching branding

Your branding is an essential part of your company. Make sure that every business card you hand out perfectly matches your brand identity to make an unforgettable impression and tell your brand story. 

13. Going cheap

Cheap cards might save a few dollars, but it could end up costing you on the back end. With 72% of people judging companies based on low-quality business cards, ensuring your business cards are high-quality is essential before handing them out. 

14. Not testing first

When your brand reputation is front and center, it’s always a good idea to test your business card before you hand it out to a potential client. Before printing hundreds of cards, start by ordering a proof to make sure your card looks perfect. 

Always test your business card first
Photo by ron dyar on Unsplash

The same goes if you’re using digital business cards, though the process may look a little different. Instead of ordering a proof, test your card by going through the sharing process and viewing your card as the person receiving it would. This helps you catch any errors while also familiarizing yourself with the card-receiving process

15. Not using them

The number one reason your business cards aren’t working? You aren’t using them. The best way to ensure you start passing those business cards out is to create a card that is always with you, can be shared in-person or online, and can be customized to every situation. Digital business cards do all of that and more. 

To learn more about creating better business cards, be sure to read these helpful guides: 

What should I include on my business card?

Now that you know what not to do with your business card, it’s time to figure out what you should include. There are a few basic pieces of information you should always include. Name, title, and company should appear on every business card. Want to know what else to include on your business card? See our guide to learn the 5 must-haves for every professional business card

Main photo by PNW Production from Pexels

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