Print Low-Cost Business Cards without Sacrificing Quality
Despite the presence of online stores, websites, and social media accounts, there still seems to be no getting away from business cards. If you want to exchange business information with someone, imagine how awkward it would be to scribble your email address or business name on a piece of paper. Without having a business card handy, the whole transaction would be ineffective, not to mention awkward. This is precisely the reason why it still pays to print affordable business cards.
If you think that this endeavour can be quite costly, the good news is that there are plenty of cheap business cards that you can order online. But just because you want them to be cheap does not mean that the quality also suffers. Remember that these promotional cards are part of your branding efforts, so they should be visually pleasing. Give customers low-quality business cards and they will equate it to the quality of products or service that you provide. To do away with this, you must do your research and look for low-cost business cards that will not in any way affect the quality of the product.
Designing and Printing The Cheapest Business Cards
Before everything else, you need to know how to effectively design business cards. You might have the best material, finish, and print quality but if the design does not suit the image you want to portray as a brand, it will still not be considered an effective marketing tool.
Perhaps the number one thing that you need to think about when designing affordable business cards is the image that you would like to portray as a brand. Are you cool, conservative, young, geared towards men or women, formal? If your target market is millennials, a design that will grab the attention of their generation could be an image that you can start with. If you have a more mature clientele, you might want to go with a formal, conservative design.
Make sure that the look and feel of your logo and all your printed promotional materials are consistent all throughout. This way, one look at a notepad, letterhead, or business card that you made would easily be recognizable as “your brand”. You should also have an idea of what you want to say as a brand. This is not just through words but using your colour scheme, design, and images as well.
Next, the information included in your business cards should be complete and accurate. The basic information in a typical affordable business card are:
- Your business name
- Your name and/or job title
- Your office address
- Phone number (include the hours when you are available for calls)
- Email address
- Website and social media accounts (Facebook name, Instagram handle, etc.)
- Scannable QR code which will lead users to your website when scanned
- A short marketing message which could be a slogan or a tag line
Given the limited space that you have with business cards, you can skip any of these details and include only what is important for you. If you must include a photograph, illustration, or logo, make sure that the image is sharp and professionally designed. Stay away from stock photography which will ruin the professional look you’re going for.
As far as the typography is concerned, pay attention to even the smallest details! Again, you have a very limited space to work with so if you will use a complex font, it might not be pleasing to the eye when combined with bright colors or a bland background. Choose the font and size carefully – it should be readable, and the text must not look crowded against the small space. The colour and other elements of the design should all blend together to make one pleasant, eye-catching whole.
How to Look for Cheap Business Cards
You might think that you are sacrificing quality when ordering cheap business cards but that is not necessarily the case. With much resourcefulness and knowing exactly what to look for, you can find business cards cheap online companies that will print good quality contact cards for you. Here are a few tips on how to do just that:
- Determine the printing process used.
First, determine the printing process used. If you’re a bit desperate, you might think about printing business cards yourself using the desktop printer that you have at home. This might be good for about a dozen or so copies, especially if you have photo-quality printer and ink. However, the results of at-home and professional printing are never the same. Those with a background on design, printing, or computer graphics would know whether you had a DIY (do-it-yourself) job of creating those affordable business cards – or if you had them done by a professional.
For business cards cheap printing companies, the printing process can either be desktop digital or offset. Your first instinct if you are looking for cheap business cards might be to go with the more cost-effective digital printing. But you might want to think this over, because digital printing has less than half the quality of offset prints. If you need to have a huge number of business cards printed out, its capacity is also limited, and the speed of delivery might not be up to par with offset printing. All in all, desktop digital printing might be a good way to buy cheap business cards but there are better yet equally cost-effective options out there.
Really, the best option would be offset printing. Printed promotional products using offset printing utilizes high-end colour technology applied on printing presses. Aluminium plates are used to transfer images onto another material, after which it is rolled out onto the paper material.
Unlike digital printing, there’s no direct contact between ink and paper. Once set up, offset printing is faster and more efficient than desktop digital printing. It also produces sharper images, more accurate colours, and an overall look that is more professional.
- Compare the costs offered by different printing companies.
Next, if you are look for really cheap business cards and you only need a small quantity produced, digital desktop printing might be good enough. Another benefit of digital printing is that you only need to print a certain number of copies of business cards when you need to. Offset printing, on the other hand, turns out to be a lot cheaper if you need to print large quantities.
In fact, the more copies of business cards you need, the cheaper the per piece price would be if you will go with offset printing. There are many offset printing companies out there. To look for one with the best price, make a list of sites with good reviews. Compare the costs of three or four printing companies, then make an informed decision from there.
- Check on the cheap business cards options that they offer.
After narrowing down your options to two or three companies, check on the varieties of low-cost business cards that you can order from them. When it comes to the type of material, what are your options? If you want a straightforward, good quality business card, one that is made from linen with 43% the thickness of a credit card is a good option. Despite falling under the category of business cards cheap, these cards are made using offset full colour HD printing. The finish is super smooth, and you can go for unique features like a rounded corner or spot UV gloss option where a certain portion of the design is highlighted.
Another basic business card package is using 14-pt. paper stock which has about 20% the thickness of a credit card. Still, this is made using full colour HD printing and you can take your pick from either a glossy or a matte finish.
For the most popular business cards cheap package, you can order ones made with 16-pt. paper which has 50% the thickness of a credit card. These can be made with coloured metallic ink or spot UV gloss. There’s also the rounded corner option, and glossy or matte finish.
You want to have a smooth, fast, and hassle-free transaction so check out the reviews when considering several printing companies. Do they offer good customer service? Do they respond quickly to customer inquiries? What do other customers have to say about them? Do your research and check out the reviews so that you would know exactly what you’re getting into when dealing with a specific printing company.
- Know how fast they can deliver.
If you are not in a rush to get your hands onto a set of the cheapest business cards that you need, you can wait for seven to ten business days for the delivery. This would not incur any extra costs on your part because there is no rush with the processing and delivery. But if you do need to place an order and get the business cards as soon as possible, you must pay a bit more for 24 hours delivery. Other options include two to three business days; three to four business days; and five to seven business days. If you are
Ways to Ensure that the Low-Cost Business Cards Have Good Quality
Let’s say that you have already chosen which printing company to order business cards cheap from, what else can you do to ensure that the albeit low-cost business cards have good quality? Despite having reasonable prices, there are companies offering good quality prints so you can get the best bang for your buck.
Here are the ways to ensure that the low-cost business cards you will order have good quality:
- Check on the material used.
If you want, you can ask the printing company to send you samples of their previous work. This would give you an idea about the material that they are using, as well as the quality of print. For the material, most low-cost business cards are made using linen paper with thickness that’s less than that of a credit card. As long as the material feels solid and substantial to the hand, this is good. You should also base the thickness of the material on the design, colours, and overall look and feel of the cheapest business card that you will print.
For the finish, you can choose from glossy or matte. Business cards with a glossy finish shimmers and shines against the light; while matte has a super smooth finish that does not glisten. A glossy finish usually looks more expensive and elegant, but matte works well for other paper materials, too. There are no right or wrong choices here, it is all a matter of personal preference.
- Check on the print quality.
There are pros and cons to choosing either digital or offset printing but it all boils down to the end result. If you think that you are getting the best quality print possible despite having a limited budget, then you should go with the printing company that offers the best business cards packages.
It does take a bit of research and it involves a lot of decisions about the nitty-gritty of printing, but it pays to make the right choices when it comes to ordering business cards. Being cost-effective should not equate to poor quality. You are, after all, also a business who is offering affordable products or services with high standards. The same thing should apply to your business card, which is a representation of what you are all about as a brand.