Ah, yes, the business card! We’ve all had to design a business card at some point in our life, leading us straight into many, many hours of designing, redesigning, and struggling to get that extra long URL into place on the card. If you’re experiencing a similar problem, and would like some help on how to design a better looking and more functional business card, then you’ve come to the right place!

  1. Flip it Vertically: One of the things we fight most when teaching a new student to design a business card is the tendency to throw everything into boxes, and then slap it all onto the face of the card. Business cards are a dime a dozen, and they come with all sorts of pre-fab forms and layouts that you should be aware of. Why should you know about them? Because it’s your job as a modern designer to break all of those rules! Start by simply turning the whole card off its side and standing it upright. Now, that looks better, doesn’t it? This gives you a more engaging surface to work with, and it also gives you more room to add text, graphics, or anything else that you would like to do.
  2. Ask Yourself . . .  Next, when you have a first draft of the card done, ask yourself a simple question, “Is this card too boxy?” If the answer is yes, then you’re in trouble. Take all of the elements you’ve got on the card, and try to figure out a way to rearrange them so that they look less formulaic. Remember that you want your card to stand out the minute the recipient looks at it. Work to achieve this by removing the obviousness of the grid in your design.
  3. Are My Colors Popping? Lastly, ask yourself if the colors you’ve chosen for the card are really working. Do they match the brand or the mood that the marketing push is shooting for? Do they simply look good? If you answered, “No,” to any of those questions, then you’ve got to do a redesign. It’s really that simple, and owning up to it now will save you a whole lot of headaches later.