How to Design a Business Card from Scratch

February 20, 2020

Business cards are a small card that identifies an individual along with his business details and other information related to his business – name, position, company name, email, address, tagline, etc. These are given to clients or potential clients to help them connect with you.


In this digital age, people still make use of business cards because of how easy it is to distribute and because of how it boosts the legitimacy of your business. It lets your client or potential clients know how ready and how sincere you are in making connections with them.


Designing a business card is possible with the help of a professional or you can start on making your own from scratch. Here are the things you need to know in creating your very own business card from the ground up.





There are standard dimensions followed by every country. These are just guides but can vary depending on your design and idea.


  • Australia and New Zealand

90mm x 55mm, with bleed: 96mm x 61mm


  • United States

88.9mm x 50.8mm (3.5in x 2in), with bleed: 95.25mm x 57.15mm (3.5in x 2in)


  • United Kingdom

85mm x 55mm, with bleed: 91mm x 61mm


  • Canada

88.9mm x 50.8mm (3.5in x 2in), with bleed: 95.25mm x 57.15mm (3.5in x 2in)



Alongside the above mentioned sizes, there are also some important points you need to remember.


  • Trim

Trim size is the final dimension of your business card. These are marked by lines.


  • Safe Area

The safe area is inside the trim area. It is important to note that any important elements of your business cards, i.e. logo, texts should not go beyond the safe area. The safe area is usually around 0.19” from the trim line. Any designs or texts outside this are at risk of beingcut off.


  • Bleed

Bleed is the segment of your design that stretches out past the trim size. Bleed is cut off when the production is cut to the last size. Its sole intention is to ensure your design or picture arrives at the very edge without leaving any unattractive white edges. Bleed is usually rom 0.125" to 0.25". Check with your printer first to ensure the best size.

Design Elements


The next important step in creating your very own business card is to gather the elements for your design. You will need the following:

  • Logo

  • Colours that will make up the design/texts

  • Eye catching elements that will make your design standout or best describe your business.

  • Name of Business, tagline and other contact details

  • Brand Personality or elements that will bring out the character/nature/feel of your business which would reflect in the design and texts



Design Direction


Decisions, decisions… In order to create your business cards, you will have to decide on these factors:

  • Shape

  • Where to place the elements

  • Styling – would it be minimalist, bold, modern, contemporary, fun or interesting?



Design Mistakes


While you may add a lot of things on your design, there are also some things to make a mental note when designing your business card.

  • Make sure to include bleeds

  • Set your color mode to CMYK

  • Make sure that you’re working on a high resolution. You don’t want your card to appear blurry on the final print!

  • Clear, concise texts taking into consideration the size of the fonts used and the colour contrasts in your design



Add Important Information


Of course, a business card is of no use without the business details such as your name, your title, logo, name of business, address, phone number, fax, email, website. You may also add your business tagline to your project.



Design that Stands Out


It is a good idea to standout, but one must also take into consideration that too much is not always good because it may bring about confusion. Make sure not to add to much distinctive methods in your design. These are some design techniques you can use (if appropriate):


  • Most business cards are printed on cardstock, you may also use wood, magnets or metal.

  • Laser cutting for a more interesting output

  • Spot UV Coating or clear coating

  • Letter or design embossing

  • Metallic inks



Finalise Your Project


When you are done with the above steps, make sure to proofread, review your visuals and look for printers in your area that best suit your needs for the project before finally exporting your working files!


L 35, 100 Barangaroo Avenue

Sydney NSW 2000

P: 1300 322 409



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