To design your business, you need to first design your business card. There is one other preliminary activity that makes the rest of the business card design process run more smoothly. Taking a few minutes of reflection about your personal brand will help with some business card design questions down the line, particularly when it comes to displaying your personality. If you have already decided on a traditional rectangular business card, you can skip ahead to the second step. On the conservative end of the spectrum, you could simply round the corners for a friendlier business card. You can even build your entire business card theme around clever cutting. Cireson’s business card design uses shape to really highlight the employee picture, giving them a more personable and therefore approachable feel. For example, some companies such as STIR above like to die-cut areas of their logo.
Bleed area, trim line, and safety line on a standard U.S. /Canadian business card, 3.5 2 in. While these areas vary depending on the size and printer, a safe bet is to set the trim line at 0.125 in. From there, set the safety line at 0.125 in. That is 0.250 in total from the edge of the bleed area to the inside of the safety area.
Now we begin plotting the visual elements of your business card design, first and foremost the logo. Your logo should take centre stage on your business card, although other flourishes and secondary graphics can sometimes be useful as well. One strategy is to dedicate one side of the business card exclusively to the logo, while the other side showcases the contact information of the person.
However, it is also good to have the logo on both sides, so often you will see a smaller, out-of-the-way logo on the side with contact information, as with Omni. This is just one strategy of many, though, so feel free to experiment with logo placement until you find one for your tastes. While minimalism is a popular choice for business cards, if that empty space does not suit you, you can fill it with additional graphics.
Even if your logo is simple or text only, any related imagery serves the same ends. What your business card says depends on you. The point is different people benefit from different text on their business cards. So, the next step is for you to decide what to put on your business card.
To maintain readability, you want all your text to be at least 8 pts. However, you want your most important elements to stand out, so feel free to vary the text sizes. Font. Just remember to choose a font that represents the personality you are going for. Staying on-brand, choose text colours that go well with the background colour of your card, which should also be a brand colour. See if any of these “special effects” can benefit your business card design strategy. This technique creates three-dimensional reliefs, making certain areas “pop out. The result is something like an engravement, typically with special ink to draw further attention. This also works for accenting text if you’ve chosen a bold enough typeface. Spot UV coating is the same thing, except only applied to certain areas. That means you can apply a gloss on only your logo, specific graphics, or even a word or phrase. Use it when you want to accent certain areas over others but be mindful of how it affects the overall composition when only a portion is shiny.
A good visual flow should start with the logo, then the name, and then the secondary information, finishing on any secondary images if they are there. You can always change and optimize the visual flows by changing an element’s size and location.
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