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Our Tips for on How to Prepare Your Business Card Design for Printing

The use of business cards remains a mainstay of business in spite of the working class transforming into a digital landscape more and more. It’s a crucial marketing opportunity that enables you to expand your circle of clients and collaborators, and when done right, it can effectively draw the attention of your prospects every time it’s handed out. 

For a business card to be successfully eye-catching, it will need to contain more than just your name and contact number. The small space of the paper, 3.5-inch by 2-inch to be exact, doesn’t necessarily limit your creativity as there are countless ways it can be utilized to its full potential. Keep in mind that before investing in a particular design, you have to follow a specific format and requirements to avoid compromising its quality in print shops.

To that end, here are tried and true tips for printing professional business cards that can leave a lasting impression:


Different Card Design Requirements


Text and Graphics

Whatever you have in mind for your text and graphics, be it a slogan, tagline, or a graphic illustration that captures your brand, be sure to position all these design elements at least ⅛ inch away from the edges of the card. This is to accidentally cut away parts of your text or logo when trimming down the card into separate pieces. 



Bleed is a border surrounding the card that will be trimmed off during the cutting process, which is why most printing companies require you to include bleeds in the original artwork file. You can easily do this by setting a ⅛ inch, or 0.125 inches bleed around the edges of the card when exporting your design to PDF. Keep in mind that the bleed size requirements may differ in each printing shop, so be sure to inquire about the requirements first so you can prepare for it. 



When including imagery in your business card, the best practice is to obtain your photos from a digital camera, scanner, or a high-quality media file from the Internet. Maintaining a high resolution is the pinnacle of what makes a good quality of the printed picture, especially when you consider how the impact changes from screen to paper. 

To that end, set your image resolution to at least 300 dpi. You can ensure that it’s in tip-top quality by zooming into the image until it is 600%. If the image looks decent, then you can go ahead and print away.


File Formats Supported by Printing Companies

Most printing companies accept materials in the PDF and TIFF formats. Speaking of which, files in PDF format have fonts that are automatically embedded. However, it still has the tendency to display incorrectly when printed as it typically depends on the software and equipment the printer shop uses. For that reason, it may be best to save your card design to TIFF format as the quality and text will remain exactly the way you want it to. 

Print Pal is a printing shop based in London, get in touch today to see how we can help! We have a wide range of business card solutions available to help accelerate your business.

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