Review of Vistaprint business cards – I’m in the middle of developing an online shop to sell my cat-related t-shirt designs, so I figured I’d invest about $20 to have business cards printed to advertise my online store.
The name I’m most familiar with for printing business cards is Vistaprint.com (coupons), so I decided to go with them. Here’s my review for business cards from Vistaprint:
Vistaprint Standard Business Cards: My Review
I’ve ordered business cards through Vistaprint a couple of times before, but never to specifically promote a website or online store. In this case I wanted the cheapest business cards possible without looking or feeling cheap.
I went with their ongoing 500 business cards for $10 promotion because it only cost me $1 more than getting 250 business cards. ($8.99 with same coupon code)
By the way, they don’t seem to offer “free,” or economy business cards anymore, which is a good thing. Those used to have the Vistaprint logo on the back, and the paper felt cheap!
That’s a bad first impression to make with potential clients or customers. I sell t-shirts at my online shop, so I don’t want people thinking they are also cheaply printed!
1. First, Use a Design Template
Vistaprint offers design templates for all of their products, including business cards. TO be sure my design was the right resolution and in CMYK, I downloaded this template:
Anyway, in this case I used a 300 dpi version of one of my t-shirt designs, and formatted it for the vertical 3.5×2″ size of their Standard business cards. I also chose a matte finish, (included) as I wanted a vintage look. Glossy might be appropriate for certain designs or photos, but I usually go with matte.
*Their “Signature” business cards are printed on an adequate, 14 pt. paper, but you can upgrade to Premium or Signature with a heavier if you’d like. For my purposes I wanted the cheaper option, as I plan to just festoon these around the city.
I had no need to print on the back of the cards, so my order total was $9.99 for 500 standard business cards plus $5 shipping.
2. Be Sure to Use a Promo Code
If you click on a link for a specific promotion, the discount might be applied immediately, or, you have the option of entering a promo code at checkout like this:
3. You Can Consider Upgrades: (Brilliant Finishes) Metallic, Spot Gloss, Raised Print
Upgrades like foil, and spot gloss can really make features on your business card, like your logo, pop!
4. You’ll Have 4 Paper Stock Options
5. Here’s My Vistaprint Business Cards!
Wondering how long it takes Vistaprint to ship business cards? Their cheapest shipping option (economy) took exactly 8 days. (7 business days) They came in a neat little box, and I was excited to open it. (Need your cards fast? Check out the shipping speeds here)
The business cards themselves look great, and the colors are just like the online preview. Once again, be sure to design in CMYK at high resolution (300 dpi). Here’s another photo of my business cards:
Some of the cards printed about 1/16 of an inch off-center, but they mention that your design should be in the “safety zone” as it might shift by a small amount horizontally or vertically.
These business cards are great! 5 stars for the $15 total price. If you want you can upgrade and spend more on Signature business cards or ultra-thick which cost a lot more.
My Review: 500 Vistaprint Business Cards
You can see the “premium business cards” pictured above that I had printed with one of my Chairman Meow designs. I wanted heavier paper, so I was willing to pay an extra $5 than the 500 for $10 deal. Here are a few highlights of my premium business cards:
- Economy delivery took 7 days (free shipping not available)
- The business cards have a matte finish, and the paper is nice and sturdy
- The design is full-bleed, and was well centered
- The color was true to the online preview
- The total cost was about $20 for 500 business cards (with this coupon)
- Not using a design template? Remember to create your own design in CMYK!
*Tip: If you are on their site looking at the standard business cards, scroll down and you’ll see customer reviews. Consumer affairs is where you’ll find negative reviews, which are helpful to read, too
Ideas for Using Vistaprint Business Cards
Ok, so your on the fence about ordering 500 business cards? Business cards are like the Swiss Army knife of marketing, as they have so many potential uses for for many people. Here are a few ideas for getting your money’s worth:
1. Cheap Business Cards to Promote an Online Store / Shop / Blog
I used to imagine business cards as what people passed around at industry events, or left behind as contractors. However, if you have a website or online store or blog, they can be so much more!
They are great to hand out, and if you ship orders from an online store, be sure to drop a couple into each package that you ship.
If you do any online marketing whatsoever, you are probably familiar with paying for clicks on Google and Facebook. If you have a budget for this type of advertising, please consider supplementing it with business cards!
2. Business Cards are Like Online Clicks, But Cheaper
In my own online advertising experience, it’s costing me upwards of 50 cents per click to advertise my website to people categorized as “cat owners.”
That’s nothing compared to the $10+ per click a friend pays per click through Google for his basement waterproofing business. Yikes!
Anyway, by paying for clicks I quickly realize that the math doesn’t work to my advantage. I’m only making $6 on the sale of a t-shirt, and the potential conversion rate from these paid clicks is pretty low. There’s just no way a high percentage of people are going to take out their wallet and buy a t-shirt, so I need to find a cheaper way to get people to my online store.
While I work on ways to bring this cost per click way down, I’m printing 500 business cards for some guerilla marketing. Vistaprint offers 500 business cards for $10 + $5 shipping, so the cost of each business card is about 5 cents each.
Like online clicks they deliver information for a brief moment with the hope of hooking a customer. While online advertising has many advantages, a business card is tangible, and doesn’t disappear into the ether once that moment has passed.
If you cross paths with your potential audience at any time, consider printing cheap business cards that get attention and send people to your online store or website!
For my shop, imagine how much more effective a little stack of business cards would be if left at a cat cafe, coffee shop, or pet store!
3. Cheap Business Cards for an Etsy Shop, CafePress Shop, Zazzle Store, eBay Store, or T-Shirt Store
If you have an online store, you’re probably trying to market your unique designs or products. This greatly increases the odds that you have some kind of design experience, or at least the ability to photograph your products close up.
Tip: Consider zooming in on your best design or product, add your URL, and print it on a business card? Make sure your image is really sharp and high-resolution!
These potentially catchy business cards can be stuck in lots of locations; either one at a time, or even fanned out or stacked in strategic places.
Example: I go to a dog park every other week, which is a very social environment. That would be a great place to hand out a business card. You’re not limited to dog products in that environment either. Maybe you just mention during conversation that you have a side-business, like an Etsy store, which would be a great time to whip it out. (a business card)
I have also propped up business cards on signs, wedged them into the side of bulletin boards, or any little corners where they might get noticed.
Idea: Not only can business cards help you hook potential new customers, but existing customers as well. I recommend including at least one business card in the packaging of all orders that you mail out. Your customers might hold onto it, or even pass it on to a friend.
So Many Ideas for Using Business Cards
There are a number of great resources out there that list creative ideas for using business cards to market your store, but I’d just recommend the following in summary:
- A catchy “hook“: a design featuring a head-turning product photo or example of your favorite design
- No more than one one line of text or it will be too crowded
- Your easy to remember domain name
- Printing on the back of the business card may cost more
- Try the 500 business cards promotion first at 3 cents per card
- Similar offer from Vistaprint.ca here
Anyway, if you’re an entrepreneur of any sort, I do recommend Vistaprint’s business cards, as they are really cheap and great quality. I was really happy with the result, and it was a great investment of less than $20.