Looking to do a little professional networking? A business card can help, but quotes from local printing places often seem pricey. Thankfully, there are plenty of sites that print high-quality custom business cards without busting your wallet in the process. Here's a look at five of the best, based on your nominations.
Photo by Murat Ertürk.
Stuff to note: Many online business card sites offer free options, but that usually means some kind of watermark or advertisement on the card itself. Many of these operations are located outside Australia, but that doesn't always mean a major delay in shipping times. Free offers and discount codes are frequent for business card sites, but check carefully -- sometimes these codes don't do quite what they describe.
VistaPrint's doesn't offer the same customisation tools that some of the other competitors do, but is very competitive on price. The company was one of the first to offer super-affordable business card printing for individuals who just wanted their own cards for themselves or their businesses, usually tossing 250-500 free cards to any new customer who signs up. Even now a quick Google search will turn up deals where you can get free cards as long as you pay shipping. Alternatively, other codes will shave a hefty amount off of your order or give you free shipping. You usually have to choose from predetermined designs and layouts and deal with a VistaPrint watermark on the back of your card unless you're willing to pay, but if cost is king and free is your favourite flavour, VistaPrint is where it's at.
Moo offers high-quality card stock and stacks of designs. It has decent pricing and there are regular specials via third-party sites offering free or near-free deals. Moo offers mini cards and full-sized business cards, and you can design your cards through a great webapp that lets you tweak and customise the front and the back with virtually any text, image or design you choose. You can customise your card order to include different photos or designs on each card (ideal for photographers looking to show off their work). You can even get NFC business cards if you require them. An added bonus -- they don't always watermark your cards -- even when you get free ones.
GotPrint offers multiple card size, stock, and paper options, but make no mistake -- the service prints business cards, not photo or designer cards. Those of you who nominated GotPrint noted that it's a great option if you have access to a designer or want simple, elegant, and clean business cards with a more traditional look. If you want something fancy and special, the service does offer a number of cuts, shapes and colours, all of which are available at competitive prices.
An independent printing company with serious attention to detail, JukeBox offers an incredible selection of card stock types, from traditional white paper to textured pulp and beautiful recycled paper options. The company even offers wooden business cards. It also offer a wide variety of paper colours, typefaces, and more customisation and personalisation options than a lot of other printing companies. You can be sure that when you order your cards from JukeBox, they won't look like everyone else's. JukeBox's pricing is competitive. You'll have to supply your own designs though -- there's no online wizard to walk you through the process, but the end result is that you get truly personal cards.
Overnight Prints, like GotPrint, specialises in all kinds of mass printing, not just business cards. It gives you the option to upload your own design, use their wizard, or choose from pre-defined templates, whichever you choose. You can also choose your finish, card stock, and colours -- you'll find somewhat fewer customisation options here in the main wizard. The "overnight" option won't be true for Australia, but it's another option to consider.
If you have a favourite card printing site that didn't make the cut, tell us about it in the comments.