5 Reasons to Avoid Cheap Business Cards

So you think you need to save a few Rands on your next business cards order? You don’t need to buy an expensive business card to look good, you only need to avoid a business card that looks cheap.

First Impressions on Business Cards

We have all learned how important first impressions are. We are often obsessive about our actions during a first meeting (firm handshake, eye contact, pleasant cologne) while paying little mind to all the underlying details. Nice business cards, just like a solid website and a good follow up phone call, is what separates the men from the boys (and the women from the girls)

A Nice Business Card

You don’t need to have a fancy business card if It is not your style or brand. What you are aiming for is an effective business card. If a fancy business card that wins design awards is your goal, awesome, add that to your list, but design awards are not the goal of most businesses.

Your business card is NOT an advertisement for your products, it’s an advertisement for the quality of the business relationship you are offering. You want to be a luxury brand of business relationships, regardless of what you are selling. And visually, a layout free from distractions implies luxury. Busy, crowded layouts imply cheap. Give your information some room to breathe. It’s easy to get excited about social chiclets and pretty fonts and a big photo and your mission statement and and and and… Don’t get distracted from your main message: The establishment of a great relationship.

Branding and Design

Whether they know it or not, every person and company has a brand. Even plumbers and landscapers need to demonstrate a high level of trustworthiness and quality. Your card is a physical representation of your business. Is your business cheap, flimsy, and hastily put together? Well, maybe it is, but no one needs to know that, least of all the person you’re trying to build a relationship with.

No Pre-Designed Business Cards Templates

There is no way to use a pre-designed template without compromising your brand. To a template designer, successful templates are measured by the number of downloads. They are by definition, designed to be as generic and broadly appealing as possible, the brand equivalent of vanilla ice cream.

High-Quality Printing

You have poured a lot of TLC into your business card design, don’t go cheap now! Your goal does not need to be expensive. The goal is to not look cheap. Just like you would be wary of the cheapest contractor or supplier, you don’t want to go to the cheapest printer. They are the cheapest for a reason, where do they cut their costs?

You can save so much money on paper if you don’t mind ordering from an Asian sweatshop mill. They grab any cheap, clear-cut rainforest tree they can get their hands on. The cheap paper goes out the front door and awful chemical slurries get pumped out the back. Any respectable printer, orders papers from exclusive paper mills, whose trees are chain-of-custody certified and gave come from responsible, well-managed forests. The earth is more important than saving a few bucks.

Customer Service
Certain printers are proud of how robotic their print shops are. Digital orders come in, computers prep the files, digital printers spit them out, and a robot boxes them for shipping. It’s literally a really fancy office printer that ships to you instead of sitting in the closet next to the break room. You’re paying for experts who notice that your text is too close to the edge and might get cut off. Experts who notice you accidentally linked a lo-res file before printing. Experts you can call on the phone and talk to.

Quick, Not Quality
Cheap printers find ways to cut corners on your files. We won’t bore you with the technical details but what it means is that they have optimized their print process to what’s quick and efficient for them not what looks best for you. Improper rasterization leads to a fuzzy type that is hard to read. The crappy line screen means you see the ink dots on your prints instead of smooth colours. Rick blacks make fine details look blobby. You are better than blobby business card.


When you introduce your brand, artwork, band, passion or small business to a new customer or fan you want to instill confidence, quality, and longevity. Sure, your business card may be a small detail, but it is part of your first impression. How do you want to be remembered?

At Foxx Design, we keep to all guidelines to ensure you have the best business card, and we have also perfected the process that it does not cost you your entire salary. Get in touch with us and we will guide you