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1. Too Much Information

This isn’t a website, it’s a very small business card meant for networking, not telling your whole life story. Whoever is picking up your business card should immediately be able to find your website, email or phone number without searching for it.

2. Starting a Font War

Too many fonts are never a good idea, especially if you are using more generic font choices. Don’t mix between bold, italicized and highly stylized fonts. While I don’t recommend it, if you are going to use more than one style, be sure to use a serif font (such as Georgia) next to a sans-serif font (such as Helvetica). This will add a much cleaner touch.

3. Low Resolution Images

There’s nothing worse than the excitement of waiting to see your work in print only to find that you didn’t vectorize your elements and everything looks like a grainy mess. Be sure you are working with digital images that are at least 300 dpi to ensure that you get maximum quality and no blurry or pixilated imagery in the event you need to enlarge it.

4. Busy Background and Clutter

Simplicity is key. Avoid using a busy background photo that could be distracting from your text. You don’t want the words to be lost, especially if the image has a range of dark and light colors that might make it difficult to adjust your font colors to be more visible. You should generally only include visuals and information that are absolutely necessary, eye catching and most importantly easy to read.

If you feel a background image is absolutely crucial for your business card design, make sure it does just that; stay in the background. Try adjusting the brightness and contrast so it isn’t too prominent and won’t distract from your contact information.

5. Not Having Them on You at All Times

Now, I know this is not a design mistake, but what is worse than designing a business card and not having it on you when a huge potential client comes strolling along? A business card will show that you are dedicated to your craft and want to network with other people who are in your field. People will not take you half as seriously when you are yelling out your website link that they are bound to forget or writing it on a used napkin. Check your business card holder or wallets right now, if your business cards aren’t in there, take action!