Vertical or horizontal Business Card?

What do you prefer? why? also do you like simple designs or quite complex designs for your business card or for the business cards you create for your clients? :slight_smile:

I used to have landscape ones with not a lot of information on it, but not so long ago I had new ones created, and these are portrait; since there is more info on them it works better. I kept the design very simple.

I prefer horizontal ones. Like momos, I prefer a front with as little information as possible - preferably just a name. All the contact details can then be written on the back.

I’ve only come across horizontal ones, and now that I think about it, vertical ones could be useful under certain circumstances in terms of ease of readability (ie, flipping through the cards in your wallet)

Also, there’s a seem in my desk that I’ve gotten into the habit of sticking business cards in that I recently acquire or know I need handy. As luck should have it, I stick them in vertically since they take up less space that way.

I suppose in order to make everybody happy, you might be able to print on both sides…one horizontally and one vertically shrugs

That’s actually an interesting idea - it would certainly make your card stand out.

Thinking about stealing Force Flow’s idea :wink:

I recently came across an ID card with a strip of information at the top of the card which I can see sticking out of my wallet and found it pretty neat:

I once came across this animation company offering an “outside the box” business card which was narrower and longer than the standard. One side had the logo. The other side had the name and contact details.

I thought it was pretty cool, and it fit nicely into my business card album.

Horizontal are going to work better with BC holders, the info will be easier to identify and scan.

I go horizontal with business cards and vertical with badges. You can thank E3 and the GDC for having beat that in my head early on.

Horizontal for me with clear, precise details - which really is the whole point of a business card isn’t it?!

Only horizontal!! And with nothing on the inside, that has to be opens up - never do that. Sure it looks neat, but it is the worst thing for user-friendly. I do put some non-important stuff on the back, but all contact info is on the front in an easy to read font.

Here’s my reason, I put biz cards in a biz card holder book, it you give me a biz card that I have to flip open to view your phone number, then I have to pull it out to open it - this is a pain and maybe I just won’t call you instead. Or if the biz card is vertical, I have to turn the book to read it. Pretty much all biz card books are horizontal - there’s a reason for that. It’s kind of like putting the main nav of a site at the bottom, sure its there but most people will not look for it there.

You’re right :slight_smile: I do agree

My cards have always been horizontal. For one the font for your name can be larger, unless you have a catchy short name.

There is also the convention. Horizontal cards have been established as a norm. It is good to jump out of the box sometimes, but I think not for cards, unless you count on this little confusion you create to be a positive connotation. Important to think about the character of your intended target.

The cards I had over the years were both: complex or simple, all depending on the purpose and what kind of customer I tried to attract, what business I happen to be in at the moment. They always reflected the character of what I was doing.

most of these are for design firms:

by NO MEANS should any old business adopt this design flair for their business card. I think almost all businesses who benefit from a professional image should use white cardstock ,glossy or matte, no more than 1 non-text element, standard layout of information and preferably one sided.
A good example would be the congressional staffer business cards which I can’t seem to find a picture of online. They’re grainy matte white cardstock, with a raised golden seal of the US government in the left corner, name and position in the center, congress person in the right corner, contact details in the bottom corners. Simple. Elegant. Professional. one sided for ease of use.
A good business card is like picking a nice suit. They key is to get noticed without sticking out.

just my two cents,

i lke the way you put that randy. about the business suit…
i voted vertical but i think you guys convinced me to go horizontal. that said, one of my favourite cards I’ve ever seen is a vertical one, with a red stripe down the right edge (company colour is red) like the BC id card linked to above.

I like non-glossy cards cuz u often need to write on a card (e.g. site has changed, phone has changed, how u met etc) and pens won’t write on glossy, or at least not easily.

It depends what kind of statement you are making.

I’ve had both types.
For my main biz, as an investigator dealing mostly with corporate executive level people, I use a minimalist horizontal. It’s standard and gets the vital info accross.

For my photog biz I have both modes - each with differant images on them. Vertical (portrait) certainly stick out more and are more memorable.

I prefer horizontal business cards. They fit into my wallet, and are easy to flick through when the are horizontal. I do like the cards that have a little bar up the top with at least the business name (similar to that ID card someone showed). I have a number of cards like that and it makes them much easier to find in a wallet. I think all the important details should be on the front of the card. If any information needs to be printed on the back it should only take up a small part of the back. I personally write notes on the back of alot of my business cards so I can identify why i got this card, who exactly the person is (sometimes a name means nothing), or i even write down quotes, prices or personal details on the person if i need it.

My Business cards are always horizontal. They are generally filled with black writing that has a fancy faunt to some of it and a white background. This is because of simplicity and general call backs. I may be getting too far into this, but I believe that everything you design has an impact on people. If you find the general likes of the population what people are comfortable with than you may get a call back, email etc. If you use a colour, design, wording that is specific to only a group of people not the wider audience than perhaps you will get less people that keep your cards, no matter how much you yourself believe in your cards. It’s only an idea, and of course it depends on what service you are giving, however this idea has been with me since I started business and I haven’t had a down turn yet, luck and hard work with my ideas I believe that is why I have my results.

I have swung both ways but currently stick to horizontal. If it’s not broke don’t fix it.

“Look at that settle off-white coloring… The tasteful thickness of it… Oh my god, it even has a water mark.”

not to be a spelling nazi, but that’s “subtle” not “settle”.
As in a light touch, barely noticeable, not overdone.

And the font on Paul Allen’s card is, hilariously enough, quite popular in DC amongst lobbyists and PR firms. I think its copperplate gothic but I could be wrong…
personally I think its still too daring for these firms, I would use a more traditional serif font or at least a modern one firmly rooted in tradition.