Whether you’re a large enterprise with tens of thousands of employees or a solopreneur with your own small business, you may wonder if it’s time to retire your paper business cards and go digital.
I’ve trialed nearly all of the most popular digital business cards on the market (see my full list of the best digital business cards here). I’m here to tell you that nearly everyone will make the switch in the next few years. I highly recommend doing it early, so you get the “wow” factor instead of waiting until it’s old news.
First Things, First. What Is A Digital Business Card?
The quick version: A digital business card is where you create a professional contact page, known as a “landing page,” that you can easily share via the wave of an NFC card, text, email, QR code, etc. to all of your business contacts or potential clients. They can be used as a software to manage thousands of employees and often serve as a networking platform thanks to their analytic capabilities.
If you’re still a bit confused, no worries. Here’s the full-view breakdown.
The Landing Page Replaces the Paper Card
Think of the landing page as the digital version of your business card. When you share your digital card, a “landing page” will pop up on the user’s mobile browser or the internet. There’s often a button where the client or customer can “save” the contact. It will then pop up on their phone as “Add to Contacts” depending on your phone.
Now, paper business cards typically only have a Company Name, Title, Phone, Fax, Email, and maybe a Website. But landing pages do SO MUCH more as they’re not confined to a small amount of space. Depending on the company you choose, here are some of the options you can add.
Digital Business Card Landing Page Features
As you can see, the landing page alone adds much more value than what you could do or fit on a small traditional business card.
How To Share Digital Business Cards
Okay, so you get the point of the landing page. But how do you share it? How can you send this information to someone else at a networking event, and how do they save this information?
Option 1: Send Your Contact Details with an NFC Product
If you like the option of having a physical business card, then an NFC business card is the way to go. Think of these as the shape and size of a debit card that easily fits in your wallet or phone case. But instead of having your account number, these have an NFC chip that can store all the information from your landing page. There are tons of other products with this technology too, which I’ll get to soon.
To share, you simply wave the card in front of someone’s phone, and it will either pop up with the landing page or a message asking if they want to save the contact to their phone. It will then automatically add all your business information (including a link to your page so they can visit it at a later time) into the contact of their phone.
The best part is that you don’t need an internet connection for this to work, so you can use this even when you’re not connected.
The only downside to this is the phone you are sharing the information to has to have NFC phone capabilities, which are any of the newer iPhones, Androids, or smartphones that have been released in the past few years. If they don’t, no worries, you have a few more options.
Option 2: Send Your Contact Details with QR Codes
QR codes are small; the square barcode can be read by a QR code scanner or a smartphone with the right app installed. For most phones, you can just point your camera on them, and you can pull up the related link. Once scanned, it will take your contact straight to your business page, where they can save your information on their phone.
You’ve probably seen these before, as most businesses now have them displayed somewhere on their storefronts, or you use them to read a menu at a restaurant.
Option 3: Digital Business Card via Text or Email
The other popular way is you can text or email someone a link to your business card. This is an added benefit to digital business cards because, in a digital world, we are constantly meeting clients and customers remotely and not in person.
If you want to exchange your contact information over a Zoom call, you must have a virtual business card. This is one of the main reasons I said before that it’s more of a matter of when, not if, you or your company will make the switch.
After you’ve emailed or texted them, they can click on the link; it will take them right to your landing page.
To share, you simply type out a quick message letting them know what your business is and what you do. Then, you include a link to your landing page. The great thing about this method is that it’s very versatile and can be used on any phone or computer.
As I eluded to above, you can choose to just have an online app that you text or email. Or you can get an NFC product to wave at someone’s phone. I’ve broken down the companies that specialize specifically in NFC business cards here. This makes it a much nicer exchange because you don’t have to ask for their phone number to send a contact, which could be awkward if you don’t know them too well.
Here are some of the different NFC products that allow you to share electronic business cards:
Depending on the company you’re purchasing these from, they can come in many colors and designs and be customizable to your Company logo and colors.
Do I Need to Download Business Card Apps To Access It?
In short, no. You do not need an app all the time to use it. There are plenty of companies that offer desktop and mobile platforms, so you could design your entire card on software if you purchase a Teams option or online.
Your employees wouldn’t need the app; they could just use an NFC card to exchange contact information.
However, to get quick access to your marketing efforts on the go, and to make quick changes to your card or easily share it, I highly recommend everyone using the app.
What Additional Features Are There With An Electronic Business Card?
Okay, so I’m sure I’ve probably already changed your mind or confirmed that it’s time to join the digital era. But the truth of the matter is, I haven’t begun to scrape all the amazing features that come with these cards.
Here are a ton of other features that many digital business cards offer:
What are the Benefits of Using Digital Business Card?
Besides all the reasons I’ve already discussed above, many other benefits come from using a digital business card. Let’s take a look.
1. Save Your Company Money
You’re not printing. You can change your title, name, or contact info in a matter of seconds without having to reprint. No more running out of business cards anymore either.
2. Increase Your Conversions
By tracking your analytics, you can see what’s working and what isn’t when it comes to your marketing strategy. You can also set reminders to follow up with leads or integrate the leads into your CRM software to increase conversions.
3. Go Green
Related to the point above, you’re not using paper which is always a good thing. Think of every single time you had to reprint because of an employee change. Not to mention, how many of your cards end up in the trash? This is definitely going to save the planet a bunch of trees.
4. Appear Tech-Savvy
When you meet someone, and they ask for your card, and you hand them your phone, there’s an immediate impression.
5. Exchange During Virtual Events
If you constantly take online meetings, virtual fairs, or meet new contacts via social media accounts, then an e-business card is a great way to swap information.
6. You Stand Out
Not a lot of people are using these yet, so if you start now, you’re going to be one of the first in what will become the norm.
7. Always Prepared
You always have your digital business card with you because it’s on your phone. You never have to worry about forgetting it or leaving it at home, and looking all awkward checking your empty wallets and leaving a bad impression.
How Do You Create Digital Business Cards Whether You’re a Solopreneur or Have Thousands of Employees?
If you’re a solopreneur, it’s easy. You can first check out my “How to Create A Digital Business Card” Step by Step Guide or you can jump straight into the “Best Digital Business Cards on the Market” here.
Suppose you are a large enterprise looking to convert your company to digital business cards. In that case, you may be a bit overwhelmed by the process, as that would require making individual cards for every employee in your company.
But don’t worry! I’ve written an entire article about the “Best Digital Business Card for Teams,” and after interviewing and getting personal demos to many of them, here are some common themes I’ve found:
- Many companies will have a specialized onboarding process with your HR department, or whoever else will be in charge of managing your company’s digital business cards.
- There are often several processes to design the cards with your company colors and logo. During the various design stages, you will get to finalize and approve the final product before making a mass purchase.
- Some companies make the switch easy by allowing you to send over your list of employees, and they’ll create the first bulk order for you.
For a more in-depth review of the functions of “Teams” or “Enterprise” digital business cards, check out my article to get the full 411.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between a paper card and a digital business card?
Business paper cards are typically small, 3.5×2″, where you have limited information. Digital business cards utilize landing pages where you can encompass many different links, social media accounts, etc and share them virtually.
How do I create electronic or virtual business cards for my company?
Creating a digital business card is easy! I’ve created an entire page for you on how to optimize and what to include on your digital business card.
How do you share a virtual business card?
There are many ways to send a card, such as through NFC, email, text, or QR code.
Is there anyone that offers a free digital business card?
There are few options for a free digital business card. Still, they are typically very basic and offer the same things a paper business card does (like all your contact information) and maybe your social media links. They typically won’t offer all the extra.