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Contractor Business Card Guide [w/ FREE Template]

2020-03-19[templates]

SummaryHow to Design a Contractor Business Card  So, you need to design a contractor business card? Maybe you need a new (or updated!) logo? Awesome. We’ve got you covered. Whether you need to design a ro

How to Design a Contractor Business Card

 So, you need to design a contractor business card? Maybe you need a new (or updated!) logo?

Awesome. We’ve got you covered.

Whether you need to design a roofing business card, general contractor business card, or commercial construction business card, the principals are the same and we’ll give you some templates and free tools you can use.

Before we begin: a few encouragements…

  1. You don’t need to be a design expert.
  2. You don’t need super expensive software.
  3. You don’t need to spend tons of money to make your cards.
  4. You can do this.

Contractors are notoriously good at figuring things out. If there’s one thing we’ve seen with these kinds of tech projects, when contractors or construction Pros like you want to learn something… you go all in.

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This guide will walk you through designing a card, and give you different options of how to approach designing your own cards.

Let’s start with designing your own custom contractor business card.

Step 1: Create or Update a Logo (Why a Logo Is So Important For Your Contractor Business Card).

First thing’s first: you need a design, a look, and a logo. Whether you’re going to use a popular online service like Vistaprint or having a local business print your cards, you’ll probably want a custom design.

Of course you can always use pre-designed templates or tools like Vistaprint’s card builder, but just know that it might look that way to customers or clients. But you already knew that, or else you wouldn’t be reading this post right?

Here’s the good news: you don’t need to be a graphic design expert to design your own card.

Now, having said that – a logo is a great place to spend money on a graphic designer. Your logo is the symbol of all you stand for: your business, your values, it’s the visual representation of your company and brand.

A poorly-designed business logo is like a poorly designed website: it can make your business appear unprofessional or untrustworthy, and make it hard to compete in an age where visuals are incredibly important to Millennials and others. I know that may sound crazy, but many people will read a degree of “amateurness” into your business if your aesthetics aren’t up to par.

So if cash is tight for you, I’d recommend you spend  more on a clean, modern logo design, and then do the business card design yourself.

Here’s why…

The logo is going to be everywhere. On your cards, your truck (probably), your website, social media accounts… everywhere. But your contractor business card really only needs your contact info. Once you have a solid logo set up and ready to go, it’s relatively easy to design your own business card. It’s simply a matter of laying out the info you want in a visually appealing and user friendly manner.

Because having a good business logo is an important part of your business card, we’ll begin by taking a look at few examples of (what I consider) awesome contractor business logos.

Awesome contractor logos for examples and inspiration.

The following logos are included for your inspiration, and to give you an idea of what simple, elegant, effective, clean, modern logos can look like.

That said, you need to do you. Don’t just copy someone else’s logo – but do use these as a reference or guideline to learn what you like in a logo.

Example 1 – Text Only (= Name Logos).

I’ll admit it, I’m a big fan of “name logos”. Lots of company’s use them (take a look in the upper left of this website for example!).

Here’s an example from J.A. Wilwert Carpentry:

contractor business card in-post-img-1

Pros

  • Perhaps the most “cost-effective” solution because you don’t need to have an image or symbol designed by a designer.
  • Easy to get started.
  • Can be free (by using Google Fonts, etc.).

Cons

  • Can look amateur with the wrong font / name combination.

Tools to Create a Name-Only Logo

Learn how to design a text-only logo with our free course.  

 

Example 2 – Text & Logo Combo.

If you like the idea of a cool text logo, but just want a little something more to it, consider combining your text logo with a small graphic or symbol representing your business.

This can be anything from crossing hammers (increasingly popular among contractors), to a saw blade, to chisels, or anything else that represents your business. The idea here is not unlike the early days of this country, when blacksmiths, carpenters, bakers, etc. had signs hanging out front of their businesses with symbols serving as visual representatives of what their business or trade was.

Here’s a good example from NS Builders:

contractor business card nsbuilders-in-post-img

Notice how the logo is really a “text-only” logo in the upper left: super clean, simple, professional. However, they’ve taken their slogan: “design. build. repeat.” and really enhanced it with a simple logo of crossing nails, with a solid vertical line.

In my opinion, it just adds that really clean, nice visual that sums up what they do and makes it look more like a logo.

Pros

  • Gives more of a visual than the text-only logo.
  • With the right symbol / graphic, it can really make your look stand out.
  • There are free tools to create the logo if you have some eye for design and patience to put it together.

Cons

  • You’ll probably need to work with a graphic designer if you want a custom, slick, professional graphic to incorporate with your text-only logo.

Free Tools to Create a Text & Logo Combo

  • Google Draw
  • Pixlr Editor
  • GIMP

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Example 3 – Graphic Logo.

The graphic logo is the standard thing that most people think of when they think “logo”. It’s typically a custom graphic that represents your company or brand.

John Malecki (NFL player turned Craftsman) has an excellent example of a graphic logo:

contractor-business-cards-john-malecki-in-post-img

john-malecki-graphic

Pros

  • Totally unique and engaging: you’re not going to run into anyone else using the same font, because your font is a drawing.
  • An ability to uniquely brand yourself (in John’s logo for example, you see the rings of what look like wood, with a saw blade, and some really cool custom font).

Cons

  • You’ll most likely need to hire a graphic designer
  • The designer needs to be good. If you go with someone cheap, inexperienced, or who doesn’t understand your company or vision, you’re going to end up with a look you’re not happy with.

Resources to create custom graphics:

  • If you want to learn how to do graphics like this, we can’t teach you. But we do know enough to recommend you check out Photoshop.
  • Use a service like 99Designs – a marketplace of top designers. You pick the looks you like most, and receive dozens of submissions of mockups for your new logo. Pick the one you like and pay for it.

Get advice on creating a great custom graphic, with this free course.  

 

Got your logo? OK. Now it’s time to design your business card layout.

A contractor business card is not vastly different from any other type of business card. There’s a core bit of information you’ll want to make sure you include, but it’s fairly flexible.

We’re going to assume for the sake of this article, that you want to design a custom layout, rather than using a pre-made template on Vistaprint. I mean, if you were going to use that, you probably would have by now, right?

Tools like Vistaprint are great, because they allow you to get a small or large number of cards printed up at a great price, and you can usually get a discount or promo code for your first order. In this section we’ll walk you through how to tackle a custom design.

*For the following steps we’re using Vistaprint’s sizing chart. If you use a different service, please find their exact dimensions.

Business card template sizing:

Full Bleed Size ( = full template size)
3.62″ x 2.12″
92 x 54 mm
1085 x 635 pixels
Document Trim Size ( = the smaller area which all your information must fit inside)
3.50″ x 2.00″
89 x 51 mm
1050 x 600 pixels

Step 1 – Create a blank template inside the editor of your choice.

We’re going to use Google Draw, mostly because it’s more user-friendly for non-designer types.

Inside Google draw:

  1. Click “file”
  2. Click “page setup”
  3. Select “custom” from the dropdown menu
  4. Select “pixels” from the dropdown instead of “inches”
  5. Type “1085” in the first field (width) and “635” in the second field (height) – **if your business card sizing is different, simply enter the number of pixels you need for width and height here**
  6. Click “OK”

contractor business cards template sizing-in-post-img

Now your template size is set, and it’s time to move into the design aspect.

Step 2 – Set your background color.

Right click (on Windows, for Mac do as appropriate) and hover over “background” , then select the background color you want. You can add a custom background color (like #e7e7e7), or choose a pre-set one.

I’m a fan of clean design, so I’ll set mine to be white.

Step 3 – Layout your logo, and text.

Alright, it’s time to make some decisions and have fun playing with your design.

Here’s the what you’ll need to decide on:

  • Font (what your wording will look like) – I recommend keeping your font fairly tame. Don’t go with something fancy, hard to read, etc. Your logo is there to catch someone’s eye, the font should help people clearly read the important info. Now, that doesn’t mean you should choose an ugly font. Just choose something clean that fits with your overall design.

  • Text (what content you’ll include) – What do you want to say? I’d recommend keeping it simple, and uncluttered. Give your name, phone number, email, and website. Beyond that, you may want to add anything else you think is relevant or promotional.

  • Layout (where your name, contact info, logo, etc. will go) – Do you want everything centered? Do you want your logo in the upper right, or to be on a side all it’s own? Google Draw makes it easy by giving you red lines when you click and drag an object to know if it’s centered, or lined up with other objects.

Step 4 – Design a back.

If you’re doing a second side, you can simply create a new Google Draw document, and repeat these steps and design the back of your card in order to upload it to the printer of your choice.

A very standard example would be doing Side A focused only on your brand: a nice background image with your logo, then using Side B to communicate your contact info.

Step 5 -Download your front and back images.

Click “file” > “download as” > and choose “.png”. Most services will also let you upload .jpg or .pdf files, but generally I recommend using .png files, as they are higher image quality for printing.

Step 6 – Upload your design to your printer of choice.

After you have the front and back designed, just visit your printer of choice and select “standard business cards” as the product. For our example, we’re using Vistaprint (click here for a direct link to their standard business cards).

Most card designers online will let you upload your own design.

Step 7 – Proof and order!

That’s it! Once you have your images uploaded, make sure you proof the image and preview it to see what your cards will look like. Take your time, ask your friends/family, and get some feedback because there’s no going back (without re-ordering!).

Once you’re happy, just place the order. Be sure to search around for some promo codes to potentially get your first order at a discount. Oh, and be prepared to be “up-sold” a bunch of stuff you don’t need

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