Artwork Guidelines

Review our tips for creating a design that will generate a flawless ready-to-use online print template.

Basic Principles

5 Tips for print perfection

Brandly is not like any other printing solution. We help brands print business cards for their entire team in an easy and fast way. We achieve this by instantly transforming business card files into templates that can be edited on-site, shared and self-ordered by the entire company. That’s why we only accept PDF

1. PDF files

Make sure your files are saved as PDFs

2. Card size

3.5 x 2 inches plus 1/8 bleeds if needed

3. Live text

Leave editable text 'live' - not outlined

4. No crop marks

Remove crop marks - we'll make them.

5. CMYK colors

Prepare files in CMYK mode for best results

Shape

Size and corners

At Brandly, we print standard sized business cards. That is 2” x 3.5”. You can choose either square corners for a more classic style or rounded corners for a modern style.

3.5 x 2 inches

Square Corners

50 cards from $18.99

3.5 x 2 inches

Radius: 1/4 inch

Round Corners

50 cards from $21.99

  • Bleed Area: 3.75” x 2.25”

    Make sure your background extends to fill the bleed area (to avoid nasty white edges!)

  • Trim: 3.5" x 2.0"

    This is where we aim to cut your cards.

  • Safe Area: 3.34" x 1.84"

    Make sure important aspects of your design (like text and logos) are inside the safe area.

Text Fields

Live vs Outlined text

Brandly converts uploaded PDF files into editable and sharable online templates that perfectly match your brand's identity. Our app reads in your file's font information (as text) so you can upload your design once and use it many times.

  • Editable fields

    Prepare your file so that the fields you want to edit for each employee (e.g. name, title, phone, email) are live text. Live text is simply text that is not converted to outlines in Adobe Illustrator. Additionally, consider using text that is 8pt or higher for better results.

  • Non-editable fields

    Business cards usually have content that won’t be customized for each employee. Logos, taglines, web addresses, & license numbers are examples of static text. To make sure this content is not mistakenly edited, convert them to outlines in Adobe Illustrator before uploading. To learn how to transform text to outlines, watch this video.

Graphics

Using bitmaps and vectors

Brandly converts your uploaded PDF file into an editable and sharable template - ready to be ordered by or for eveyone on your team. Since the main benefit of using Brandly is to make it fast and easy to order "on-brand" prints, it's crucial to ensure that your file is prepared correctly.

  • Logos

    Many logos are created from geometric shapes and letterforms. Some are solid color, others use gradations or knockouts - for example, reversing type out of a shape. It is advisable to source the original vector file for best results.

  • Lines

    If your design has lines - for example, a horizontal or vertical rule - or stroked shapes, aim to keep them them at 0.5pt or thicker for best results.

  • Images

    Images can depict anything, from a simple geometric shape to a full color photographic image, but with one caveat: You must have enough pixels available to render a high quality image. Shoot for 150 to 300 DPI at actual size.

Templates

Downloadable templates

If you prefer starting from scratch, download one of our blank business card templates in Adobe Illustrator or PDF format or try our starter pack of generic business card designs in Illustrator and PDF formats with content ready to edit or replace.

Bleed

Understanding the bleed

The bleed is an area that gets printed beyond the trim edge of the business card to avoid white lines when we trim it. If your business card contains a background color or graphics that extend to the edges, make sure to add a 1/8 inch bleed beyond the trim.

Final printed and trimmed business card

Need more?

Frequently asked questions

Not seeing your question here?

  • What if I don’t have a design?

    You could either design it yourself using our templates or get help from a designer. For professional looking business cards we suggest you to hire a designer.

  • Will I need to upload a design for each employee?

    Nope. Just upload a PDF once and create a shared template. A template can be used by anybody on your team to order their cards. No design skills required.

  • Do you offer templates?

    Brandly does not provide ready-to-use templates but you can always use our Starter pack to create one in an easy way!

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