Paper Vs. Digital Business Cards. 9 easy comparison points to choose the best

Updated: June 20, 2023

By: Marcos Isaias

I know you now want the answer to your question, Paper Vs. Digital Business Cards which one is better? Well, I think that digital business cards, but I have tested both, and here I try to tell you why. I hope you can choose after this article but first!

What are paper business cards?

A business card is a physical token that represents your business. It has your name, title, and contact information so that people can quickly get in touch with you.

Business cards have been around for centuries and are a stylish way to promote your business.

However, with the advent of digital technology, there is now a new type of business card called a “digital business card.” So, which is better for your business: traditional or digital? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each.

What are digital business cards?

Digital business cards are a fun and easy way to promote your business or personal brand.

In this digital transformation era, they are perfect when you want to give someone your contact information but don’t want to carry around a paper card.

You can easily create a digital business card using an online template or one of the many software programs available.

You can add photos and videos to your digital business card to make it more unique. Once you have created your card, you can share it with others via email, social media, or even print it out if you want to.

If you’re looking for a fun and easy way to promote your business, consider getting a digital business card.

Paper Vs. Digital Business Cards: Paper Cards

Digital business cards vs paper business cards image with both cards in a balance

What is a paper business card?

Traditional or paper business cards are just what they sound like – cards made of paper. They are usually about 3×5 inches in size. People often use them to exchange contact information at networking events or meetings.

Pros and cons of physical or paper business cards

Pros of Paper Business Cards

There are a few pros to using traditional business cards:

  • They are very affordable. You can get a lot of business cards printed for very little money.
  • They are easy to carry around with you. You can just throw physical business cards in your purse or wallet and take them wherever you go. According to a study by Adobe, around 88% of all business cards are in the trash between one week.
  • They are easy to give out. When you meet a new client, friend or lead, you can just hand people the business card, and they will have all your information.
  • There is something magical about paper cards. The way the fresh paper or cardboard feel in your hands, the sound they make when you open them, and the handwritten message inside. 
  • A paper card is a tangible expression of someone’s thoughts and feelings; there is something special about that. In a world where we rely increasingly using technology for everything, it is nice to have something physical and tangible. Paper cards remind us that we are connected to other people in a genuine way, which is a beautiful thing.

Cons of Paper Business Cards

However, like with everything there are some cons to using traditional business cards:

  • They can be easily lost or misplaced. If you lose your business card, it is gone forever, and someone else may find it and use it.
  • You will need to get new business cards printed if you change your contact information (such as your phone number or email address). This can be a hassle, and it can be expensive if you have a lot of business cards.
  • If you order them from a printer company outside your area, they can be expensive to ship.
  •  Paper business cards pollute the environment. Every year, billions of business cards end up in the trash. Also, they are made from trees, requiring energy and resources to produce. Business cards often contain toxic chemicals, which can leach into the ground and water when they decompose

You can print business cards at most local print shops. Alternatively, you can order business cards online from a variety of retailers.

Nowadays, creating a personalized traditional business card through websites like MOO is much easier. You can upload your own photos, logos, or illustrations and add special effects like rounded corners to make them stand out.

If you want to be creative, you can do eccentric designs such as a die-cut business card. Die-cut cards are cut into unique shapes that will make a lasting impression.

Paper Vs. Digital Business Cards: Digital

What is a digital business card?

A digital business card is a type of card that is exchanged electronically instead of through traditional means, like paper.

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Virtual business cards have a technology that makes your networking experience more interactive.

They are typically exchanged through email, text messages, or social media platforms.

They can be formatted in various ways, including as a PDF, JPEG, or Word document.

Electronic business cards can be used in a variety of ways. For example, you can use them to:

  1. Introduce yourself uniquely to potential clients or customers
  2. Send information about your company or services
  3. Connect with other professionals online
Pros and Cons of Digital Business Cards for

Pros of digital business cards

Digital business cards have a few advantages over traditional business cards. It is projected that by 2027 the business of e-cards will grow to 242.2 million.

  • They are effortless to update. If you change your contact information, you can just update your digital business card and send it out to people.
  • They are straightforward to keep track of. You can save all your digital business cards in one place to always know where they are.
  • They are easily shared. You can email your digital business card to someone or share it on social media with just a few clicks.
  • Digital business cards protect the environment by reducing the number of physical business cards that are printed each year.

Cons of digital business cards

However, not everything about digital business cards is a walk in the park. There are also some disadvantages to digital business cards.

  • People may not be able to open them. If someone doesn’t have the same digital business card software that you are using, they may not be able to open your business card.
  • People may forget about your business card. Unlike a traditional business card, which people can put in their wallet or purse, a digital business card can be easily forgotten.
  • You may not be able to use a digital business card’s full features if you send it to someone who doesn’t have the same software. Even if they have software to open them, just not the one you used to design the card).
  • They might be perceived as a bit cold because they might lack that personal paper touch. For this reason, you might choose a great design from one of the top vendors. 

So, which is better for a business: traditional or digital? The ultimate answer is, It depends on your needs and preferences.

Suppose you want a business card that is easy to carry around with you and easy to give out. In that case, a traditional business card may be your best option.

If you want a business card that is easy to update and share, then a digital business card may be your best option. Whichever type of business card you choose, make sure that it reflects your business in the best way possible and has your personal mark.

9 easy Key Points when Choosing Between Paper Vs. Digital Business Cards to choose the best

1. Price

Digital business cards have a lot of advantages over traditional paper business cards. For one, they’re much cheaper to produce. Hang on! I know what you are thinking. Digital business cards have a more significant upfront cost but consider this; you won’t need to print more than one vs. thousands of paper ones.

Either way, the cost of digital business cards is a fraction of what you would pay for paper business cards on the belong run. In addition, digital business cards are more flexible and customizable than their paper counterparts.

You can include any information you want on your card, and you can easily update your contact information if it changes. You can also include links to your website or social media profiles. Finally, digital business cards are more eco-friendly than paper cards because they don’t require cutting down trees.

Related: Best digital business cards with NFC

2. Flexibility and outreach

Digital business cards are the clear winner here. The power of having just one card and having an unlimited reach is out of this world in my eyes. For example, I have my Popl digital business card profile.

The outreach of the outreach and duplicate virtual cards you can send is almost infinite (Nothing is really infinite. You could find a hardware cap after millions of cards probably, don’t know. Up for an experiment?)

3. Tracking

With my digital profile, I go to networking events and share my contact with sometimes hundreds of people, and I can enjoy the benefit of tracking and interactions on my app.

Insight screens of popl

Imagine you give away 50 business cards at an event. How would you know which leads actually read your card, and how can you follow up on someone interested in your brand or service but has not allocated time to contact you?

Having tracking capabilities on digital business cards allows you to have all the follow-up information and even more.

4. Environmentally friendly

Recyling symbol onb a purpel background to represent how enviromentally frienly digital business cards are

5. Personalization

Digital business cards offer a great deal of personalization, allowing you to add your graphics and logos to create a card that truly represents your brand. Even though on paper business cards, you might be able to add more colors or textures to the card.

Your digital business card profile can include links to your website or social media pages, making it easy for potential customers or clients to find out more about your business.

Paper business cards are more limited in customization, but they can still be highly effective marketing tools.

Including your contact information and a brief message can make a lasting impression and ensure that your card stands out from the rest. Ultimately, deciding which type of business card to use depends on your personal preferences and marketing goals.

6. Safety or security

Digital business cards offer several advantages over their paper counterparts regarding safety and security.

For starters, digital cards can be password protected, ensuring that only the intended recipient can view the card’s information.

On the other hand, you can hand the intended recipient a paper business card, and if he loses it, you have no control over who can see your personal information.

Additionally, digital cards can be backed up and stored in the cloud, so the information remains safe and secure even if the physical card is lost or stolen.

Finally, digital cards can be updated with new information as needed, so you can always be sure that your contact information is always fresh and updated.

Overall, digital business cards provide a more secure and convenient option for storing and sharing your contact information.

Related: How to protect your NFC business cards

7. Handling

More and more people are ditching paper business cards in favor of digital ones.

Digital business cards take up less space than their paper counterparts, making them easier to handle.

Electronic cards are beneficial for people who are always on the go and don’t have a lot of room to spare.

Also, digital business cards can be sent and received almost instantaneously. In contrast, paper business cards often have to be mailed back and forth, which can be time-consuming.

Finally, digital business cards can be easily updated with new information, such as a change of address or phone number, with just a few clicks anywhere in the world (No printing stores necessary).

8. Durability

eCards are far more durable than paper cards. They can’t be bent, torn, or stained as quickly, and they’ll never fade over time. 

They can be easily stored on your phone or computer, taking up far less space than a traditional card holder. 

If you want a card for a lifetime, I recommend metal or gold digital business cards. 

9Wow effect (First impression)

In a business setting, first impressions are everything. 

You have a very short window to make a good impression on potential clients or customers, so you must ensure that every detail is perfect. This includes your business card. 

In the past, paper business cards were the standard. However, in recent years, digital business cards have become more popular. 

There are several reasons for the popularity of digital business cards vs. paper ones:

  • Digital cards are more eye-catching than their paper counterparts. They can include multimedia features such as videos and images, which paper cards cannot match. 
  • Electronic cards are more interactive. They can contain links to your website or social media pages, giving recipients a way to learn more about your business. 
  • Virtual digital cards are more sustainable. They can be stored electronically, saving paper and ink and your image of an environmentally friendly business partner. 

Related: how to create digital business cards to 10x your leads

The best of both worlds

Of course, you don’t have to choose between paper vs. digital business cards. You can actually have both! For example, you can:

Popl business card

Have a traditional business card that you carry around with you to give out when you meet someone in person, and add a QR code to it

Have a digital business card that you can email to people or share on social media. You can also add a link to your traditional business card so people can download it and print it out if they want to.

Or even a short URL or QR Code with your website or the leading site you use to promote your digital presence in this date and age is all about digital marketing and how you use it.

Do you have any other clever uses for digital business cards? Let us know in the comments!

If you want my final advice on Paper Vs. Digital Business Cards, I will tell you! Go for a business card with NFC. I bought and tested most of the best NFC cards and digital business cards out there, and you can check that review here.

One of my favorites ones is MOBILO. 

Paper Cards vs MOBILO Cards.

Paper vs MOBILO Cards

This card is the best of both worlds. With my MOBILO Card, I get to give a great traditional impression with a personalized card and get the technology of NFC without the need for any apps.

Do you have any questions about business cards? Leave a comment below and let us know! We would love to hear from you!

Are digital business cards better than paper business cards?

Traditional business cards can be cumbersome to carry around and quickly become lost or damaged. Digital business cards offer a more convenient and durable alternative.

With a digital business card, you can add the person’s contact information to your phone or computer.

You can also include additional information, such as your website or social media handles. And if you ever lose your digital business card, you can send a new one.

Do people really use digital business cards?

Yes, the use of digital business cards is on the rise. You can confirm this with a quick google search. You will be able to see how many companies are already in the business of digital business cards.

What are the advantages or pros of digital business cards?

Environmentally friendly, cheaper, easier to handle, and endless possibility of profile updates.

What are the disadvantages or cons of paper cards?

Paper business cards can be pretty fragile, and a bent corner or ripped edge can ruin the look of the card. Also, paper cards, if any, can be challenging to store and organize, especially if you receive a lot of them.

 However, despite these drawbacks, paper cards remain a popular choice for many people who appreciate the tactile experience of holding a physical card in their hands.


Marcos Isaias

PMP Certified professional Digital Business cards enthusiast and AI software review expert. I'm here to help you work on your blog and empower your digital presence.