The following innovative tools not only offer an eco-friendly alternative to traditional paper business cards but also can save time and provide a host of other benefits. In this blog, we explore the future of digital networking and why digital business cards are paving the way.
Paperless digital business cards are the dawn of a new digital networking era. These new digital solutions are by default more eco-friendly solution than traditional paper cards, but they also carry a vast range of other benefits and positive side effects, such as data collection and reducing the likelihood of losing contacts.
It’s important to go into your digital business card search with a set criteria and outcome, depending on the kind of business you have and what aspects are important to you. We broke down our search criteria into:
1) Design flexibility
So that you and your entire team can have complete control over how you present your company
2) Ease of use
Making sure that the cards are intuitive and easily used by everyone in your company, no matter their technical skills
To ensure that your networking efforts will be unlimited, with the ability to connect on any front and via any platform
4) Contact management
Because if the solution doesn’t have a highly effective and organized contact management then it’s definitely not the one
As at the end of the day, you’ve got a business to run.
We found in our research that the top all-round best digital business card provider was Doorway. With all of the pros of digital business cards and none of the cons, cue working without wifi and easy integration, Doorway is the number one recommended digital business card provider. Second and third up was HiHello and Blinq, both offer solid software and an easy interface however HiHello is more pricy and Blinq lacks certain integrated features. Read on to discover which digital business card solution best fits your company!
Why Paperless Digital Business Cards are Gaining Traction
The digital business card has gained significant momentum in recent years due to several factors.
First and foremost, the environmental impact of physical business cards has become increasingly urgent and important to consumers. By transitioning to digital contactless business cards only, companies and individuals can significantly reduce their environmental footprint, which helps both personal green habits as well as a company’s ESGs.
At the same time, the rise of remote work and virtual networking has made paperless digital business cards a more practical, affordable price and efficient option. With more people working from home and engaging in virtual meetings and events, the ability to quickly and easily exchange contact information without the need for in-person contact has become increasingly important.
Another advantage of paperless digital business cards is their integration with contact management systems and customer relationship management (CRM) software. This allows for seamless organization of contact information and easy follow-up with potential clients or business partners. Creating more value per contact and increasingly the likelihood of mutually beneficial business relationships.
In conclusion, the benefits of going completely paperless with digital business cards are numerous and cannot be ignored. By reducing environmental impact, increasing efficiency, and integrating multimedia content on their virtual cards with contact management systems, companies can better promote their brand identity while scaling their business.
Advantages of Paperless Digital Business Cards
Paperless digital business cards offer several advantages over their traditional paper counterparts. They are cost-effective, with no printing costs and easy updates just a few clicks. They are also highly customizable and dynamic, with endless design possibilities and real-time updates. Additionally, they are easily shareable via email, social media, QR code, or via Apple Wallet or Google Pay technology. They also provide better organization of contacts with everything being automated to reduce clutter.
Since digital business cards eliminate printing costs by default, which can add up quickly, and are easy to update whenever necessary they are therefore much more cost-effective.
Rather than the extra cost of having to order new paper cards each time a change in company name is made, digital cards can be updated in seconds. Your company also only needs one card per employee instead of 500+ paper cards over the course of a year per person.
Customizable and Dynamic:
Electronic business cards offer endless design possibilities that are not feasible with a traditional business card. They can be fully customized to reflect a brand’s personality, with various design elements such as logos, images, social media links, QR code and color schemes.
Their dynamic and interactive design make them much more appealing and eye-catching than a paper business card, making your company stand out from the competition! What’s more, digital business cards can be updated in real-time, allowing individuals and businesses to adapt quickly to changes in their contact information or branding.
Sharing paperless digital business cards is a breeze. They can be shared seamlessly via email, social media, QR code or (and this is our favourite) via your Apple Wallet or Google Pay – making it easy for individuals, large scale networking professionals and small businesses everywhere to connect with others. In comparison to print paper business cards, the contactless manner of virtual business cards also eliminates the hassle of exchanging them and the unfortunate mistake of losing them.
Traditional paper business cards often end up in a cluttered pile, making it difficult to find the basic contact information you need when and where you need it.
With an electronic business card, automated contact organization is possible and incredibly efficient. Contacts on your mobile phone or device can be sorted, searched, and organized easily, which reduces clutter and saves valuable time when searching for a specific contact.
Top 10 Digital Business Card Solutions: A Comparison
In this section, we introduce the top 10 digital business card solutions on the market and evaluate them based on several criteria. These criteria include design flexibility, ease of use, sharing options, contact management, and pricing.
We have chosen these categories because they represent the greatest potential benefits and drawbacks of different paperless digital business card solutions. We provide brief descriptions of each solution’s features and how they compare to one another based on the criteria mentioned.
Criteria for Evaluating Solutions
Design flexibility is an important criterion when evaluating paperless digital business card solutions. The range of templates and customization options offered can greatly impact the user’s ability to create a card that accurately reflects their personal brand and personality.
Solutions that offer a wide range of design options, such as different font styles, color schemes, and layout templates, are often favored by users. Having full control of the card’s design is incredibly advantageous as it allows the brand’s identity to be fully represented, making a lasting impact on the new contact made.
Ease of Use:
The ease of use of a digital business card solution is also a crucial factor in its evaluation. User-friendly interfaces and setup processes are essential to ensure that users can easily create and share their virtual business cards, without difficulty, even team members who are less technologically-inclined than others. Solutions that offer step-by-step instructions and tutorials are often preferred, as they reduce the learning curve.
The variety of sharing methods and compatibility with different platforms is another criterion that should be considered when evaluating electronic business card solutions. The ability to share electronic business cards through multiple channels, can greatly improve their reach and impact as well as impress the contact specifically by sharing it through the innovative channel of Google Wallet or your Apple Wallet. Solutions that integrate with multiple platforms and offer compatibility with different devices is often a necessity.
Integration with contact management systems and CRM software is an important criterion as it provides one of the main benefits of using a digital business card over a physical business card, namely simplification of the networking and contact management process. Solutions that integrate with popular contact management systems and CRM software are favored as they allow business leaders and employees to be much more efficient.
Finally, the pricing of digital business cards is an important consideration. A comparison of pricing plans and value for money can help users choose a solution that meets their needs while remaining within their budget.
Some solutions may offer more features or better support at a higher cost, while others may have more basic features but be free or at a lower cost. It’s also important to consider which cards have a more advantageous pricing plan and set-up for ‘solopreneurs’ versus 500+ employee companies. Make sure to evaluate the cost-benefit ratio when choosing a solution.
Solution #1: Doorway
Digital business cards are becoming increasingly popular for their convenience and sustainability and Doorway stands out as the top provider of digital business cards.
Doorway digital business cards are uniquely stored in your Apple Wallet or Google Pay, making it easy, efficient and intuitively accessible with or without internet access. Its streamlined system is ideal for businesses that want to scale efficiently while promoting their brand identity.
Doorway’s benefits are numerous and include SOC2 certification for data security, customizable professional graphics, a centralized admin account, GDPR compliant technology, HR software integration, and analytics for card use. Making it a breeze to manage even for the most technologically-challenged.
It’s specifically designed for B2B clients, as its sharing function operates anywhere and everywhere – making a great impression on all potential customers or new contacts. It’s paperless, thus incredibly environmentally friendly by removing all associated waste and the need to keep reordering new cards.
Doorway offers tiered pricing based on different corporate needs, with the most popular option being the Enterprise Tier. While Doorway may not be suitable for individual users who prefer physical cards (whether NFC or other), it is an excellent choice for businesses looking to prioritize sustainability, efficiency, and brand identity.
Solution #2: HiHello
HiHello is another popular solution. It offers a range of customizable templates and design options, with the ability to add images, logos, and links to your digital business card – giving the digital business cards a relatively high level of design flexibility. The platform also offers easy sharing options via email or QR code, however there is no apple wallet or google pay functionality nor NFC technology.
It has an interesting Self-Healing Address Book™ technology, that automatically updates and manages contacts. Our research found the platform itself was slightly complex, which might pose a challenge for some users though it’s not severe.
Finally, the pricing plans can be a bit expensive meaning it might be a less cost-effective option for big companies compared to a ‘solopreneur’. Our verdict is that HiHello is a good option, however it might be more suitable for individuals who are already quite tech-proficient due to its complexity and pricing.
Solution #3: Blinq
Blinq is a user-friendly platform for creating professional digital business cards, shared via either QR code or an NFC card. You can also set up a widget on your smart phone or Apple watch for easy access.
Blinq offers a teams option for larger businesses to customize employee cards, and integrates with Microsoft Azure, Salesforce, and Hubspot, a positive point for contact management.
While the customizable landing page allows you to add links to multimedia content, social media pages, payment options, email signatures and websites, the website template itself is quite restricted.
Unfortunately, there is no Apple Wallet or Google Pay feature and its fucntionality is reliant on internet connection. Pricing is reasonable, with a free trial and a $3/month subscription for all the features a single entrepreneur needs however the pricing plan is not geared towards large companies. Blinq is a great option for individual professionals who either use their Apple Watch or Zoom a lot.
Solution #4: Mobilo
Mobilo is an interesting choice if you want to go paperless while remaining physical. Mobilo is a NFC option which gives you a wide range of networking choices. They offer a minimalistic landing page with links to everything you need, such as basic contact information, social media, payment methods, and custom URLs – not an incredibly wide range of design flexibility.
Their Teams platform offers HR/CRM integration, great customer care and a user-friendly dashboard. While their landing page is not as interactive as their competitors, it has all of the social and link connections you’d expect.
Mobilo’s pricing is again excellent for single entrepreneurs, with no subscription fees for users, but for Teams the price varies depending on the size of your company and is not as good.
Solution #5: Haystack
With Haystack, you can personalize your digital business card by adding custom backgrounds, logos, and fonts, ensuring that your own business card reflects your unique brand identity.
The platform offers seamless sharing capabilities through email or QR code, making it effortless to connect with others and exchange contact information. Additionally, Haystack integrates smoothly with major contact management systems.
However, the pricing plans may not be suitable for those with larger networks or extensive networking needs. The costs associated with maintaining a substantial number of contacts can add up quickly, making it less cost-effective for users with extensive connections.
Furthermore, Haystack may lack some of the advanced features offered by other digital business card solutions in the market. Users seeking more advanced functionalities or integrations may find that Haystack falls short in comparison.
Solution #6: CamCard
Unlike the other platforms, CamCard does not provide a built-in business card creation function. Instead, it’s for individuals who prefer to design their own business cards with tools like Canva, though this does waste time & energy, then upload them into CamCard for efficient organization and management.
When it comes to pricing, CamCard offers a free version, although it includes advertisements. For an ad-free experience, individuals can opt for the paid version, which costs $46.99 per year.
In summary, CamCard caters to individuals who prefer to design their own business cards and offers a robust organizational platform. While the lack of built-in card creation may be a drawback for some, CamCard’s unique approach and functionality make it a worthy consideration for the DIY-inclined.
Solution #7: Kado Networks
Kado Network is designed to streamline the sharing, receiving, and organization of digital contact cards; offering the essential digital card functionalities such as card templates, a paper card scanner, and QR codes for seamless sharing as well as unified contact management.
It also integrates with LinkedIn, Gmail and Outlook, bringing together all your networking resources in one place. However, it is not Apple Wallet or Google Pay compatible and requires an internet connection.
In terms of pricing, Kado Network offers a free version, but it is limited to three users, making it inadequate for growing businesses. However, at just $4 per month, the app provides excellent value for the range of functionalities it offers.
To summarize, Kado Network excels as an all-in-one online networking app however its downfall is its reliance on internet connection and lack of Apple Wallet and Google Pay functionality. While the free version may not be suitable for expanding businesses, the affordable pricing for the app’s comprehensive capabilities makes it a compelling choice for individuals.
Solution #8: SwitchIt App
SwitchIt offers a comprehensive set of features to design, send, receive, and organize your business cards seamlessly within the app. This functionality enables effortless tracking of potential clients and contacts.
One notable advantage of SwitchIt is its versatility, allowing you to send your business card out to individuals who do not have the app installed, thanks to its integration with various social media platforms. SwitchIt empowers users to create visually appealing business card templates that can include contact details, photos, and even videos, adding a personal touch to your virtual presence.
With eight different methods to share your virtual business card, including email, text, QR code, and popular social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and WhatsApp, SwitchIt offers flexibility and convenience. However, it does require an internet connection.
The app provides the functionality to set reminders that sync with your Google, Microsoft, or Outlook Calendar, ensuring you never miss an important follow-up or meeting.
In terms of pricing, like many other digital virtual business card apps, SwitchIt offers a free version with basic features, while upgrades are available to cater to your specific needs. Overall, SwitchIt stands out as a popular virtual business card app but unfortunately it’s dependence on internet connectivity might sometimes pose a challenge.
Solution #9: Linq
Don’t confuse it with Blinq! Linq is an up and coming company specialising in NFC (short for ‘near field communications’) solutions for professional networking. Whether it’s truly paperless or not, we’ll let you be the judge.
They mostly sell physical cards & badges, however unlike traditional physical business cards though, they don’t have any of the waste associated with genuine paper business cards.
Companies can use the bulk creation feature for their business cards and grant employees access to add specific features like their LinkedIn accounts and contact info. Administrative access can be delegated to individuals to help efficiently manage hundreds of employees with the mixture of software and hardware technology.
Linq’s price depends on the product chosen (ranging from $19.99 – $36.99) but comes with a free app upon purchase. Team pricing plans are available upon request.
Overall, due to the nature of NFC technology Linq isn’t as obviously ‘paperless’ as we would want so in that sense it’s perhaps not as great of a choice. It’s opaque pricing plan for companies is also a bit difficult, thus making Linq a good choice for companies who want to have a token of traditional business relations with additional modern features.
Solution #10: Beaconstac
Beaconstac is a top-notch digital business card company that combines the power of digital and physical cards by using unique QR Codes. These unique QR codes can either be embedded within a digital business card, physical card, email or more for instantaneous contactless contact sharing. If you choose to use their digital business card option, instead of their physical one, then it’s definitely an interesting paperless option.
The dynamic QR Codes offered by Beaconstac allow you to update your card information in real-time, providing your contacts with the most up-to-date details at the click of a button, making it efficient at contact management and generally accessible. Because the technology is reliant on QR codes, there is slightly less design flexibility.
With pricing starting at $5 per month for dynamic QR Codes and a 14-day free trial available, you can try it out before buying. However, one must inquire for further details on team or company pricing.
Beaconstac is a good option with it’s ease of use, pricing and security efforts. However, it’s design limitations might prove difficult for company’s that prioritise unique and powerful branding.
Making the Switch to Paperless Digital Business Cards
We hope this was the push you needed to make the transition to paperless digital business cards. Whether you decide to adopt them for your own start-up or bring it up with your boss, getting ahead of the curve on this innovative and uniquely efficient networking method could make the difference between a sealed deal and a cold handshake. Think about what functions are priorities for you, your team and your industry, then go ahead and use them to decide which solution suits you the best.
Speak to our team