With the threat of climate change and environmental degradation hanging over the planet and our minds, it’s important for consumers to choose sustainable and green alternatives to traditionally polluting products. To make this easier for you, we’ve brought together the definite list of the best environmentally-friendly business cards available for corporate or personal use. We’ve broken each option down and done the legwork to see how far both your investment goes and how sustainable the option is in the long-term. To give you a little sneak peek, we’ve found that the best eco-friendly business cards come from Doorway at number one, Moo at number two and then finally V1CE.
Coming in at #1: Doorway
Known as being a leader in the digital business card space, Doorway’s technology lives in your Apple Wallet or Google Pay so it can uniquely function without internet or external app download. This makes it the most sustainable option as it’s paper-less, preventing anything from going in the landfill. Doorway completely eliminates the cost, fuss and waste associated with having to order and reorder cards for new hires as your business scales. This streamlined system makes it the ideal business card for companies looking to promote their brand identity while scaling their company in the most efficient way possible.
Cost: Doorway is a B2B solution thus its tiered pricing reflects the needs of different corporations. Doorway’s Professional Tier is the most popular option, with prices starting at $150 per 300 business cards.
- No internet required
- No external app download required
- Focused on B2B clients
- SOC2 certified, so your data is always secure
- Complete customization with professional graphics
- Centralized on an admin account for easy updates
- Efficient to scale
- Integrates seamlessly into HR software
- Easy distribution across your organization
- Analytics available to understand card use
- Great impression on your client
- Since it’s geared towards corporations, individual users might prefer a print or app-based card
Moo offers high-quality, customizable business cards made from recyclable materials. Since the templates are printed on their cards with vegetable-based inks, they are less harmful to the environment than traditional ink. Customers can choose cards made from recyclable cotton linters, this material makes the cards naturally bright white forgoing the need for bleaching. They use eco-friendly packaging to ship their products and are a certified B Corporation.
Cost: $30 for 50 cards, larger bulk single-orders receive a slight discount. No cost-efficiency when scaling as a whole new set of cards have to be ordered for every new hire, high maintenance cost as well.
- High-quality customizable cards
- Use recycled paper and vegetable-based inks
- Eco-friendly packaging
- Certified B Corporation
- More expensive than other options
- Difficult to scale
- Expensive to maintain
- Cards still produce waste and can end up in landfills
- While vegetable-based ink is better, it’s still not great for the environment
- Releasing emissions when shipping physical product
V1CE is a NFC business card company, an interesting idea which marries together physical cards with digital. Customers purchase one physical NFC card which can then be tapped onto client’s phones to transfer their details. They offer an environmentally-friendly option made from bamboo, a great recyclable material, and they also promise to plant a tree with every bamboo card bought. It’s important to note that functionality might be limited depending on your phone’s internet connection.
Cost: A single card is priced at $51. This makes it incredibly difficult for a company to scale and add on new employees.
- Made from eco-friendly bamboo
- Dedicated to planting a tree per purchase
- Sleek credit-card look
- Customizable design
- Easy transfer to client’s phone
- Requires internet connection
- Difficult to scale
- Emissions from shipping physical card
- Expensive compared to other companies
- Cards might still end up in landfill
- Physical cards are liable to be lost
Greenerprinter is an eco-friendly printing company based in San Francisco. They offer a selection of products, primarily business cards. They use 100% post-consumer reused paper, soy-based inks, and have a carbon offset program to reduce their carbon footprint. They offer a variety of customisations including rounded corners and white ink to make the most professional-looking, recycled business cards around. Their website also provides a carbon calculator to estimate the carbon footprint of your order.
Cost: It varies depending on type and quantity of business card but for reference it’s $69.07 for 250 cards made with a recycled uncoated finish, making it quite expensive to scale.
- Use 100% post-consumer recycled papers
- Use soy-based inks
- Have a carbon offset program
- Transparent shipping process with a carbon calculator
- High-quality printing process
- Purely physical card, no digital features
- Less efficient in handing out contact details
- Liable to lose the cards
- Cards might still end up in a landfill
- Higher price compared to other options
- Very difficult to scale
- No analytics on card usage
Vistaprint is a well-known online printing company that offers a recycled option of eco-friendly business cards. They offer a range of eco friendly paper types from hemp blend to 100% post-consumer recycled paper, as well as vegetable-based inks. The cards are highly-customisable, allowing you to put qr codes, company logos, website urls, as much detail as you like.
Cost: While cost varies depending on the type of card you select, 100 of the hemp-blend business cards cost the customer approximately $29 (not including shipping). Since they’re physical cards, new sets need to be purchased as well as reordered routinely as employees run out of cards.
- Large selection of recycled materials
- High-quality printing
- Shipping materials are not eco-friendly
- Shipping times can run long
- Cards still run the risk of ending up in a landfill
- Difficult to manage, distribute and scale
- Cards are liable to be lost
HiHello is a digital business card app that can store and share contact details as well as update one’s address book, as long as your phone has an internet connection. Since it’s an app and not a physical business card it’s a great eco-friendly alternative, removing the possibility of creating more pollution as well as the potential carbon emissions from shipping & transport. They also offer NFC business cards, similar to V1CE, if that’s your thing. However, they don’t have any plant-a-tree program such as the one Doorway has.
Cost: A limited version of the app is free for a single user. Their professional plan starts at $6 a month for a single user while they’re business plan begins at $5 a month per user for 5+ users.
- No shipping thus no carbon emissions
- No cards ending up in the landfill
- Affordable if you’re a freelancer or individual
- Easy to manage
- Offer NFC cards too
- Won’t work without internet
- No ecological offset program, such as plant a tree
- Takes up phone’s storage space
- Low employee uptake if they have to download an app
4over4 is a printing company that offers a range of business cards printed with soy-based inks. They’ve been in the industry for a long time so are experienced at creating a wide range of business cards with many customizable features.
Cost: For a set of 100 standard colour business cards it’s $16. It’s increasingly expensive as you grow your company, a whole new set of business cards must be ordered with each hire.
- Use soy-based inks
- Experienced printers
- Highly customizable
- No carbon offset program
- Cards can end up in the landfill
- Their paper materials are not recycled
- Carbon emissions from shipping & transport
#8 Overnight Prints
Overnight Prints is a printing company that uses 100% post-consumer recycled paper free from processed chlorine to create their eco-friendly business cards. They also use waterless printing, an innovative process which saves on thousands of gallons of water being wasted. They offer different shapes and sizes of business cards, as well as rounded or straight corners and a finished or unfinished coating. made from recycled paper and printed with vegetable-based inks.
Cost: For reference they charge $7.04 for 25 premium business cards, prices vary depending on the quality of card chosen with a slight discount available for bulk single-orders.
- Use 100% post-consumer recycled paper
- Innovative waterless printing
- Highly customisable with a large range of designs
- Paper free from processed chlorine
- More expensive than other options
- Physical cards might still end up in the landfill
- No digital equivalent
- Shipping materials are not eco friendly
- Difficult to scale and maintain
#9 Botanical PaperWorks
Botanical Paperworks is a Canadian-based company that makes innovative eco-friendly business cards from recycled paper embedded with a blend of non-invasive wildflower seeds. These cards can be planted after use, creating a fun and eco friendly option, making them a great option for a memorable marketing moment. They’re cards are highly customizable, with different paper colors and graphic designs, as well as the ability to print on both sides of the card.
Cost: Prices start at $1.39 per card for a minimum order of 50 cards.
- 100% post-consumer recycled paper
- Seeds contribute to sustainability
- Cool design and ability to plant the card makes it memorable
- Expensive, much more so than other options
- Relatively high minimum order size
- Carbon emissions from shipment
- High price makes it hard to use these cards at scale
#10 Hemp Press
Hemp Press is a printing press that ingeniously uses hemp paper as a sustainable alternative to traditional paper. Hemp paper is made from the hemp plant which grows quicker and requires less water than other crops – making it a far more eco-friendly option. Hemp Press’s business cards are chlorine free and can be customized with everything from embossing to foiling. However, it’s important to note their minimum order is 250 cards which is quite high compared to competitors.
Cost: Hemp Press’s pricing starts at $110 for 250 cards, they only offer discounts on orders of 2500 cards or more of the same design. Making this option notably more expensive than others.
- Promotes circular economy
- Promotes use of hemp plant as paper alternative
- Recyclable and biodegradable materials
- Overall uses less water and energy
- Highly customizable
- Much more expensive than other competitors
- High minimum order
- 7-12 business day turnaround makes it slower than competitors
- Cards can get lost
Established in 2008, ForeverFiancés is a pioneer of the eco friendly printing industry. They have developed a range of handmade seeded papers, one with wildflowers seeds and one with garden herb seeds which come in a multitude of colors. Their high-quality printing facilities are able to render your logo, graphics and company name true to form on its unique seeded papers. And when the business card is no longer of use, you can plant it directly into your garden using their specific planting method. It’s important to note however that their turnaround times are longer than the average printer due to the paper being handmade.
Cost: For their minimum order of 125 cards it’s $87.97, with no discounts offered for bulk orders.
- Plantable paper makes a great impression
- Very sustainable
- Range of different colors to choose from
- Established business
- Much more expensive than competitors
- Long turnaround time
- High minimum order
- Difficult to scale
- No bulk order discounts
#12 Haystack App
Last but not least we have the Haystack App! A digital business card app, Haystack allows customers to go paper-free and thus save on trees. Through the app, customers can create and share their own digital business cards safe in the knowledge that the company will keep their data safe with their SOC2 accreditation.
Cost: While Haystack is free for individuals, there’s a base cost of $4.95 per month for a team in addition to a charge of $27.50 per card per year.
- Digital therefore no shipping
- SOC2 certified
- Pricing makes it difficult to scale
- Services require users download an app
- Not stored in your digital wallet
Why choose eco friendly business cards?
Environmental Benefits of Eco Business Cards
Using eco friendly business cards significantly reduces the environmental impact of you and your business. Digital cards or cards made from recycled paper and responsibly sourced materials use less energy, chemicals and water in the manufacturing process as well as reduce landfill waste (especially when using digital business cards).
Ethical Benefits of Eco-Friendly Business Cards
The ethical benefits of using eco business cards are multiple. First off, you promote the social responsibility of both individuals and businesses by prioritizing sustainable production in your consumer choice and supporting fair trade practices. Not only is it empowering to choose products aligned with your morals but it also protects both human health and the planet.
Marketing Benefits of Eco-Friendly Business Cards
Eco friendly business cards appeal to multiple customer segments and are very useful in marketing. They help your business stand out from the competition by tangibly demonstrating your commitment to sustainability and enhancing the environmental image of your brand, which appeals to both the environmentally conscious consumer as well as others.
Savings over traditional business cards
If you’re using a digital card like Doorway, not only do you save on the environmental impact but it’s also more efficient and cost-effective when scaling your business in the long-term. You completely eliminate that need to reorder, maintain and worry about the longevity of your physical cards. While with physical eco friendly cards you save on the ecological impact but they do tend to be more expensive than traditional business cards.
In this article we’ve mapped out the best business card choices for the environmentally conscious. Perfectly summarizing the pros and cons of choosing digital over physical cards, made out of recycled materials. The most cost-effective and environmentally friendly was digital, with Doorway leading the pack. But for those who want a more handmade approach, Botanical Paperworks and ForeverFiancés seed studded paper make for very unique card.
Most Common Questions People Also Ask (PAA) Related to Sustainable Business Cards:
- What makes a business card eco-friendly?
If it’s either digital or made from recyclable materials and non-toxic ink which can biodegrade.
- How do biodegradable business cards work?
Biodegradable business cards are made from materials that microorganisms consume when exposed, so if properly composted the cards won’t end up in a landfill.
- Can recycled paper business cards still look professional?
Yes they can. Many printers have a wide selection of card types and designs suitable for professional use.
- What are some creative design ideas for eco-friendly business cards?
Most card companies will have the option to create a design for you, but a clean, simple design is always a good look.
- What printing and finishing options are available for green business cards?
Many! Most card printers will be able to do great quality full colour printing with square or rounded corners, laminate finish, white edges and different font size.