In a digital-first world, networking using traditional paper business cards pose several limitations. As more and more businesses realize this, they are increasingly shifting to digital business cards, the best traditional business card alternative.

Case in point, the digital business card market is expected to grow to a 242.3 million USD industry at a CAGR of 11.2% by 2027.

If you, too, are looking to make the digital shift but are new to the digital business card ecosystem, this comprehensive glossary will help you. This guide explains all the essential terms related to digital business cards in the most straightforward language. Further, we have broken down the terms into categories and added helpful resources so you can develop a thorough understanding of digital business cards.

Basics of Digital Business Card

Under this category, you will find a complete list of the most commonly used terms, synonyms, and definitions related to digital business cards:

1. Digital Business Card

A modern and cloud-based tool, digital business cards instantly share key information about an individual or business via QR Codes and NFC technology. Compared to their traditional counterparts, digital business cards can share large amounts of data such as your name, address, Google Maps location, web URLs, profile photo, social links, and more.

2. Electronic Business Card

An electronic business card or e-business card allows a contactless and digital way to share a myriad of unique information—name, website, contact number, user image, social links, etc.—about an individual or an organization in real-time.

3. Mobile Business Card

A mobile business card lets you digitally share your personal or professional information on the go through a mobile device. Individuals and organizations can share everything, from contact numbers, social links, and portfolios to websites, in seconds with their recipients without requiring an app.

4. Virtual Business Card

Like digital business cards, virtual business cards offer the provision to instantly share contact information about an individual or organization interactively via QR Codes or NFC technology.

5. Virtual Contact Card (vCard)

Virtual contact cards or vCard is a modern way of sharing professional contact details such as your name, email, web URLs, Google Maps location, social links, etc., on mobile devices through QR Codes.

6. Virtual Contact File (VCF)

A virtual contact file (.vcf or VCF) is a standard online file format in which the contact information of your digital business card, such as your name, email, contact number, address, etc., is stored. This format ensures that information-sharing is possible across mobile devices and PCs.

7. Digital Visiting Card

As the name suggests, a digital visiting card is a virtual alternative to a paper visiting card. A digital visiting card lets you share contact details such as your name, contact number, image, and much more on a mobile device with the help of QR Codes.

8. Digital Contact Card

A digital contact card, or a digital business card, contains the contact information (such as name, phone numbers, social links, etc.) of an individual or business that can be shared instantly through a mobile device.

9. QR Code Business Card

A business card with a QR Code simply refers to a physical or digital business card with a QR Code embedded in it. Once the recipient scans this QR Code, they can view and instantly save your contact details on their mobile devices.

10. Scannable Business Card

As the name suggests, scannable business cards contain a business card QR Code which your client can scan to view and save your contact information. Essentially, every physical or digital business card with a QR Code refers to a scannable business card.

11. NFC Business Card

Near-field communication (NFC) business cards are embedded with a chip that can transfer your contact information with a single tap. These cards let you share individual or business contact information with a compatible mobile device through a card tap—provided the card and the device are nearby.

12. NFC Business Card Tag

An NFC business card tag is a physical tag with an NFC chip embedded in it. Because of this chip, you can share your professional contact information by tapping the tag on a smartphone. You can input this contact information in the tag via your business card provider and share your details with a compatible mobile device.

Digital, Contactless, and Sustainable Networking

Under this category, you will find a complete list of the most commonly used terms, synonyms, and definitions related to digital business cards:

1. Digital Networking

Digital networking is a practice that uses virtual technologies, such as digital business cards, NFC business cards, digital address books, and the like, to help professionals build connections and expand their networks.

2. Digital Address Book

A digital address book, or virtual address book, is a cloud-based storage tool. Here you can save your client’s business card details once they have scanned your digital business card or a QR Code on a physical business card.

3. Apple Wallet Business Card

An Apple Wallet business card is a digital business card that can be stored and shared as an Apple Wallet pass directly through your iPhone.

4. Google Wallet Business Card

A Google Wallet business card is a digital business card that can be saved and shared as a Google Wallet pass via an Android smartphone.

5. Contactless Business Card

A contactless business card is essentially a digital business card that you can create and share virtually without the involvement of any physical medium. You can share these contactless business cards via Apple or Google Wallets or QR Codes in a touchless manner.

Note: Contrary to popular belief, NFC business cards are not 100% contactless. This is because they require you to create and share a physical NFC card, which you need to tap with your client’s smartphone so they can save your contact details.

6. Paperless Business Card

Also known as a virtual or digital business card, a paperless business card is a sustainable alternative to a traditional one. You can eliminate the need for printed business cards when you share your business card digitally as an Apple/Google Wallet pass, a QR Code in email signatures, or on social media.

7. Eco-friendly Business Card

Eco-friendly business cards are sustainable and cost-effective alternatives to paper business cards. Essentially, you eliminate the need for paper business cards when you share your business card digitally (such as an Apple or Google Wallet pass or a QR Code).

This ensures that your carbon footprint is reduced and you conduct your networking in an eco-friendly way.

8. Sustainable Networking

Sustainable or green networking refers to business networking via eco-friendly means. Sustainable networking involves measures such as reducing physical business card usage, adopting digital business cards, and more. These practices aim to cut down the over-consumption of resources and energy while networking.

9. ROI-driven Networking

ROI-driven networking refers to practices formulated and implemented to increase the value of your networking efforts. You can conduct ROI-driven networking by switching from paper business cards to digital ones. By doing so, you can capture and analyze card engagement metrics to optimize your networking efforts.

Interactive Business Card Networking

Under this category, you will find a complete list of the most commonly used terms, synonyms, and definitions related to digital business cards:

1. Interactive Business Card

An interactive business card lets your recipients instantly and seamlessly interact with your business card by making every information on your card clickable. This ensures your recipients can view and save your details in real-time—within a few clicks.

2. Social Media Business Card

A social media business card is a digital business card with social media links that one can tap to access instantly. You can include links from platforms such as WhatsApp, Calendly, YouTube, etc.

3. Email Business Card

An email business card refers to adigital business card added to your email signature or email content—as a QR Code or a hyperlink. This way, you can share more contact information than you can via a regular email signature, and expand your network.

4. Clickable Business Card

Clickable or interactive business cards let your recipients interact with your card in real-time. This means your client can quickly click and save any piece of information on your business card on their mobile devices.

Digital Business Card Functionalities & Management

Under this category, you will find a complete list of the most commonly used terms, synonyms, and definitions related to digital business cards:

1. Dynamic Business Card

Dynamic or editable business cards let you update your business card information without recreating the card. These business cards are powered by a dynamic QR Code that enables this editable functionality.

As you do not need to recreate and reprint dynamic business cards, you can eliminate massive reprinting costs and conduct sustainable networking.

2. Digital Business Card Distribution

Digital business card distribution refers to sharing virtual business cards with your recipients as an Apple or Google Wallet pass, QR Code, NFC card, or URL.

3. Bulk Business Card Creation

Bulk business card creation is when organizations can instantly create thousands of business cards in a single batch. This process ensures you do not manually create each card, saving significant time and effort.

4. Digital Business Card Self-Service Portal

A business card self-service portal is a centrally managed portal where employees can self-edit their card details without logging into the dashboard. The organization admin controls the portal’s access to a team member and can also restrict the number of fields a team member can edit.

5. Digital Business Card Retargeting

Digital business card retargeting is displaying targeted ads on Facebook and Google to people who have scanned the QR Code on your card. This retargeting gives you another chance to reach out to those prospects who have expressed interest in your brand but haven’t converted yet.

6. Digital Business Card Scan Metrics

Digital business card scan metrics refer to the data collected upon scanning a virtual business card. These metrics include the total number of card views, and contact saves, unique users reached via your card, and card scans by location and device. This data helps you draw powerful insights to understand end-user engagement better and optimize your networking efforts.

Digital Business Card Customization

Under this category, you will find a complete list of the most commonly used terms, synonyms, and definitions related to digital business cards:

1. Digital Business Card Template

A digital business card template refers to the look and feel of your business card—including all the design elements, contact information fields, clickable icons, and more.

2. Custom URL Digital Business Card

A custom URL digital business card is an e-business card with a branded (company or individual-focused) URL. For example, you can create the following URL for your digital business card: [company name].com/[first name-last name]. This customization helps you build trust and credibility among your clients as they are encouraged to take the next step.

3. Custom Branded Digital Business Card

Custom-branded digital business cards refer to e-business cards customizable per your company branding. To better represent your brand identity, you can personalize these digital business cards with your company logos, URLs, and other design elements.

Digital Business Card Tools

Under this category, you will find a complete list of the most commonly used terms, synonyms, and definitions related to digital business cards:

1. Digital Business Card Solution

A digital business card solution lets businesses create, manage, and track their e-business cards within a single dashboard. Through a specialized digital business card solution, you can create secure and interactive e-business cards and analyze scan engagement to boost the ROI of your networking efforts.

2. Digital business Card Generator

A digital business card generator, or a digital business card creator, lets you create interactive and secure digital business cards for your organization.

3. Business Card Scanner App

A business card scanner app can scan business card QR Codes or transcribe physical business cards and populate the contact details on the card directly into your digital address book. This address book can either be your CRM or lead management software or your digital business card solution itself.