LLC business cards provide current and potential clients, vendors, and partners with pertinent information about your limited liability company.

Naming Your LLC

Before you can form a new LLC, you must come up with a unique name for your business. It's important to find a name that can anchor your brand and marketing. You also want to choose a name that you won't want to change in the future, since this will result in additional cost and effort. You'll also lose existing brand recognition for the old name.

The LLC name you choose cannot already be taken by another business in your state. After coming up with a name you like, you can conduct a search through the secretary of state office to make sure that it's available. Most states maintain an online database of registered businesses so you can determine if the name you want is available. You may also want to conduct a trademark search through the United States Patent and Trademark Office to avoid choosing a name that infringes on someone else's trademark.

Legal naming requirements vary by state but contain the same general provisions. Most states require your business name to include the words "Limited Liability Company," "LLC," or another approved abbreviation. States also restrict certain words from being used in business names. These typically include words that may lead to public confusion, such as "bank" or "insurance."

If you don't want to use "LLC" in your business name, you can register a fictitious business name, also called a DBA (doing business as). This option is also available for partnerships and sole proprietorships that want to use a name other than their own legal name for the business.

Using "LLC" in your business name does carry certain advantages, such as:

  • Increasing the legitimacy of your business in the eyes of potential clients, partners, and vendors.
  • Notifying those who work with your business that it is a separate legal entity from you as an individual.

The LLC designation should be included in all business correspondence, including your business cards, website, letterhead, and other marketing collateral. However, you don't necessarily need to have it as part of your logo.

Business Card Considerations

Because your business card may be a person's first introduction to your company, it's important to get it right. In addition to choosing a name, consider the following elements when creating a business card:

  • Logo and branding: Avoid using stock images or designing your own logo, as these can look unprofessional. Instead, invest in graphic design services to create your logo, business card, stationery, and other materials. You can also save money by using an online company rather than a traditional advertising firm.
  • Website and email: Secure a domain name and email address for your business before printing business cards. You don't necessarily have to have the full website built, but you should set up a simple landing page. Avoid using a third-party email services such as Gmail or Yahoo! for your company mail, as these can appear unprofessional. Use email addresses connected to your website instead.
  • Phone and fax numbers: Although you may be tempted to cut costs by listing your cell phone as your business number, it might make sense to invest in an extra line. You might receive a lot of calls.
  • Mailing address: If you don't have a separate office location, consider establishing a PO Box as your mailing address rather than printing your home address on business cards. You can also use a virtual office service, which may also provide mail forwarding, internet access, workstations, phone answering services, and conference and meeting rooms as needed.

You have various options to choose from when it comes to having your cards designed and printed. Professional design and printing services look much more professional than homemade business cards that use standard templates. You can opt to have your cards printed by a local printing company if you prefer in-person service, or you can choose an online store for a more convenient, less expensive option. If you hired a graphic designer for your logo and business cards, they may be able to recommend a printer.

If you need help establishing a limited liability company, you can post your legal need on UpCounsel's marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law and average 14 years of legal experience, including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Stripe, and Twilio.