How to make a gift card from design to print?

Gift card, normally it is also called gift certificate in America, or gift voucher or gift token in the UK and Australia, which is a prepaid stored-value card regarded as the money, regularly issued by a retailer or bank. Gift cards are also given out by companies or organizations as rewards or gifts to their employees and customers. They may also be used as a promotion tool by retailers and e-commerce stores. Gift cards are redeemable only for purchases at the relevant retail premises and cannot be cashed out.

Today, let’s me show you how to make your gift card from design to print.

1. Choose your gift card dimension

Actually, there is a standard size for gift cards in the gift card printing industry, which is 3 3/8” width x 2 1/8” (height) x 0.30 mil (thickness). And the card’s dimensions are the same as your credit/bank card. You can refer to the template below. Many gift card printing companies are not only providing the standard size for their clients. So VIGOR SMARTECH can offer you various dimensions and templates for your reference.

gift card template

 2. Create your gift card artworks

Before printing your gift card design, it is important to create an electronic format as artwork for your printing partners. Currently, most of the printing companies accept digital files for both the Mac and PC platforms created with any of the following programs: Quark XPress 4.0 to 6.0 Adobe InDesign 2 to CS Adobe Photoshop CS or lower Adobe Illustrator CS or lower Macromedia Freehand MX or lower Adobe PageMaker 7 or lower Corel Draw 7.0 (Win) & 6.0 (Mac). Or if you don’t know how to use those design software, there are also many online design websites to help you design your own gift card, such as canva.com. And VIGOR SMARTECH accepts separated film and camera-ready artwork. Photocopies and pre-printed materials (business cards, brochures, etc.) are less suitable for high-quality graphic production but are often used, that to complete your gift card design.

3. Setting the color mode for printing

When you’re getting to design your gift card, it’s important to know the difference between the RGB and CMYK color modes so you can plan and optimize each stage of the design process. If you want the gift card to be physically printed, set up the color mode on CMYK instead of RGB. Both RGB and CMYK are modes for mixing color in graphic design. As a quick reference, the RGB color mode is best for digital work, while CMYK is used for print products.

4. Add barcode and magnetic stripe on your gift card

As a gift card which is not simply showing the corporate image and promotion contents, it is a prepaid stored-value card regarded as money. Retailers have the gift card system solution, like the POS system, They will generate the data from the system. And data should be stored on the gift card. So barcode and magnetic stripe are the key options to record the data. Please leave the space for the barcode and magnetic stripe when you are drawing a gift card. Tips: Barcode added on white block area of gift card surface, which is good to be scanned gift card clearly.

5. Discuss with your print partner


When you finish your gift card design artworks and send it to your print partner. Ask your print partner about the artworks whether there is something that should be improved. In most cases, sometimes your design doesn’t meet the print requirements. For example,

bleed and trim

Bleed is a term that refers to the printing of the design that goes beyond the final trim edge of any piece of printed artwork. The artwork bleeds off the edge. The bleed gives the printer a small amount of space to account for the movement of the paper while running through the press and design inconsistencies. Bleed ensures that no unprinted edges occur in the final trimmed design.


And a professional gift card printer will you advice that to make your gift card particular. VIGOR SMARTECH not only help to finish your gift card printing, also offer various print options, such as translucent look, matte/frosted finished card surface, brilliant PANTONE colors or metallic colors, dazzling hot stamping craft, textured and embossed spot UV.

gift card
gift card
gift card

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