5 Effective Ways To Store Your Business Cards

Contact information is fundamental to networking and business communications. However, most business people collect hundreds, if not thousands, of business cards every year, and storing these business cards can seem like a daunting task. If you are struggling to find the best way to store business cards, let’s take a look at five effective ways to do it in this article. Depending on how tech-savvy you are, you can choose between several options for the best business card storage. 

1. Several quick tips to organize business cards

Ultimately, keeping your business cards organized is the way to keep all your contact information in line. Organizing your business cards in a particular system saves you from losing touch with new leads, important partners, or forgetting which supplier is potential for your business. 

Writing down important information, keeping your business cards safe in one place, and uploading them to your database, you will be able to build your networks and connect with many people in your industry. 

So before jumping to the best way to store your business cards, let’s see some tips to keep your cards neat and organized:

  • The order of the business cards

The most common order when organizing business cards is by name. Some people order them by industry, company name, job position, or even location. How you order your business cards entirely depends on how you need to access your contacts. 

The order you choose to organize your cards should be the way that works best for you. People think in different ways, so you should stick to whichever way helps you remember the information, position, or company name!

  • Take time to re-organize your business cards

Keeping old and stale contacts might be a good idea at first, but it can cause frustration when you are trying to find a business card. You need to ensure spending some time every now and then cleaning up the contacts. Ideally, you can set aside time every month or quarter to go through your contacts. By that, you can see if there are any contacts you need to get rid of or any you should get in touch with. This action helps keep the size of your contacts at a manageable level. It also makes searching much easier, especially if you are keeping physical business cards. 

Here are some ideas to remove unnecessary cards: 

  • Contacts that you never heard from again; 
  • Suppliers you didn’t end up choosing; 
  • Companies that are no longer in business.

2. Five effective ways to store your business cards

  • Use a business card book

If you’d like to keep physical business cards, using a business card book (or a card binder) is a great choice. This is a bit of an old-fashioned way to organize business cards, but it is still a good choice if you don’t have too many of them to store. 

Business card books are specially designed books to store business cards. The books include several pages of clear plastic sleeves that have individual slots for cards. You just need to slip business cards into the sleeves with your order. With a business card book, you can easily access groups of similar cards together on a single page or set of pages. Business card books are quite handy when you need to reference cards at the turn of a page. They also keep your cards protected from dirt and moisture. The problem with the business card book (or card binder) is that you either have to bring them to every business event or remember to put your collected cards in there afterward. This can cause a huge hassle for many people. 

  • Use a rotary business card file

Like a business card book, a rotary business card file (also called rolodex) simply sorts your business cards in a rolling cylinder. Cards are organized in sections from A-Z, which allows you to find the contact information at once. The upside is that it can sit on your desk, and you can roll through your cards at ease. The drawback is that it looks a bit old school and outdated. However, if you are of a certain age or fond of the traditional ways, a rotary is a good alternative to a business card book. 

The good news about rotary card filing systems is that they are still available. These file systems are also considered one best way to store business cards and keep them organized. You only need to take a business card, tape it, staple it to a blank rotary card and file it under the appropriate alphabet letter. 

  • Store business cards in a box

This method is similar to storing recipe cards in a cardboard box. If you are too busy to find the best way to store business cards, this method can still help. You can tie all your business cards together, organize them from A to Z, and place them directly into a business card file box. You can purchase a designed business card file box, but any long, narrow box or container with a lid will also work. For example, a narrow plastic storage container or even use any cardboard business card box in your office. This method can somewhat work if you prefer remembering people by the color of their business cards. However, it may be best to at least try using other ways before sorting with “the box method.” 

  • Keep photos of business cards on your smartphone

Carrying physical business cards can sometimes cause inconvenience. To avoid this, you can simply take photos of business cards and store them in a separate album in your gallery. That way, you will be able to find them if needed. 

Don’t forget to capture both the front and back of the business cards to avoid missing important details. However, you might need to name each file to organize them, and this action can take several minutes per card. Although this is probably not the best way to store business cards, it still works for some people. And most importantly, it is 100% free. 

  • Download a business cards scanner app

If you live with your smartphone by your side and need to organize your business cards in a particular order, using a business cards scanner app would be the best way to store business cards. 

There are various business card scanning apps available, and many of them are even free. Most of them will scan your business cards and convert them into a digital format automatically. This means you will be able to save them as contacts directly from your phone. You can also find the original business card by the image of the card that you scanned. Many apps will also allow you to export contacts into Outlook and many other platforms. 

Let’s take an example with Shoeboxed. Shoeboxed is the business card management app that allows you to create an online database of your contacts and get rid of business card piles. Shoeboxed not only allows you to track your business receipts, expenses, and mileage logs, but it also enables you to manage all your contacts, complete with all the traditional information on a business card.

After downloading the Shoeboxed app, you can take a picture of your business card, enter the basic information. Otherwise, you can simply put them in your Shoeboxed envelopes and mail them to us. We will then scan them and enter the data on your business cards. You can view them online and import all your contacts, with all the information on the card, to any digital contact list: Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, LinkedIn, etc. From the first name, last name, address, phone number, email address, company name, and position, you will have all the contact information from your colleagues, partners, and suppliers without having to scan a single thing or enter any data yourself. 

See also: Get Accurate Information from Your Business Card Scans

So, suppose you met a lot of people at a conference that you recently attended. With Shoeboxed, you will be able to have all their contact information in one place, within a 3-minute process, from beginning to end. This is by far the best way to store business cards in the modern age. 

Final thoughts

Now you have several options to decide which is the best way to store business cards. We’d love to hear your opinion. Let us know by dropping a comment!

Don’t forget that the Shoeboxed app is now available for iOS and Android. Download now to store your business cards efficiently and free with Shoeboxed. 

The Why And The How Of Digitally Scanning Receipts With The Shoeboxed App: A Step-By-Step Guide

Whether you are a business owner or a freelancer, tracking expenses is an essential part of your job. In either case, using a receipt scanning application can make it easier to scan receipt and keep track of and manage your expenses. 

You’ve probably used a document scanner before and know how it works. With a piece of paper placed on the scanner’s surface, you only need to press a button, and the scanner saves an image of the document to a hard drive. A receipt scanner varies from a traditional document scanner in two fundamental aspects: it doesn’t just save an image of the receipt; and it uses OCR (optical character recognition) software to process the image, extracting data displayed on the receipt such as letters and numbers, and it will even create an expense report for you. 

Automatic receipt scanning technology brings several benefits to your business, all of which serve to make your work much easier. This article will give you a precise look at how your business can benefit from a receipt scanning application and a step-by-step guide to scan receipt with the Shoeboxed Receipt Scanning & Expense Tracking App

1. Introducing the Shoeboxed Receipt Scanning & Expense Tracking app 

At Shoeboxed, we know how troublesome it can be to sort through receipts and put together an expense report. That’s why we bring you the perfect mobile app for scanning and managing receipts to make the process of expenses as simple and painless as possible. Our significant features allow you to manage all your receipts at any time. 

The Shoeboxed app functions as an automatic receipt scanner. It essentially processes a photo of a receipt to produce a digital receipt containing all the necessary information and a wealth of useful metadata. Once your receipts are fully stored in digital format, Shoeboxed provides you with numerous useful functions. You can submit expense reports in a few clicks, have all data automatically exported to the accounting software of your choice, and can search, access, and make changes to your receipts at any time, from anywhere.

Discover more: Why Start-ups and Entrepreneurs Need Digitized Receipt Management

2. Benefits of using a receipt scanning app

Time-saving

First and foremost, the most apparent benefit of a receipt scanning app is the potential to save you a lot of time. Imagine how long it takes to enter one receipt’s worth of information into an excel spreadsheet and compare that to how long it takes to take a photo of the receipt! 

It used to take hours to go through a box of receipts. Now the whole process only takes a few minutes. All you need to do is capture an image of the receipt with your smartphone, and the app will do the rest. 

Space-saving and clutter-reducing

A great benefit of storing your financial information in digital format is the reduced need for paper storage. You can free your desk from piles of papers and get it less cluttered. This improves your work environment and allows you to get your paperwork into action. 

Data loss reduction

Normally, you need to take all your receipts and store them all in one place and choose a certain day to go through them. And there are also chances that you lose your receipts from time to time. With a receipt scanning app, you can take a photo of each receipt as soon as you get in and keep it on your smartphone. When the information is stored digitally (particularly when using cloud storage), the chances of data loss are significantly reduced. This means you no longer have to worry about receipts and invoices piling up and saves you from an unmanageably large mountain of receipts. 

Increased security

Storing important documents on a digital cloud platform is obviously safer than keeping a hard copy of those documents. Most cloud servers are intensively secured with complex encryption methods and protocols, as well as reliable backup systems, protecting your data from being lost or hacked. Additionally, digital storage means increased privacy. While anyone can pick up or read your paper documents, only specific people with given permission can access the digital-storage documents. 

Ease of access

Let’s imagine trawling through multiple boxes of receipts looking for a particular expense from several years ago. Not only would this take forever, but there is also a chance that you wouldn’t find what you were looking for. A receipt management app provides you with search tools, allowing you to search for receipts by category, time, amount, or any number of metadata that you have attached to the receipt. 

You can also add metadata to receipts (projects, expense category, location information, payment method, etc.). This is a great way to organize the receipts and make it easier to find them. For example, if you need to go over all expenses incurred during your two-week business trip to New York, simply look up the relevant category or time frame. All necessary information is right where you need it. 

And it doesn’t matter where you are or what time it is, you can access all of your financial data from any device as long as you have an internet connection. From there, you can enter new information or make changes if needed, and share data with clients, employees, or business partners at ease. 

Automatic currency conversion

When traveling around the world, you may receive a lot of receipts in different currencies. Adding a conversion step to your expense reporting can save you time and effort converting this information manually. 

FIY: Shoeboxed currently supports the following currencies: USD $, AUD $, CAD $, NZD $, MXN $, EUR €, JPY ¥, GBP £, CHF ?, HKD $, SGD $ and so much more. 

You can always change the default currency for your account so that expense reports in your account will display your receipts in your preferred currency. 

The Shoeboxed app also offers currency conversion. Shoeboxed will capture the international currency amount and convert it into your default currency when you send receipts that aren’t in your default currency. We use historical conversion rates from the European Central Bank to convert your receipt and bill to your default currency. 

Long-term and unlimited storage 

At Shoeboxed, we offer unlimited storage to keep your receipts for years! When your receipts are digitally stored, they will still be perfectly intact even when they are ten years old. On the other hand, physical receipts are prone to aging and fading, reducing clarity and legibility, potentially causing you troubles down the road. 

Court-recognized legal documents

Digital receipts are completely accepted as legal documents. The IRS and HMRC both accept digitized receipts, meaning that the process of filing tax refunds and write-offs for business expenses becomes much easier. 

Accuracy

Countless hours of data entry might weaken your accuracy. But this will no longer be a problem with the Shoeboxed Receipt Scanning & Expense Management app. Every single receipt will be processed with 100% accuracy. 

Automated expense reporting

With all of the receipt information digitally stored, generating an accurate and comprehensive report is only a few clicks away. You can then send them by email or export them to other accounting software such as QuickBooks, Xero, or Dropbox. 

3. A step-by-step guide to scan receipt with the Shoeboxed app

Our Shoeboxed receipt scanning app was designed to be incredibly user-friendly. To scan receipt, simply do the following:

  • Step 1: Prepare your receipt for scanning

Flatten all receipts as best you can. Then, tape any tears in each receipt. Torn receipts might not make it through the scanner correctly. You may also remove all staples and paper clips that may be attached to the receipt. 

  • Step 2: Open the Shoeboxed app, choose “Add new.”
prepare to scan receipt
  • Step 3: Take a picture of the receipt
scan receipt with the Shoeboxed app
  • Step 4: Add essential information to the receipt (such as title), and choose a category. 
add information to the receipt
add information to the receipt
  • Step 5: Scanning and processing the data
process

The Shoeboxed app extracts the most important data points on your receipts and automatically categorizes them by vendor, total spent, date, and payment type when you have scanned the receipt. Extracted data is fully searchable and editable. Our team members double-check extracted information so you can rest assured that you’re seeing human-verified, trustable data. You can always edit or add any details or metadata that you need. 

adding information to the receipt

See also: Shoeboxed human-verified data extraction feature

  • Step 6: Create an expense report for approval with the Shoeboxed app

Once everything is in place, Shoeboxed creates clear and comprehensive expense reports that include images of your receipts. You can click the “Expense report” on the left of the screen, select receipts, export, print, or email them in an email to your client, employees, or colleagues for easy tax preparation or reimbursement. Shoeboxed ensures that all of your receipts are legibly scanned, clearly categorized, and easy to locate.

create expense report

Final thoughts

Now you know how to scan receipt digitally anytime, from anywhere with a single smartphone. Having the ability to turn your paper receipts into a digital format can make your expense tracking much simpler. Furthermore, Shoeboxed is packed with features you may not have tried yet (like mileage tracking or business card storing). Get your 30-day trial now before choosing the perfect plan for your purpose!

Why Small Businesses Need To Transform Paper Receipts To Digital Data

Long gone are the days when one only had paper and pen to keep records of information. Computers and digital data have dramatically transformed how people work and live, and even decades after the commercialization of the first computer, its potential still seems endless. In the business world where innovations to improve productivity are always welcomed, the role of computers in storing and processing information is indispensable. 

Digital technologies are increasingly replacing traditional manual processes and becoming the key to success in today’s business world. 

The recent pandemic made this urge to transform digitally even greater, as it is a matter of survival for a business to cut down on expenses while aiming to grow. The switch to digitization is urgent, but before adopting any new tool, we have to consider its advantages as well as possible drawbacks. 

For small companies who want to embrace scanning and receipt tracking software to get rid of their paper receipts, our explanation of the pros and cons in this article will help you decide if your business will take the next step and digitize its documents.

What is digital data?

According to Techopedia, digital data is a binary format of information that can be interpreted by various technologies. In a binary system, complex audio, video, or text information is turned into a series of binary characters, ones, and zeros, or “on” and “off” values.

As computers can only work with digital information, we need input devices to “translate” the data into a language that computers can understand. For example, a scanner or a camera converts an image into pixels (small squares of color that are signaled by a sequence of numbers), so that visual information becomes digitized images that we can see on a computer screen. 

What is good about digitizing your receipts?

Although a scanner is a must-have item in any company, scanning apps or software aren’t as commonplace. However, the idea that you can scan all your bills and other kinds of documents with just a smartphone is tempting. Much like an ordinary scanner, scanning software turns your paper into a digital copy, but that is not all it has to offer. 

There are a lot of apps that also help you to organize your receipts, track expenses, and even create reports. If you are still wondering why you should choose a scanning app for your business’s digitalization, here are some of the benefits.

  • Cost-saving and time-saving

From a financial perspective, switching to digital receipts is undoubtedly cost-effective. Conventional physical documents require various expenses from the users, ranging from paper and ink to printers and scanners. Businesses need to track their operation based on various kinds of documents, so there are storage costs and added unnecessary expenditures. 

Imagine that all your important papers are now digital data safely kept in your computer or the cloud with the support of scanning software. There are several free apps that you can try; or you can purchase one for more useful features, such as linking to your accounting system and customizing your financial reports.

On top of that, working with digital data is quicker than you expect. If you are an accountant or a bookkeeper, you should know better than anyone the time-consuming task of categorizing receipts, inputting data, and then extracting information from them. Don’t waste your energy doing everything manually now that you have apps and software to assist you. Let these digital tools take care of your receipts and spend more time on the essential tasks which will lead to increased profit for your business!

One significant advantage of a scanning app is that you can use it at almost anytime and anywhere. Once the app is downloaded to your smartphone, you can easily scan receipts on the go without waiting until returning to your office. 

  • Easy storage and access

Managing receipts and financial documents in an organized way for ease of tracking and retrieval is a real headache as your business transactions grow in number and scale. Soon you’ll realize you are surrounded by clutter and piles of folders that take up considerable space in your office. However, thanks to digitalization, you don’t need physical cabinets to store the documents or worry about them getting lost or fading. 

Both you and your customers can store digital receipts in your computer or on the cloud, which means easier access, and smoother record keeping and accounting. Receipt scanning software keeps your documents in a central location and helps your team stay on top of all the details even when working remotely.

  • Tax-ready

A recurring question whenever tax season draws near is: How do you know what expenses are deductible without having to sort through each receipt? Good scanning software can get your receipts into action in many ways. 

First, besides scanning, you can use it to add tax information and categorize the expenses accordingly, which makes tax preparation time a breeze. When every expense is precisely recorded, you will also be able to tell how many tax deductions you can claim. 

What’s more, many receipt scanning apps allow you to create financial reports based on the input data and export them into your accounting programs. This means you can minimize errors caused by carelessness, therefore maintaining the accuracy of all reports. 

Even if tax time is over, you’ll never know when the IRS may ask to review your receipts, and this is when scanned receipts and documents come in handy. Because the IRS accepts digital images, you can simply show them the data they need and get the paper copies off your desk! 

  • Increased interactivity with customers 

Another merit of electronic receipts worth mentioning is their marketing role. Email receipts are the perfect tool to promote your services by, for example, featuring links to your business website. Based on the customer transactional information collected through e-receipts, you can keep track of their purchasing habits, know their preferences, and send them personalized offers that match their needs. 

In addition, business owners can use the email list to gather customers’ feedback with surveys. Each receipt sent is an excellent opportunity not only to engage customers but also to improve your products or services. So it can be considered a bridge that brings the retailers and their customers closer together while transforming shopping into an interactive experience.

Disadvantages of digital receipts and documents

  • Technical knowledge required

Although you don’t need to be an expert to use the scanning software, some technical knowledge is necessary if you want to optimize all functions it is capable of. Those who are not used to working with digital data may find it hard to navigate to each receipt and end up using the software just like a normal scanner instead of fully exploiting its potential. 

If you haven’t bought one yet, help yourself by asking such questions as “What are you looking for in scanning software?” “How can you use its features to your benefit?” “What skills are required to make it work?” Digital transformation can’t happen overnight and certainly entails remarkable cultural changes in the office, so you should at least know what to prepare, including an understanding of the tools you are going to adopt. What is equally important is an open-minded attitude toward new things and the willingness to learn from mistakes in this process.

  • Security problems

Many people are concerned that digital data leaves information vulnerable to greater security risks. Keeping receipts and financial documents online doesn’t guarantee they are safe from hackers’ attacks or system failures. However unlikely such security issues may seem, the far-reaching consequences should be acknowledged and avoided at all costs. When someone compromises the system, the worst scenario may be loss of customer data, so it is advisable to backup everything in advance. 

Shoeboxed as a solution

Given both the pros and cons of switching to digital receipts, are you still opting for scanning software to accompany your office’s transformation? If you say ‘yes’ to innovations and challenges, let’s figure out how Shoeboxed can assist you with its amazing features.

  • Easy scanning with accurate data

Shoeboxed gives you multiple scanning options so that you can do it no matter where you are. After taking photos of your receipts, you can upload them to Shoeboxed software or its mobile app in just seconds. 

Whether you are at home or on a business trip, Shoeboxed makes a great companion that digitizes your receipts and tracks every expense on the move. Real-time reporting is possible so you’ll never have to worry about missing out on some bills.

At Shoeboxed, we also understand that there are important receipts that you want to keep as they are. In this case, or at a time when you wish to outsource your receipt scanning task, you can ask Shoeboxed to send you the postage-paid Magic Envelope, put all the items that you need us to scan inside, and mail it back to us. 

We also accept the electronic images of your receipts 24/7 and help you process to extract key data. With Shoeboxed, you know that you are provided with human-verified information which is easily searchable and editable in your digital system.

  • Improved security for both paper and digital receipts and documents

Keeping your physical and digital receipts secure is a promise that Shoeboxed is committed to our customers. We use Secure Socket Layer encryption for the upload process and do regular backups of your scanned data so you can rest assured that your private information is protected with utmost care. Also, access to the app is strictly controlled and you can decide who will have the right to retrieve or modify the data. 

The same attention to security is applied to storing your paper documents, which are safeguarded in our independently owned processing center with strong monitoring measures. For each receipt you entrust to us, Shoeboxed will do whatever it takes to deliver our best services.

  • Great compatibility with accounting programs

We are partners with several accounting platforms, such as QuickBooks, Xero, and Evernote, which means documents scanned with Shoeboxed can be synced onto these systems and ready for any report. You can also choose to auto-import receipts from your Gmail inbox into Shoeboxed account so you never lose another bill again. 

Forget the tedious manual data entry and get some burdens off your accountants’ shoulders, helping them to streamline the bookkeeping process. You’ll surprised at how the fine combination of a receipt scanner and an accounting program will speed up your workflow and help your financial management. 

  • Tax-friendly

Audits will no longer be a hassle if you have all necessary documents at hand. One perk of Shoeboxed is that it offers clearly scanned images of your receipts which are accepted by both the IRS and CRS. You don’t need to scour through file after file to search for data because  Shoeboxed  organizes and categorizes things as you scan them. 

Calculating tax deductibles will be a lot easier and with precise data, you can also create accurate expense reports that are tax-compliant and share them with anyone from your Shoeboxed app.  

  • Economical plans for small businesses

At Shoeboxed, we have plans for all types of customers, including individuals and businesses of any size. Starting from just $18 per month, you will be able to enjoy our unlimited file storage and make the best out of the Shoeboxed scanning app. Professional users can consider the $36 plan to include QuickBooks Online integration. 

Details of each package are available on our website, so make sure to check it out!

The bottom line

Trying out a receipt scanning software may become the best decision you can make to digitize your office. It offers the convenience and flexibility you need to manage your finances better while solving problems caused by paper receipts and documents. If you are up to this idea, we can’t wait to show you how Shoeboxed can make a difference!