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Designing Badges for Pre-Printing
Designing Badges for Pre-Printing

Tips and guidelines for designing and submitting a custom badge image

Daniel Murphey avatar
Written by Daniel Murphey
Updated over a week ago

The badge printers that Webex Events Onsite supports can only print in black or gray text and elements. So, what do you do if you want to add your logo to the badge or dazzle attendees with a full-color background? You create a custom badge design and have badge stock pre-printed! When attendees check in with Webex Events Onsite, attendee information prints on your awesome custom design. ✨

A pre-printed badge with an anime character running on a yellow background with floral designs. Attendee information is printed on a lighter section near the middle of the badge.

This article explains how to design badges for pre-printing and offers helpful tips for designing the badge image file for pre-printing. Let's go!

💡 Keep in mind, this article assumes some experience with design software.

Choose a vendor

If you've decided that a custom badge is right for you, contact a badge vendor at least 8 weeks before your event to start the customization process.

Our preferred partner for Onsite Event Check-in hardware rentals and custom badge printing is Choose 2 Rent. Read our article about working with Choose 2 Rent for more information and a link to an equipment and custom badge request form.

Designing for pre-printed badge stock

As you work on designing your badge, keep the following best practices in mind. ⬇️

Know your badge type

To design your badge correctly, you have to know which size you'll use. Read our Onsite Badge Types article for information about each size and type. We generally recommend double-sided tear-resistant badges unless you have badge holders or plan to purchase them. If you have any questions about badge types and material, your badge vendor will provide guidance.

Plan carefully for attendee information

Before you start designing the badge, make sure you know exactly what information you want to include and where you want to position it on the badge. Since printers only print in black or gray, the parts of the badge that will have attendee information should have a lighter background. As an example, the badge shown near the beginning of this article from our friends at Sakura-Con has a large light area for attendee information.

Use CMYK colors

If you create your badge file in RGB, proofs you receive from your badge vendor may be deceptively vibrant. Because of printing limitations, the final printed product may not appear the same as the proof unless you design in CMYK.

Be aware of template safe zones

Most vendors will provide you with a .ai badge template. Templates often include a “safe zone” around the edge of the template. Any design elements placed outside that line may be cut off in printing.

Embed objects and images in the .ai file

To ensure your badge prints at the best possible resolution, make sure to embed images and objects in the design file. This also ensures that component images aren't lost. Images should be at least 300dpi for the best results.

Use bold lines to prevent image bleed

If there are small lines of a light color surrounded by a dark color, it's very likely the dark color will bleed into that light color, obscuring the design. Give the badge elements plenty of padding.

Examine the proof carefully

Most vendors will send you a proof of the design before they print your badge stock. Examine the proof carefully to ensure the design is just right. 🏆

Now you have our best advice for creating a stellar badge design! 🚀 Read our Onsite Badge Printing Overview and Timeline for even more helpful tips, links to resources, and best practices.

Questions? Chat with us, email support@socio.events, or attend a Face to Face session.

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