To scan your business cards and boost your business development, there are different types of applications:
- Free scanners, which can then export your business cards into Excel or CSV format. Think software like Camcard, Bizconnect or ScanBizCards
- More advanced and paid mobile applications with integrations to different CRMs like Covve, Snapaddy or Abbyy
- Applications that can be hacked into business card scanners, such as Evernote, Google Lens or Microsoft One Note.
In this post, we walk you through the different options, from free to premium, and from simple hacks to full-fledged CRM integrations.
What makes a good business card scanner?
1. Detection accuracy
The power of a business card scanner lies in the OCR (optical character recognition) software that simply converts images into text.
For a business card, it first scans the structure of the card, then divides it into blocks of text and images, and drops the text and numbers into their respective contact fields in the application. If all goes well, the contact information matches the business card.
But the accuracy of scanning varies from application to application, and this is part of the difference between good and bad applications. Unusual fonts, background colours and the layout of information on a map affect the way the application’s OCR processes the data.
There are several levels of integration of business card scanners, and this is often what differentiates them in terms of price.
- The most basic level is offered by many applications: exporting the scanned maps to Vcard format or to an Excel file that you can then share.
- The applications also often offer to add the scanned data to your phone contacts or to your mailboxes, Outlook or GSuite, depending on the software you have chosen.
- Finally, scanners often offer numerous integrations with your CRM software in their paid version: from SalesForce to Hubspot, this allows you to import them into your CRM and then transform them into leads.
3. Ease of use
A good business card scanning application is also one that is easy to use: many scanners offer a host of tools for tagging contacts, labels, and grouping contacts so that they can be sorted and then shared.
How much does a business card scanner cost?
There are basically two pricing models for business card scanners:
- Free offer: there are many free applications, which offer high quality services with many features and sometimes ultra precise recognition. However, these applications are more limited in their export and integration possibilities and the data remains locked in the application.
- Paid offer: around 100$/year. These offers allow you to unlock the export features (on Excel, in your contacts, etc.) and to integrate them in your various software. In some cases, they even offer manual validation of your leads.
Is there such a thing as a free business card scanner?
There are therefore free business card scanners, particularly those offered by CRM software, which however limit integration with their own software. If your CRM offers it, this is the option to choose.
In the free options, there are also tools like Google Lens, but which do not offer any integration with other software.
We offer you a series of comparisons on tools that facilitate your business processes:
#1 CamCard: the free business card to Excel converter
Camcard is the leading free business card scanner for professionals. It is both a business card wallet and a social network where you can exchange your cards with your contacts, and be notified as soon as a contact updates their information.
Among its strengths, Camcard offers a free export of your business cards to Excel and a bulk report function, i.e. you can scan several cards by taking a single photo. It also integrates with Salesforce.
There are three offers for the price:
- Camcard personal: the free version, which includes an export of your contacts to Excel
- Salesforce version: 30 day free trial then $7.99/mo per user
- Business version: from 10 users, its price is between 21 and 25$/month (with a free trial period).
Discover Camcard for free
Camcard has a free version to test its functionality before you commit yourself.
#2 Covve: the most accurate business card scanner
Covve is a popular American business card scanning application that is ultra-accurate thanks to AI: its simple and powerful interface makes it easy to organise and search for information on your contacts and share it with colleagues, via email or Whatsapp, or export it to Excel.
It can be used as a stand-alone application or integrated with your CRM, either Salesforce or Salesrabbit. Covve also allows you to organise your contacts by adding notes, tags and locations.
In terms of pricing, Covve offers 4 versions:
- Starting offer: at $6.99, it allows you to scan up to 50 business cards.
- Unlimited version: at 44.99$, you can scan as many cards as you want.
- Annual unlimited version: this is like the unlimited version but at $29.99/year.
- Business version: price on request, it allows you to benefit from advantages such as the various integrations.
Covve offers a trial of 10 free scans before upgrading to the paid offer.
#3 ABBYY business card reader: business card scanner from a leader in business process digitalisation
Among the leaders in optical character recognition (OCR) technology, ABBYY is an ultra-comprehensive application that offers scanning of your business cards in 25 languages that you can then share with your colleagues.
Particularly suitable for international companies, Abbyy offers all the features of business card scanning applications, such as integration with various CRMs.
For pricing, you can benefit from a free trial period before committing yourself. Pricing is only available on request.
Discover Abbyy for free
Abbyy offers a free month to test its features before upgrading to a paid offer.
#4 ScanBizCards: the forever free business card scanner
Primarily aimed at businesses, ScanBizCards is a free business card scanning application that offers a wide range of features, from scanning an unlimited number of business cards to exporting them and sharing them with your contacts.
Its strong points are that it is free, although the automatic recognition of the details of scanned maps is not always optimal. You can manually transcribe your maps, but within a limit of maps in the free offer (but you can buy more later).
In terms of pricing, ScanBizCards offers a free starter package that you can add to:
- Starting offer: free of charge.
- Sales Ninja offer: $100/user/year. For teams up to 50 people, 100 manual transcriptions allowed, integration with your CRM
- Growth Hacker offer: price on request.
Discover ScanBizCards for free
ScanBizCards offers a 14-day free trial to test its features before you commit.
#5 Snapaddy: the software to scan business cards to almost any CRM
Snapaddy is a business card scanning application that caters to businesses of all sizes and offers numerous integrations with your CRM software.
It offers all the features of business card scanners with a special emphasis on integration with your various software programs.
In terms of tariffs :
- Starting offer: 60 euros/user with all features (integration, export in Excel format, unlimited scanning). The price is degressive up to 100 licences.
- Business offer: Beyond 100 users, Snapaddy has a business offer, the prices of which are only available on request.
Discover Snapaddy for free
Snapaddy offers a 14-day free trial to test its features before you commit.
#6 Bizconnect: the iPhone application for scanning business cards
Bizconnect is a powerful business card scanning application that offers many features, from integration with your various CRMs to direct synchronisation with Outlook and Google, not to mention exporting your data to Excel.
Among its features, you can also find tools for reporting and monitoring your activity as well as task management functions for your team.
Bizconnect has 4 offers:
- Free offer: you can scan 50 business cards per day.
- Monthly offer: 9.99$/month, with an unlimited number of business cards but only for one user.
- Annual offer: the same offer but $79.99/year.
- Corporate offer: 399.99$/year, for 10 licences. In addition to the previous offers, it offers the possibility to share contacts with colleagues.
Discover Bizconnect for free
Bizconnect offers 50 free scans per day on its application if you don’t want to commit.
#7 Zero Keyboard: scanning your business cards into Salesforce
Zero Keyboard allows you to digitise your business cards and is mainly aimed at Salesforce users as the integration with this CRM is so simple. It also offers to complete each card manually with tags to have the maximum information on your contacts.
In addition to the classic features that Zero Keyboard offers, there is also an offline scanner mode, map recognition in different languages and a voice dictation tool.
In terms of pricing, Zero Keyboard offers a 14-day trial before you commit, which does not even require your bank details. However, prices are not available on their website.
Discover Zero Keyboard for free
Zero Keyboard offers a 14-day free trial to test its features.
#8 Hubspot: CRM software with integrated business card scanner
Hubspot CRM software also offers a free business card scanning application that allows you to automatically integrate them into your CRM.
It has all the classic features of business card scanning applications, plus the ability to send follow-up emails, or schedule tasks and calls.
Hubspot’s business card scanning application is free but only available to CRM users.
Discover Hubspot for free
Hubspot CRM offers a free trial before committing to a paid version.
#9 Evernote: for free and easy scanning
The Evernote note application also allows you to scan business cards: by adding a new photo as a note, Evernote automatically recognizes it and stores it as a business card that you can save as a contact.
Evernote also integrates with your various CRM applications: for example, after scanning your business card, the application asks you whether it should store this information in your personal contacts or in the leads category in Salesforce.
Evernote offers a free package but does not include the business card scanner. There are two offers for this:
- Personal offer: 6.99 €/month, it allows you to benefit from the scanning of all your documents.
- Professional offer: €8.99/month, it includes all the features of the personal offer with the added possibility of synchronising all your contacts with your CRM.
Evernote has a free version to test its features before committing, but this does not include the business card scanner.
#10 MS OneNote: Business Cards to Excel in seconds
For users of Microsoft and its OneNote application rather than Evernote, you can also benefit from a business card scanner with the Microsoft Office Lens application.
The MS OneNote application works like a basic PDF scanner that simply scans your business cards and then saves them in OneNote.
The application is free for users who already have the Office package.
Discover MS OneNote
For Office users, you can find OneNote right here.
#11 Google Lens: for a simple and free business card application
For Android users, this application may already be integrated into your smartphone and allows you to save your business cards directly into your contacts.
Although the Google Lens application is free, this means that it only offers fairly basic functionality such as scanning and saving scanned business cards.
Discover Google Lens for free
If the application is not already installed on your phone, you can download it right here.