Whether you need to take a quick note, share some contact information or even keep track of projects, index cards can come in handy for your business. When considering types of index cards to use, know that you have many options when it comes to the design, color and size of index card.

You'll want to consider your reason for using the cards and may find it a good choice to use a variety of card types. In addition to purchasing index cards, you can conveniently make them yourself with Microsoft Word.

Types of Index Cards

Some common types of index cards you can use include:

  • Ruled index cards: Featuring either wide ruling or thinner college/business ruling, this classic type of index cards works well for writing notes and organizing information.

  • Blank index cards: When you want the most flexibility, you can find blank, white index cards that can handle text, drawing and even printing well.

  • Colored index cards: These index cards often come in neon, bold and pastel colors and can make it easier to keep track of different sets of cards. They may come ruled or unruled.

  • Large index cards: The classic size of index card is 3 x 5 inches, but when you need more space to write important notes, larger index card dimensions also come in 4 x 6 and 5 x 8 inches.

  • Small index cards: When you need to just make a quick note, you can find mini index cards that often come in the dimensions of 2.5 x 3 inches.

  • Tabbed index cards: Often used for categorizing other index cards inside an index card holder, these cards have either empty tabs or those labeled in alphabetical order.

  • Grid index cards: When you need to make a precise diagram, do some math or create a design, you can use index cards that have a grid layout on one of the sides.

  • Sticky index cards: Similar to a sticky note but larger and thicker, these index cards work for when you need to hang your notes on a board, wall or another surface.

Business Uses for Index Cards

When you think of using index cards, you probably picture their most common use for note-taking. However, consider these other business uses of index cards:

  • Business cards: While larger than a traditional business card, an index card provides a cheap, easy way to share your contact information with customers and clients.

  • Bulletin board announcements: You can use a sticky index card or stick a pushpin through a regular one to inform staff about meetings, deadlines, projects and special occasions.

  • To-do lists: You can start your busy day jotting down your tasks on an index card and simply marking each item off as you go.

  • Project organization: You can use a tabbed index card for each project and then use regular cards to jot down important tasks, deliverables and even resource lists.

  • Quick notes to staff: Whether you need to take a note after a phone call or just need to leave an important reminder to yourself or other staff, an index card provides just enough space and convenience.

  • Flashcards for training: Like how you may have index cards to learn new terms at school, you can make flashcards for your business to help train employees on important terminology or steps in a process.

  • Shopping lists: You can use a ruled index card to conveniently jot down supplies you need for the office.

  • Cue cards: If you're worried about forgetting what you need to say at a meeting or presentation, put important notes to remember on index cards you can refer to.

Using an Index Cards Template

While you can pick up some pre-made index cards at most supermarkets, discount stores and office suppliers, you can use an index cards template for Microsoft Word and special paper from a manufacturer like Avery. You can also use regular cardstock and explore Word's built-in templates when you just want to make flashcards. This option will allow you to print blank cards or include preset text and images to fit your needs.