These days it is more or less impossible for someone or the other to start a serious commercial concern if they have not put a considerable amount of effort into getting business cards printed without any kind of delay. However, people have been conducting business for thousands of years, and suffice it to say that business cards were not aways a part of this process if you think about it. This begs the question, when were business cards first invented and how have they evolved over the years?
When you first start to think about this question from an objective frame of reference, the first conclusion that you would come to is that business cards can trace their origins back to the industrial revolution. While it is certainly true that industrialization allowed things like Metal Kards to become a reality, the history of business cards actually extends a couple of centuries before this historic event! To put it plainly, the first business cards were seen way back in the 17th century, so there is a small level of likelihood that William Shakespeare himself used one of them when he was trying to get established as a playwright!
One thing to remember here is that the business cards that were used in the 1600s were not cards in the modern sense. Rather, they were sheets of paper that had business information printed onto them. They eventually became thicker because of the fact that thin paper sheets were not all that durable, and eventually techniques like embossing got added to the mix as well. The history of business cards is really quite fascinating and it reveals how much businesses have changed.