The Paperless Post: E-card Service (Review and Demo)

Hello ladies and gents and welcome to today's post!

I'm excited to bring you a review on the The Paperless Post. This is an online
company that allows you to create e-cards, either from their website or their mobile app.

***Disclaimer:  This is a sponsored post.  I wasn't paid a monetary sum, but instead was compensated with coins (i.e. store credit) to create some cards and blog about it.  However, please note that I wasn't required to give only a positive review.  I'm free to give my own thoughts about what I liked/disliked in regards to their website, app, and the products available therein.  All opinions in this review are my own.  I'm a blogger/YouTuber who only collaborates with companies who will allow me to share my honest feelings about their offerings.***

Now on to the fun stuff...

When I was first contacted about a review of the e-cards, invitations, and stationary available on the Paperless Post, I was a bit skeptical.  To be honest, most e-cards I've seen are pretty cheesy and unimpressive.  I've sent very few of them to friends and family because I'd rather create something in Photoshop and send it on.   Once I browsed the site and saw the quality of the items there, I jumped at the chance to play with these e-cards.

I was pleasantly surprised to find beautiful, high quality card options at the Paperless Post.  Well-known designers, such as Jonathan Adler, Kate Spade, Vera Wang, Oscar De La Renta (one of my personal favorites), and more have gorgeous cards and stationery available there:

Here are some of the Oscar De La Renta cards I plan on using in the near future.  These are so elegant and have gorgeous detail:

There are times when I've wanted to send a  premade e-card,  especially when I've used up all my paper handmade cards, and need something really nice in a pinch.  Or perhaps I want to send a note or invitation to a friend who lives in a different country, and don't have time to get down to the post office.  Now that I've found the Paperless Post, their beautiful e-cards and invitations will fit the bill.

Getting Started
If you'd like to try your hand at making an e-card on Paperless Post, I'd suggest doing a few things to get going.  I've included useful, clear visuals here, because I feel it's easier to also "show" rather than just "tell" you how this works.  Please note that there are parts of some pictures I've blurred out to protect the privacy of myself and the others I sent e-cards to.  Remember to click on any of the photo thumbnails below to get a larger, better look.

1 - create an account & buy some coins.  To make e-cards on The Paperless Post, you must purchase some store credit, which is in the form of coins.   Coins can range in value from about 14 -30 cents apiece.  See the Coins And Pricing Page for more info and to view to coin package purchase options.   I believe sending a card is approximately 30 cents or so, depending on the options you choose for customization.  There are free cards and accessories (i.e. stamps, envelopes, envelope liners, etc.), but it's more fun if you have some coins to buy the other options that require a purchase.

2 - Browse through the various card types (invitations, birthday cards, thank you cards, photo cards, and more) and choose some favorite designs.  As you look through the card selections available, you'll see a little heart under each one.  Click the heart to add the card to your favorites.  I find that the process of sending cards is much faster and easier if I'm looking through designs I know appeal to me.

3 - Populate a mailing list with email addresses of those you want to send your e-cards to.  This site provides a handy address book for you to plop them into.  Once you're ready to email your card, you'll be prompted to choose a recipient (or 5 or 10), and all you'll need to do is check the boxes next to their names.  Paperless Post's address book will auto fill the appropriate fields,  and sending them off will take only a few minutes.  It's incredibly fast and easy.

After this, you're ready to get cracking and create some beautiful digital correspondence.

How To Choose And Customize A Card 
While this website is an awesome place to create and send out invitations, I find myself drawn more the other types of cards, such as birthday, "just because," and holiday cards.  

Today, I'm going to take you through the process of creating and sending a birthday card. 

First, I chose my card for a male relative who's recently celebrated his birthday (cost for this card is 2 coins): 

Next,  I clicked on the card, which took me into "Customize" mode on the website.  From here I get to modify the text and some other options, such as envelope, envelope liner, the postage stamp and the backdrop the card sits on.  While the free accessory options were great, I chose to go with items that cost a few coins here and there.  Most of the cards I sent out while I was learning my way around the site/app cost me around 3-6 coins.  I felt it was worth it.

After selecting the card, I clicked the arrow on the right side of the screen to get to the next section, where I choose a backdrop for it.  My card will sit on the backdrop, and there are many options here.  The default background is a lovely white & gray marble background, which is a fine choice, or you can remove the background altogether if that's your preference.  I chose the gray fabric one, since it makes the design on the card pop (cost for that was 1 coin):

 The third section allowed me to personalize the sentiment. The text options screen allows you to choose from several fonts, and you're also allowed to recolor and resize as well.

After this, there are choices for the envelope and its liner.  I decided to go with the suggested envelope (which is the brown one shown below) provided with the card.   However, there are other colors and styles you can choose a different one if you desire.  The next arrow after that allows you to select a liner.  I went with a different liner than the one that was already in the envelope and choose a white liner with fun aqua stars (cost: 1 coin):

At this point, it's time to choose your postage stamp and a postmark.  I paid a coin to use the cupcake stamp since it went along with the theme of the card.  I stayed with the free postmark that was already in place. You'll notice that the text on the envelope doesn't yet have your recipient's name, but don't fret.  This is taken care of when the cards are emailed out.

Emailing Your Card
 This step is a seamless process and can be done quickly.  You can choose to send it to one or as many recipients as you choose using your address book, or if needed, you can type in a single email address in the second section below (I'm not 100% sure, but I think it costs 1 coin to email each card).

Since this card costs 6 coins per recipient, I take this into account before sending it off.  In other words, if I send off 3 cards, there will be a total of 18 coins deducted from my account.  There will also be a chance to preview how the card will look when it's sent to your special person (see thumbnails below).  Cards created here have a fun animation sequence where it pops the card out of the envelope and allows your recipient to read it:

get your card ready to send through email

How to preview your card

card animation & how it looks

sentiment on the back of the card

confirmation email sent

If you'd like to see how the card animation in action,  please watch the companion video I put up on my YouTube channel (the animation is super cool):

One thing I really appreciate about sending these e-cards is you know if your card has been sent or not.  Paperless Post sends a confirmation email informing you of the card's delivery, as well as some other nice options shown above.   It's also handy that you're able to go back to your virtual "post box" and see who has read your cards, how many are unopened, and so on.  The post box is found by clicking on your account name or email in the upper right corner:

Other Considerations
Aside from creating a card, there are a few other things I think would be helpful to anyone who stumbled onto Paperless Post for the first time.  

 Any greeting, birthday, Christmas, and most other types of cards that aren't previewed as invitations can be made into an invitation.  You're able to track invitations or any cards you've sent here on your tracking page, which you can find by accessing your account dashboard.  Below you can see that I have only one recipient for my birthday card, but if I'd chosen to make an invitation instead and send it out to ten recipients, I could track whether or not all of them had received their invites.  I could further see if RSVPs had been replied to, export a list to email or other places, or print the list.  Paperless Post really rocks this functionality!

Another incredibly awesome feature is the ability to include an auto-generated map to your invitation.  Here's a invitation preview of a garden party invitation:

If I chose to send out invitations to a guest list I create for this event,  I can type in the address of the location, house, venue, etc., and a map is included in the email along with the card:

One of the things I love the most about Paperless Post is the impeccable, high quality and beautiful aesthetic of these cards.  Being a digital scrapbooker, I'm a real stickler for high resolution, good design, visual interest, and good color payoff on any digital items.  I find that you get all of these things with these e-cards.

For instance, here's the envelope and liner for the garden party card I showed you above, as well as a card I sent to my hubby last week.  Check out the luscious details I've pointed out.  Very few, if any,  other e-cards have this amount of detail, or the same fun accessories available to their end users:

Using the Paperless Post App

Currently, Paperless Post offers mobile apps for Apple Devices.  Android users and those on other platforms will have to use the website versions on their desktop or laptop computers.  For those of us on iPhones and iPads, you can download apps for them here. 

You can see how the apps look on your phone and tablet (images from the Paperless Post website):

After using the desktop version and these mobile apps,  I came away with these thoughts.  

First, I felt like the best experience happened on my laptop.  It's just easier to see the various customization options on the big screen, as you can tell from the photos included here.   I had to play with the app for awhile before I figured out how to change out accessories, but finally found out how to get it to work.  After opening the app, I chose this path:  create>thank you cards (or any other type you want) & design for online.  

You can see in this first screen cap the white/gold confetti backdrop, which I thought competed too much  with the design on the card.  After some looking around, I finally saw the paint roller icon at the bottom right of the screen, which is the backdrop icon. 

 From there, I got a small pop up at the bottom of the screen showing the backgrounds. 

 I chose a purple backdrop from the pop up, then hit done and was taken to a new screen with the envelope options.  When I clicked the the envelope icon on the lower left side,  I was given a similar pop up with choices for different liners, however, I haven't yet found a way to change the envelope style or color on the app. 

The iPad app works very similarly, however, I don't have photos for you because the app acted sluggish or froze up on me.  I had to close the app and start over, and got so frustrated because I came up with no visual examples for you.  I had better luck going to the website on my iPad, and could view and make cards much the same way as I did with my laptop.  I would suggest doing that until some updates are done for the iPad app.  

The one really big advantage about using your phone, aside from creating cards on the run, would be ease using the tracking functionality when you are out and about and away from your computer.

I personally think it would be nice to have to app keeping track and sending me notifications.   If I was at the store buying party supplies for an event, it would be super cool to find out 2 more people RSVP'ed, so I could pick up a few more things there and then. 

Also, another perk of the using the iPhone app is the envelope view.  On both the computer and iPad  versions, only a portion of the envelope is showing, whereas on the phone, the envelope gets it's own screen view.  I love being able to see the whole thing and  how cool it looks. 

 view on the phone (scroll with arrow between envelope & card)

website view on computer or iPad

Wrap Up And Final Thoughts 

The Pros:
-quick, easy card creation
-Wide selection of versatile & beautiful card designs
-Well known and respected designers have cards designs here
-website is user friendly and easy to navigate
-easy and convenient to send out invitations and track RSVP replies
-high quality resolution on all site offerings 
-good value for your money

The Cons: 
-only a few free designs for cards and accessories
-some may not want to pay to send e-cards.
-No way I can find to choose a different envelop on the mobile app
-iPad app is sometimes unresponsive 
-envelope not as visible if viewed online

My verdict?  While there are some things I'd like to change, I still really like and enjoy using Paperless Post e-cards.  I feel like customers get a good product or an inexpensive fee, the prices are comparable to other e-card services, and the Paperless Post has nice offerings that other similar websites just don't offer.  

I would highly recommend Paperless Post and hope you will check them out.  You can find them at  Should you choose to open an account with them, I believe you are gifted with 20 free coins to get started.  I hope you enjoyed this post, and let me know if decide to make some e-cards with Paperless Post.  I'd love to know how it went or hear your thoughts on e-cards.  

Enjoy your day!

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