Retractable badge holder is something that we can see in corporate world more and more. It is those things that are hanging on our necks so that we can use for corporate identity. So, in this introductory post, I am going to cover a lot of details dealing with this product. If you want to understand everything, get yourself a coffee cos this is going to a super long post about something that most people would not think.
These products are holders for your badge or corporate identity cards. These holders are tied to a string which can then be extended and retracted as you desired. The other end of the string is tied usually to a a object of which the string will wrap around it, something like a yoyo mechanism. These objects are typically rounded although you can see other forms and shapes. These round objects can be, in turn, attached to a lanyard or to your belt. Whenever you need to show your pass, simply pull the holders out and the string will allow to extend to fairly significant distance.
What are retractable badge holders made of?
- The usual materials you will see for the holders are typically made of plastic. These are the cheapest forms of materials you can find although they are not as durable. On average, they will last about a couple of months before the seams start to give away and you need a new one.
- Another more durable form of holder material is fibre glass. These are more durable and they have the additional benefit of being easily printed on. This means corporations can print their logos or company names on the holder for corporate identity. The drawback however is that they do not adapt well to fast changing temperature. If you work in an environment that always changes from hot to cold in another instant, the fibre glass holder might crack under the change.
- The third option is metal badge holders. These are what I called the heavy duty retractable badge holders. They are extremely strong and withstand high stress and daily wear and tear. They however weigh more much and that may cause you shoulder or neck ache if you wear them for extensive periods of time. Also, because they are made of metal, you need to take them during security checks. If you need to pass these checkpoints a couple of times a day, taking them on and off can become a daily nuisance.
- Finally, there are the special materials that you can buy as well. These materials include things like gold or silver holders or even custom made designs with tailored graphics or logos, which are more for decorative purposes. I have seen very cute badge holders that are made of animal prints or even comes in strange animal shapes like money For companies that wanted a more unique or to convey a higher status to its senior officers, these customize holders are a good option. However, if you are buying for a normal usage, I suggest you pick one of the three categories of materials that I have reviewed above.
Accessories for retractable badge holders
Retractable badge holders are often used in conjunction with other accessories to maximize their benefits. Lanyards are an great example. By attached the holders to the lanyards, you can simply put this over your head when you are entering the office and forget about the problem of misplacing it. Lanyards can also be branded under the company’s colors or logos which further strengthens one’s corporate identity.
Besides using it to hold your badge, you can add on other accessories to increase the product’s usefulness. For example, you can exchange the holder for a can opener or a wine opener, which then can be used to waiters when they are serving their customers. Because these are handed onto your bodies, they can use them whenever and whatever they want. This helps to save lots of money and time for the restaurants.
Benefits of retractable badge holders
There are quite a number of benefits of buying a retractable badge holder. Let’s speak the foremost obvious: you don’t lose you passes anymore. I can’t recall the statistics but I remember there is a higher number of people who reported that they tend to misplace their passes and had to spend money to replace them. If you have the pass always attached to you the likelihood of losing them is significantly reduced.
Another benefit is the convenience these retractable holders can offer you. Besides making it less easy to lose, they also made it easier when it comes to security clearance. More and more, we are seeing companies installing electronic readers that require staff to tap on the readers before being able to open the doors. If you have a non retractable holder, you might need to stand very near the reader or you might need to remove them first before using. All these caused great inconvenience. With a retractable badge holder, you can simply extend the holder to wherever the reader is without any extra action on your part.
These products are also more durable than your normal clip tags. Not only are these clip tags inconvenient (see the same point above), but they are likely to break about several weeks. If you constantly need to take your badges in and out of the clip tags, then their life span is even shorter. On the other hand, a retractable holder is much more durable. It ensures that the badges are firmly attached to either your lanyard or your belt.
In terms of corporate branding and marketing, the holders can also play a part. A company can print its logo on retractable badge holder and this becomes a walking advertisement for its employees wherever they go. In fact, you can even use them as a corporate gift. Because they offer such great benefits, it is likely that whoever you give these new retractable holders to, they will use them and becomes your free advertising agent.
Customised retractable badge holders
Ok, I want to side track here and talk a bit more more about the benefits of customised retractable badge holders. There are two options here: you can customised the designs on the holders and you can also customised the shapes. The latter is of course more expensive but they make a greater impact in terms of memory retention and marketing.
So customised designs, companies typically want to do it to reinforce their company image or branding. These can be done fairly cheaply and easily. What you need to do is just specific the colors and the image that you want to be printed on the holders and the manufacturers can do the production for you.
When it comes to customising the shape of the retractable badge holders, the process is a bit longer but you also have more choices in terms of what you can do. Firstly, set a budget that you are willing to spend. Because these things can go as detail as you want, it is easy to exceed the costs that you originally wanted to spend. My advice is to keep to your budget and work the designs around it.
Now, you need to consider the shape of the holders. There are a few considerations here. One important things is of course the company image. You want to select a shape that people will remember and at the same time identify your company. If you are in the medical field, you might want to use a pill shaped retractable badge holder for instance. However, if you are in the pets business, you want consider animal shaped retractable badge holder instead.
Besides the company branding, you also need to consider how these devices will be used and design the shape according. If a circle shape in more conducive to the movement of the people, then make a circle shape. On the other hand, if people prefer rectangle to fit into their belts of whatever then you should choose a rectangle shape. The principle is to study how people in your company move and then design the shapes that will offer the best convenience for them.
Finally, you add some bells and whistles to your holder if you want to increase their functionalists. For example, I have seen companies adding lights to their retractable badge holders so that they can use them during night shift. Again, this is something that should be considered on a case by case basis.
Where to buy cheap retractable badge holders
This is the most important question. You can buy retractable badge holders in most stores or big supermarkets like Target, Sears, Walmart or even Ikea. However, to get the best deals or lowest price on badge holders, you need to go online and shop. The reason is simple. Online stores typically price their products 10 to 20% cheaper because they save on the physical stores. If you buy it from large online stores like Amazon, the prices are even lower as they have economies of scale during their purchase. Therefore, if you really want to buy cheap retractable badge holders, go online. In fact, you can also hunt for used or second hand retractable holders at places like Ebay if you are just buying for yourself and not for your entire company.