Whether you’re an emerging entrepreneur, a seasoned professional, or a small business owner eager to distinguish personal from business expenses, a business credit card can be an invaluable asset.
Whether you need one for a fully established company or you’re just starting out, our guide can help you choose the best business credit card for you.
Best credit cards for small businesses
In selecting the best small business credit cards, especially those with annual revenues under $1 million, it’s important to consider their unique financial needs and how certain cards can enhance their fiscal management. Our carefully chosen list of credit cards is designed to help these smaller enterprises streamline their expenses and maximize bonus rewards, providing efficient financial solutions tailored to their scale and requirements.
Best for frequent travelers: Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card
The Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card stands out in the market for its exceptional value, especially considering its lack of an annual fee.
Annual fee: $0
Welcome offer: Earn $900 bonus cash back after spending $6,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening.
- 1.5% cash back on all purchases
- 5% cash back on Lyft rideshare through March 2025 with the Chase Ink Unlimited card (this includes an additional 3.5% on top of the standard 1.5% earned on all travel expenses)
Why we like it: The Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card is a standout choice for small businesses and frequent travelers, thanks to its $0 annual fee and a generous $900 cash-back welcome offer. Particularly beneficial for frequent Lyft users, it offers 5% cash back on rides until March 2025, along with a universal 1.5% cash back on all other purchases. This simple and inclusive rewards structure makes it an effective and economical option for managing business expenses and travel costs.
Best for versatile spending: Bank of America® Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard®
The Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard is a versatile and cost-effective tool for businesses, offering tailored rewards with no annual fee. Here are the specifics of what this card has to offer:
Annual fee: $0
Welcome offer: Enjoy 0% APR for the first 9 billing cycles. Plus, earn a $300 online statement credit after making at least $3,000 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.
- Choose to earn 3% cash back in one of the following categories: gas stations and EV charging stations (default), office supply stores, travel, TV/telecom and wireless, computer services, or business consulting services
- Earn 2% cash back on dining purchases
- Receive unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases
Why we like it: Ideal for diverse business needs, the Bank of America Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards Mastercard offers a no annual fee and customizable 3% cash back in bonus categories like fuel, office supplies, or consulting, aligning with your primary expenses. The 2% cash back on dining further benefits client meetings or business trips.
Additionally, the card’s initial 0% APR for the first 9 billing cycles aids in large purchases and effective cash flow management, making it a strategic choice for businesses seeking flexibility and cost-efficiency in their financial tools.
Best for businesses focusing on growth: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Chase’s Ink Business Preferred Credit Card is a robust choice for businesses looking for a card that not only rewards their spending but also enhances their travel experiences. Here’s a quick overview of what this card offers:
Annual fee: $95
Welcome offer: Earn 100,000 bonus points after spending $8,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening.
- Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases in select categories each account anniversary year
- Enjoy 5x points on Lyft rides through March 2025 with your Chase Ink Preferred card
- Points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
Why we like it: The Ink Business Preferred Credit Card is ideal for growth-focused businesses and frequent travelers, with a $95 annual fee balanced by high reward potential in key spending categories. Its 100,000 bonus points welcome offer, particularly effective for travel expenses, provides a significant return on investment.
Enhanced travel points and the 5x points on Lyft rides make it a valuable asset for frequent travel, offering both savings and convenience. Overall, this card is a top choice for businesses aiming to maximize their investment in travel and core business expenses.
Best credit cards for startups
For businesses in their startup phase, usually under two years old, choosing the right credit card offers financial agility with growth opportunities. Below, we highlight credit cards that provide the most benefits to these young enterprises, helping them navigate the unique challenges of their early years while maximizing their potential for reward and expansion.
Best for cash flow management: American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
The Amex Blue Business Cash card is an excellent choice for businesses seeking straightforward cash-back rewards cards without an annual fee. It offers a blend of rewarding cash-back rates and a valuable introductory APR period (terms apply; see rates and fees).
Annual fee: $0
Welcome offer: 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months from the date of account opening.
- Earn 2% cash back on eligible business purchases (up to $50,000 per calendar year)
- After reaching the $50,000 threshold, earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
Why we like it: The American Express Blue Business Cash card is particularly suited for businesses focused on efficient cash flow management and everyday spending. With no annual fee and a 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months, it offers immediate financial flexibility.
The 2% cash back on the first $50,000 in purchases each year, followed by 1% thereafter, ensures that businesses earn rewards on their regular expenses. This straightforward cash-back structure, combined with the ease of automatic cash-back credits to your statement, makes it an ideal card for businesses looking for a hassle-free way to reduce expenses and manage finances more effectively.
Best for simple financial management: Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business
The Capital One Spark Classic for Business is a solid option for businesses seeking a no-frills, easy-to-manage credit card. With no annual fee and a simple cash-back rewards program, it’s designed for straightforward financial management.
Annual fee: $0
Welcome offer: None
- Earn 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases
- Earn 5% unlimited cash back on all hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
Why we like it: The Capital One Spark Classic for Business is especially beneficial for new businesses and those looking for simple financial management. Its absence of an annual fee and straightforward 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases make it an accessible and uncomplicated choice. Overall, this card is a great entry-level option for businesses aiming for a hassle-free credit card experience.
Best credit cards for established businesses
Targeted towards established companies over two years old with over $1 million in annual revenue, this section looks into the best credit card options for mature businesses. These cards are selected for their ability to meet the complex financial needs and aspirations of larger, more seasoned enterprises, offering features and rewards that align with their scale and operational dynamics.
Best overall for established businesses: Capital One Spark Cash Select for Excellent Credit
The Capital One Spark Cash Select for Excellent Credit card is an attractive choice for businesses with high credit scores, offering enhanced cash-back rewards and no annual fee. It’s tailored to reward frequent business travelers while providing straightforward benefits for everyday business expenses.
Annual fee: $0
Welcome offer: 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months.
- Earn 1.5% unlimited cash back on all purchases
- Receive 5% unlimited cash back on all hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
Why we like it: The Capital One Spark Cash Select for Excellent Credit card is particularly beneficial for frequent business travelers and companies with excellent credit. The 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel offers substantial savings for businesses with regular travel needs.
Its 1.5% unlimited cash back on all other purchases makes it a rewarding option for everyday business spending. With no annual fee and a helpful 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months, this card is a standout choice for businesses seeking to maximize their travel rewards while maintaining straightforward and cost-effective financial management.
Best for high spenders: Ink Business Premier℠ Credit Card
The Ink Business Premier Credit Card is designed for businesses with significant spending, offering high-value cash-back rewards and a substantial welcome offer. With its targeted rewards structure, it’s well-suited for enterprises that handle large transactions.
Annual fee: $195
Welcome offer: $1,000 cash back after spending $10,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
- Earn 2.5% cash back on every purchase of $5,000 or more
- Enjoy unlimited 2% cash back on all other business purchases
Why we like it: The Ink Business Premier Credit Card is effective for businesses with high-volume purchases, as it rewards larger transactions with a higher cash-back rate. The $1,000 welcome bonus is a strong incentive for businesses planning significant spending in the initial months. Despite the $195 annual fee, the rewards and benefits can offer considerable value to the right business.
Best for high-end business travelers: Business Platinum Card® from American Express
The Business Platinum Card from American Express is a premium credit card offering a rich array of rewards and benefits, targeted at businesses with frequent travel needs and high spending. With its substantial welcome offer and high rewards rate on travel expenses, it’s tailored for the discerning business traveler (terms apply; see rates and fees).
Annual fee: $695
Welcome offer: Earn 170,000 Membership Rewards® Points after spending $15,000 on eligible purchases in the first 3 months.
- Earn 5X Membership Rewards Points on flights and prepaid hotels booked through AmexTravel.com
- Up to 1.5X points on eligible purchases in key business categories
- Earn 1X points on all other eligible purchases
Why we like it: The Business Platinum Card from American Express is particularly advantageous for high-end business travelers and companies with significant spending. The 5X points on flights and hotels booked through AmexTravel.com make it a top-tier choice for frequent travelers, maximizing rewards on travel expenses.
The potential to earn up to 1.5X points on select business purchases adds considerable value, especially for businesses with large spending in these categories. Although the annual fee is high, the extensive rewards, along with the luxury travel benefits and services provided, justify the investment for businesses that frequently travel and value premium travel experiences.
Key features to look for in a business credit card
Explore the key features and characteristics to consider when choosing the best option for your business. Here’s the most commonly valuable ones to look for:
- Reward programs: Depending on your needs and types of business you may opt for cards that offer lucrative incentives like:
- Cash back that you can apply as statement credit toward select eligible purchases
- Points you can redeem to cover business purchases
- Travel rewards including travel credit, seat upgrades, or airport lounge access
- Expense management tools: Features that help you track expenses in separate business categories can be invaluable for accounting.
- High credit limits: Important if you have a business with large operational costs.
- Introductory offers: Look for cards offering initial benefits such as zero interest for the first few months.
- Integration with accounting software: Allows you to easily sync with popular accounting platforms and can simplify bookkeeping.
- Employee cards: The ability to issue additional business credit cards to your employees with customizable limits.
- No foreign transaction fees: Beneficial if your business deals with international transactions or travel.
- Purchase protection: Security features that safeguard you against unauthorized transactions or fraud.
- Flexible payment terms: Options that allow for varied payment cycles, catering to businesses with fluctuating revenues.
- Customer support: A responsive support team that can promptly assist you with any questions or issues.
How to compare different business credit cards
Don’t risk damaging your credit profile by wasting a credit inquiry on just any card. Here are features to consider to help you narrow down your choices and find a credit card that aligns with your business needs:
Assess your business needs: Every business is unique, with distinct financial habits and requirements. Recognizing your frequent expenses or the need for international transactions will help tailor your card choice. A card that aligns with your business’s specific needs maximizes benefits and minimizes inefficiencies.
Look at interest rates (APR): Interest rates directly influence the cost of borrowing. A lower APR can lead to substantial savings, especially if balances are carried month-to-month. This is where a great 0% APR sign-up bonus can be handy. Over time, even a small difference in interest can accumulate, affecting your business’s profitability.
Review reward programs: Different cards have varied reward programs. Understanding these can ensure you earn maximum returns on your spending so be sure to read the fine print. Select a card whose reward system matches your expenditure to get the most out of every dollar spent.
Beware of hidden costs: Beyond the transparent charges, cards may have hidden fees that can eat into your bottom line like foreign transaction and balance transfer fees. Identifying and factoring in all potential costs ensures there are no unexpected financial surprises down the line.
Consider credit limit: The offered credit limit should cater to your business’s operational scale. This can be difficult since many card issuers don’t readily disclose their minimum and maximum credit limits. A suitable credit limit ensures you can cover large expenses when needed, without promoting excessive spending.
Consult peer reviews: Reviews provide firsthand insights into a card’s real-world utility, highlighting both its strengths and limitations. Just don’t forget to compare in a relative space. A construction company will have vastly different needs than a digital marketing company. Understanding the experiences of fellow business owners can help you anticipate potential charges, challenges, or benefits.
Test customer service: Efficient, responsive, and knowledgeable customer support can be a lifesaver during unforeseen issues or for clarifying doubts. The three pillars are phone, email, or live chat. Having a reliable support system can mean the difference between a quick resolution and prolonged complications in times of need.
Perks and benefits of business credit cards
There are several advantages to using a business credit card for your company:
- Separates your personal and business expenses for clarity.
- Streamlines accounting and tax preparation.
- Helps identify and track your business-related expenses for the day-to-day and tax season.
- Provides you with potential perks like cash-back rewards, welcome bonuses, and travel benefits.
- Offers discounts on business-related purchases.
- Can lead to significant savings, from cash back on office supplies to points for business trips.
- Helps boost your business credit history.
- A robust credit profile offers you opportunities for better loan conditions, higher limits, and lower interest rates.
- Boosts the financial profile required for business growth.
Potential drawbacks of business credit cards
While business credit cards offer numerous benefits, it’s important to be aware of potential drawbacks.
Higher interest rates
- Business cards can have high interest rates, particularly if you don’t pay off the balance monthly.
- Some cards come with annual fees or charges for international transactions.
- Irresponsible spending or mismanagement of a business credit card can strain a business financially and tarnish credit reputation.
In our mission to identify the best business credit cards, we adhere to a meticulous and impartial evaluation process, focusing our analysis exclusively on the needs and benefits of our readers. Our review is independent and free from external financial influences, ensuring credit card issuers have no sway over our conclusions. This approach upholds our editorial integrity and solidifies the trustworthiness of our recommendations, aimed at optimizing financial outcomes for businesses.
Our methodology is tailored to the unique demands of business credit cards. We concentrate on key factors relevant to different types of businesses, including credit limits, reward structures, additional business-focused benefits, annual fees, and APRs. Recognizing the diversity within the business sector, we specifically target our analysis to cater to three main categories: small businesses with annual revenues under $1 million, startups less than two years old, and established businesses with revenues over $1 million.
We conduct a thorough comparison of a wide array of business credit card offers, evaluating them across more than 150 distinct data points. This expansive approach allows us to delve into each card’s specific features and advantages, assessing aspects like reward schemes, credit limits, additional business perks, cost-effectiveness of annual fees, and the implications of APRs.
Our proprietary scoring system plays a crucial role in this evaluation, enabling us to quantitatively and qualitatively compare each card against these vital factors. The system ensures a comprehensive assessment, considering both the immediate financial benefits and potential long-term advantages or disadvantages for businesses.
After a detailed scoring of each card, we refine our selection to those that stand out in offering exceptional value, reasonable fees, and favorable terms for businesses. Our chosen cards are not only compliant with industry standards but surpass them, providing the best options for business growth and financial management.
This ongoing and dynamic review process guarantees that our recommendations stay up-to-date and genuinely beneficial, reflecting the latest developments and changes in the business credit card market. By following this thorough and unbiased methodology, we aim to present our readers with a meticulously curated list of the best business credit cards, empowering you to make informed financial decisions aligned with your business’s growth and stability goals.