The Ramp card is two things at once: a business charge card and a financial platform for your business. This card may make life easier for startups or small-to-medium-sized business owners since it can streamline the financial processes that are likely to cause you a headache, like expense management and accounting. And there’s no need for a personal guarantee.
To help you decide if the Ramp card is right for your business, this article outlines what it is, the pros and cons, and how it compares to other options on the market.
What Is the Ramp Card?
The Ramp Card comes from financial technology (fintech) company Ramp. It’s a small business charge card and financial management platform all-in-one. As a cardholder, you can:
- Use the business card for expenses
- Manage your business expenses
- Pay your bills
- Track your financials to make accounting easier
- Create automated financial reports
Also, the Ramp corporate card says it can help your company save money in multiple ways, including giving you control on spending limits on each employee card and by advising you on areas you’re overspending.
It’s a charge card rather than a credit card, so the full balance is automatically debited from your account on the same day each month.
The Ramp card targets U.S.-based small-to-medium-sized businesses, corporations, or nonprofits — the company won’t accept unregistered businesses like sole proprietors. Applicants also must have $75,000 or more in a business bank account and most of your business spending needs to happen within the United States.
There are no fees for using the Ramp card. Instead, Ramp makes money by charging the merchant a small fee, called an interchange fee, on each purchase. You can get unlimited virtual cards for your employees at no added cost, as well. As a Ramp cardholder, you can pay vendors via card, check, or ACH payment.
The Ramp card application is completely online and takes a few minutes to complete, as long as you have gathered all your information and documents ahead of time. You’ll need:
- A business email address
- An employer identification number (EIN)
- The date of business formation
- Articles of organization (for LLCs) or articles of incorporation (for corporations)
- The mailing address and last four digits of the social security number of at least one business owner. Anyone from outside of the U.S. can use a passport and proof of address.
- Log-in details for your business bank account
- A business description
- An estimate of how much you spend each month on your business cards
Ramp works hard to keep your personal details safe by supporting processes like multi-factor authentication. The company also uses trusted third-party technology like Finicity and Teller to link your external bank accounts, and it tokenizes your card and CVV numbers to make them more difficult to steal.
Ramp Product Details
The Ramp card operates on the Visa network. You’ll get 1.5% cash back on every purchase that you can redeem for a statement credit. As mentioned, you won’t pay any fees — no annual membership fees, replacement card fees, late payment fees, or foreign transaction fees.
It’s a charge card, so you also won’t pay interest. You’ll instead have to pay off your balance in full each month. Because of this factor, you can’t maintain a revolving balance like on a credit card so you can’t use it to fund extra business expenses in instances of limited cash flow.
However, one of the biggest benefits is that there’s no personal guarantee required, so you won’t be personally responsible if your business can’t pay its debts. Your spending limit is determined by factors like your business revenue, cash flow, cash balance, and your business credit score. So there’s no personal credit check, and therefore no effect on your personal score when you apply.
The Ramp card also offers many opportunities and insights that may lead to business savings:
- Spend management. You can set daily or monthly limits for spending on individual employee cards. Anything outside of the spending guidelines you set is flagged for review.
- Partner savings. You can access up to $175,000 in reward savings with companies in partnership with Ramp. Partners include AWS, Slack, and Google Ads.
- Insights on overspending. Ramp uses its own Ramp Savings Insights to scan your bank accounts and find possible savings for your business. It can alert you to things like spending increases and duplicate subscriptions.
- Contract negotiation. When you’re signing a contract, Ramp offers its savings experts to review it and negotiate the pricing and terms for you. Some other Ramp customers have paid around 27% less when using this service.
You can also collect employee receipts automatically using Ramp’s receipt matching technology. Each expense is categorized in real-time, and requests for receipts go out immediately. If you integrate Gmail, Lyft, or Amazon Business, built-in automation collects those receipts right away, which will make things like employee reimbursement faster. Furthermore, Ramp supports integrations with accounting software like QuickBooks, Xero, and NetSuite to make your tax season easier.
Note: Ramp currently doesn’t have a mobile app for cardholders to use.
Ramp Pros and Cons
There are several perks and potential drawbacks to choosing the Ramp card for your small business. Take a look at the most important below.
May save you time
The Ramp card’s technology can help streamline some formerly tiresome and time-consuming tasks you need to complete to keep your business running. Your employees can snap pictures of their receipts and Ramp will match it to the expense, so your finance team doesn’t have to worry about it. It also allows you to create categories for each purchase, and your expenses will be siphoned into those categories without you lifting a finger. Closing your books can also be faster when you sync it to your business’s accounting system.
May save you money
You won’t pay an annual fee or any other fee to use this card. Also, not all charge cards offer rewards, but Ramp gives you unlimited cash back on every purchase. You’ll also have more spend controls on your employees’ cards than many competitors of the Ramp card offer, which can allow you to control spending better. For example, you can choose which vendors employees are allowed to buy from depending on the card.
Offers higher credit limits
Ramp advertises credit limits as 10 to 20 times higher than its competitor card issuers. Your credit limit isn’t based on your personal credit score, but instead takes the overall financial picture of your business into account.
No revolving credit
The Ramp card is a charge card rather than a business credit card. Therefore, you must pay off your balance in full every month. The inability to keep a balance on the card means you can only spend what you can afford to pay back right away, so it doesn’t have as much leeway as a credit card for unexpected or additional business expenses.
No sole proprietors
You must have a registered business to get the Ramp card. That means you can’t operate as a sole proprietorship or other unregistered business and use this card, even if you meet the balance and other requirements.
No mobile app
Ramp currently doesn’t offer a mobile app for its customers to use. This can make banking on the go more difficult and may be a dealbreaker for some tech-savvy clients.
How Ramp Compares
The Ramp card is unique, so comparing it to other options on the marketplace is a bit of a challenge. Corporate credit card providers may offer cash back rewards and no annual fees like Ramp. However, since Ramp doesn’t give cardholders access to revolving credit, we thought it would be more helpful to compare it to other business checking accounts.
Here’s our breakdown of where Ramp falls in the competition lineup:
Chase Business Complete Banking
With this Chase account, you pay a monthly fee, but you can qualify to have it waived. Business checking accounts also often allow you to accept payments from customers, unlike charge cards, and this one uses Chase QuickAccept. You’ll also be able to perform as many ATM and debit card transactions as you need every month, and you can request employee cards. Also, the Chase Mobile® app receives fantastic reviews from customers, which makes banking on the go easier than with Ramp.
Bank of America Business Checking Account
Bank of America has two business checking accounts, each with a monthly fee that you can waive when you meet the requirements. Similar to Ramp, these BofA accounts allow you to link your other accounts to view everything from one place, as well as monitor and project your business’s cash flow. Furthermore, you can integrate with accounting software like QuickBooks and get digital cards to make purchases right away. And the Bank of America Mobile Banking app is extremely highly rated by users.
Lili Business Checking Account
Like Ramp, Lili is an all-in-one business platform. A business checking account with Lili provides a spending card, accounting tools, and integrations that make taxes easier for small businesses. You can also get cash back at participating merchants while also earning interest on your account balance. The biggest difference between Lili and Ramp: Lili offers a very well-rated app for its customers while Ramp doesn’t yet have an app.
BlueVine Business Banking
BlueVine is also a fintech company that doesn’t charge its customers any fees. It allows for unlimited transactions and doesn’t have a minimum account balance. Although you don’t get cash back rewards, you can earn interest on your account balance if you meet the qualifications. Furthermore, you can sync to QuickBooks Online and pay bills directly from your dashboard. BlueVine also has an app, but it’s not as highly rated as others on this list.
Online & Mobile Small Business Checking by Bank Novo
Novo is a fintech company that offers a no-fee business checking account that can integrate with popular accounting and business software. Like Ramp, your personal credit isn’t affected when you apply for an account. It also offers a virtual card, as well as free ACH transfers, check payments, and incoming wires. Novo also offers a well-rated app to use for mobile banking.
Nav’s Final Word
When you’re deciding whether or not to go with the Ramp card, it all depends on what you need. The Ramp card can give you a charge card for business purchases that earns cash back and doesn’t charge fees, as well as integration with other financial tools. But many business checking accounts provide similar perks — and allow sole proprietors to apply.
If you need help with spend management and saving money in your business, Ramp might be the right fit for you. But it’s best to explore all your options before making a decision, and Nav is the perfect place to start.