Business Credit Card Marketplace

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The Best Business Credit Cards of 2019

By Kali Geldis
November 8, 2019

Choosing the right business credit card isn’t so different from picking the right personal credit card. However, business owners need to do even more thorough research to understand exactly how this financial tool can be used to help their business and to make sure it doesn’t backfire on their personal finances.

In the 2019 Federal Reserve Small Business Credit Survey, the majority of business owners in the U.S. — regardless of size — used their own personal credit to access capital for their business.

“Whether you’re a new business or an established one, business credit cards are a vital tool for funding your business,” says Gerri Detweiler, business credit and financing expert and Nav’s Education Director. Portable, flexible and leveraging a tool most business owners have established already (a personal credit score), business credit cards are a must-have for business owners. But with dozens of options, how do you pick the right one for your business? 

22% of business owners said that business credit cards were the top resources accessed the last time that their small business needed funds.

According to the Nav’s Small Business American Dream Gap Report. Methodology here.

No single business credit card will be the best choice for all business owners across the board. Just like the business financing options available to your business, the best credit card for your business will depend on the benefits crucial to your business, what you are likely to qualify for based on your income and personal credit score, and how much cost you’re willing to incur to access capital.

In this in-depth guide, we’ll cover all of the essentials to choosing the right business credit card for your business, with insights and advice from our unbiased business & credit experts.

Want to get straight to the point? Here are the topics we’ll cover:

Business Credit Cards vs. Personal Credit Cards

A business credit card and personal credit card operate in many similar ways. Both can offer bonus points, rewards points, introductory apr offers and a sign-up bonus, but there are a few distinct differences between how they’re regulated. That means there can be different terms and conditions for business cards and personal cards, and a savvy credit card shopper needs to understand those differences before they apply. 

Small business owners carry twice as many credit cards as consumers.

Based on the Nav credit database of over 260,000 business owners and consumers

First, let’s review how business and personal credit cards are similar.

  1. The way they’re used. Whether it’s a chip and PIN or a swipe, business and personal credit cards can be used for purchases online and in stores in the exact same way personal credit cards are. The fundamentals still remain the same and they include the same security features as personal cards like CVV/security codes, expiration dates, signatures, etc.
  2. They rely on a personal guarantee. Nearly every business credit card relies on a personal guarantee from the applicant. A personal guarantee means that if you default on the credit card or make late payments, the issuer can use tools like personal judgments and debt collection to hold you personally accountable. As part of a new regulation to prevent money laundering, the applicant for the business credit card isn’t the only one who needs to be listed on the application — if you have any business partners who own more than 25% of the business, they will likely need to be listed on the credit application as well.
  3. Personal credit scores are key to getting approved. While a business credit card is for business purposes, a personal credit score is still a key qualifying factor across nearly every business credit card. For business owners with great credit, this is awesome news — you don’t have to worry about needing a business credit score, submitting business tax statements or financials, or getting someone to believe in the vision of your business like you’d need to do for other business financing options. A great credit score helps power approvals and opens up a plethora of options for the applicant to choose from. However, if you have a bad personal credit score or not enough data to produce a credit score — a major problem for the small business community, as Nav noted in its study a few years ago on credit ghosts — it can prove extremely problematic. Since businesses are already viewed as riskier options from the lender’s perspective, credit requirements for business credit cards tend to be even tighter than the personal credit card realm. There are just a handful of options from the major business credit card issuers that service business owners with bad or no credit. 

Next, let’s cover the major differences between personal and business credit cards.

1. Which credit bureaus get your information. 

When you apply for a personal credit card, your payment and account history is generally reported to at least one, if not all three major consumer credit bureaus — Experian, Equifax & TransUnion. But when you apply for a business credit card, the issuer may not report to any of the consumer credit bureaus except in the case of default or late payment. 

Each issuer has its own policy on which consumer bureaus it will report to and whether they’ll report positive payment history or just negative information (check out this guide on the major business credit card issuers’ consumer credit reporting policies here). This means shopping the issuer is just as important as shopping the card. If you have bad credit or limited credit history and are making on-time payments and not maxing out the cards on a regular basis, having a business credit card report to the personal credit bureaus can be fantastic news — the card can help create a positive account on your personal credit and grow your scores if used responsibly. 

However, if you don’t need a positive account on your personal credit history and/or plan to max out the card regularly (business owners often put larger spending balances on their credit cards, as a Nav study recently found), you may want to opt for an issuer that only reports if you pay late or default on the card. This way, you can take advantage of the new credit line for business purposes, but not have to worry about the credit utilization impact (get more insights on how credit utilization impacts your personal credit scores in this article). 

The consumer credit bureaus aren’t the only ones you need to consider when selecting a business credit card, though. Business credit card issuers can also report your payment and account history to the major business credit bureaus — Experian, Dun & Bradstreet and Equifax.

Pro Tip: Some of the issuers also report a credit agency that’s somewhat separate from the main three commercial bureaus, the Small Business Financial Exchange (SBFE).

You can learn more about the SBFE and the data it houses and shares in this article. Each issuer has its own policy on which business credit bureaus it uses to report your payment and account history (you can see an issuer-by-issuer policy guide here). 

The key takeaway here though is that a business credit card is often the first business financing option new businesses access and it can be a quick way to begin establishing credit with the major business credit bureaus if you choose a card that reports to all three bureaus. Establishing business credit early can help you access better net terms with vendors and suppliers, and opens up larger-dollar, lower-rate and longer-term business loans down the road. If you’re going to open a new business credit card to help fund your business or make daily purchases, you might as well choose one that can help you build business credit in the process. It’s never too early to start planning for a successful business and how you’ll take it to the next level.

2. The terms & fees. 

Federal regulations for consumer credit cards are quite different than those for business credit cards. There are fewer restrictions on the rates and fees issuers can charge, the notification periods they must abide by before changing terms, and what they can do to collect on the debt if you default. That might lead you to believe business credit cards have more “gotchas” you need to worry about, but by and large the major business credit card issuers have actually self-regulated and implemented some or all of the same policies on rates, fees (including annual fees and foreign transaction fees) and notifications of changes to both business and consumer cards. 

3. How the debt can be collected. 

Third-party debt collectors collecting personal debts must follow the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). That law offers a variety of protections including specific requirements to notify individuals about the debt, preventing debt collectors from discussing the debt with people other than the debtor, and the right for the debtor to request validation of the debt. 

Business credit cards don’t fall under the FDCPA and therefore debt collectors may be much more aggressive when collecting small business debts. (It’s worth noting the FDCPA does not apply to card issuers collecting their own debts, including personal credit card debt. But states may have laws that apply to those consumer debts.)

Corporate Cards vs. Business Cards: What’s the Difference?

While the terms corporate card and business credit card are often used interchangeably, they can mean radically different things in how they’re used and who maintains liability and responsibility for the charges. Most commonly, corporate cards are known as the cards business owners authorize for employees to use for business expenses that the business then reimburses. 

Many business credit card options you can find in the Nav marketplace have the ability to add authorized users, and issuers have come a long way in recent years in adding new features to monitor spending and manage the authorized cards to allow employees to spend as needed while giving the business owner more oversight. 

American Express business credit cards are a  great example of business credit cards with awesome corporate card management tools. The American Express® Blue Business Cash Card, for example, has several options to give the business owner management and monitoring of employees’ corporate cards at no additional cost. Here’s a list of some of the features that make this a great pick for those looking for a low-fee and scalable corporate credit card solution:

  • $0 annual fee for additional employee cards. This is already on top of a $0 annual fee for the main account holder.
  • Account Manager designation. You’re busy, so how can you be expected to put a personal guarantee on the line and still feel that your employees aren’t abusing a corporate card? This feature allows you to designate a trusted individual — perhaps an administrative assistant, partner or executive — to manage the account alongside you so you don’t have to spend hours monitoring spending yourself.
  • Custom account alerts Catching abnormal expenses as soon as possible is key to keeping cash flowing through your business and limiting liability. Just like consumer credit cards, business credit cards are just as vulnerable to fraud and identity theft. This feature allows you to set payment reminders as well as flags to monitor for odd charges or potential fraud. 
  • Introductory APR offer. Pay 0% on purchases for 12 months after account opening, one of the stronger introductory APR offers in the market. 

Are there small business credit cards for no credit?

If you haven’t established a credit profile with the three major consumer credit bureaus, finding a business credit card can be a challenge. There are some secured business credit cards available from smaller banks and local credit unions, but these generally aren’t an ideal option for business owners since the goal of a business credit card is to access working capital.

A secured card requires a deposit to secure a credit line of equal value in order to limit the lender/issuer’s liability if you default on payment, so instead of opening up new working capital for your business, it can actually limit the cash you can access by locking up a portion to secure the credit line. 

In recent years, a few new options have come to market to serve business owners with a limited credit history. One issuer in particular that’s growing in popularity is Brex. They offer the Brex Card for Ecommerce and the Brex Card for Startups. Brex doesn’t consider personal credit scores to qualify, and there is no personal guarantee required for the card either. It’s targeted at business owners who already have a large amount of working capital in the bank, perhaps from a seed round of fundraising or an angel investor, and need a credit card that can help keep cash flow moving through parts of the business as they scale. Brex offers 30,000 points when you spend $1,000 in the first three months, and has a rewards program and opportunities to earn bonus points and rewards points. A key caveat if you’re considering a Brex card, however: If you need access to new capital, not just a tool to access and use the capital you already have, a Brex card isn’t ideal. Read more details about this option before you apply below.

Pro Tip: Limited personal credit profile? Click here to download our eguide on Smart Credit Strategies for Business Owners and get insights on what impacts your personal credit scores and special considerations business owners should make when managing their personal credit.

Can you get approved for a business credit card with your EIN only?

Your Employer Identification Number (EIN) is often referred to as your business’s Social Security number (SSN). It’s used to file your tax returns, similar to a SSN, and helps identify your business to potential partners, the commercial credit bureaus and other government agencies.

As part of the business credit card application process, you will likely be asked for your EIN, as well as several other details about your business like the industry you’re in and how your business is structured (LLC, sole proprietorship, Corporation, etc.) Most major credit card issuers will require an EIN to even submit an application. For example, American Express won’t allow you to apply for its business credit cards without an EIN if you’re an LLC, corporation or partnership. Sole proprietorships don’t require an EIN to submit an application with most major business credit card issuers.

Just as there are some business credit card options available to those with no personal credit score, there are some options where a Social Security number or personal guarantee is not required to get approved, but they are limited. The Brex cards, for example, rely on the EIN for their underwriting, so Social Security numbers aren’t required to apply. However, because the Brex cards underwrite off of the EIN, sole props aren’t good fits for this card. 

You should also be aware that an EIN-only credit card application may require other personal identifying information to verify your identity as part of federal regulations to limit criminal financial activity and money laundering. After all, you give your EIN to many business partners, vendors, suppliers, even customers in some cases. Would you want them to be able to use just your EIN and a few other pieces of information to open a credit card in your business’s name? The issuers who offer EIN-only business credit card applications mitigate this risk by using other tools to identify and verify your identity before approving you for a card.

There’s another major warning if you’re considering a card that requires only an EIN to get approved — a credit card that requires an EIN and not an SSN to apply may not be the best fit for your business. If you have a solid personal credit history, you have a great tool you can leverage to help fund your business and it can help you access business credit cards with better rates, terms and fees. Just because you can get a business credit card using only your EIN doesn’t necessarily mean you should.

How a Business Credit Card Can Build Business Credit

Whenever anyone applies for a credit card, there’s always a key question they ask — how will it impact my credit? That question is doubly complicated when it comes to business credit cards, as business credit cards can impact both your personal and business credit scores. 

You can read our article here on which credit card issuers report to the consumer credit bureaus, and how that reporting can impact your personal credit scores.

The major business credit bureaus are Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and Equifax. The Small Business Financial Exchange, though it doesn’t designate itself as a commercial credit bureau, shares business financial account information with those three main bureaus and so often your business credit card account data is shared with the SBFE, which then shares it with its members as well. There are a few issuers that report to all three major business credit bureaus, plus the SBFE — Chase and Citi are the two major issuers (read more on the subject here)

how many small business credit cards report to commercial credit agencies

Getting a card from one of these issuers’ business options can help ensure you’re building a strong business credit profile with all major bureaus. However, it also means that if you default, pay late or have other negative information on the card account, it can have a negative impact on your business credit score. Below are some quick tips for building strong business credit with your business credit card.

  1. Pick a card that reports to the three major bureaus. It may seem obvious, but selecting a card that helps you build business credit means choosing one that reports to all the bureaus. This is crucial to the real goal of building business credit — being able to leverage it down the road to establish better vendor/supplier relationships, better net terms and access larger-dollar, longer-term and lower-rate financing options like traditional bank loans and SBA loans. When considering business credit scores, a lender doesn’t have to disclose the bureau that they’re using in the lending decision. To cover your bases and ensure a lack of credit history with one bureau doesn’t block you from the right financing option, building a credit history with all three is key.
  2. Make your payments on time. Just like your personal credit scores, payment history is a huge component of your business credit scores. Missing payments or making late payments consistently will help you establish a business credit score, but it likely won’t be a good one. Consistent on-time payments are crucial to building a positive business credit profile that you can leverage when the time is right.
  3. Monitor your business credit scores for red flags/errors. Just because an issuer reports your account to the major credit bureaus doesn’t mean that they won’t make mistakes or clerical errors. If you’re building business credit, keeping an eye on the accounts that appear on your reports and scores is vital. A “set it and forget it” policy isn’t ideal as you never know when a potential partner, lender, or investor can pull your business credit report — that’s right, unlike personal credit, there is no permissible purpose required to purchase or access your business’s credit report. There are often fees, but any private individual can pull your business’s report at any time. You can monitor and manage your business credit scores with all three major commercial credit bureaus — Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and Equifax — with a free Nav account, which includes alerts so you can monitor your credit as you build your scores.

How we make our business credit card recommendations

Nav’s editorial team reviews not only the business credit cards in our marketplace of 30+ industry-leading options, we also review other cards on the market. Our relationship with the issuers does not impact our recommendations and we are constantly reviewing and optimizing our recommendations as terms change to give you the most up-to-date and important information on business credit card trends and features so you can make the right choice for your business.

The best credit card for your business isn’t just about rates, terms and fees either. What good is finding the perfect credit card for you if you can’t qualify? We encourage you to set up a free Nav account to access MatchFactor, our proprietary algorithm that ranks and sorts all of the credit cards in our marketplace to help you find cards you’re more likely to qualify for, based on your business and credit profile. Nav customers who used MatchFactor were 4x more likely to get approved for a business credit card.

Now, on to the top business credit card selections!

The Best Credit Cards for Startups

Not all business credit cards are created equal and startups have some very unique needs that a business credit card can help solve. Whether you’re a sole prop startup or have already incorporated or formed a partnership, there are business credit cards that can help you access a line of credit quickly while leveraging your personal credit.

A few key considerations startups should make when choosing a business credit card:

  • How much working capital do you need?
  • If you’re in a partnership or have a co-founder, whose name will be on the application?
  • Who will need access to the card?
  • How will it impact your personal and business credit scores?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best credit card for startups:

If a corporate charge card is something you need, the Brex Card for Startups gives you a fair balance of rewards across several spending categories. With no annual fee or foreign transaction fees, it’s an affordable way to finance purchases for a full billing cycle and build your business credit history.

There are no annual fees, and since payment in full is due when the bill comes (or 60 days post-purchase), there is no interest rate, either. Team members can have their own cards, either in virtual or plastic form; additional cards also have no annual fee. There are no foreign transaction fees, and the card comes with Mastercard’s zero fraud liability protection plan; if you didn’t make the purchase, you’re not on the hook to pay for it.

Rewards are paid out as a credit on travel services booked through the Brex Travel portal or as a statement credit on a specific transaction. There are also entrepreneur-friendly cardholder discounts and credits that have been arranged with popular businesses, such as Amazon web services, Google Ads, WeWork, DocSend, and Hubspot. Discounts vary from 15 – 50% off service prices, and they change regularly. 

Read our full list of the best credit cards for startups here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Business Credit Cards for Travel

If you’re traveling often for your business and have a good personal credit score, it makes sense to consider a travel rewards credit card to access points and perks or cash back that make life on the road that much easier. In recent years, travel perks from major co-branded credit cards have lost some of their luster as mergers and rewards program rebrands and restructurings have eliminated some of the perks road warriors know and love. For example, across most major travel cards (even business travel options) the fares and room options available for free or at a discounted rate when using points have become fewer and fewer and the points don’t go as far anymore. 

However, business travelers can still benefit greatly from the rewards of a travel card, especially if other business rewards cards don’t offer cash back or rewards points for purchases in categories where you spend often.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a business credit card for travel:

  • Are you loyal to a specific airline or hotel chain or do you want to be able to use your rewards with any hotel/carrier?
  • Will the card be used international travel or domestic only?
  • Who gets to use the perks/points?
  • Does the card carry traveler’s insurance or other travel-specific support or protections?
  • What’s the annual fee?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best business credit card for travel:

The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express is a great card for frequent Delta travelers who plan to make a large amount in purchases ($50,000+) on their card each calendar year. This card has a killer signup offer—Earn 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) and 35,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Plus, earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. MQMs help you get closer to reaching Medallion status in the Delta SkyMiles program.

Read our full list of the best business credit cards for travel here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market. 

The Best Business Credit Cards for Bad Credit

Business credit cards for owners with a poor personal credit score are rather limited, but they aren’t unavailable entirely. There are definitely more options in the “fair credit” category, so we’ve included some of those in our ranking. If you’re in between the bad and fair credit categories, taking some time to work on improving your personal credit scores opens up more options with better rates, terms and fees. 

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a business credit card for bad credit:

  • What’s the APR for purchases?
  • Is there a penalty APR if I pay late?
  • What’s the annual fee?
  • How much working capital do I need?
  • Would a no-personal-guarantee business credit card be a better option for my needs?
  • Will this card help me build my personal and business credit so I can access better financing down the road?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best business credit card for bad credit:

The Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business card allows cardholders to earn rewards without needing excellent personal credit scores to qualify. The Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business looks for fair credit scores — 580 and above — when making approvals for this card, and it is not available to business owners with subprime credit scores. A secured card or line of credit (check below!) may be a better option for those entrepreneurs. Business owners who make on time payments with their business credit card and keep their balances low can build business credit (if the card issuer reports to the business credit bureaus — here’s our quick guide on which do), however it’s worth noting that your payment history may be reported to personal credit reporting agencies and affect your personal credit scores.

Read our full list of the best business credit cards for bad credit here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best High-Limit Business Credit Cards

The key unknown that causes many business owners frustration when finding a business credit card is not knowing how big of a credit line they can access before they apply. While other business financing options like lines of credit and term loans have screening processes and prequalification tools that can help you determine if you’ll likely be approved for the credit line you need before you apply, these generally are not available until you get approved for a business credit card. Issuers often do not share maximum limits or even ranges in their marketing, which can make it a real guessing game for business owners who know they would charge large-dollar bills to the card if they had a large-enough limit.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a high-limit business credit card:

  • Will my new credit limit help my personal credit utilization? (i.e. does the card report to the personal credit bureaus as well)
  • Can I spend beyond my stated limit? If so, how much?
  • What’s the APR for purchases? (if you plan to carry a balance regularly)

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best high-limit business credit card:

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express was designed for business owners who spend a lot of time jet setting from place to place. Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com. Get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's 1.5 points per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. You can get up to 1 million additional points per year.

In addition, this card offers a ton of annual perks, including airline credits, hotel credits, and even a $200 annual statement credit for making purchases directly with Dell. Cardholders can also take advantage of the Pay Over Time feature, which makes it possible to carry balances, with interest, on purchases over $100.

American Express also offers business owners some unique offers during their first year of membership, including a one-year membership to WeWork, which includes access to private office space, shared workspace, event space, onsite staff, Wi-Fi, and pantry amenities at over 335 workspaces worldwide — a $2,700 value.

Overall, these benefits can make The Business Platinum® Card from American Express a truly valuable addition to your wallet. Unfortunately, there is one significant catch — a $595 annual membership fee.

The Best Business Credit Cards for LLCs

Structuring your business as an LLC doesn’t by default narrow your business credit card options, but it can make the process of applying for a business credit card a bit more laborious if you have partners.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a business credit card for your LLC:

  • Do you have partners who own 25% or more of the business? (This will require additional documentation when you apply)
  • Which owner/founder (if multiple) will be the main account holder?
  • Does your LLC have a reward preference?
  • What’s your EIN? (Keep it handy — you’ll need this when applying for a business credit card in the name of your LLC.)

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best credit card for LLCs:

If your business expenses fluctuate, getting a card that offers bonus rewards on certain categories may not be helpful. But with the American Express® Business Gold Card, the card can adapt to your spending habits. While it is technically a charge card, the flexibility it offers on rewards category makes it a card to look at. 

Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month. The rewards categories are:

  • Airfare purchased directly from airlines
  • U.S. purchases for advertising in select media (online, TV, radio)
  • U.S. purchases made directly from select technology providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions
  • U.S. purchases at gas stations
  • U.S. purchases at restaurants
  • U.S. purchases for shipping

There’s also no credit limit, giving you more flexibility with how much you can spend. The only downside is that the bonus rewards only apply to the first $150,000 spent each year in the two categories. You’ll earn 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.

Read our full list of the best business credit cards for LLCs here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Chase Business Credit Cards

Chase is not only one of America’s largest national banks, it also has a plethora of business credit card options and can be an easy and simple solution for existing Chase business banking customers as well as small businesses looking for a bank with a large national presence. All Chase business credit cards are on the Visa network, which has one of the largest payment networks in the world and gives you plenty of flexibility when making purchases in the U.S. or abroad and Chase offers several co-branded credit cards with popular airlines like United and Southwest to round out its standard business credit card offerings.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a Chase business credit card:

  • Do you already bank with Chase or do you plan to?
  • Do you want a card to build business credit?
  • What rewards structure do you prefer?
  • Is there an annual fee?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best Chase business credit card:

Finding the right business credit card is often a matter of evaluating your spending habits, rewards or benefit expectations, and current card offers. However, if it’s miles you’re after, then airline cards like the United℠ Explorer Business Card. are often a popular choice.

While many co-branded airline cards limit maximum earning categories to brand-specific purchase, the United℠ Explorer Business Card extends earning power. Purchases at restaurants, gas stations, and office supply stores are worth just as much as those made with United.

In addition to miles, the United℠ Explorer Business Card. also carries other airline specific perks, like free baggage check for the cardholder and one companion and priority boarding. Cardholders can also take advantage of two one-time United Club passes — a $100 value — every year.

The Best American Express Business Credit Cards

American Express has long carved out its own special niche in the business credit card space, offering high-end rewards and perks for established businesses while also innovating its online account management tools and services to make it a natural consideration for any business credit card shopper. American Express is both the issuer of its business credit cards and the payment network on which its cards operate, and the company offers a variety of cards suited to different types of small business owners and their business card needs.

Most American Express cards also offer a tremendous sign-up bonus, as well as opportunities to earn rewards points and bonus points for qualifying purchases.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing an American Express card:

  • What’s your personal credit score?
  • Do you want a high annual fee with extra rewards or a lower/$0 annual fee with limited rewards?
  • Do you want a charge card or credit card?
  • Do places where your business normally make purchases already accept American Express cards?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best American Express business credit card for:

Read our full list of the best American Express business credit cards here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Citi Business Credit Cards

Citi’s suite of business credit card options can be a great fit for businesses of all types, but especially for those looking to build business credit. Citi is one of only two major business credit card issuers that reports account data to all three major business credit bureaus and the SBFE. 

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a Citi business credit card:

  • Do you want a card to build business credit?
  • Do you need access to Citi branch locations?
  • Do you already bank with Citi or do you plan to?
  • Does your business spend a large dollar amount at Costco?
  • Are you an American Airlines loyal flier?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best credit card for startups:

Costco club members pay no annual fee with their paid warehouse membership, and the competitive 4% cash back on fuel makes this card a top pick for business owners who drive often. Rewards are paid out annually and can be used on in-store merchandise, with the balance given out as cash upon request. Other spending categories range from 1-2% without the need to enroll in bonus spending promotions. There is no limit to rewards, and your credit card doubles as your Costco membership card. Show it at checkout to get great deals on Costco merchandise, charge your purchase to your account, and build those rewards for an unlimited payout when your reward certificate is issued in February.

This card has a lower rate than some other retail and warehouse club cards, so use it for your in-store purchases, online at the Costco website, and wherever you shop. You’ll be getting points for all your business purchases, and team members and employees who are issued cards can be added to your account for even faster reward earnings.

Read our full list of the best Citi business credit cards here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Discover Business Credit Cards

After carving out a unique space for itself in the consumer credit card world, becoming known for its rotating 5% cash back categories, late payment forgiveness and top-notch customer service, Discover has started to re-enter the business credit card world in the past couple years. The value and simplicity of Discover’s rewards structure in the consumer space is echoed in the issuer’s business credit card offerings as well.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a Discover business credit card:

  • Do places where your business normally make purchases already accept Discover cards?
  • Is this your only business credit card?
  • Is quality customer service important to you?
  • Do you need employee cards?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best Discover business credit card:

With little to no fees, a steady rewards rate and no-hassle redemption program, the Discover it® Business Card is worth consideration for the young business owner.  

Discover has long been one of the most respected and sought-after names in the consumer credit card space. Now, with the Discover it® Business Card they look to bring the same value and service to business owners. With a steady rewards rate, little in the way of fees, and no minimum redemption for cash back, the Discover it® Business Card could be a strong choice for business owners.

Read our full list of the best Discover business credit cards here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Capital One Business Credit Cards

The Spark line of business credit cards from Capital One has long been a favorite of business owners looking for quick approvals that serve a wide variety of personal credit scores. Capital One has one of the best all-purpose travel rewards cards as well, meaning its line of cards can be a great fit for business owners looking for cash back or miles and those who travel often but aren’t loyal to a specific airline or hotel chain. Capital One also has business credit cards that operate on both Mastercard and Visa payment networks, which provides some flexibility if you have a preference.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a Capital One business credit card:

  • What’s your personal credit score?
  • Do you need employee cards?
  • What’s the APR for purchases? (if you plan to carry a balance regularly)
  • Who gets to use the perks/points?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best Capital One business credit card:

For a no-nonsense cash back reward card, the Capital One® Spark® Cash Select for Business is the best of the bunch. Part of the impressive line of Spark business cards from Capital One, it offers no annual fee with a simple rewards structure. Use the cash back for whatever you want, with almost no restrictions on how and where you can earn. If you’re a fan of Capital One and its business-friendly credit model, this is a pick you can be proud to carry. 

While the card isn’t heavy on travel perks, it does have some benefits, including emergency card replacement to get a new card or even cash 24/7 (worldwide) and auto rental damage waiver service. The purchase protection is a nice benefit, too, giving you 90 days of replacement, repair, or reimbursement for select items you buy with the card; it also doubles the manufacturer’s warranty on items you buy.

No annual fees give this card an extra boost, and the promo offer is one of the best out there right now for a cash-back rewards card. Earn $200 Cash Back once you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. Use the cash to pay down your account balance, or cash it out for whatever you want. Rewards don’t expire as long as you keep your account in good standing.

Read our full list of the best Capital One business credit cards here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Bank of America Business Credit Cards

Bank of America has over 4,600 branches and close to 16,000 ATMs across the U.S., making it one of the largest banks in America and positioning it well to serve small business customers, especially those who already have a consumer banking relationship with BofA. Bank of America has business credit cards on both the Mastercard and Visa payment networks, which are extensive in the U.S. and abroad.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a Bank of America business credit card:

  • Do you already bank with BofA or do you plan to?
  • Do you need access to BofA branch locations?
  • What’s your personal credit score?
  • Do you want flexible travel rewards that can be used at multiple airlines and hotels?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best Bank of America business credit card:

While this card does not offer any type of rewards program, business owners who don’t have the “excellent” credit can still take advantage of several perks, including an 0% introductory APR offer, a low APR, and no annual fee.

The Bank of America® Platinum Plus® Mastercard® Business card was designed as a no-frill card for business owners with good credit.

If you are approved for this card, you can likely take advantage of the ongoing cash back welcome offer as well as a low APR, particularly when compared to other cards on the market. Plus, there is no annual fee, which makes this a low-risk addition to your wallet.

In addition, there are some other perks, such as get free employee cards and travel insurance perks. That said, many of those perks are also standard among competitor cards as well.

If it’s benefits and rewards you’re after, and you have excellent credit, it’s probably best to consider the Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card, which will help you earn 3% cash back on the category of your choice (for the first $50,000 in combined choice category/dining purchases each calendar year, 1% thereafter), 2% cash back on dining, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.

Read our full list of the best Bank of America business credit cards here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.

The Best Wells Fargo Business Credit Cards

Despite recent bad press recently, Wells Fargo is a premier American bank with a foothold in nearly every state, making it a top option for most American business owners shopping for a credit card. 

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a business credit card for bad credit:

  • Do you already bank with Wells Fargo or do you plan to?
  • Do you need access to Wells Fargo branch locations?
  • What’s your personal credit score?

As your business grows, Wells Fargo has a card that meets your needs. It’s designed for businesses with annual sales above $1 million. The Wells Fargo Business Elite Card can feature a credit line of up to $300,000, and can give you up to 200 employee cards. It also includes spending controls that can limit employees spending to certain merchant types, dollar amounts, or even spending during business hours only.

This card offers the same rewards program as the other Wells Fargo business cards, however, those that choose the points option receive 5,000 bonus points when the company spends $10,000 in any monthly billing cycle. There is no annual fee for this card, and no foreign transaction fee. But it does have a $75 optional rewards program fee, which is waived the first year.

The Best US Bank Business Credit Cards

US Bank has an extremely well-rounded offering of business credit cards, with options for nearly all business owners depending on your rewards preference and whether you are interested in an intro offer. US Bank offers some of the healthiest intro offers for business cards and truly designed its entire program to craft cards that are more custom, rather than a one-size-fits-all mentality.

A few key considerations you should make when choosing a US Bank business credit card:

  • Is an intro offer important to you?
  • Do you want a simple rewards structure or is complexity ok?
  • What’s your personal credit score?

Here’s Nav’s pick for the best US Bank business credit card:

Not all business owners spend the same, and the U.S. Bank Business Select Rewards Card is made to reward those with big purchasing requirements. Earn 20,000 bonus points after you spend $1000 in eligible net purchases during the first 90 days after opening your account. A very competitive 3 points back on your top spending category means you have the chance to save up for bigger rewards, including statement credit and gift cards. The 20,000 bonus points offer helps sweeten the deal for any cardholder who loves the power of a good reward card. No annual fee helps make it a top choice for small business earning opportunities.

This business credit shines in its ability to help you earn rewards quickly, provided the bulk of your business spending is one of the following three categories:

  • Shipping, advertising, utilities, telecommunications, professional fees/services, and office supplies are considered within the category of “Day-to-Day Expenses.”
  • Fuel, car repairs, car washes, service fees, tolls, and dealership expenses fall into the “Automotive” category.
  • The “Travel and Entertainment” category covers airfare, car rental, hotels, dining out, and travel agencies.

As you can see, there is a big potential to earn one of the highest earning categories ever for a business card, provided you know your spending habits and pick the category in which you’re most likely to earn. For a company with many fleet vehicles, for example, an automotive category makes sense. If you’re more the jetsetter type, this card could easily replace your competitive airline or travel-branded reward card. (It does, however, charge travel fees of 2-3%, something to consider if you’re going abroad.)

Read our full list of the best US Bank business credit cards here to learn more about our other top picks and how our editorial team ranks and scores the cards on the market.