The Best Business Credit Cards of 2018 – Expert Review

The Best Business Credit Cards of 2018 – Expert Review

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Business credit cards are an underutilized option when it comes to making purchases for your business. In addition to providing a great source for emergency cash, the best business credit cards offer a few additional perks.

1. Minimize the impact on your personal credit. Businesses tend to make larger purchases than individuals. If you end up with large outstanding balances on your personal card because of business expenses, your personal credit score could take a hit. Use a business credit card that doesn’t report to personal credit bureaus and, as long as you are on time with your payments, your personal credit will not be affected. (Some business credit card providers will report your payments to personal credit bureaus. Find out which ones do here.)

2. Build your business credit. Making on-time payments on your card can help you build strong business credit scores, allowing you to secure lower rates and longer repayment terms on business financing, as well as better terms with your vendors and suppliers.

3. Protect your business. Business credit cards offer more protection than business debit cards, so it’s in your best interest to use a business credit card over a debit card for business purchases. The Truth in Lending Act, for example, which caps maximum liability for fraudulent purchases at $50, usually covers the unauthorized use of business credit cards, but does not apply to business debit cards.

The Best Business Credit Cards

Along with these benefits, business credit cards offer a variety of different features, from rewards points, to miles, to cash back. The following are some of this 2018’s top business credit cards.

Best Cash-Back Business Credit Cards

1. Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card

Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card

Earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account Learn More

Chase’s Ink Business Cash Credit Card makes sense for business owners who make significant purchases of office supplies and telecommunications services. The card offers a 0% Intro APR on Purchases for 12 months and a $0 annual fee.

The rewards system for this card allows cardholders to earn Earn 5% cash back in select business categories., like phone, internet, and cable. An additional 2% per dollar spent can be earned on on gas and dining (up to $25,000 annually), and 1% back on all other purchases.

One of the neat perks of this card is that cash-back rewards are offered as points in Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program. This means your points can be redeemed for one cent each as cash back, but if you also have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire card, you also have the option to transfer your points to airline and hotel partners.

2. SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express
American Express is a Nav Partner
Terms and Conditions

SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

Special Offer: Earn up to $500 cash back. Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $5,000 in Learn More

This card is ideal for those who like to choose which purchases they earn the most cash back from. It offers 5% cash back on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. office supply stores. 3% on the category of your choice from a list of eight and 1% cash back on other purchases. 5% and 3% apply to the first $50,000 in purchases per calendar year, then 1% thereafter. Cash back received is automatically credited to your statement..

Additional benefits include:

  • A great welcome offer. Special Offer: Earn up to $500 cash back. Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $5,000 in qualifying purchases on your Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership. Plus, earn an additional $250 statement credit after you spend an additional $10,000 or more in qualifying purchases on your Card within the first year of Card Membership.
  • An introductory APR of 0% on purchases for 9 months.

3. Bank of America Business Advantage Cash Rewards Mastercard Credit Card

Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card

Get a $200 statement credit when you make at least $500 in net purchases within 60 days of Learn More

This is a great card for business owners who want to earn additional rewards at restaurants, gas stations and office supply stores, a great combo fit for road warriors. Perks include:

  • 3% cash back on purchases at gas stations and office supply stores (up to $250,000 annually).
  • 2% cash back on purchases at restaurants.
  • 2% cash back on purchases at restaurants. 1% cash back on all other purchases. 3% cash back on purchases at gas stations and office supply stores (up to $250,000 each calendar year, 1% after that)..

The card comes with a $0.00 annual fee, an intro APR of 0% for 9 billing cycles, and is available to applicants with excellent credit. Cash back can only be redeemed in $25 increments.

Best Travel Rewards Business Credit Cards

1. Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Learn More

This Chase card is ideal for earning the most rewards for your frequent business purchases. It features:

  • Great rewards: Earn 3 points per $1 in select business categories..
  • $0 foreign transaction fee.
  • A killer intro offer: Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Points are earned in Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program, and can be redeemed for 1.25 cents each towards travel booked through Chase’s Ultimate Rewards website. Or points can be transferred to miles with seven different frequent-flyer programs or points with four different hotel programs. It also features a wide range of travel insurance and purchase protection policies. There’s a $95 annual fee for this card.

2. The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN
American Express is a Nav Partner
Terms and Conditions

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

Welcome Offer: Earn up to 75,000 Membership Rewards® points. Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 Learn More

Serious business travelers need to consider this card. The Business Platinum Card From American Express offers numerous premium travel benefits including access to three different airport lounge networks — Priority Pass Select, Delta SkyClubs and the American Express Centurion Lounges. You also receive Gold Status when you sign up for the Starwood Preferred Guest program. (Editor’s Note: This offer was updated January 4, 2018.) Other perks include:

  • A great welcome offer: Earn up to 75,000 Membership Rewards® points. Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 and an extra 25,000 points after you spend an additional $10,000 all on qualifying purchases on the Business Platinum Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • A credit towards the Global Entry application fee, which includes access to the TSA PreCheck program.
  • 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..
  • No foreign transaction fees.

Points are earned in the American Express Membership Rewards program, which offers transfers to miles with 17 different frequent flier programs. There’s a $450 annual fee for this card.

Best Low APR/Balance Transfers Business Credit Cards

1. GM BuyPower Business Card From Capital One

GM BuyPower Business Card from Capital One®

3% Earnings on purchases at gas stations, restaurants, and office supply stores. 1% Earnings on all other Learn More

This new card offers a ton for small business owners, including introductory financing and rewards that can be used for the lease or purchase of a new GM vehicle. You’ll get 0% Intro APR on purchases for the first 12 months, followed by a standard 14.74% (Variable) APR. Other perks include:

  • Lots of rewards! 5% Earnings on purchases of GM parts, accessories and service at authorized GM Dealers. 3% Earnings on purchases at gas stations, restaurants and office supply stores. 1% Earnings on all other purchases..
  • $0 annual fee.
  • No foreign transaction fee.

2. The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card from American Express

The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card from American Express
American Express is a Nav Partner
Terms and Conditions

The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card from American Express

Get rewarded for business as usual. Earn 2X points on everyday business purchases such as Learn More

This card has a 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, plus $0 annual fee.

Cardholders have the ability to Earn 2X points on everyday business for the first $50,000 in purchases per year, 1 point per dollar thereafter.

Best Credit Builder Business Credit Cards

Depending on your credit, the best bet to find a credit builder business credit card might be to find a secured credit card. A secured credit card requires the holder to provide a cash collateral deposit that secures the credit limit of the card (or possibly more, depending on the card). These secured cards generally have low to no annual fee, but a pretty high penalty APR. If you have a bad credit score or no credit score, secured credit cards are a solid bet.

One good option for a secured business credit card is the Wells Fargo Business Secured Card.

Wells Fargo Business Secured Card

This card allows cardholders to secure a credit limit between $500 and $25,000. The amount available is equal to the amount of cash you provide to secure the line. The purchase APR rate can be as low as a variable 13.15%, and the annual fee is $25 per card.

This card allows business owners with poor personal credit to secure a card to make purchases and establish your business credit. This card will only report to personal credit bureaus if you default or are late on payments.

If you have fair credit, the Capital One Spark Classic for Business card could be a great option.

The Capital One Spark Classic for Business

Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business

Enjoy no annual fee. Earn 1% cash back on every purchase, every day. Build business credit Learn More

The Capital One Spark Classic for Business card allows cardholders to earn rewards without needing excellent personal credit scores to qualify. Business owners who make on time payments and keep their balances low can build strong business credit scores, however your payment history on this card may be reported to personal credit reporting agencies and affect your personal credit scores.

Other perks include:

  • $0 annual fee.
  • Rewards rate of 1% Cash Back on every purchase, every day..

Which Card Is Right for You?

If you are a business owner and do not yet have a business credit card, you should strongly consider making the time to find a card that is right for you. Identify your main motivation for making purchases on credit (i.e. earn rewards, build credit for a future loan, use it as a short-term financing option, etc.), and find out where your credit scores stand (you can check your personal and business credit scores for free on Nav). This will help you narrow the field and begin comparing some of the best business credit cards on the market.

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About the Author — Lydia serves as Content Manager for Nav, which provides business owners with simple tools to build business credit and access to lending options based on their credit scores and needs.

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