If you aren’t using a business credit card for your business expenses, then you’re leaving money on the table in the form of reward points or cash back. When used correctly, a business credit card is a valuable tool that you can use for either financing your business or simply earning a return on the money you’re already spending every month.
Considering all the different business credit cards on the market, it’s smart to take your time and choose the card that’s right for your needs. To help you narrow it down, here are the top five business credit cards currently on the market.
1. Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
• APR: 16.49 to 21.49% variable APR.
• Annual Fee: $95.
• Rewards: 3 points per $1 spent on travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services, on advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines, up to a limit of $150,000 per account anniversary year. All other spending earns 1 point per $1 spent.
• Sign-up Bonus Offer: 80,000 points for spending $5,000 in the first 3 months.
• Additional Benefits: Get 25% more when redeeming your points on airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
The Chase Ink Business Preferred card earns you an excellent reward rate on several spending categories that are common for business spending. The 80,000-point bonus offer is one of the best on the market, and the Chase Ultimate Rewards program has many different transfer partners available.
The annual fee is fairly affordable for what this card offers. The only drawback is the interest rate on this card is a bit high. If you’re going to carry a balance, then it may not be the best choice. However, if you pay your bill in full every month, this card is an excellent option for racking up rewards.
2. American Express SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card
• APR: 0% introductory APR for 9 months, then 12.74, 17.74 or 19.74-percent APR.
• Annual Fee: $0.
• Rewards: 5% cash back at U.S. office supply stores and on wireless telephone services from U.S. providers. 3% cash back on a category you choose, from a list of eight, up to $50,000 in spending per calendar year. All other spending earns 1% cash back.
If you prefer the simplicity of cash back instead of the more complex world of reward points, then you’ll be very happy with the American Express SimplyCash Plus. The 5% and 3% cash back offers allow you to earn excellent money back on your spending.
Although the $50,000 cap does mean that this card is best for smaller businesses with lower monthly spending. Being able to choose a cash back category for the 3% offer is also helpful for getting more back.
You don’t get any sort of sign-up bonus with this card, but the 0% APR introductory offer is useful if you want to borrow money interest-free for up to 9 months to finance your business. Having no annual fee is also a big benefit that isn’t available with many other business cards.
3. Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card
• APR: 15.74%, 17.74% or 19.74% variable APR.
• Annual Fee: $95, waived for the first year.
• Rewards: Up to 5 Starpoints per $1 spent at participating SPG hotels, 2 Starpoints as a card carrier and 2 to 3 possible Starpoints as an SPG member. 2 Starpoints per $1 spent at participating Marriott Rewards hotels and 1 Starpoint per $1 spent on all other purchases.
• Sign-up Bonus Offer: 25,000 points for spending $5,000 in the first 3 months
• Additional Benefits: Credit for 5 nights and 2 stars towards SPG Elite status annually, and receive complimentary access to the Sheraton Club lounge.
As far as hotel business credit cards go, the Starwood Preferred Guest card ranks near the top. What makes this card great is the versatility of Starpoints, as Starwood has numerous airline and hotel transfer partners. With many airlines, you can transfer 20,000 Starpoints and earn a 5,000-mile bonus, which means you’ll get 25,000 frequent flyer miles.
The reward rate and bonus on this card aren’t the best, so the main perk is the flexibility of its rewards. If your business has high spending and tends to use a variety of different hotels and airlines, then this card will be an excellent fit.
4. Capitol One Spark Cash Business Credit Card
• APR: 17.49% variable APR.
• Annual Fee: $59, waived for the first year.
• Rewards: 2% unlimited cash back per $1 spent on all purchases.
• Sign-up Bonus Offer: $500 cash bonus for spending $4,500 in the first 3 months.
The Capitol One Spark Cash card is as simple as it gets when it comes to business credit cards, as you get the same reward rate on every purchase without any limits. Whether this card or the American Express SimplyCash Plus are better for you depends on your business’s typical spending habits, particularly how much you spend.
If your business has small to moderate spending, then the American Express card will likely provide you with the superior return due to its 5% and 3% cash back options up to $50,000 in spending and its lack of an annual fee. Businesses that spend well over $50,000 per year will be better off with the Capitol One Spark Cash card because of its 2% unlimited cash back.
5. Capitol One Spark Miles Select Business Credit Card
• APR: 0% introductory APR for 9 months, then 13.49% to 21.49% variable APR.
• Annual Fee: $0
• Rewards: Unlimited 1.5 miles per $1 spent on all purchases.
• Sign-up Bonus Offer: 20,000 miles for spending $3,000 in the first 3 months
Again, Capitol One provides a card that keeps it simple, offering you a solid reward rate on all your purchases without requiring you to consider spending categories or annual spending caps. You also benefit from the 0% introductory APR, allowing you to pay no interest on purchases for the first 9 months.
Capitol One’s miles don’t have as many transfer options as points in other reward programs, such as Chase Ultimate Rewards or SPG. The other downside is you won’t earn extra points for spending on travel like you would with several Chase cards.
However, the lack of a spending cap is still very useful if your business spends quite a bit annually. This card is best for businesses with high spending in a variety of categories that are also able to take advantage of the travel rewards.
As you can see, every business credit card is a bit different in what it offers, and there really isn’t one single best option. To decide which card is right for your business, analyze your spending, including the amount you spend per month and how you spend it. Then, select the card that will earn you the most cash back or the highest rewards, depending on which of those you prefer.
Keep in mind that if you choose a rewards credit card, you need to make sure that you can redeem the points with your preferred airlines or hotels, so take a look at the redemption options and transfer partners.