*Editorial Note: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.
Whether you are a start-up or an established business, you should have at least one business credit card. Consider what your business needs most. Choose travel rewards, a long 0% introductory APR or all businesses can benefit from cash back.
Here’s our list of 2017's top 10 business cards. Find the right card to grow your business and apply online at the bank’s secure application site.
Top Cash Back
The Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card is a cash-back winner for businesses that spend a lot on office supplies, phone or internet services. Its simplicity and strong cash-back rewards make it a slam dunk if you don't want an annual fee and you spend a lot in their categories.
Your business can earn an impressive 5% cash back for spending at office supply stores, cellular phones, landlines, internet and cable TV services up to $25,000 a year. Take home another 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent on gas station and restaurant spending and 1% on all other purchases, with no limits on the amount of cash back you can earn. If your business has to make a big purchase soon, this card offers a long purchase intro APR rate 0% for 12 Months, which gives you time to carry a balance interest free. And, there's a generous sign on bonus. Earn a $300 cash back bonus when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Drawback: If you don't spend a lot in these categories, consider The Capital One® Spark® Cash Select for Business to maximize overall cash back. This card offers unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase and no annual fee.
Verdict: If your business spends a lot at office supply stores, or on phone or internet spending, the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card could be your cash-back machine.
Annual Fee: $0
This powerful no-fee cash back card offers 5% cash back on spending at U.S. office supply stores and at U.S. wireless telephone service providers. Then, you get the power to choose 3% cash back on one of 8 popular business categories, and then earn 1% on other purchases. This card also offers benefits the flexibility of a 0% on Purchases for 9 months introductory APR.
Drawback: This card has a foreign transaction fee of 2.7%. If your business frequently takes you abroad, consider the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business, which has no foreign transaction fees and offers unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase.
Verdict: As long as you don't travel a lot internationally for business, the power to customize a spending category makes this no-annual fee card a valuable cash-back card.
Annual fee: $0
Does your business spend thousands on gas or office supplies? If you answered yes, the Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card is your no-annual fee cash-back powerhouse.
The on-going rewards rate is 3% cash back on purchases at gas stations and office supply stores, 2% on purchases at restaurants, and 1% on all other purchases (Annual cap of $250,000 on combined gas station and office supply store purchases; then 1% earn rate after that). Other cards also offer gas and office supply rewards, but the Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card stands above the crowd with a massive annual cap on combined gas station, and office supply purchases. You'll earn a respectable $200 statement credit after $500 in purchases within 60 days of account opening. If you foresee some cash flow lags ahead, this card will give you a generous 0% APR for the first 9 billing cycles.
Drawback: The sign-up bonus is respectable, but not rock star. If you are looking for a card that starts out with a bigger bang, the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express has a Special Offer where card holders can earn up to $400 cash back. Read those details here.
Verdict: If you run a business with multiple vehicles that you are filling with gas, you can pump up cash rewards significantly with the Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card due to the high annual cap.
Annual fee: $0
There are no spending categories with the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business card. You earn cash back on everything. Period. For simplicity, this is one of the best cash back business cards available. You earn an unlimited 2% cash back for all your business spending from computer hardware to software to break room snacks. This card has one of the best sign-up bonuses we've seen. Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
Drawback: There is a $59 annual fee. It's waived the first year, but then you will pay $59.
Verdict: If you want to maximize cash-back from ALL business spending, or don't necessarily spent a lot in a couple of categories, this card is a great choice for your business.
Annual fee: $0 intro for first year; $59 after that
Top Travel Cards
This card proves you don't have to be rich to travel well. If you are a frequent business traveler, The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN offers exclusive membership benefits well worth the price of admission. This card unlocks the door to complimentary access at more than 1,000 airport lounges. You'll enjoy free Wi-Fi at more than 1 million Boingo hotspots and 24/7 complimentary concierge service that can arrange business lunch reservations or help you snag tickets to the big game for client entertaining.
If you are a frequent business traveler this card delivers a lot of powerful rewards that quickly offset its annual fee of $450. Card members can earn a $200 airline fee credit and credit for Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85) application, when you use your card.
This card packs a punch. You can earn up to 75,000 Membership Rewards® points welcome offer. 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 within your first 3 months of card membership. Keep earning: Earn 5X Points on flights and eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com. Earn 1.5 Points per dollar on qualifying purchases of $5,000 or more.
Drawback: You may get sticker shock from the high annual fee. But, for frequent travelers the benefits can quickly offset that cost. Also, this is a charge card. Benefits include no pre-set spending limits, but you need to pay your bill in full each month.
Verdict: This card is best for businesses with large travel expenses. If you spend a lot of business travel or business expenses in general, this card can return significantly more than its annual fee over the course of a year and deliver sophisticated perks that will help you enjoy the journey.
Annual fee: $450
The Bank of America® Business Advantage Travel Rewards World Mastercard® credit card is the best all-around business credit card for flexible travel reward. This $0 annual fee card offers you the opportunity to earn a quick 25,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in the first 60 days. Then, you will earn an unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 you spend on all purchases. When you use Bank of America® Travel Center, powered by Orbitz®, to book your travel and you'll earn 3 points for every dollar spent. There’s no limit to the number of points you can earn and the points do not expire. If your business may be cash strapped in the months ahead, this card can help with a 0% intro APR for the first 9 billing cycles from account opening. Then it switches to a variable rate.
Drawback: It's tough to find something to complain about with this card. But, if you are willing to cough up money for an annual fee you could earn slightly better travel rewards with the Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business (an unlimited 2x miles on every purchase).
Verdict: If flexible travel rewards are what you desire, this is the perfect card for you. Redeem your points for a statement credit to pay for flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars, or baggage fees. That means you won’t have to deal with blackout dates or travel restrictions when you book your trip. $0 annual fee, no international transaction fees.
Annual fee: $0
If your business spends a lot on non-travel related business expenses, this card can help you rack up travel rewards quickly. You will earn a generous earn 2 miles per $1 on every purchase. Fly on any airline, anytime with no blackout dates or seat restrictions. If you are traveling internationally, you'll pay $0 in foreign transaction fees when you use this card. The Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business card delivers a massive one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. The annual fee of $59 is waived for the first year.
Drawback: There is no introductory 0% APR on this card and there is an annual fee, which begins in the second year. If you have a big one-time business purchase in your future, or really don't want to pay an annual fee, consider this card instead: Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business. With that card you'll get solid travel rewards, no annual fee, plus 0% introductory APR on purchases for 9 months.
Verdict: This card is a great option if your business doesn't spend a lot on travel, but you want to build up travel rewards on your spending.
Annual fee: $0 intro for first year; $59 after that
Best Flexible Payment Card
The unique benefits of The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN help businesses with either unpredictable or very steady cash flow. Let us explain.
If you have unpredictable cash flow: If you run a seasonal business whether you are landscaping in the hot, summer months or plowing snow in the middle of a blizzard, cash flow can be unpredictable at times. The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN gives you up to 60 days to pay with no interest, if you pay your minimum due. That means greater flexibility for your business.
If you have steady cash flow: Get an early pay discount. If your business sees a regular revenue stream, you can get a 1.5% discount on the portion of your balance that you pay within 10 days of your statement closing date (as long as you pay at least your minimum payment due by the payment due date.)
Drawback: This is a charge card. That means you get big buying power with no pre-set spending limits. But you need to pay your bill in full each month, in order to avoid big penalty fees.
Verdict: Most other business cards have a grace period of about 25 days to pay your bill without a late fee, this card's generous Extra Days To Pay (up to 60) gives your business real wiggle room if you are waiting for invoices to be paid.
Annual fee: $0 for the first year, then $250
Best Points Cards
The Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card current has one of the best points sign up bonuses for any business card. You can earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. That’s worth a whopping $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Beyond the sign-up bonus, your business can earn 3 points per $1 spent on the first $150,000 in purchases spent on advertising at social media sites or search engines, travel, shipping purchases and internet and cable phone services.
Drawback: There's no introductory 0% APR period. With this card, plan to pay your balance in full each month for this card or pay a 16.74% - 21.74% Variable rate. Also, there is an annual fee.
Verdict: The rewards can be very lucrative especially for businesses with big spending in travel, shipping, telecom or advertising purchase with social media sites and search engines.
Annual fee: $95
Best Card For Good Credit
We’ve included the Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business card in our top 10 list as it offers business owners with less than perfect credit the opportunity for a solid no-annual fee card with streamlined 1% cash back on all spending.
Drawback: There is a relatively high variable rate. Consider a plan to pay off your bill each month so you can avoid paying interest charges.
Verdict: If your credit isn't perfect, this card helps you get down to business with access to capital and also the opportunity to build a stronger credit score if you make regular on-time payments.
Annual fee: $0
Start earning rewards your business can use today. More questions on business credit cards? See our FAQ.