The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses
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Business cards are intended for small businesses, sole proprietors, or any consumer who wishes to divide his or her company's spending with a separate card. For example, when I was a business traveler, I used a business card to charge my reimbursable expenses. I still had to apply for the card using my own credit, and I alone was responsible for payment. Using a business card allowed me to segregate my personal expenses from those my company was reimbursing me for. Today, I hold a variety of business and personal cards to maximize the features of each. (See also: 250+ Tips for Small Business Owners)
The Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses
Like personal cards, the market for business cards has been characterized by ever-increasing rewards and perks. Therefore, the selection criteria for the top business cards have been weighted heavily towards the rewards offered. These are my favorites.
The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN
The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN is a charge card which awards a 1.5% discount on the portion of your balance that is paid within 10 days of your statement closing date. Although it is a charge card which requires you to pay your balance in full each month, you do have the option to pay at least the minimum payment (10% of the balance from new activity plus previously deferred balances) by the due date and defer payment of the rest of the balance until your new payment due date without incurring interest. Unlike other charge cards, this gives you up to 60 days to pay your balance without paying interest. New cardholders can earn a $200 statement credit after each $10,000 you spend on the card, up to $30,000 within the first three months of membership. There is no foreign transaction fee. There is an introductory annual fee of $0 for the first year. After that it is $250. Terms and limitations apply.
SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express
If you want the quality and service of an American Express card for your business but don't want to commit to a charge card, try the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express. Get 5% cash back on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. office supply stores, 3% cash back on the category of your choice from a list of eight categories and 1% cash back on other purchases. For a limited time, you can earn up to $500 in statement credits after you meet the spending requirements (offer expires 1/25/2017). You also get a 0% intro APR on purchases for the first 9 months (then 12.74% - 19.74% variable). The best thing about this card? The annual membership fee is $0! Terms and limitations apply.
Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business
With the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business, you can get 2% cash back on all purchases. There are no categories, no limits on your rewards, and no minimum redemption amount. New cardmembers can also earn a one-time $500 cash bonus after spending $4,500 on purchases within three months of approval. You can get employee cards at no additional cost and earn rewards on their business spending. There is a $59 annual fee for this card that is waived the first year, and there are no foreign transaction fees.
The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN
American Express offers a line of business credit and charge cards, but their latest addition, the Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN offers business owners truly flexible rewards. Choose one of 5 categories to earn 3x points on and earn 2x points on the other 4 categories, up to $100,000 in purchases in each of the 5 categories per year. Earn 1x points on other purchases. Note that this is a charge card. You must pay in full every month.
Sign up offer: Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $5,000 in purchases on the Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership. The annual fee of $175 is waived for the first year. Terms and limitations apply.
Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business
The Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business offers 2x miles per dollar spent on every purchase, every day. There is a bonus offer right now to get a one-time 50,000 miles after spending $4,500 within 3 months of approval. This card is also versatile in rewards redemptions. If you don't want to spend your miles on travel, you can redeem them for merchandise, gift cards, and even cash. There is a $59 annual fee for this card that is waived the first year.
Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express
With the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express, you can earn five Starpoints for each dollar spent at Starwood properties and one point for each dollar spent on other purchases. New cardholders can earn 25,000 bonus points after making $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. This card also includes benefits such as free in-room internet, complimentary access to Sheraton Club lounge, and SPG Elite status. Terms and conditions apply The variable APR is 15.74% - 19.74%. There is no foreign transaction fee for international purchases. The annual fee of $95 is waived the first year.
The Enhanced Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN
The Enhanced Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN is a charge card for business owners who travel often. This card offers one point for each dollar you spend on qualifying purchases under $5,000 and 1.5 points for each purchase $5,000 or more, plus travel benefits such as access to Delta Sky Club airport lounges, Priority Pass Select, and American Express Centurion lounges. You also get a $200 annual airline fee credit and a $100 credit toward the Global Entry application fee or $85 for the TSA PreCheck program. For a limited time, you can earn up to 100,000 points after meeting spending requirements. (Offer expires January 25, 2017.) Terms and restrictions apply. There are no foreign transaction fees. The annual fee is $450.
By carefully considering the best business cards on the market, you can choose the product that best meets your needs.