Opening a Credit Card for Your New Business – What You Should Know

Opening a Credit Card for Your New Business – What You Should Know

A business credit card could be essential to your new small business—especially in the beginning. As you are just starting out, finding funding may be difficult. This is why sometimes turning to a business credit card is a necessity for brand new companies. But then again, are you going to be able to find a credit card that will qualify you? Despite your short amount of time in business, there are still cards out there that are available, particularly those that take into consideration personal credit history.

If you are currently in need of capital to keep your fledgling business up and running, then looking into the option of a business credit card may not be a bad idea. Below is a guide to understanding and reviewing your options when it comes to applying for credit cards.

Where to Begin with Your Business Credit Card

Some creditors won't even look at a brand new small business as there is not enough history on which to assess risk. Keep this in mind and don't get discouraged if you do get turned down by a few such credit card companies. That said, there are those out there that are willing to work with smaller companies, even brand new small businesses.

Once you find that credit card suited to your business needs, you may be able to benefit from such perks as air travel benefits, cash travel bonuses, loyalty programs, even cash back offers.

Just as with a personal credit card, a business card works in much the same way. You pay for what you need and then repay the amount charged to the said card. Repayment plans are based upon certain fees and if you do pay after the grace, you will start to accumulate interest on the initial amount charged.

Unlike your own credit card, however, the business card will be issued to the business itself and thus be in the company's name. As such, it is important that you only utilize these cards for business expenses and costs as they are not for personal usage.

How Do You Qualify?

Again, because you are a relatively new business, there is no available track record, meaning no credit history, and so the lender will use your personal history in order to try and get you qualified for the card. For reference sake, credit scores break down as follows:

  • Very Poor: 300-579
  • Fair: 580-669
  • Good: 670-739
  • Very Good: 740-799
  • Exceptional: 800-850

Additionally, it is not out of the ordinary for the primary cardholder to make a deposit in order to secure the card. The amount of money that you put down will impact the amount of credit that you are able to get.

Over time, as you build up your business credit history, then you will have more flexibility when it comes to finding cards that do not require a deposit, and that offer you lower rates with higher limits. Just make sure to stay on top of the repayment.

Do You Really Need a Credit Card?

Certainly you do not have to have a credit card; however again, this is a great way to establish a track record, take advantage of some of the startup perks and get that money you need when more traditional lending routes are closed to you due to your negligible time in business.

Sometimes you may find business cards offering 0% APR—this is definitely something to take advantage of. This means a lower monthly repayment and thus bigger savings over the long run.

How to Choose a Credit Card For Your Business

There are currently a number of great business credit cards out there. The question is, how exactly do you choose…Here is a quick overview of some of the more popular business credit cards:

OpenSky Secured Visa

This one is particularly good for those looking into getting a business card for the very first time. The best part: no credit check. They do still report to the 3 main credit bureaus, thus enabling anyone to start building up their business credit history. They do however require a $200 deposit upon opening up the card.


  • The absence of One-Time Fees
  • $35 Annual Fees
  • 19.39% Regular APR
  • No Credit Check

First Progress Platinum Select Mastercard

This is a very popular one for just starting out businesses with little to no credit history. Very low annual fees and no initial one time fee make this one you should definitely check out.

Not all states though offer this card—one such state being New York. For those who do have access to this business card, within a few months, you can really start to establish your creditworthiness.


  • The absence of One-Time Fees
  • $39 Annual Fees
  • 14.49% Regular APR
  • Easy and Fast Online Application

Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express

For this one, while you don't have to have a business credit history, you do have to have good personal credit.

Generally speaking, they are looking for credit scores over 700, so the approval is definitely a bit tougher than with some of the others on this list. If you do qualify, there is the incredible bonus of a 15 month 0% APR grace period.


  • 15-Month 0% APR
  • 2x Reward Points For First $50,000 Spent/Year
  • The absence of Annual or Monthly Fee

Capital One Spark Classic for Business

With this business card, you get 1% cash back on purchases as well as no annual fees with which to contend. This is also a good one for rebuilding personal credit in tandem with establishing your business's credit.
For those interested in this particular card, credit scores can be as low as 550, making this an easier one for some to attain. In fact, because of this, it has become one of the most popular among brand new businesses searching for that ideal card.


  • NoAnnual Fee
  • 1% Cash Back
  • 25.24% Regular APR

Are You Ready to Apply?

After reviewing and researching the various business cards out there, you really want to take the time to plan for how you intend to use the card. Overdoing it and overspending can get you in trouble and consequently have a detrimental effect on your score. Remember, you want to do everything you can to try and prove your business's creditworthiness. Be sure to take a look at things like cash back, perks, air miles, APR, grace periods and any incentives for startups that may be offered—you may find a card that works well for you and brings with it some terrific rewards! First Union offers credit card processing for those who have business credit cards. We are able to cut fees, offer support, and ease credit card transactions. Call today to find out more information!

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