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August 31, 2019

Best Bank for Small Business

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The right bank account can make or break your business. Narrow down your options and find the best fit with our guide.

Best Banks For Small Businesses

Here are the top banks to consider for your small business:

Finding the right bank for your small business is crucial to your daily operations and the future growth of your business. Not only is it important to keep your business finances separate, your bank should also help achieve your business goals.

Whether you need merchant services, credit cards, or loans to expand your business in the future, you should be able to go to your bank for solutions. Having an established relationship with a bank will help your possibilities in the future.

Below are our top banks for small businesses. Read on for a full breakdown of features, services, and fees.

    Chase

    Chase Total Business Checking®

    • Get $200 as a new Chase business checking client, when you open a Chase Total Business Checking® account with qualifying activities
    • Access to 16,000 ATMs and nearly 5,000 Chase branches
    • Chase has business specialists at your local branch to help with your business needs
    • Account Alerts are a great way to stay on top of your account's activity and enhance security
    • Unlimited electronic deposits at no charge, including Chase QuickDeposit℠, ACH and ATM

Wells Fargo: Best Overall Business Services

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Wells Fargo is the 3rd largest bank in the US. We like Wells Fargo as the best overall option because of their added benefits for small business accounts. Wells Fargo offers:

  • 4 checking options for different sized businesses
  • Full-service payroll features and employee benefits
  • Customized merchant processing options
  • Tax programs
  • Business credit cards
  • Unsecured business loans up to $100,000
  • Small business insurance

Recommended: Business Choice Checking
Well Fargo's most popular business checking account is best for growing small businesses. The opening deposit is just $25.

  • 200 free transactions per month ($0.50/item after that)
  • $7,500 in free cash deposits per month
  • Free text and mobile banking
  • Custom debit card to include your business logo
  • Zero Liability protection

There are many ways to waive the $14 monthly fee:

  • Post 10 or more business debit card purchases/payments each fee period
  • Maintain a linked Direct Pay service
  • Qualifying transactions from a linked Wells Fargo Merchant Services account
  • Qualifying transactions from a linked Wells Fargo Business Payroll Services account
  • Maintain $7,500 average balance

Small Business Credit Cards
Wells Fargo has three small business credit card options. For all three cards, you can choose to either earn 1.5% cash back OR 1 reward point for every $1 spent.

  • Business Platinum Credit Card: This is the basic business card. There is no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees, and no fees on up to 99 additional employee cards.
  • Business Secured Credit Card: A secured card allows you to get a business credit card when you have poor or limited credit history. There is a $25 annual fee.
  • Business Elite Credit Card: This card offers more rewards and purchasing power to businesses with over $1M in annual sales. You get $100 travel incidentals fee reimbursement per year. There is an annual fee of $125 ($0 the first year).

Small Business Loans
Wells Fargo offers many financing options for a variety of small businesses, including:

  • Business lines of credit with no collateral required
  • Unsecured business loans up to $100,000
  • Equipment express loans up to $100,000
  • Commercial real estate loans up to $1M
  • Small Business Administration (SBA) loans
  • Healthcare Practice Financing

Well Fargo offers a comprehensive search tool on their website to find the exact business loan your company needs. You can fill in what you need the loan for, how you want to access your funds, and whether you plan to put up collateral.

Merchant Services
Wells Fargo offers comprehensive card processing services, including:

  • In-person and online credit and debit card processing
  • Mobile payments through Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Virtual terminal for phone orders
  • Access to your funds as soon as the next business day
  • Variety of Clover POS devices
  • Customer rewards program

You can apply online if you have a Wells Fargo business checking account and have less than $500,000 in annual sales.

Payroll and HR Services
Wells Fargo is partnered with ADP to provide payroll and HR solutions. If you have a larger business with employees, this allows you to handle tasks like:

  • Sending direct deposits to employees
  • Keeping track of time and attendance
  • Background checks when hiring new employees
  • Staying on top of employment law compliance

Chase: Best for Small Business Credit Cards

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Chase is another large bank offering a variety of services for small businesses. It's especially known for its excellent business credit cards. Chase offers business solutions including:

  • 3 business checking account options
  • Business credit cards
  • Business loans
  • Merchant services

Recommended: Chase Total Business Checking
The Chase Total Business Checking account is best for a budding small business with limited activity (read full review). You get a small number of transactions, but unlimited electronic deposits, so it may be better for businesses that mostly deals electronically.

  • 100 free transactions per month ($0.40/item after that)
  • $5,000 in free cash deposits per month
  • Unlimited electronic deposits
  • Domestic and international wire transfers (fees apply)
  • Free online banking, online bill pay, and mobile deposits
  • Free Chase Business Debit Card
  • Set up multiple business account users

This basic account does not have advanced features, like linking business subaccounts and waiving non-Chase ATM fees.

You can waive the $15 monthly service fee by maintaining a minimum daily balance of $1,500 or keep certain accounts linked. The fee will be discounted if you enroll in paperless statements.

    Chase

    Chase Total Business Checking®

    • Get $200 as a new Chase business checking client, when you open a Chase Total Business Checking® account with qualifying activities
    • Access to 16,000 ATMs and nearly 5,000 Chase branches
    • Chase has business specialists at your local branch to help with your business needs
    • Account Alerts are a great way to stay on top of your account's activity and enhance security
    • Unlimited electronic deposits at no charge, including Chase QuickDeposit℠, ACH and ATM

Chase Business Credit Cards
Chase has some of the best business credit cards available.

  • Ink Business Preferred lets you earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. 80,000 points is worth $1,000 toward travel when you redeem via Chase Ultimate Rewards. Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases on travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year. Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases - with no limit to the amount you can earn. There are no foreign transaction fees. There is a $95 annual fee.

  • Ink Business Cash lets you earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Earn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year. Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year. Earn 1% cash back on all other card purchases with no limit to the amount you can earn. There is no annual fee.

    Plus, there is a 0% introductory APR on purchases for 12 months. After the intro period, a variable APR applies, currently 14.74% - 20.74%.

  • Ink Business Unlimited lets you earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase. There is no annual fee.

    Plus, there is a 0% introductory APR on purchases for 12 months. After the intro period, a variable APR applies, currently 14.74% - 20.74%.

Read our detailed comparison guide on the differences between these three cards.

Small Business Loans
Chase offers business financing solutions, including:

  • Small business term loans starting from $5,000
  • Business lines of credit up to $500,000
  • Commercial real estate loans starting from $50,000
  • SBA 7(a), SBA 504, and SBA Express loans
  • Equipment financing

Merchant Services
Chase's merchant services processes over $1 trillion in annual volume, serving both world-renowned companies and tiny startups.

  • Solutions to process credit cards in-person and online
  • Mobile reader, standalone terminal, and tablet POS
  • Virtual terminal for phone orders
  • Works with a variety of business software providers

Bank of America: Best Low-Cost Small Business Checking

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Bank of America is one of the largest physical banks in the US. This is a good choice if you're looking for convenience and wide presence. Bank of America offers:

  • 2 business checking options
  • Small business credit cards
  • Small business financing
  • Credit card processing solutions
  • Payroll processing

Recommended: Business Fundamentals Checking
This is the best BofA checking account for small businesses. It's easy to waive the maintenance fee and you get a decent number for free transactions and deposits.

  • 200 free transactions per month ($0.45/item after that)
  • $7,500 in free cash deposits per month
  • Free online and mobile banking
  • Free online bill pay and mobile deposits
  • Free business and employee debit cards
  • Business Investment Savings account for no additional monthly fee

Several ways to avoid the $16 monthly service fee include:

  • Spend $250 in new net purchases on a business debit or credit card.
  • Maintain a $5,000 average monthly balance.
  • Maintain a $3,000 daily balance.
  • Enroll in the Business Advantage Relationship Rewards program.

Small Business Credit Cards
Bank of America offers several business credit cards. These cards have no annual fee:

  • Business Advantage Cash Rewards: Earn 3% cash back on a category of your choice and 2% cash back on dining (on the first $50,000 in combined category/dining purchases each calendar year).
  • Business Advantage Travel Rewards: Earn unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 spent, and 3 points per $1 on travel purchases booked through the Bank of America Travel Center.
  • Platinum Plus Mastercard Business Card: This card offers lower interest rates, though it has no rewards.

Small Business Lending
Bank of America offers a variety of small business financing options:

  • Unsecured line of credit up to $100,000
  • Unsecured term loans up to $100,000
  • Secured lines of credit and loans
  • Commercial real estate loans
  • Business auto loans
  • Equipment loans from $25,000
  • SBA loans and more

Small business owners will automatically be able to apply for an unsecured business loan and unsecured business line of credit online. Most other loans require businesses to be in operation for at least two years.

For businesses with less than 2 years of operation, look into SBA-backed loans.

Merchant Services
Bank of America Merchant Services offers:

  • Card readers, terminals, and full POS systems
  • E-commerce payment gateway system
  • Virtual terminal for phone orders
  • Reporting and insights

Capital One: Best for High Volume Businesses

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For businesses with high number of transactions, Capital One is worth looking into. Its checking accounts allow for unlimited transactions for no additional fees. Capital One offers business services such as:

  • Business checking and savings
  • Business credit cards
  • Small business loans
  • Merchant services
  • Cash flow management solutions

Recommended: Spark Business Basic Checking
This account gives you unlimited transactions per month, so an affordable solution for businesses with high transaction volume. The minimum opening deposit is $250.

  • Unlimited transaction per month at no charge
  • $5,000 in cash deposits per month ($1 for every $1,000 deposited after that)
  • Free business debit card
  • Free online banking and bill pay
  • Free Overdraft Protection with a linked small business deposit account

The $15 monthly service fee can be waived if your prior 30- or 90-day account balance averages at least $2,000.

Small Business Credit Cards
Capital One Spark business credit cards are also popular. You can choose from cash back and travel rewards. All Capital One cards have no foreign transaction fees and free employee cards.

  • Capital One Spark Cash: Earn unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase.
  • Capital One Spark Miles: Earn unlimited 2x miles per dollar on every purchase, and 5X miles on hotel and rental car bookings through Capital One.
  • Capital One Spark Classic: For those with average credit. Earn unlimited 1% cash back on every purchase.

Read more in detail about Capital One business cards.

Small Business Loans
Capital One offers:

  • Lines of credit; No financial statement required for $50,000 and less
  • Business term loans starting from $10,000
  • Equipment loans starting from $10,000
  • Real estate loans up to $5M
  • SBA 7(a) & 504 Loans

Merchant Services
Capital One is partnered with Worldpay to provide credit card processing solutions.

Azlo (by BBVA): Best for Small E-Commerce Businesses

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Azlo is an online-only bank specifically for freelancers and entrepreneurs. If you don't need to visit a physical bank, you can keep your business banking affordable by going with Azlo. This bank is backed by BBVA and deposits are FDIC insured.

Recommended: The Small Business Checking Account
This account has no fees on any transactions whatsoever. There are also no service fees or minimum balance requirements.

  • Unlimited number of transactions - all free
  • Free domestic bank-to-bank transfers
  • Free debit card
  • Free ATM access at 55,000+ ATMs across the country
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • No fee for incoming wires
  • Mobile check deposits and online bill pay
  • Pay others with digital checks
  • Send digital invoices directly from your account
  • Square and Stripe integrations

Azlo is ideal for small e-commerce businesses because it can only send and receive digital payments and transfers. It's not ideal for businesses that deal in cash because it can't accept cash deposits.

You can also seamlessly integrate your Stripe and Square payment system. Azlo plans to add additional providers in the future.

Azlo has downsides that is not ideal for all businesses:

  • No small business lending
  • No small business credit card options
  • No cash deposits or check writing

Consumers Credit Union: Best Credit Union Option

Consider a credit union if you don't like the idea of a big bank. Credit unions are often more affordable and provide more personalized service.

We picked Consumers Credit Union as the top choice for small business owners because anyone can be eligible to join. You don't have to live or work in a certain region or industry. Plus, it offers great businesses services, such as:

  • Multiple checking options (including a free checking and one for non-profits)
  • No minimum balance for Business Savings account if you have a business checking account
  • Business loans
  • Merchant services

How to join Consumers Credit Union?
Anyone can join by simply becoming a member of the Consumers Cooperative Association for a one-time $5.00 membership fee.

Recommended: Freedom Checking
This basic business checking account has no monthly service fee or balance requirements. It's ideal for very new businesses with limited activity.

  • 100 free transactions per month
  • Free Visa debit card
  • Free business online banking

Business Loans
Consumers Credit Union offers these types of business loans:

  • Commercial mortgages up to 25 years
  • Equipment financing
  • Business lines of credit
  • Business Construction and Development Loans

Merchant Services
Consumers Credit Union is partnered with First Data to provide payment processing services.

How to Choose the Right Bank for Your Small Business

From annual fees to early termination rates to the size of the bank, there are many factors to consider.

  • Fees and balance requirements
    Is there a minimum balance or deposit requirements in order to waive the service fee? Can you meet that requirement?

  • Number of transactions
    How many transactions do you expect each month? Most banks offer a limited amount of free transactions, and you'll have to pay for each one beyond that. High volume businesses will want an account with unlimited or higher number of transactions.

  • Small or large bank
    Large national banks are more convenient and may have more options. But small local banks or credit unions offer more personalized service, and may be able to help you get a better deal on a loan or aid you financially if something happens.

  • Availability and convenience
    Do you want to bank in person? Does your bank have ATMs near your place of business? If you don't need in-person banking, then consider online banks, as they often have less fees.

  • Additional services and benefits
    Will you potentially want a loan in the future? Or merchant services and payroll programs? If so, look for a bank that offers these services to small business owners. Having a personal relationship with your bank may help you obtain these services.

  • Types of accounts
    Some banks offer small business checking accounts but may not have a savings account or financing possibilities.

  • Customer reviews
    Always read up on potential banks. Other customers will give you an idea of how easy it is to deal with the bank, or offer advice about banks as well.

Documents You Need To Open A Small Business Bank Account

Whether you plan to open your small business checking account online or in person, there are several documents you will need.

To open your account, you will need:

  • An employer identification number (EIN) or Social Security number, if you're a sole proprietor
  • The business formation documents
  • Ownership agreements
  • Business license
  • Business tax ID
  • Name, address, and state of your business and business owners

Keep in mind that these are some of the most common files that banks request. Some banks may ask for additional information.

Bottom Line

Consider all your options and your small business banking needs before committing to a bank.

Your choice doesn't have to be permanent. If you're unhappy with your choice, you can switch your bank at any time.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone. Please support CreditDonkey on our mission to help you make savvy decisions. Our free online service is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Chase. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by Chase. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.

Disclaimer: The information for the Ink Business Cash Credit Card and Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card has been collected independently by CreditDonkey. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

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Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
Apply for Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
At Chase's Secure Site
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases–with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Redeem points for travel, cash back, gift cards and more – your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Employee cards at no additional cost
  • $95 Annual Fee
  • Go to issuer's official application, terms, and details
Intro APR for PurchasesIntro APR for Balance TransferRegular APRAnnual Fee
N/AN/A
17.49% - 22.49% Variable
$95

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