A Comprehensive Look at Each American Express Business Credit Card

Georgia McIntyre

Georgia McIntyre

Finance Writer at Fundera
Georgia McIntyre is the resident Finance Writer at Fundera. She specializes in all things small business finance, from lending to accounting. Questions for Georgia? Comment below!
Georgia McIntyre
Advertiser Disclosure

Editor’s Note: American Express is a partner of Fundera.

So you’re on the hunt for the perfect business credit card for your small business.

Congrats! You’ve made a great first step. Every business owner can benefit from using a business credit card—that’s for sure.

But not every business credit card will be the perfect fit for you. So when you’re searching for the best business credit card for your company, you’ll need to think long and hard about what you’re looking for in your card.

How do you want to earn rewards? Points or cash back? And are you willing to pay an annual fee?

These are just a few of the questions you’ll have to ask yourself along the way.

To make things easier for you, we’ve put together a guide to each American Express business credit card out there, comparing them on what you care about most: rewards, sign-up bonuses, and annual fees.

The Blue for Business American Express Business Credit Card

The Basics:

The first American Express business credit card we’ll take a look at is the Blue for Business Credit Card.

The Blue for Business Credit Card works on a points system. Every time you swipe your Blue for Business card, you’ll be racking up Membership Rewards points.

Sounds fancy, but how does the Membership Rewards system work? And most importantly, how will your business benefit?

Depending on the American Express business credit card you sign up for, you’ll earn a certain number of Membership Rewards points for each dollar you spend. Then, you can redeem those points on the American Express website and use them at eligible retailers and services—like supermarkets, gas stations, restaurants, offices supply stores, airlines, hotels, and more.

Interested? We thought you might be.

Here’s how this American Express business credit card stacks up.

Rewards Program:

The Blue for Business Credit Card works on the Membership Rewards points system.

So when you make purchases on this American Express business credit card, you’ll earn reward points that you can redeem to use on everyday business expenses, travel costs, and employee rewards.

The Blue for Business Credit Card is a great fit for business owners who don’t want to spend the time juggling their rewards earnings. You’re a busy small business owner—and having to remember to switch your rewards category is just another thing to add to your plate.

This American Express business credit card gives you the straightforward rewards you might be looking for. You’ll earn 1 Membership Reward point for every $1 spent on eligible purchases, with no limit on what you can earn in points.

On top of the basic rewards earnings for the Blue for Business Credit Card, you also have the opportunity to earn 2 Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent through the American Express Travel website.

When it comes to everyday spending for your business, we think this American Express business credit card has a solid points system. But here’s where its rewards program really shines:

You’ll get an annual 30% Membership Rewards points bonus on your all your purchases from the past year. That means if you spend $20,000 on your Blue for Business Credit Card over the whole year, you’ll earn an additional 6,000 Membership Rewards points.

When you tack that onto what you’ve already earned throughout the year, you’ll see substantial rewards benefits that you can reinvest in your business.

blue business cta

Sign-Up Bonus:

American Express also gives you a welcome offer when you sign up for the Blue for Business Credit Card.

You’ll get 10,000 Membership Rewards points just by making one purchase on the card—within 3 months of owning it.

You might not think this is that huge of a deal, but we believe you should be psyched about this sign-up bonus.

In most cases, you’ll only get a sign-up bonus if you spend a certain amount of money on the card within the first 3 or so months. It’s always great to get more points back to your business, don’t get us wrong, but it’s not as exciting when you have to spend thousands of dollars to just to qualify for a welcome offer.

That’s not the case with this American Express business credit card. Just one purchase and you’ll earn 10,000 points—which is valued at $100 in gift cards at certain merchants.

Plus, you’ll get an additional 15,000 points when you’ve spent another $5,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of owning the card.

So after the Blue for Business Credit Card’s sizable Membership Rewards points program, the sign-up bonus on this American Express business credit card is just the cherry on top.

Annual Fee:

Budgeting for the annual fee on the Blue for Business Credit Card is easy—there isn’t one.

This American Express business credit card have a $0 annual fee—meaning you won’t lose the valuable rewards you earn with this business credit card to an annual fee.

Plus, the Blue for Business comes with an introductory APR of 0% for 15 months (with a variable APR of 11.99% to 19.99% thereafter). In a lot of ways, having this 0% APR for 15 months is like a free loan for more than a year.

Why This American Express Business Credit Card Is Great For You

The Blue for Business Credit Card offers straightforward—but significant—Membership Rewards points.

With this American Express business credit card, you won’t have to spend time calculating and optimizing your spending categories so you’ll earn the most points on your purchases—you’ll get an easy 1 point for every eligible purchase.

And unlike most business credit cards with substantial rewards, you won’t have to dish out what you earn in annual fees.

blue business cta

The SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

The Basics:

While the Blue for Business Credit Card gives you points for your spending, the SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card works on a cash back rewards system.

And when you consider just how much cash you can earn back with this American Express business credit card, you’ll quickly realize why it’s considered one of the best business credit cards on the market.

Rewards Program:

The cash back rewards on the SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card are, well… Simple. Every time you use this card, you’ll be getting cash back on your purchases—it’s as easy as that.

American Express makes it even more straightforward for you by automatically crediting your statement with the cash back you’ve earned. There’s no jumping through hoops to redeem the cash back.

But just because this American Express business credit card is simple to use doesn’t mean you won’t be earning a lot of cash back on your purchases.

Here’s what you’ll get:

  • 5% cash back on any purchases with office supply stores and wireless telephone services in the United States—up to $50,000 in purchases. After that, you’ll earn 1% cash back for purchases in these two categories.
  • 3% cash back on the category of your choice:
    • Purchases at U.S. gas stations
    • Purchases at U.S. restaurants
    • Purchases for shipping in the U.S.
    • Purchases for advertising in the U.S.
    • Computer hardware, softwares, and cloud computing purchases in the U.S.
    • Airfare purchased directly from airlines
    • Hotel stays
    • Purchases from eligible car rental companies

And again, once you’ve spent $50,000 on your category, your earnings go down to 1% cash back.

  • 1% cash back on everything else.

The flexibility of your 3% cash back category makes the SimplyCash Plus a great option for small business owners.

Your rewards are completely customizable—allowing you to earn on the categories you spend the most on.

simplycash-cta

Sign-Up Bonus:

When you consider the 5% and 3% cash back earnings, you’ll be bringing in a lot of savings on your purchases… And the welcome bonus on this American Express business credit card just adds to your cash back rewards.

For a limited time, earn even more cash back: Earn up to $400 cash back as statement credits. Earn a $200 statement credit after you spend $5,000 in qualifying purchases on your Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership. Plus, earn an additional $200 statement credit after you spend an additional $10,000 or more in qualifying purchases on your Card within the first year of Card Membership.

Annual Fee:

Just like the Blue for Business card, the SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card comes with a $0 annual fee.  

You’ll also get a 0% intro APR for 9 months, with a variable APR of 12.99% to 19.99% thereafter.

An Extra Perk:

There’s one more thing about the SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card that we can’t help but mention.

With this American Express business credit card, you’ll get what Amex’s calls “buying power.”

Here’s what that means for you.

The SimplyCash Plus is a business credit card—no doubt about it. Unlike charge cards, business credit cards come with a credit limit that you can’t spend over.

But with the SimplyCash Plus, things work a little differently. American Express lets you spend above your credit limit and still earn cash back on those purchases—with no need to notify American Express or worry about overlimit fees. You’ll just need to pay off the amount above your credit limit in full each month as a part of your minimum payment due, like you would with a charge card.

This added bonus is great for small business owners who need the flexibility to spend big on their business.

Why This American Express Business Credit Card Is Great For You

If you’re a frequent spender at office supply stores or wireless telephone services, you won’t find a better business credit card on the market. Plus, we’re willing to bet that you spend a fair amount in one of those eight 3% cash back categories for your business.

The bottom line on the SimplyCash Plus?

This level of cash back earnings with no need to dish out an annual fee is pretty unheard of for an American Express business credit card.

simplycash-cta

Which American Express Business Credit Card is Right For You?

Both of these American Express business credit cards are pretty great… But which one is the right fit for your business?

Well, it really comes down to how you prefer to bring in your rewards. Do you prefer to have cash automatically credited to your statements? Or do you want to take advantage of the Membership Rewards points system?

In the end, they both offer significant savings without too much hassle when it’s time to cash-in.

Are you ready to apply?

apply for all cta

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 of these entities.
Georgia McIntyre

Georgia McIntyre

Finance Writer at Fundera
Georgia McIntyre is the resident Finance Writer at Fundera. She specializes in all things small business finance, from lending to accounting. Questions for Georgia? Comment below!
Georgia McIntyre

2 Comments

Most Recent

  • Matthew

    Monday, February 13th, 2017

    Very helpful post.

  • Ben Rashkovich

    Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

    Nice! It's super useful to have all the cards laid out right next to each other.

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