It’s easy to think that applying for a business credit card online is super simple. After all, with all of the advertisements that boast “30-second approval” and “streamlined applications,” many business owners end up imagining that all it takes to apply for a business credit card is … well, pressing an “apply” button. And that’s it.
If only there were a magic button that made a business credit card appear on your doorstep!
Of course, applying for a business credit card today is easier than ever, and that you can apply for a one online without leaving your home is actually pretty remarkable. That said, there are still a few logistics to cover in order to apply for a business credit card online. And they easily get swept under the rug in the excitement of an ever-easier process.
Let’s learn what these logistics are in order to have a full grasp on how to apply for a business credit card online:
Before You Apply for a Business Credit Card Online, Read the Fine Print
Because applying for a business credit card online is so easy these days, it’s all that much easier to apply for a business credit card that you’re not fully familiar with.
So, before you start that application, you have to be sure that you’ve familiarized yourself with the terms you’re agreeing to. Which means combing through all of the fine print. Here are some particularly important details you need to keep a keen eye on before you apply for a business credit card online:
Off the bat, the first question you need to ask: Will you have to pay an annual lump sum to use the business credit card you’re planning on applying for online?
Hefty annual fees will temper many of the sweetest business credit card deals, and they can even get as pricey $450 a year. However, many of these do end up essentially paying for themselves in perks, rewards, discounts, welcome bonuses, and rebates—fees aren’t a bad thing, but they are something you need to be cognizant of.
There’s a chance that you’ll also see some other fees associated with your business credit card in addition to the annual fee.
You need to check in on the miscellaneous fees that a business credit card comes with before you apply for it online. These miscellaneous fees could include penalty fees for late or bounced payments, foreign transaction fees for spending abroad, and balance transfer fees for bringing a pre-existing balance to your new account.
You also need to read up on the various APRs that a business credit card comes with before applying for it online. Your card, of course, will come with its primary APR—the one that will apply to any balance you carry from month to month.
But it will also come with a variety of APRs for different situations, too. Some cards, for instance, come with a 0% intro APR for a certain number of months after account opening. This intro APR could apply to purchases, balance transfers, or even both. But after that, a variable APR sets in at a rate depending on your creditworthiness. This rate will also vary with the market.
Additionally, if you take out a cash advance with a business credit card, then you’ll likely accrue interest with a higher APR than your default one. Not to mention, if you don’t make a minimum payment on time—or a payment bounces—you’ll also pay a higher APR on your balance.
That’s where taking a magnifying glass to that fine print becomes so extra important—the details of the various APRs for any business credit card are detailed in the terms, so be sure you comb through before signing on the dotted line.
Last but certainly not least, you need to make sure you’re eligible for the business credit card in question before you decide to pull the trigger and formally apply for it.
When you apply for a business credit card, the credit card issuer pulls a hard credit inquiry on your personal credit to see if you qualify. And that’s the kind of credit inquiry that can dent your credit score.
That’s not to say that getting your hands on the perfect business credit card isn’t worth the hard credit inquiry it’ll require. However, credit card issuers often provide a minimum personal credit score they’re willing to issue to. So, if your personal credit doesn’t meet that minimum requirement, why take the ding to your credit score in vain?
Checking the eligibility requirements for a business credit card is a small step, but this precaution could save you some dashed hopes and quite a few points on your personal credit score.
Applying for a Business Credit Card Online: Information You’ll Need
Now that you’ve done your due diligence in making sure that you should apply online for the business credit card you’re considering, it’s time to prep all of the information necessary to go for it.
Although you don’t need any formal documentation to apply for a business credit card online, you do need a fair bit of technical information on both your business and yourself.
Beyond the basics, like names, titles, and contact information, what stats do you need to have at the ready when you apply for a business credit card online?
Business Stats to Know
When you apply for a business credit card online, you’ll need to know a good bit of nitty-gritty information on your business. Though some of this information might be knowledge that you have on hand, some of it also might require a bit of digging:
- Business legal structure
- Business ownership type
- Years in business
- Number of employees
- Business age
- Federal tax ID number
- Annual revenue
- Monthly spend
Personal Stats to Know
You also need to have some personal information at the ready when you apply for a business credit card online. Although this is a business card, yes, issuers will lend a lot of weight to your personal credit history when deciding whether or not you qualify for the business credit card you’ve applied for.
Because you—as the business owner—will be the one handling the card in question, issuers will look to your personal financial responsibility as an indication of how risky it is to extend your business a line of credit.
As such, you need to provide enough information for the business credit card issuer to make an inquiry into your personal credit. Plus, a business credit card online application will likely ask for your general financial obligations in order to get a better idea of where you stand with your own finances.
Here’s the personal information you need to gather to apply for a business credit card online:
- Social Security number
- Annual income
- Non-taxable income
- Monthly rent/mortgage payment
Taking the Step to Apply for a Business Credit Card Online
With all of the prep work out of the way, let’s get to the exciting stuff—actually choosing which business credit card to apply for online.
Though the details will be in the fine print, of course, the big picture for these business credit cards is pretty stellar.
Check out some of the top business credit cards that you should seriously consider applying to through their online applications:
The American Express Blue Business Plus
The Blue Business Plus offers the longest 0% intro APR period on the market—with this business credit card, you’ll gain access to a solid 12 months of interest-free balances. This means that, as long as you make your minimum monthly payment on time every month, then you can carry a balance that won’t gain a cent of interest for 12 months. After that, you’ll have to check in with Amex for terms and conditions on the latest APR information.
For business owners who need to make a big-ticket purchase and pay it off gradually, the Blue Business Plus’s 12-month 0% intro APR can be a game-changer.
You’ll be able to earn a sustained 2x rewards rate on the first $50,00 you spend every year with the Blue Business Plus. And there’s no annual fee at all.
The Chase Ink Business Preferred
If you’re looking for the most generous welcome bonuses available on the market, then look no further than the Chase Ink Business Preferred.
If you spend $5,000 during your first three months after opening your Ink Preferred account, you’ll earn 80,000 bonus points. And those 80,000 points actually get you quite a lot if you redeem them through Chase’s travel portal, Chase Ultimate Rewards—about $1,000 worth of free travel.
After that welcome bonus, you’ll continue to earn 3x rewards for the first $150,000 you spend annually.
If you’re considering applying for this business credit card, be sure to note that you have to pay an annual fee of $95 to access these rewards. That said, if you end up earning the Ink Preferred’s welcome bonus, its annual fee will feel like small change stacked up against those bonus points.
Are You Ready to Apply for a Business Credit Card Online?
With all of this information under your belt, you’re ready to dive into the easy part—simply applying!
Because you’ve chosen to apply for a business credit card online, the prep work—including choosing which business credit card to apply for and prepping all of the necessary information—is the most involved part of the process.
Now that you’ve made it through this guide to making the most out of applying for a business credit card online, you’ll be upgrading your business spending in no time.