A business credit card can be an excellent way to build your business credit history and manage your cash flow. Unfortunately, credit card issuers typically prefer borrowers with high business or personal credit scores. As a result, you might find that you have a difficult time being approved for a card with insufficient credit.
That's where secured business credit cards come in.
A secured credit card is one where you put down a security deposit, which serves as your credit limit. For example, if you wanted a credit limit of $10 000, you would put down a security deposit of $10 000. As you use the card and pay your bill each month, your credit gets better.
The best secured business credit cards offer decent interest rates and credit limits. Many even offer cashback rewards and the ability to upgrade to an unsecured credit card later on.
Keep reading to learn about the best secured business credit cards and which one is right for you.
Wells Fargo Business Secured Card
Best overall secured business credit card
The Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit card is a great option for small business owners. Because each account comes with spending reports and can have up to 10 cards, it's well-suited to businesses with several employees. Cards are available with credit limits ranging from $500 to $25 000.
Like many unsecured business credit cards, the Wells Fargo secured card comes with additional rewards for businesses, and you can choose which reward you want. The first option is to earn 1.5% cashback on qualifying purchases. You can also opt to earn one point on every $1 you spend and an additional 1000 bonus points in each billing cycle with at least $1000 on qualifying purchases.
The card has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees. You'll pay an interest rate of Prime + 11.90% on purchases and Prime + 20.74% on cash advances, with a grace period of up to 25 days on each purchase.
If you open a secured business card, Wells Fargo will periodically review your account and credit history. If you responsibly use your secured card and your credit history improves, then you may be upgraded to an unsecured card.
- No annual fee or foreign transaction fees
- Option of either cashback or rewards points
- Potential to upgrade to an unsecured credit card
- $25 000 credit limit for all Wells Fargo business cards
- Poor customer satisfaction among credit card users, according to a J.D. Power survey
- High interest rates on cash advances
First National Bank Business Edition Secured Credit Card
Best for a high credit limit
The First National Bank of Omaha Business Edition Secured Visa Card offers credit limits ranging from $2000 to $100 000. The card offers a significantly higher credit limit than many of its competitors, making it ideal for those businesses who need a high spending limit.
The card has an annual fee of $39 and a variable interest rate of 20.24% on purchases and balance transfers. The interest rate is based on the Prime Rate, meaning it's subject to change.
One downside of this card is that you must pay a security deposit of 110% of your desired credit limit. So if you want a credit limit of $100 000, you'll need a security deposit of $110 000. The good news, however, is that you can earn interest on your security deposit.
The First National Bank secured card comes with plenty of ideal features for businesses, including tracking expenses, spotting tax deductions, preparing tax filings, forecasting expenses, and managing cash flow.
- High credit limits
- Ability to earn interest on your security deposit
- Business management tools
- A required security deposit of 100% of your desired credit limit
- Higher interest rate than many competitors
- Annual fee required
OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card
Best for no credit checks
The OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card is technically personal, not a business one. But it's still available to small business owners. One of the greatest benefits of this card is that, unlike many of its competitors, there's no credit check required. As a result, this card is well-suited to those with extremely poor credit, such as those rebuilding after a bankruptcy.
The OpenSky card comes with credit limits ranging from $200 to $3000, and your refundable deposit will be equal to the credit limit you choose. Your security deposit is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
The card comes with a variable interest rate of 17.39% for both purchases and cash advances. The rate varies depending on the Prime Rate. Unfortunately, the card also has a $35 annual fee, a $6 or 5% fee (whichever is higher) for cash advances, and a 3% foreign transaction fee.
- No credit check is required to apply
- No bank account required
- Refundable deposit insured by FDIC
- Annual fee and foreign transaction fees
- No spending rewards
- The highest credit limit available is $3000
Discover It Secured Credit Card
Best for freelancers
The Discover It Secured Credit Card isn't technically a business card, but its perks make it good enough to be included on this list, and it's the perfect card for freelancers looking to boost their credit scores.
First, unlike many secured credit cards, the Discover secured card comes with rewards. You'll earn 2% cashback at gas stations and restaurants, 1% cashback on all other spendings, and with Cashback Match, you'll earn an unlimited dollar-for-dollar match on all the cashback you've earned by the end of your first year.
The Discover secured card has no annual fee and an interest rate of 22.99%. Your security deposit is refundable, and after eight months, Discover will review your account to see if you qualify to convert to a standard unsecured card and get your deposit back. Unfortunately, the secured card has a maximum credit limit of $2500, and your limit is based on your income and credit history.
- Cashback rewards for spending, including doubling of your rewards after the first year
- Ability to convert to an unsecured card after 8 months
- No annual fee
- Low credit limits compared to other secured business cards
- High-interest rates compared to most competitors
- It doesn't help to build your business credit
How did we choose these credit cards?
There are many business credit cards on the market, as well as many secured business cards. But unfortunately, it can be not easy to find cards that sit at the intersection of those, meaning secured credit cards for businesses. While not all of the cards on our list are specifically designed for businesses, it was important to us to narrow down cards with benefits that would be useful for small business owners.
When seeking out the best secured business cards, we considered factors such as credit limits, interest rates, cashback rewards, business features, fees, and the ability to upgrade to an unsecured card in the future. And considering most applicants of secured credit cards are those who have poor credit or haven't built sufficient credit yet, we needed to find cards that business owners could easily qualify for.
Which is the right secured business credit card for you?
When you're trying to identify the best secured business credit card for you, it can be difficult to decide which direction to go. Ultimately, it comes down to identifying your creditworthiness and what benefits you want in a card.
For example, for those with more established businesses and employees, it might be important to have a card that comes with additional business features. In that case, you might prefer the Wells Fargo or First National Bank cards. But for customers without business credit who would rather use their personal credit.
Are there alternatives worth considering?
The cards we identified in this article are a few of the best secured credit cards for small businesses, but they aren't the only ones. A few other secured credit cards you might consider, which may or may not be technically business cards, include:
How do secured business credit cards work?
You put down a security deposit that serves as your credit limit when you open a secured credit card. The security deposit reduces the risk for the bank, which allows them to offer these cards to individuals and businesses with a poor or insufficient credit history.
How do you get a secured business credit card?
Applying for a secured credit card is quite similar to applying to any other credit card. First, you'll have to provide a credit check and provide personal information on the application form. The issuer may run either a business or personal credit check (or both) depending on the type of card you're applying for. Some cards, such as the OpenSky secured card, don't require a credit check, making the signup process easier.
Depending on the card, you might get a decision immediately or may have to wait for a decision. Once you've been approved, you'll pay the security deposit to fund your card. Once you receive your card in the mail, you can start using it.
Which is the best secured business credit card?
There's not necessarily one secured business credit card that's better than the rest. Instead, each card is best for certain situations. For example, the Wells Fargo business card is best for established businesses with employees. The First National Bank card is best for companies that want a high credit limit.
The OpenSky card is best for those with extremely poor credit since it doesn't require a credit check. Finally, the Discover secured card is best for freelancers who don't necessarily need to build their business credit history and who want to take advantage of cashback rewards.