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The Best Business Checking Accounts for Small Businesses

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Business checking accounts are an essential tool for managing company funds, but finding the right one can be a little daunting, especially with new options cropping up all the time. It ultimately comes down to how your company does business and how often you move your money around. Here’s a guide to help you figure out what you should focus on when choosing the best business checking account for you.

Business checking accounts are essential for businesses of all sizes. They give you a safe home for your working capital and help you easily move money around and pay your operating expenses as they arise.

But choosing the best checking account for your business can be a little daunting, especially to new business owners.

Below, we'll look at some of the key factors you should consider when comparing business checking accounts and what you need to open one.

Product Description Next Steps
The BlueVine Business Checking account is an innovative small business bank account that could be a great choice for today's small businesses.
The Chase Business Complete Banking℠ account gives small business owners the tools and flexibility they need to manage their business finances without paying a fortune.
The PNC Bank Business Checking Plus account offers higher monthly transaction and cash deposit limits than you typically see with business checking accounts.
The Novo Business Checking account is an online-based bank account designed to make business banking as easy and cost-effective as possible.
The Axos Basic Business Checking account charges few fees and offers some unique perks you don’t see with many other business checking accounts.
The Radius Tailored Checking account is a user-friendly account that goes beyond the basics to offer interest, cashback, and other unique perks you rarely see among business bank accounts.
The Bank of America Business Fundamentals Checking is a great option for small businesses that want a branch-based checking account.
The Capital One Spark Business Basic Checking® account blends some of the best features of online and brick-and-mortar business checking accounts. Read our review to learn more.

The BlueVine Business Checking account is an innovative online banking solution designed for small businesses that want the best features of checking and savings accounts, and want fees at a bare minimum.

While it does have a few drawbacks, the BlueVine Business Checking account eliminates many fees, pays a competitive interest rate, and offers an easy-to-use payments platform.

For example, there's no minimum balance requirement or activity level needed to avoid a monthly service fee, and there is an extensive network of ATMs that customers can use to access cash. And for businesses that keep significant amounts of money in their accounts, BlueVine can be a great way to monetize that idle cash with one of the highest interest rates offered by any checking account we know of.

BlueVine's app is easy to use and offers a free bill pay platform that doesn't require any significant technical knowledge to use. The account opening process is quick and easy, and unlike many competitors, BlueVine even gives account holders their first two checkbooks for free.

To be fair, businesses that deal with cash or otherwise need to go to a physical bank branch regularly might want to look elsewhere.

The same can be said for businesses that regularly make payments with credit cards, or need the capability to send invoices through their bank accounts. On the other hand, for businesses that don't typically need branch-based banking services and who want to keep costs low while earning interest on their unused cash, the BlueVine Business Checking account is definitely one to check out.

The Chase Business Complete Banking℠ account is a great fit for businesses who primarily get paid electronically or via debit or credit card.

While most banks require you to open a separate merchant services account if you’d like to accept card payments, Chase Business Complete Banking℠ customers won’t have to deal with all this hassle because Chase QuickAccept is included with this account.

There are extra fees for this service, but you’d expect that with any bank account that lets you process credit card transactions.

This business checking account is also somewhat unusual in that many types of transactions, including electronic transfers, ATM and debit card transactions, and internal transfers have no monthly transaction limits.

Unlimited transactions are rare with brick-and-mortar business bank accounts, so this account will definitely appeal to companies with higher transaction volumes who may get hit with per-transaction fees at some other banks.

You do need to visit a branch in order to sign up for the Chase Business Complete Banking℠ account, so it may not work out if there isn’t one near you. That said, Chase has one of the largest branch and ATM networks of any bank in the country, so there are pretty good odds you’ll find one that’s not too far away.

The bank also has online and mobile account management tools so you can do most of your daily banking without leaving your office. However, if you receive a lot of cash deposits, you’ll want to make sure there’s a branch close by.

The PNC Bank Business Checking Plus account is bound to catch the eye of small business owners who feel restricted by the low transaction limits most brick-and-mortar business checking accounts allow.

It serves as a middle ground between the basic, no-frills business checking accounts and the costly commercial accounts designed for enterprises.

PNC Bank has some of the highest-rated online and mobile account management tools in the industry and it goes beyond the basics, offering Cash Flow Insight® tools that help you track your company's spending, create projections for the future, and submit invoices.

You can also link to popular accounting software to make tracking company funds even easier.

But despite the ease of managing your PNC Bank Business Checking Plus account online, you'll probably want to make sure there's a branch location near you, especially if your company often gets paid in cash. It's virtually impossible to make cash deposits outside of a PNC branch or ATM.

Plus, while there are several ways for PNC customers to get support when they need it, you may prefer working with a local banker who knows you and your company rather than talking to someone on the phone.

The PNC Bank Business Checking Plus account is a little more expensive than some more basic business checking accounts, but the cost is reasonable considering all the features it includes.

PNC Bank also gives you four options for waiving your fee, and it's possible to avoid the charge without maintaining a certain minimum balance in your account.

The Novo Business Checking account is an online bank account that is designed to make business banking as efficient and cost-effective as possible. The account features a low minimum initial deposit requirement, no monthly fees, unlimited transactions, and more.

Customers who need access to cash will enjoy unlimited ATM fee reimbursement anywhere in the world (a business checking account rarity), and Novo allows payments to be sent to vendors and other third parties for free -- even with paper checks.

And as a tech-focused account, the Novo Business Checking account integrates with some of the most popular business software tools.

On the other hand, there's no such thing as a perfect business checking account and Novo isn't an exception. Unlike some of its competitors, the Novo Business Checking account doesn't pay interest, and there's no easy way to deposit cash into the account.

There's also no overdraft protection, which can be especially valuable to small businesses just getting started. Finally, with no branch network, the account might not be the most convenient option for small businesses that regularly need to "go to the bank" for whatever reason.

The bottom line is that like most other business checking accounts, the Novo Business Checking account has advantages and disadvantages that need to be considered in the context of your specific business needs to determine whether it's a good fit or not.

Businesses that don't deal in cash too often and get value from Novo's other perks could find that the account is an excellent fit.

The Axos Basic Business Checking account stands out for its minimalistic fee structure, user-friendly account management tools, and rare perks, like unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements, that give business owners more flexibility than a typical brick-and-mortar business checking account.

It also includes free checks and QuickBooks integration to make paying bills and managing your company’s finances as quick and easy as possible.

Those comfortable with online banking should have no trouble diving right in with the Axos Basic Business Checking account.

Setting everything up only takes a few minutes and the bank’s online tools are pretty intuitive. In addition to all the usual features -- bill pay, transaction histories, and mobile check deposit -- you can also set up permissions that allow your employees limited access to your accounts, which could come in handy if you don’t want to be solely responsible for managing your company’s funds.

Large business owners and companies that receive a lot of cash payments may not find all the features they’re looking for here as the monthly transaction limits are fairly low and there aren’t any branches for easy cash deposits.

But it’s a great account for small businesses with lower transaction volumes, provided they can meet the minimum opening deposit requirement.

This is a little higher than what you see with most business checking accounts and may prohibit some businesses from opening an Axos Basic Business Checking account. However, once you’ve opened your account, you don’t have to maintain this balance in order to avoid fees or account closure.

The Radius Bank Tailored Checking account is perfect for those who prefer the flexibility of an online bank account but still need fee-free access to ATMs for depositing and withdrawing cash payments.

It’s one of the few business checking accounts to allow both cash deposits and out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements.

This gives you a lot of freedom in which ATM you use, though if you receive a lot of cash payments, you should verify that Radius Bank has a deposit-taking ATM near you before you sign up.

The account also stands out for its rarer perks, like the opportunity to earn interest on your balance and cash back on select debit card purchases. These features are uncommon among business checking accounts, and while they’re unlikely to raise your balance significantly, they could put a few extra dollars in your account every month.

The bank also gives you one free outgoing wire transfer per month. Not all businesses will use this perk, but it’s definitely something to make note of if your business frequently uses wire transfers.

You won’t have to worry about staying under a certain number of monthly transactions with this account because Radius Bank doesn’t charge per-transaction fees.

However, it does charge you for some other things that many business checking accounts don’t, like incoming wire transfers. If you want to keep your Radius Bank Tailored Checking account affordable, review the fee schedule before you sign up so you understand what the bank can charge you for and how you can avoid these extra costs.

The Bank of America Business Fundamentals Checking account is a branch-based business checking account offered by one of the largest banks in the United States.

Account owners can use any of Bank of America's roughly 4,300 branches and 16,000 ATMs throughout the U.S., which can be a major benefit for customers who need to regularly deposit cash or benefit from in-person support.

And although it's a brick-and-mortar-based bank, Bank of America offers one of the highest-rated online and mobile banking platforms in the business. What's more, for high-balance accounts the Preferred Rewards for Business program is perhaps the best banking rewards program in the industry and is a big differentiator that can help customers earn superior credit card rewards and save money on loans.

On the other hand, as a branch-based account, the Bank of America Business Fundamentals Checking account doesn't have quite as favorable a cost structure as some of its online-based competitors.

It has a monthly account fee (which can be avoided), as well as fees for incoming and outgoing wire transfers, excessive transactions and cash deposits, and more. And the account opening procedure is a bit less efficient than some of its online-based rivals. Unlike some of the newer tech-focused business checking accounts, this offering doesn't earn interest.

The Bank of America Business Fundamentals Checking account certainly has quite a few advantages and drawbacks to consider, but it could make sense for many small businesses.

Best for Customer Service
Capital One Spark Business Basic Checking
Bottom Line: The Capital One Spark Business Basic Checking® account blends some of the best features of online and brick-and-mortar business checking accounts. Read our review to learn more. Read our Capital One Spark Business Basic Checking review.

The Capital One Spark Business Basic Checking® account has carved out a niche for itself in the industry by combining some of the best features of online business checking accounts with the in-person support that's often essential to business banking, especially for companies that deal a lot in cash or have more complex needs.

It doesn't try to compete with some of the flashier online business checking accounts that offer perks like interest and ATM fee reimbursements.

However, it's managed to garner a strong fan base thanks to its unlimited transactions and free monthly cash deposit allotment -- something you usually have to go to a brick-and-mortar bank to find.

Capital One does have branches and Cafes where you can go to deposit, transfer, and withdraw funds or just get assistance managing your money, but it's also built for the digital age, so those who don't live near a branch or prefer to manage their money themselves may do so with the bank's online and mobile account management tools.

Spark Business Basic Checking® customers won't have to contend with any monthly fees as long as they keep a few thousand dollars in their account, but the bank does charge a few less common fees that could make it costly to those who aren't careful. If you're considering this account, be sure to review its fee schedule so you understand what it can charge you for. However, it shouldn't be too difficult for most businesses to avoid these extra costs with careful planning.

What The Ascent looks for in a great business checking account

While every company will have slightly different needs when it comes to their business bank account, here are a few things all the best small business checking accounts have in common.

1. FDIC insurance

FDIC insurance protects your business funds -- up to $250,000 per person per account type -- against bank failure. However unlikely, you don't want to risk losing all your hard-earned cash just because your bank couldn't keep its doors open. So you must make sure that whichever business checking account you choose is backed by the FDIC. Nearly all brick-and-mortar and online banks have this protection, so it shouldn't limit your options.

2. User-friendly account management tools

Whether you choose a brick-and-mortar or an online bank for your small business checking account, it should include an online portal and a mobile app where you can, at a minimum, view your balance, transfer funds, pay bills, and remotely deposit checks. This is often the fastest and simplest way for businesses to manage their money and it enables you to do so from just about anywhere.

A business checking account fee schedule written out in an informational guide.

Always check the business checking account's fee schedule before you sign up so you know exactly what your bank can charge you for. Image source: Author

3. Reasonable fees

How much you'll pay for your business checking account depends in part on which bank you choose. Some online business checking accounts don't charge maintenance fees or per-transaction fees at all, but these charges are common among brick-and-mortar business checking accounts.

What's considered a reasonable fee depends in part on what you need from your business checking account. An account with a high monthly transaction and cash deposit limit, for example, will likely have a higher maintenance fee than a more basic business checking account. But the best business checking accounts will have fees that are in line with comparable accounts at other banks and won't nickel-and-dime you for every little thing.

4. Good customer service

The best business checking accounts provide customers with multiple avenues for seeking support when they need it. Phone and email support are fairly common, and brick-and-mortar banks have branches where you can get in-person assistance from someone who knows you and your company. The best banks also have high customer satisfaction ratings, which you can gauge by looking at customer reviews and third-party customer satisfaction surveys.

What to consider before selecting the best business checking account for your business

Focus on the following factors when comparing business checking accounts to determine which is the best one for your business.

An example of cash deposit and monthly transaction fees for a small business checking account.

Most business checking accounts list their transaction and cash deposit limits clearly, though the per-transaction fees for exceeding these limits aren't always as clear as in the example above. You may have to dig into the fee schedule to find this information. Image source: Author

1. Your monthly transaction volume

Many business checking accounts impose monthly limits on transactions and cash deposits. Exceeding these limits results in additional per-transaction fees, which can make the account much more expensive to own. Some business checking accounts do allow unlimited transactions, though sometimes these accounts are more expensive than accounts with lower limits.

Focus on choosing a business checking account that has a transaction limit that suits your business but still leaves you a little extra room in case you have a month where you need to deposit more cash or move your money around more than normal.

2. How you usually get paid

Brick-and-mortar banks tend to be a better choice for businesses that make a lot of cash deposits because they have large branch and ATM networks where customers can bring their cash. This usually isn't an option with online banks. Some banks also charge for incoming and outgoing wire transfers, while others only charge for outgoing wire transfers.

Consider how you normally receive payments into your account and make sure you're comfortable with any limits or fees associated with these types of deposits.

3. How much you plan to keep in the account

Business checking accounts often have a minimum opening deposit -- usually a few hundred dollars or less. Some also have a minimum balance you must maintain if you hope to avoid monthly maintenance fees. If you're not confident you can meet these requirements, you may want to explore some other options.

4. What other services you plan to use

If you're interested in business loans, credit cards, or other deposit accounts, choose a business checking account at a bank that offers these services as well so you can manage all of your money in one place. If you use an accounting software to track your business finances, you may also want to look for a business checking account that integrates with this software to save you from having to manually transfer your banking information over.

What you will need in order to open a business checking account

In order to open a business checking account, you'll need the following things.

1. Employer Identification Number or Social Security number

Sole proprietors may be able to open a business checking account with just their Social Security number, but if you want to open an LLC bank account, you will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN), which you can get for free on the IRS website.

2. Personal identification

You'll need a driver's license, passport, or other government-issued photo ID in order to open a business checking account.

3. Business license

Your bank will want to see your business license that proves that you are operating a legitimate business in your state. It should list your name, any business partners' names, and your business name.

4. Business organization documents

You must present your articles of incorporation or articles of organization in order to open a business checking account. What these documents must entail varies slightly from state to state, but it should include your business name and address as well as an outline of how your company is structured, the type of business you do, and who its registered agents are.

5. Certificate of assumed name

If your business advertises to customers using something other than its legal name, you must have a certificate of assumed name, also known as a "doing business as" name. Your bank will need to see this when you open your business checking account.

6. Partnership agreement

If you have business partners, you will need to present your partnership agreement to your bank outlining each partner's rights and responsibilities to the business.

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