When a small business applies for a credit card, simplicity is the order of the day. Although previous purchases were made with cash, checks, or personal credit cards, the company is now tasked with managing a new method of payment. Advantages include convenience, a record of spending, and even credit card rewards.
Chase offers its Ink Classic Card for small businesses and sole proprietors that are looking for business credit cards with simple rewards and no annual fee.
- Sign-Up Bonus. Chase is offering a bonus of 25,000 points: 10,000 points after your first purchase and another 15,000 points after spending $5,000 in the first three months. This is worth $250 in cash back or other rewards.
- Combines Visa/MasterCard Purchasing Power. The Chase Ink cards combine the purchasing power of Visa and MasterCard into one card.
- Earn Reward Points. For each dollar spent, cardholders earn a single point in Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program. Chase grants double miles for airfare booked through Chase’s travel agency. Also, you earn 5x points on the first $25,000 spent each year on office supplies and cable/phone services, and 2x points on the first $25,000 spent each year on gas and lodging accommodations.
- Redeem Points. Businesses can redeem accumulated rewards points for cash back, merchandise, gift cards, or travel expenses. The points equate to one cent each, and cardholders must redeem a minimum of 2,000 points to receive $20 cash back. There is no limit to the number of points you can earn, and points do not expire.
- 0% Introductory APR. New card members receive a 0% interest rate on all purchases and balance transfers for the first 6 months after opening an account.
- Annual Fee. This card has no annual fee, and businesses can receive additional cards for authorized employees at no charge.
- Foreign Transaction Fees. All purchases processed outside the United States incur a foreign transaction fee of 3%.
- Simplicity. The complexity of some rewards programs disheartens cardholders. However, one point earned per dollar spent, and two points earned on airfare purchases reduces complications.
- No Annual Fee. Any time you apply for a card with an annual fee, you must ask yourself if its benefits and rewards justify the unnecessary expense. This card doesn’t charge an annual fee.
- Free Employee Cards. This business rewards card makes it easy to extend your purchasing power to your staff. Create a policy in writing that explains acceptable use for the credit cards, and then keep track of employees’ expenditures.
- Cash Back Bonus. The Chase Ink Classic card pays cardholders for using the card, with the $250 sign-up bonus.
- Chase Ultimate Auctions. Cardholders can use their rewards points to bid on items on Chase’s exclusive Ultimate Auctions website. Auction items have included a private golf lesson with a PGA instructor, sports memorabilia, and vacation packages.
- Ultimate Rewards Mall. Shop online through Chase’s shopping portal and earn bonus rewards points for purchases from retailers including Buy.com, Land’s End, and Pottery Barn.
- Exclusive Events for Cardholders. Cardholders can redeem rewards points for access to exclusive events, and VIP seating for sporting events, concerts, and fine dining.
- Travel Protection Services. All of the Chase Ink cards provide cardholders with a car rental collision damage waiver, baggage delay refund, and roadside dispatch coverages.
- Modest Rewards. 1% cash back is a fairly standard offer, and not exceptional. Other cash back rewards credit cards offer as much as 2% cash back.
- Higher Rewards Only Through Chase’s Site. To earn double rewards on airfare, you have to book your tickets with Chase’s Ultimate Rewards website. This can complicate matters when you need to change a ticket. In addition, the travel agency charges service fees of up to $20 for airfare purchases booked or changed through the agency’s toll-free number.
- Foreign Transaction Fees. The excessive 3% charge on all purchases made outside the United States is the highest in the industry. If you plan to travel outside of the United States, find a credit card with no foreign transaction fees.
- Complicated Redemption. To receive your rewards, you must log into the Chase web site, enter an amount to redeem, and wait for them to mail you a check or deposit the funds into your account. You can also use your points to make purchases on the site. Other cash back cards automatically provide you with a statement credit every month.
If you own a growing small business, you and your employees may need credit cards for business expenditures. Find a simple product with modest rewards to harness the purchasing power of a credit card, while incurring the least amount of fees. Many businesses consider the Chase Ink Classic card an ideal choice for their company’s first credit card.
Do you have a Chase Ink Classic Card for your business? What are your overall thoughts and impressions?