Are you a small business owner looking to find a bank that offers a comprehensive list of services, convenience, and safety? Do you want a bank that offers a brick and mortar in-person option or are you fine with online? Are you looking for a high APY? Or, are you just totally overwhelmed with all of the choices and different options?
Regardless, having a business bank account is just a smart move. You’ll be able to keep your business finances separate from your personal finances and, as you’ll see below, you’ll have access to critical business tools like invoicing for your clients.
No matter where you’re at in your search for a bank to support your small business, read on and let’s see if I can find a bank that best fits your needs.
Overview of the best banks for small businesses
Financial Company Best for Fees APY
Bluevine Those who need to write paper checks None 2.0% on balances up to $100,000 (conditions apply)
Novo Freelancers and those with side-hustles None None
Lili Freelancers looking for accounting tools $0 for Lili Standard; $9 monthly for Lili Pro 1.50% APY with Lili Pro
Chase Business Checking Those who want an in-person banking experience $15 per month
$0 per month if you deposit $2,000 or more in new money within 30 days of enrollment and maintain a $2,000 balance for 60 days OR if you maintain a linked Chase Private Client Checkings or Chase Sapphire Checking personal account
Axos Bank Business Checking Someone looking for a stellar online bank No monthly fees
No maintenance fees
No overdraft fees
LendingClub Bank More established businesses $10 per month if your balance is less than $5,000 0.10% APY if your balance is above $5,000
Bluevine has made a name for itself in the business banking world. With free business checking from Bluevine, you don’t need a minimum balance to start. Get unlimited transactions each month and online statements at no charge.
Keep more cash in your business’s coffers—you won’t be charged any fees for incoming wire transfers or insufficient funds. You’ll also receive two free checkbooks.
You can access your account at no charge at more than 38,000 MoneyPass ATMs nationwide. If your card is missing, you can lock the account in no time. And, when you need to deposit cash, you can visit GreenDot at more than 90,000 locations.
The mobile app provides a full range of features you’d get at a brick-and-mortar location, with the convenience of banking wherever you are. Check your balance, set up a transfer, and deposit checks with ease. Though Bluevine does not offer in-person service, you can get assistance from the support team via email or phone.
Bluevine also pays interest on your checking account. Currently, the APY is 2.0% on balances up to $100,000, which is significantly higher than the national average. To qualify for that interest rate you must meet one of the following monthly eligibility requirements (effective May 1, 2022):
- Spend $500 per month with your Bluevine Business Debit Mastercard®.
- Receive $2,500 per month in customer payments into your Bluevine Business Checking account via ACH, wire transfer, mobile check deposit, or directly from your merchant payment processing provider.
Banking with Bluevine can help your small business grow. Its checking account and additional features are flexible, quick, and easy to use. Bluevine also offers financing options, and it provides expertise in small business funding.
Novo was built with small business owners in mind. They offer a business checking account that comes with unique, easy-to-use features that are perfect for almost any business or freelancer.
Open your account whenever, wherever, in a matter of minutes with as little as $50. Novo won’t charge you a monthly fee.
The company prides itself on not surprising customers with any hidden fees. ACH transfers, funds wired to your account from the U.S. or abroad, and ATM use all have zero fees attached. Novo does charge a $27 fee if you have an overdraft on the account.
Novo’s made for banking on-the-go. Convenient features include TouchID app login, the ability to deposit checks by snapping a photo, and transferring funds with the touch of a finger. Novo offers stress-free integration with existing software like Quickbooks and Slack to pull your small business together.
While Novo was built for efficiency and simplicity, the company does have a top-notch customer support staff to assist you during regular business hours. You’ll get a real person—not a bot—and an answer to your question in less than an hour. If you’re working early or late, you can reach out for customer support via the app.
Lili niches down even further than Novo, creating a banking platform designed specifically for freelancers.
You’ll get banking with no minimum balance or opening deposit required. That makes it easy to create a separate account for your business transactions, which becomes vital during tax time. There are no hidden fees, and the standard account is free.
With Lili, if you are paid via direct deposit, you’ll have access to those funds as early as two business days before you could use them in other bank accounts.
Access your account at no charge at more than 38,000 MoneyPass ATMs nationwide, and if your Visa® business debit card is missing, you can lock the account in no time.
But where Lili really shines is in its freelance-geared accounting tools. You can easily track your transactions in real-time and assign them categories. At tax time, just pull a report and you’ll have all your deductions right in front of you.
Lili also has a pro account (Lili Pro) that takes those business tools to the next level. With Lili Pro you’ll get customizable expense categorization and unlimited invoicing, and earn cash back on your spending with certain merchants, as well as 1.50% interest on your savings. There’s a $9 monthly service fee with this account, but it also covers you for up to $200 in fee-free overdrafts.
Lili also offers automatic savings features that allow you to have small amounts of money pulled out of each deposit and put into “buckets.” You can save for taxes, build an emergency fund, and more using this tool.
What’s best is that you can set up your account in just three minutes, perfect for the freelancer looking to save time (and money).
Chase Business Complete BankingSM
With Chase Business Complete BankingSM, you can handle your business banking on-the-go, online, or in person. Chase gives you access to more than 16,000 ATMs and more than 4,700 brick-and-mortar branch locations.
As a small business owner, you watch your budget closely. Chase Business Complete Banking℠ has a $0 monthly service fee if you maintain a $2,000 minimum daily balance for 60 days or if your account is coupled with your personal Chase Private Client Checking or Chase Sapphire Checking account. Otherwise, the monthly service fee is $15 with ways to waive (or $12 if you skip paper statements and get them electronically).
For a limited time, the bank is offering a $300 bonus to new Chase Business Complete Banking℠ customers who make a $2,000 new money deposit within 30 business days of the start of your new account. You also need to carry a $2,000 minimum balance over the span of 60 days and make five qualifying transactions, like debit card payments or wire transfers, in 90 days.
If you like the convenience of online access mixed with the comfort of knowing you can visit a traditional branch, Chase is a great banking option for your small business.
Axos Basic Business Checking
Its Basic Business Checking and Business Interest Checking are the best fit for small businesses. New business owners get a $200 welcome bonus with promo code NEWBIZ200. Not a new business? Use promo code NEWAXOSBIZ for a $100 bonus.
Basic Business Checking requires a $0 minimum opening deposit requirement. The account is not subject to monthly maintenance fees plus you get unlimited transactions.
Business Interest Checking requires a $100 minimum deposit to start. There’s no monthly maintenance fee if you carry a $5,000 daily balance. If the account dips below that, the monthly fee is $10. You get 100 transactions a month at no charge, then pay $.50 per item. With Business Interest Checking, you’ll earn a 1.01% APY*.
Enjoy the convenience of remote deposits anywhere and anytime via your mobile device. You can make cash deposits through wire transfer. Axos offers free online banking, mobile banking, and online bill pay free of charge.
You can integrate your account with QuickBooks to streamline your small-business budget processes.
If you’re ready to open an account for your small business, Axos has been in business for 20 years and provides a variety of online services to fit your needs. It’s a solid small-business choice.
LendingClub is an online-only bank that offers a full suite of services for businesses of all sizes.
Its Tailored Checking product is the best choice for small businesses. It also features Relationship Checking and Account Analysis Checking for larger companies with a higher transaction volume, as well as Interest Checking for non-profits and municipal organizations.
If you’re a small business owner or independent contractor, Tailored Checking boasts ease of use and 27/7 online and mobile access. Account management features include the ability to deposit checks, do a balance inquiry, and examine statements and transaction history.
With your LendingClub account, you can transfer funds to internal accounts, conduct wire transfers, and issue payments to others.
You can access funds fee-free at 20,000 ATMs across the country. The LendingClub debit card comes with a host of protection options, including setting transaction, activity, and location limits, receiving real-time security alerts, and deactivating a missing card via the app.
Your LendingClub account integrates with Autobooks so you can create and email customer invoices, then receive payments via card or electronic transfer.
LendingClub accounts do have fees attached. You’ll pay $10 per month if your account balance is under $5,000, a $5 per day overdraft fee, and fees to initiate and receive wire transfers.
What’s the difference between a personal and a business bank account?
It just so happens that there are some extra benefits that come with opening a business bank account including:
- Added protection. A business account offers limited personal liability protection and purchase protection for your customers.
- Line of credit. Many business banks offer you the option to take out a line of credit for your company. So, if you encounter an emergency or require some cash this can be incredibly helpful.
- Additional information required. When it comes to opening a business bank account you will need to provide some additional information such as your Employer Identification Number (EIN) or Social Security number if you’re a sole proprietorship and business license.
Do I need a business bank account for my small business?
It is highly recommended that as a small business owner you have a separate business bank account for the following reasons. First, it helps to keep your business and personal expenses separate
Second, this separation is extremely useful when it comes time to do your taxes. You don’t want to be sifting through your personal expenses trying to identify a business cost.
Third, having a business account makes you appear more professional and legitimate. And fourth, if your company is legally separate from you, as with an LLC or Corporation, then you need to have a separate account to protect your personal property in case of a lawsuit.
What are some important features to look for in a small business account?
When you start your search for a small business bank account that will best suit your needs consider the following features:
- Fees (maintenance fees, transaction fees, etc.).
- Interest rates for savings and checking accounts.
- Minimum balance requirements.
- Security (FDIC member).
- Access to ATMs.
- Online vs. in person.
- Card options (is a debit or credit card available).
If you are thinking about starting a small business, or you already own a small business, it’s important that you have a separate business account.
This article has outlined some of the best small business bank accounts that offer a broad spectrum of features from online and in-person access, to high APY accounts, and low fee accounts. I hope you find an account that fits all of your small business needs!