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Small Business Banking: Top Banks in 2022

Ivan Stevanovic Image
ByIvan Stevanovic
April 05,2022

Editorial disclosure: Opinions expressed on this page are the author's alone and do not represent the views of any bank.

Searching for the best bank for your small business or growing startup? Feeling overwhelmed by the countless options and factors you need to consider? Don’t worry, we’ve got your back.  We’ve performed thorough research so you don’t have to. In doing so, we’ve compiled a list of the top-performing banks for small businesses in 2021.

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Best Digital Bank

1. Axos Bank

Axos Bank Logo
Bottom line

Despite being an online-only bank, Axos offers a wealth of loan options. It also provides fantastic checking accounts with no fees, although it doesn’t offer credit cards like most of the other banks on our list. Our table below has information about its most popular checking account: Basic Business Checking. Read Review

  • ⦿No monthly checking account fees
  • ⦿Unlimited monthly transactions
  • ⦿50 free checks
Loan types:
Term loans, lines of credit, equipment financing, commercial real estate loans, and invoice factoring
Term loan amounts:
$250,000 to $5,000,000
Monthly checking account fee:
None
Opening deposit:
$0
Transaction limit:
Unlimited
Branches/ATMs:
Free access to 1,900 ATMs

New businesses get a $200 bonus with promo code NEWBIZ200. Not new? Enter NEWAXOSBIZ for a $100 bonus. SEE DETAILS

Best Mobile Banking

2. NorthOne

NorthOne Logo
Bottom line

Established in 2017, NorthOne is a digital-only banking services provider. North One’s business checking account is the heart of the company’s offer and comes with a low monthly fee, unlimited monthly transactions (deposits, transfers, and payments), live in-app support, invoicing software, Mastercard debit cards, and seamless integrations with some of the most popular payment and accounting platforms. Read Review

  • ⦿Access to cash deposits
  • ⦿Mastercard debit cards
  • ⦿Variety of integration options
Loan types:
None
Term loan amounts:
N/A
Monthly checking account fee:
$10
Opening deposit:
$50
Monthly transaction limit:
Unlimited
Branches/ATMs:
Over 2,000,000 ATMs
Best for Small-Business Credit Cards

3. Chase

Chase Logo
Bottom line

With $2.73 trillion in total assets, Chase is the largest bank in the United States and the sixth-largest bank in the world. Its biggest argument for being the best bank for a business account is its excellent credit cards, but it also provides a wealth of loan options and very good checking account plans. Our table has information about the bank’s most popular checking account: Chase Business Complete Banking. Read Review

  • ⦿Fantastic credit card options
  • ⦿No opening deposit on checking account
  • ⦿Fantastic ATM coverage
Loan types:
Term loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, commercial real estate loans, equipment financing options
Term loan amounts:
$5,000 to $5,000,000
Monthly checking account fee:
$15
Opening deposit:
$0
Monthly transaction limit:
20
Branches/ATMs:
4,700 branches/16,000 ATMs
Best for no Prepayment Penalty

4. Square Banking

Square Banking Logo
Bottom line

Square Banking is the flagship product from Square’s line and one of the best small-business banking services out there. It provides a great range of resources for small business owners, and is designed to help them simplify their business banking experience. Square Banking consists of three main products: Square Checking, Square Savings, and Square Loans. All three should help small-business owners manage their payments, business banking, and cash flow effortlessly. It works by extending loan offers to eligible small businesses that already use its POS system. Read Review

  • ⦿No monthly fees
  • ⦿Transparent pricing
  • ⦿No overdraft fees
Loan types:
Term loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, equipment loans, accounts receivable financing, merchant cash advances
Term loan amounts:
$300 to $250,000
Monthly checking account fee:
$0
Opening deposit:
$0
Monthly transaction limit:
Unlimited
Branches/ATMs:
N/A (online banking only)
Best for No-Fee Banking

5. Relay Financial

Relay Financial Logo
Bottom line

Unlike some of the other small business banks on our list that have physical locations, Relay Financial is an online banking and money management platform. While it doesn’t offer lending services to small businesses at the moment, it’s robust banking features provide clients with a range of benefits. These features save small business owners a lot of time and effort when it comes to managing finances. The small business bank also offers no-fee accounts, allowing business owners to save money by avoiding the usual fees. Read Review

  • ⦿Up to 50 Mastercard® debit cards for employees are available
  • ⦿Collect payments from Stripe, PayPal, and Square
  • ⦿No account fees, minimums, overdraft fees, no withdrawal fees at AllPoint ATMs
Loan Types:
No lending services
Term loan amounts:
N/A
Monthly checking account fee:
$0
Opening deposit:
$0
Monthly transaction limit:
Unlimited
Branches/ATMs:
32,000 AllPoint ATMs
Best for Small-Business Checking Accounts

6. Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo Logo
Bottom line

One of the oldest banks on our list, Wells Fargo, offers a wealth of options for personal, small-business, and commercial loans. It’s also a stand-out when it comes to checking accounts and credit cards, making it one of the top small-business lenders on our list. Our table focuses on Wells Fargo’s Business Choice checking account, but the bank also offers great SBA loan options and lines of credit. Read Review

  • ⦿Wealth of loan options to suit businesses of any size
  • ⦿Easy application process
  • ⦿Excellent SBA loans
Loan types:
Lines of credit, SBA loans, letters of credit, commercial real estate financing, healthcare practice financing Monthly checking account fee: $10-$75 ($500 - $10,000 no-fee balance)
Opening deposit:
$25
Monthly transaction limit:
Up to 250
Branches/ATMs:
Over 7,200/13,000
Best for Startups and High-Transaction-Volume Businesses

7. Capital One

Capital One Logo
Bottom line

Despite being one of the younger banks on our list, Capital One is an excellent small-business bank. It offers a variety of business loans, lines of credit, checking accounts, and credit cards, with preferential loan terms for people who already have business accounts at Capital One. The main attraction of a Capital One checking account is the unlimited monthly transactions. The table below has data about both of the bank’s checking account offers: Spark Business Basic Checking and Spark Business Unlimited Checking. Read Review

  • ⦿Unlimited monthly transactions
  • ⦿No upper limit on business loans and lines of credit
  • ⦿Better loan terms for existing account owners
Loan types:
Term loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, equipment, and business auto loans
Term loan amounts:
$10,000+ with no upper limit
Monthly checking account fee:
$15/$35 ($2,000/$25,000 no-fee balance)
Opening deposit:
$250
Monthly transaction limit:
Unlimited
Branches/ATMs:
755/70,000
Best for Waiving Maintenance Fees

8. Bank of America

Bank of America Logo
Bottom line

One of the oldest and largest banks in the US, the Bank of America is second only to JPMorgan Chase. It provides solid loan and checking account options across the board. While its maintenance fees are a bit higher than most of its competitors, Bank of America also provides the greatest number of ways to waive these fees. Our table has information regarding the bank’s basic but extremely popular Business Fundamentals checking account. Read Review

  • ⦿Plenty of options for waiving maintenance fees
  • ⦿Excellent mobile app
  • ⦿Above-average transaction limits
Loan types:
Term loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, auto loans, commercial real estate loans
Term loan amounts:
$25,000+ ($10,000 to $100,000 for unsecured loans)
Monthly checking account fee:
$16 - $29.95 (many ways to waive, see our review)
Opening deposit:
$100
Monthly transaction limit:
200 (unlimited electronic transactions) Branches/ATMs: 4,300 branches/17,000 ATMs
Best for Business Real Estate Loans

9. TD Bank

TD Bank Logo
Bottom line

Although it operates only along the East Coast of the US, TD Bank is in the top 10 largest US banks both in terms of deposits and total assets. It’s possibly the best choice for customers looking for SBA and commercial real estate loans. The checking account data below concerns its most popular checking accounts: Business Simple Checking and Business Convenience Checking Plus. Read Review

  • ⦿Fantastic SBA and real estate loans
  • ⦿Very high transaction limits
  • ⦿Very low maintenance-fee-waiving balance
Loan types:
Term loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, commercial real estate loans, USDA
Term loan amounts:
$10,000–$1,000,000 (up to $350,000 for SBA loans)
Monthly checking account fee:
$10/$25 ($1,500 no-fee balance) Opening deposit: $25/$100
Monthly transaction limit:
200/500
Branches/ATMs:
2,300 branches/4,000 ATMs

Our Methodology

Lending Options and Costs

This category looks at what sorts of loans focused on small businesses you can open within a bank, how much money you can get, and under what conditions.

Whether you’re just starting out with your company or got it into some financial trouble, choosing where to take out a small business loan wisely can help keep your business on track. Different types of loans offer wildly different conditions and fees. You might find that the requirements for the best loans, such as Small Business Administration loans, can be stringent and require a long time for approval. Bad credit can also be detrimental to your chances of scoring a good business loan (although some bad credit business loan options are definitely available).

We focused on the loan options available to small-business owners, so that you can judge whether the loan amounts and repayment terms suit your particular business. We’ve listed all the available options, but put emphasis specifically on the best loan terms for most small enterprises. 

Checking Account Options and Costs

This category looks at the checking accounts focused on small businesses you can open in each bank. We also highlight the terms, conditions, and fees related to opening and maintaining such an account.

There are many factors to consider when opening a small-business bank account. The first and most important one is the monthly maintenance fees your account will incur. Depending on the bank, these can range between $0 and $25 for small-business accounts, with fees rising sharply for the advanced accounts larger companies and enterprises would use.

Banks usually limit your monthly transactions and earn money on any transactions you make over that limit. In this section, we first look at monthly fees and transaction limits and analyze how those affect your overall monthly costs.

The top banks also offer ways to waive those monthly fees altogether. You can usually do this by keeping a specific amount of money in your account on a daily or monthly basis. Banks typically check the average of your daily closing balances each month. This way, you can estimate how this lines up with your average daily and monthly cash flow so you can pick the best option for your business.

Finally, when picking a bank as a small business owner, you should know how much money you need to deposit on opening. Remember that lower minimum deposits often translate to lower maximum transaction limits and higher charges. Striking the right balance between all these factors is vital for picking where to open your small business account.

Credit Cards

This category looks at the credit card options offered by each bank. One of the main ways banks attract new customers is by offering attractive credit card packages, with perks and benefits based on subscription tiers. When choosing a bank you should consider how these benefits stack up against the costs.

The areas we’ve examined in this section include cashback offers and bonuses, as well as fees and APR. This should help you determine which credit card is best suited to your business needs.

Branch and ATM Availability

The type of business you operate plays a key part in what services you need from your bank. These determine whether you require brick-and-mortar offices or e-banking will get the job done. If most of your transactions are conducted digitally, online small-business banking can be an efficient and hassle-free solution. On the other hand, if you’re running a brick-and-mortar retail store yourself, chances are that you will want a physical branch, as online banks do not support cash deposits.

The same goes for ATMs - depending on the business you run, the number of cash-out points your bank has, and the fees it charges if you use ATMs from other banks can be extremely important. 

Online and Mobile Banking

This category looks at how good a bank’s website and mobile apps are.

Mobile phones and the internet have changed the way we think about work. Efficiency, flexibility, and portability are the paradigms for the new century. Being able to access your checking accounts, loan information, and other banking details on the go makes handling your finances a lot simpler.

We’ve looked at the quality of each bank’s online platform and mobile banking apps, evaluated how intuitive the software is to use, and checked the supported operating systems. Knowing how easy and intuitive it is to use your bank’s features should help you make the right choice.

Featured Snippet Image

Best Bank for Small Business: Our Top 5 Picks

  1. NorthOne
  2. Axos Bank
  3. Chase
  4. Wells Fargo
  5. Relay Financial

Small Business Banking Options Reviewed

Wells Fargo Review

Wells Fargo Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

GOOD

Loan Repayment Period

MEDIUM

Checking Account Options

VERY GOOD

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

VERY HIGH

Number of Branches and ATMs

VERY HIGH

  • ⦿ 1.5% cashback on all business credit cards
  • ⦿ Very competitive loan rates
  • ⦿ SBA loans up to $6,500,000

Overview

Wells Fargo is a multinational financial services company headquartered in San Francisco, California, with offices across the United States. Established in 1852, it’s one of the oldest banks on our list. It’s also in the top five banks in the world in terms of market capitalization and total assets.

Loans

Wells Fargo offers an incredible number of loan options split between personal and commercial financing options. As this article focuses on the best small-business banks, we’ll be covering Wells Fargo’s small-business lines of credit.

As you can no longer get small-business loans at Wells Fargo specifically, you can instead make use of its business lines of credit and SBA loans. The former is available in two variants: Business and Prime. The first one is an unsecured loan with loan amounts between $5,000 and $100,000, with the rate being as low as Prime’s + 1.75%.

The Prime option is secured with business assets and covers lending from $100,00 to $500,000. The rates for Wells Fargo’s small-business lines of credit are calculated based on origination fees and rates from competing lenders.

Wells Fargo also offers outstanding Small Business Administration loans, with repayment terms of up to seven years for working capital and loan amounts of up to $5,000,000/$6,500,000 - depending on the type of SBA loan. It is also rated second on the list of SBA 7(a) lenders in the United States in terms of the number of approved loans and dollar volume.

Checking Accounts

When looking for a checking account, you need to consider your business size, capacities, and needs. Wells Fargo offers three account options to cater to various combinations of those three factors: Initiate Business Checking, Navigate Business Checking, and Optimize Business Checking.

The most popular option - Initiate Business Checking - gives you 100 free transactions per month, with a $10 monthly service fee that can be waived in several ways. You can make cash deposits of up to $5,000 per month without paying any fees, which is more generous than most competitors on our list. It also gives you access to mobile and online banking.

Credit Cards

The best business banks offer a variety of credit cards, and Wells Fargo is no different. All of its cards offer 1.5% cash back on all purchases. They also feature a sign-up cashback bonus between $300 and $500, depending on the card you apply for.

The Wells Fargo Business Platinum card has a 0% APR over the first nine months. After that, APR totals range from 13.49% to 23.49%.

Branch and ATM Availability

This is one of the largest banks in the United States. As such, Wells Fargo small business customers can visit over 7,200 brick-and-mortar offices and 13,000 ATMs across the country. The number of branches used to be even larger, but over 2,000 have closed in the past 20 years as more and more people have begun embracing online banking options.

Online and Mobile Banking

Of course, Wells Fargo bank has online banking. Its website is well-organized, with a clean layout and plenty of content. The mobile app is very highly rated on both Apple and Google’s stores. Its features entail depositing checks, getting ATM access codes, tap-and-pay digital purchases, as well as facial and fingerprint recognition.

Summary

Wells Fargo is one of the most comprehensive banking options across the board, whether you’re looking for loans, checking accounts, or credit cards. It’s perfect for small-business owners looking for competitive lines of credit or SBA loans with flexible options and low rates. However, it does enforce tighter repayment restrictions than some of its competition.

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NorthOne Review

NorthOne Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

NONE

Loan Repayment Period

N/A

Checking Account Options

EXCELLENT

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

VERY HIGH

Number of Branches and ATMs

VERY HIGH

  • ⦿ Fee-free access to 2,000,000+ in-network ATMs
  • ⦿ Live in-app customer support
  • ⦿ Invoice maker

Overview

NorthOne is a digital-only financial services provider established in 2017. Developed with small businesses, startups, and freelancers in mind, NorthOne offers an easy-to-use, mobile-friendly business checking account solution that comes with unlimited transactions and access to more than 2,000,000 ATMs across the US. As the best digital banking option for small-business owners, this bank account provider supports integrations with some of the most popular payment and accounting software solutions, too.

Loans

Unlike other banks on our list - e.g., Chase and Wells Fargo - that offer a wide variety of business funding solutions, NorthOne doesn’t offer loan products directly to its users. However, it does help immensely if your business needs a loan.

Not only did NorthOne help small businesses in their time of need via the Paycheck Protection Program thanks to its partnership with Cross River Bank (an FDIC member), it continues to streamline loan access now that the PPP program is over.

Businesses can use their NorthOne accounts to simplify their loan payments for a reasonable price. The company’s partnerships with Stripe, Square, and PayPal - all of them business lending providers - greatly simplify getting funded if you’re approved for one of their loans. What’s more, its features (e.g., the budget Envelopes) and useful integrations will prove crucial for managing relevant loan expenses.

Checking Accounts

As the best internet bank for small-business owners, NorthOne offers an excellent digital-first alternative to traditional business checking account solutions. Unlike some of its competitors featured on our list, this provider has a single online-based business checking option that can be opened and entirely managed via browser or Android or iOS app.

For a monthly fee of $10 (waived for the first month for those who apply via SmallBizGenius), users get unlimited fee-free transactions, including check deposits and debit card purchases, fee-free access to more than 2,000,000 in-network ATMs, and a selection of useful money-management tools, such as an unlimited number of custom Envelopes for organizing business expenses (e.g., rent, taxes, or payroll), as well as bill paying and invoicing features.

NorthOne is completely transparent about its checking account fees. You’ll need to deposit at least $50 to open an account, and, in addition to the $10 monthly fee, there’s also a $15 charge for incoming and outgoing domestic wire transfers. Those are the only two fees involved, as NorthOne doesn’t have hidden ATM, overdraft, ACH, or NSF fees other banks incorporate.

Still, keep in mind that NorthOne isn’t an actual bank. However, its accounts are still FDIC-insured thanks to the provider’s partnership with FDIC member The Bancorp.

Credit Cards

Credit cards aren’t part of NorthOne’s product lineup. However, it does offer Mastercard debit cards as a part of its solution. You can use your debit card to make cash withdrawals at any MoneyPass or Cirrus ATM nationwide, shop online or in-store anywhere Mastercard is accepted, and activate, freeze, or order additional cards directly from your phone.

Branch and ATM Availability

NorthOne is a digital-only bank, which means that it doesn’t have brick-and-mortar locations clients can visit. Still, thanks to its partnership with Greendot, it allows making a cash deposit at more than 90,000 locations nationwide.

You can complete all your banking tasks using your phone and, should you experience any issues, NorthOne's customer care team is available to answer any questions through the in-app chat feature, phone, or email, from Monday to Sunday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST. Customers also have the option to schedule a call at a time that is most convenient for them.

In addition to providing online-only banking for small business owners, NorthOne lets you make fee-free withdrawals at more than 2,000,000 Cirrus ATMs nationwide. Note that you can also use out-of-network ATMs; however, NorthOne won’t reimburse the fees such transactions may incur.

Online and Mobile Banking

This small business checking account provider recognizes the importance of multi-platform support: You can access your account via browser and mobile app alike. NorthOne offers proprietary invoice-making software, too, but you can still export your financial info into Excel and integrate it with some of the most popular payment and accounting tools such as Expensify, QuickBooks, FreshBooks, Xero, Wave, PayPal, Shopify, Amazon, and Stripe.

Summary

NorthOne is not a top choice for small-business and startup loans - it simply doesn’t offer business funding. However, if you are on the hunt for easy-to-use and affordable business checking solutions to support your business loan, this may be it.

Some of the most apparent advantages of NorthOne’s business banking option include unlimited transactions, an unlimited number of Envelopes to organize business expenses, bill payment, valuable integrations, and in-app live support. Since there are no hidden fees, with this solution, you can also save a significant chunk of funds that you’d otherwise leave at the bank - on average, you can save more than $180 a month with NorthOne. The downside is that the $10 monthly fee can only be waived for the first month, all domestic wire transfers have a $15 fee, and there are no reimbursements for fees charged by out-of-network ATMs.

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Chase Review

Chase Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

EXCELLENT

Loan Repayment Period

LONG

Checking Account Options

VERY GOOD

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

AVERAGE

Number of Branches and ATMs

VERY HIGH

  • ⦿ Accounts for 45% of all customer deposits in the United States
  • ⦿ Quick access SBA loans
  • ⦿ Excellent cashback rewards

Overview

Chase is a subsidiary of JPMorgan Chase & Co. headquartered in Manhattan, NYC. Since being founded in 1877, it has been through several mergers, the latest of which was in 2000 with J.P. Morgan. Along with Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and Bank of America, it’s one of the “Big Four” banks in the United States, accounting for 45% of all US customer deposits across the country.

Loans

Chase is a very good bank for small business owners, offering a variety of loan options. There are as many as 12 options for small business loans, including term loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, commercial real estate loans, and equipment financing options.

Chase bank loans range from $5,000 to $5,000,000 with varying interest rates. Terms range from 12 to 84 months. Lines of credit up to $350,000 are also available through Chase’s SBA Express. If you want an SBA loan, there are three options available: A classic SBA 7(a) loan, an SBA Express term loan, or an SBA 504 loan. You can borrow up to $5,000,000 and Chase is a preferred SBA lender, meaning you can get access to SBA loans sooner than usual.

Checking Accounts

With Chase business banking, you have access to three business checking accounts: Business Complete Banking, Performance Business Checking, and Platinum Business Checking. Chase small business checking accounts are all aimed at different stages of your business’s development. We’ll be looking at the most popular and starting option, the Business Complete Banking.

Unlike Wells Fargo’s offer, this account is free to open, rewards you with a $300 sign-up bonus, and charges a $15 monthly maintenance fee. This fee can be waived with a minimum balance of at least $2,000. You can make up to 20 free transactions per month and deposit cash up to $5,000 per month without any extra transaction fees. 

Credit Cards

When it comes to credit cards at Chase the two most popular offerings are the Ink Business Unlimited® and Ink Business Cash® credit cards.

Both come with no annual fee, a 12-month introductory period of 0% APR (15.49% to 21.49% after that), and a $500 cashback bonus if you spend $3,000 in your first three months. Ink Business Unlimited will also earn you a standard 1.5% cash back on all purchases, while Ink Business Cash gives you as much as 5% on office supplies, internet, cable, and phone services. Finally, for $95, you can opt for an Ink Business Preferred card. This gets you further benefits like triple points on travel and other select business categories, as well as no foreign transaction fees.

Branch and ATM Availability

Whether you’re looking for Chase small business loans, checking accounts, or credit cards, you won’t have trouble finding one of the bank’s branches or ATMs. It’s no surprise that Chase, as one of the largest banks in the country, has a huge number of locations across the United States. With around 4,700 branches and 16,000 ATMs, Chase is comparable to Wells Fargo, the Bank of America, and other leaders in the field.    

Online and Mobile Banking

If you’re looking for an internet bank for your small business, you want a bank with a well-organized website. Thankfully, the website for Chase Bank International is well-designed and easy to use. The bank has a highly rated app for both iOS and Android systems. A notable feature is that all your accounts are integrated within the app, which makes handling multiple bank accounts a breeze.

Summary

Chase is an excellent small business banking option, whether you need loans with long repayment terms or low-cost business checking accounts. The real stars of its offer, though, are the substantial cashback and rewards points earnings you get on Chase’s business credit cards offer. The one downside to this is the fairly strict limit on monthly checking account transactions. This means Chase isn’t the best bank around for business account purposes if you make a lot of monthly transactions or payments.

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Square Banking Review

Square Banking Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan options:

EXCELLENT

Loan repayment period:

AVERAGE

Checking account options:

VERY GOOD

Monthly checking account transactions:

NONE

Number of branches and ATMs:

N/A

  • ⦿ Easy application process
  • ⦿ No minimum deposits
  • ⦿ Flexible repayment terms on loans

Overview

Until 2021, Square was known exclusively for its point-of-sale (POS) hardware and software solutions. Today, it also provides banking services to all US-based businesses that operate as sole proprietorships. Its banking products can be divided into three main categories: Square Checking, Square Savings, and Square Loans.

Loans

If you’re interested in ​​online bank accounts for small-business owners, Square Banking might be an excellent solution. We’ll start our review by checking the kinds of loans they offer. Square Banking small-business loans range from $300 to $250,000. The borrowing costs vary depending on the type of loan and go between 10% to 16% of the loan. When it comes to repayment terms, all Square Banking loans need to be repaid within 18 months, and you will be obligated to pay the remaining balance once this period ends. If you have the chance, you can also prepay your loan, and Square’s main advantage here is that it doesn’t charge any prepayment fees.

Checking Accounts

If you need a free small-business checking account, Square Banking has got you covered. There are only a few steps to open a Square checking account, and the best thing about it is that it comes with no additional fees: No minimum balance, monthly maintenance, overdraft, or service fees. There also are no ATM fees as Square has no ATMs. You can collect your money at any third-party ATM that accepts Mastercard® debit cards, but in that case, operator fees may apply.

Credit Cards

Square is one of the most popular credit card processors, but as a digital bank for small businesses, it does not offer any credit cards of its own. There is, however, a Square debit card that is connected to your checking account. Once you open an account, you will automatically receive this business debit card, which can be used internationally, ​​anywhere Mastercard® debit cards are accepted.

Branch and ATM Availability

As we have previously mentioned, Square isn’t your regular brick-and-mortar bank, and as such, does not have any branches or ATMs. You can, of course, use your Square Debit Card to withdraw money from third-party AMTs or pay for goods and services in-person or online.

Online and Mobile Banking

If you were looking for the best online bank for a small business in 2021, you probably already came across Square. Its online platform is user-friendly and easy to navigate, and if you prefer to manage your payments and accounts on the go, you can download the Square POS app to your Android or iOS device.

Summary

If you’re already using Square as your business payment processor, Square Banking could be a good option. It is an alternative to a traditional business bank account that usually involves a complicated opening procedure and a lot of paperwork. Instead, Square Banking provides customers with an easy way to separate their private and business finances, has no hidden fees, credit checks, or minimum balance. This is something you don’t get to see every day! If you need an online bank account for your small business, look no further, as Square Banking has it all.

There are a few drawbacks to Square Banking, such as the inability to deposit checks and cash into your account and the fact it does not have its own ATMs or branches, but if your transactions mostly happen online, you’re not going to miss much.

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Relay Financial Review

Relay Financial Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan options:

NONE

Loan repayment period:

NONE

Checking account options:

EXCELLENT

Monthly checking account transactions:

NONE

Number of branches and ATMs:

AVERAGE

  • ⦿ Effortless integration with popular accounting software
  • ⦿ No hidden, account, overdraft, or ATM fees
  • ⦿ Up to 20 individual business checking accounts and 50 Mastercard® debit cards

Overview

Relay Financial is a fully digital banking solution that offers free small business checking accounts and money management tools. If you’re looking to automate payments, and establish more clarity into your expenses, then Relay Financial is the perfect choice. It also allows easy integrations with some of the most popular accounting software, which will help you better manage your business. 
Loans

At the moment, Relay doesn’t offer any lending options, but this might change in the future through a partnership with other renowned business banks. Relay is already partnered with Evolve Bank & Trust, which enables the platform to offer deposit accounts and provide its users with Mastercard debit cards. 

Checking Accounts

Relay offers excellent, fee-free checking accounts that small business owners can’t afford to ignore. Relay Standard checking accounts allow you to create up to 20 no-fee accounts for your team members, and within the same package, you can order up to 50 virtual or physical Mastercard debit cards for your team to use. 

It takes mere seconds to create new checking accounts for small business banking, including a dedicated account for taxes and an account for payroll. The available features also enable secure collaboration with your team through user permissions, spending limits, and you can effortlessly track your team’s expenses. Each of the cards is also Apple and Google Pay compatible.

You can manage all the accounts and spending limits through your browser, iOS, or Android. Furthermore, you can sync transaction data with popular accounting software, such as X​​ero and QuickBooks to speed up bookkeeping. The best part about this small business bank is the absence of fees. There are no account or overdraft fees, no minimum balance requirements, and withdrawal fees at AllPoint ATMs. 

Credit Cards

Unfortunately, Relay only offers debit cards at the moment. The platform doesn’t have any credit cards or borrowing options available.

Online and Mobile Banking

Relay’s services require you to do all your banking online. There aren’t any physical locations you can visit to meet with the bank’s staff or conduct transactions. You can access your accounts via a web browser or through iOS and Android if you prefer to handle your banking on the go. 

This digital bank for a small business also has a Relay Pro package with a monthly fee of $30. This option has a lot of automation tools, which will save you hours of work. In addition to everything included in Relay Standard, you’ll gain the ability to automatically import bills from QuickBooks and Xero. Furthermore, the package offers you the ability to set up a multi-stage automated approval workflow for bills and even pay them in batches. 

Through both the Standard and Pro packages, you can integrate Relay bank with Expensify, Gusto, Plaid, and Wise to simplify your accounting, effortlessly handle payroll, and streamline overall money management operations in your company.

Summary

Overall, the Relay digital bank for small businesses is not the best option for business owners looking to borrow funds. However, if you have a small business and are looking to simplify the money management processes, want to avoid the usual fees, and don’t have the need to visit the bank’s physical locations, Relay is the ideal solution. 

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Capital One Review

Capital One Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

GOOD

Loan Repayment Period

AVERAGE

Checking Account Options

VERY GOOD

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

EXCELLENT

Number of Branches and ATMs

AVERAGE

  • ⦿ Up to 2% cashback on business credit cards
  • ⦿ No upper limit for loans and unlimited monthly transactions
  • ⦿ Relationship-based loan rates for existing customers

Overview

Capital One Financial Corporation specializes in auto loans, banking, credit cards, and savings accounts. It was founded in 1994 in Virginia and has since become the 10th-largest bank in the United States in terms of assets.

Loans

When it comes to loans, Capital One small business banking provides several options. You can take out a line of credit, equipment or business auto loan, business installment loan, or SBA loan. The bank’s business installment loans start at $10,000, with terms from one to five years and fixed monthly payments. There is no upper limit, and the rates vary depending on the amount borrowed and repayment terms. You can also take out SBA 504 and SBA 7(a) loans, and the bank gives you more favorable “relationship-based” conditions if you already have an established Capital One business account.

Checking Accounts

The banks with the best account options for small businesses have plans that target businesses of all sizes and are suited to different stages of their development. Capital One offers two very straightforward options here: Spark Business Basic Checking and Spark Business Unlimited Checking. Both accounts are free to open and come with unlimited transactions each month. You can deposit up to $5,000 in cash per month with no extra fees with the Basic account, and there is no limit on the Unlimited Checking option. The accounts have a $15 and $35 monthly service fee, respectively, waived if you maintain a minimum 30- or 90-day average monthly balance of $2,000 or $25,000.

As with other top banks in this category, both accounts also come with a free business debit card, online bill-payment options, and online and mobile checking. Besides unlimited monthly cash deposits, Unlimited Checking also gives you free incoming domestic wires and up to five free outgoing domestic wire transfers each month. The wire fees are otherwise $15 per incoming domestic wire and $25 per outgoing domestic wire.

Credit Cards

Deciding which bank is the best option for your small business depends on a lot of factors. Credit cards are certainly one of the more important things to factor in. 

Capital One offers several credit card options: Spark Classic, Spark Cash Select, and Spark Cash. Spark Cash Select is our favorite pick for small businesses. It comes with 1.5% cash back on all purchases, a $200 cash bonus if you spend $3,000 in the first three months of having this account, no annual fee, and a 0% APR for the first nine months. After that, the APR ranges from 13.99% to 23.99%.

Online and Mobile Banking

Capital One has a pretty standard banking website, but the Capital One mobile app has been rated number one in customer satisfaction more than once. It’s a well-designed product for both iOS and Android systems.

Summary

To be a great choice for small-business owners, a financial institution needs to provide more than just good loans, credit cards, and checking accounts. Capital One’s claim to fame is its devotion to small businesses. In addition to free unlimited monthly transactions on all business checking accounts, the bank offers small-business owners access to Spark Business IQ, a program created to help entrepreneurs manage their business and cash flow.

The only major downside that we can think of is that, while Capital One provides access to over 70,000 ATMs, there are only 755 branches across the US.

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Bank of America Review

Bank of America Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

VERY GOOD

Loan Repayment Period

AVERAGE

Checking Account Options

GOOD

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

VERY HIGH

Number of Branches and ATMs

EXCELLENT

  • ⦿ Unsecured loans up to $100,000
  • ⦿ Easy-to-waive fees and high transaction limits
  • ⦿ Excellent smartphone app

Overview

While looking for the best bank online, Bank of America is undoubtedly a name you’re bound to come across. A banking industry staple, Bank of America Corporation is a multinational investment bank and financial services company based in Charlotte, North Carolina. It was formed through NationsBank's acquisition of BankAmerica in 1998, but its origins stretch back to 1784 and the formation of the Massachusetts Bank. It is the second-largest banking institution in the United States, after JPMorgan Chase.

Loans

Bank of America small-business packages offer secured and unsecured loans and lines of credit, as well as SBA loans, auto loans, and commercial real estate loans. Its secured loans start at $25,000 and have no upper limit. Rates vary depending on the amount borrowed and repayment terms, which can be up to five years when secured by business assets. Unsecured lines of credit are in the $10,000-$100,000 bracket. You can also get SBA loans ranging from $25,000 to $5 million, with various repayment terms depending on what your loan will finance.

Checking Accounts

There are two Bank of America business account options for small business owners: the Business Advantage Fundamentals account and the Business Advantage Relationship account.

The Fundamentals option is the one most small-business owners will be interested in. It features a rather expensive $16 monthly fee, though there are several ways to avoid it, such as by spending at least $250 in new net qualified debit card purchases or by maintaining an average monthly balance over $5,000. You can also avoid the fee if you become a Preferred Rewards Business member.

If we make a small-business bank account comparison, we can see that Bank of America’s transaction limits are exactly the same as those offered by Wells Fargo. With 200 and 500 monthly transactions per account tier, both banks offer above-average numbers in this category.

Credit Cards

Bank of America has a wealth of credit cards aimed at businesses. The one we’ll be taking a closer at is the Business Advantage Customized Cash Rewards card. It offers a 1-3% cash back depending on the type of purchase you make, as well as a $300 statement credit offer if you spend $3,000 or more in your first 90 days of owning the card. As with other top banks for startups and small businesses, there is also no annual maintenance fee. The APR is 0% during the first nine monthly billing cycles and ranges from 12.24% to 22.24% after that.

Online and Mobile Banking

As expected, the Bank of America has a very patriotic-looking website, featuring predominantly red, white, and blue accents. Like other national banks, it’s available in English and Spanish, and is generally very well laid-out and intuitive. 

You can monitor your Bank of America small-business account and make payments, as well as benefit from exclusive BankAmeriDeals from its mobile app. It also tracks your rewards and gives you access to a virtual assistant and customer support. While BoA’s customer service feedback is a bit mixed, people are delighted with the mobile app, and it’s highly rated on both the App Store and Google Play.

Summary

With three different ways to waive the maintenance fee, the Bank of America might just be the top choice for a small-business owner who wants to keep the checking account costs at a minimum. It also offers good loan options.

The bank’s credit cards are pretty standard. Depending on what you use them for, they can offer up to 3% cash back, which is pretty good considering they have no maintenance fees. The downside is that, if you don’t manage to take advantage of the numerous fee-waiving options, this bank has higher costs than most of its competition.

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TD Bank Review

TD Bank Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

EXCELLENT

Loan Repayment Period

MEDIUM

Checking Account Options

VERY GOOD

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

EXCELLENT

Number of Branches and ATMs

LOW

  • ⦿ Up to 25 years repayment for SBA loans
  • ⦿ Term loans up to $1 million
  • ⦿ Loan annual fees waived for amounts smaller than $100,000

Overview

Founded in 1852, TD Bank is the US subsidiary of the Canadian multinational Toronto-Dominion Bank. Its headquarters are in New Jersey. It’s the eighth-largest bank in the US by total assets and the seventh-largest by bank deposits. Notably, it only has branches in 16 states along the East Coast of the US.

Loans

TD Bank offers business lines of credit, term, SBA, and commercial real estate loans. We recommend TD bank if you’re looking to buy real estate for commercial purposes, with government-guaranteed SBA 504 loans. Speaking of SBA loans, this bank is one of the best banks in the US when it comes to SBA loans, as it provides quick SBA 7(a) approvals, repayment terms of up to 25 years for SBA 7(a) and 20 years for SBA 504 loans, and interest rates depending on the term and amount borrowed.

Outside of that, you can borrow from $10,000 to $1,000,000, with term lengths from three to five years. Lines of credit range from $25,000 to $500,000. Both are secured with collateral, and annual fees are waived for amounts smaller than $100,000.

Checking Accounts

The best accounts for LLC and small-business owners provide more than just favorable loan rates. TD Bank has several checking account offers, but we’ll be looking at its two most popular accounts: Business Convenience Checking Plus and Business Simple Checking accounts.

The more expensive Business Convenience Checking Plus comes with a $100 minimum deposit and a $25 monthly maintenance fee. The latter can be waived if you have at least $1,500 in your daily balance, and a personal checking account with TD Bank. As one of the top small-business banking services, it allows for as much as $5,000 in monthly cash deposits and a fantastic 500 free monthly transactions.

If you don’t need such high numbers, or find waiving the fee difficult, you can also opt for the basic Business Simple Checking account, for $10 a month (with the same waiving conditions). This one comes with 200 monthly transactions and $5,000 in cash deposits, which is pretty good for such a low maintenance fee.

Credit Cards

Like other banks with no fees for maintaining credit cards, TD Bank offers a great opportunity: The Business Solutions Credit Card. In addition to no annual fees, the card lets you earn anywhere from 1% to 3% cash back, depending on what you spend money on, and the bank’s welcome offer is $150 cash back - in the form of statement credit - on your first $1,000 spent within 90 days of obtaining the card.

Online and Mobile Banking

To provide good online banking, a bank needs to have a well-designed website that is easy to navigate. TD Bank is one of our favorites in this regard. Its modern, aesthetically pleasing page is less cluttered with offers than most of the competition. The mobile app also has a nicely designed UI, and users rate both the iOS and Android versions very highly. They feature a simple green-and-white color scheme and a navigation pane on top of the screen, so switching between options feels seamless.

Summary

TD Bank might be a good choice for new small-business owners looking to get commercial real estate or SBA loans. In addition, the bank offers solid checking account options with easily waivable fees and high transaction and cash deposit limits. Its credit card offer is also pretty competitive. The biggest downside is that TD Bank only operates across the East Coast of the US, which means it has a smaller number of branches and ATMs compared to the larger banks on our list.

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Axos Review

Axos Review Logo VISIT WEBSITE
Loan Options

AVERAGE

Loan Repayment Period

LONG

Checking Account Options

GOOD

Monthly Checking Account Transactions

EXCELLENT

Number of Branches and ATMs

LOW

  • ⦿ Digital only bank
  • ⦿ Unlimited monthly transactions and no checking fees
  • ⦿ 50 free checks as a sign-up bonus

Overview

The only digital bank on our list of small business bank reviews is also the youngest. It was founded in San Diego, California, and has been headquartered there since 1999. The bank also has branches in Las Vegas, Nevada and Columbus, Ohio, but you can open an account nationwide. Despite being online-only, Axos gives you access to a wide network of ATMs with no service charges.

Loans

Axos offers a wealth of loan options, from term loans and lines of credit to equipment financing, commercial real estate loans, and invoice factoring. You’ll also get a dedicated account rep to help you with any questions you may have, and you’ll also get access to the bank’s 24/7 lending services online.

Commercial term loans have 3.5- and seven-year repayment terms and range from $250,000 to $5,000,000. Lines of credit also start at $250,000. This means that Axos has higher than usual line of credit requirements. The very high minimum borrowing amounts, however, mean this bank isn’t the right choice for micro-businesses or startups needing much smaller loans.

Checking Accounts

Axos offers three different checking account options, depending on whether you are interested in accruing interest or avoiding monthly costs and requirements. If you’re looking for banks with no fees, the Basic Business Checking account is ideal for you. There is no initial deposit requirement, you won’t have to pay any average daily or monthly balance requirements, and there are no maintenance fees. 

There is also a Business Interest Checking account, with APY as high as 0.81% if your balance doesn’t exceed $49,999. This one comes with numerous benefits such as unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements, free image statements, and 50 free checks. You’ll need a $100 opening deposit and a $5,000 minimum average daily balance to waive the $10 monthly maintenance fee, though.

Axos is the only bank on our list besides Capital One to offer unlimited monthly transactions. This is an especially impressive offer considering that, unlike at Capital One, there are no maintenance fees when using the Basic Business Checking account at Axos. You also get 50 free checks, which is a nice bonus.

Credit Cards

Unfortunately, Axos doesn’t offer any credit card options, so there’s not a lot we can say here.

Online and Mobile Banking

We’ve already hinted that Axos may be the best internet only bank on our list. Its website and mobile app don’t quite live up to this high standard, having very mixed reviews from the community. While the website is fairly standard and reasonably well-optimized, users report frequent crashes and poor performance from the mobile app. However, the features of the app are solid, so if and when Axos fixes these issues, we’ll update our score.

Special offer!

New business owners get a $200 welcome bonus!

If you incorporated after June 1, 2020, we´ll add $200 to your new business bank account. Just use promo code NEWBIZ200 on your application.* Not a new business? Use promo code NEWAXOSBIZ for a $100 bonus. **

Summary

Overall, Axos is a great bank that deserves a place on our list. It has plenty of loan options with repayment terms of up to seven years. It is also an online bank for small-business owners looking for a no-hassle checking account with no monthly fees or requirements.

On the downside, Axos doesn’t offer credit cards, and has only three branches and around 1,900 ATMs across the country. Then again, that’s to be expected from an online-only bank.

* Business must be incorporated after 6/01/2020 and application must be submitted before 11:59pm on 3/31/2022 to qualify. In the first two months after account opening, the average daily balance of the account must be at least $2,500 in order to qualify for the $200 bonus. Bonus will be deposited into your new account within 5 business days of your statement cycle date. Account must remain open for 180 days or an early closure fee of $50 may apply. Must be new funds to receive bonus credit. Terms and conditions subject to change without notice. Bonus may be taxable and reported on IRS Form 1099-MISC. Consult your tax advisor. Bank reserves the right to limit each customer to one new account-related gift incentive per calendar year. NOTE: “New Funds” is defined as funds that did not originate from another Axos Bank brand account.

** Application must be submitted before 11:59pm on 3/31/2022 to qualify. In the first two months after account opening, the average daily balance of the account must be at least $2,500 in order to qualify for the $100 bonus. Bonus will be deposited into your new account within 5 business days of your statement cycle date. Account must remain open for 180 days or an early closure fee of $50 may apply. Must be new funds to receive bonus credit. Terms and conditions subject to change without notice. Bonus may be taxable and reported on IRS Form 1099-MISC. Consult your tax advisor. Bank reserves the right to limit each customer to one new account-related gift incentive per calendar year. NOTE: “New Funds” is defined as funds that did not originate from another Axos Bank brand account.

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FAQ
How do I choose a bank for my small business?

First, decide what you want from your bank. Compare the banks for loan terms, checking accounts, credit cards, online and mobile banking, and customer service. Better yet, you can just read our guide to get started with some solid picks.

What banks have free business checking accounts?

Axos is an example of a bank with a free small-business checking account that has no maintenance fees. You need to make an opening deposit of $1,000, though. Plenty of banks on our list offer easy ways to waive monthly maintenance fees - our favorites in this regard are Chase, TD Bank, and Bank of America.

Which bank is best for a startup business?

Signing up for a checking account or loan with Capital One gives you access to Spark Business IQ, a phenomenal repository of small-business and startup tips and resources.

What is the optimal bank for a small business owner?

It’s a hugely competitive market out there, and different banks provide different benefits, which means it’s not easy to definitively pick just one. Any of the six options from our list will serve you well, but we’ve selected Wells Fargo, Chase, Capital One, and Bank of America for various reasons. They are well-established brands with huge ATM and branch networks, excellent customer service, and outstanding loan, checking account, and credit card options.