Consider a secured business card or an alternative form of business funding.
Typically, card providers want to see strong credit from their applicants. So if you have no credit, you might wonder about your chances of approval.
Without a personal or business credit score, your best bet is likely a secured business card. You’ll need to put down a security deposit before you can open an account, but it may give your provider the confidence to extend credit to you.
Compare business credit cards for low to fair credit
Consider these business credit cards for no credit
If you don’t have a business credit score but you do have strong personal credit, you may qualify for a great unsecured business card. When you apply, the provider will look at your personal credit.
Consider the following cards if you have no business or personal credit, or if your personal credit isn’t where you want it to be.
Discover it® Secured
If you’d like an unsecured business card eventually, it’s very useful to build a strong personal credit score. The Discover it® Secured can help with this, as it’s designed for consumers with no credit.
- No annual fee.
- Rewards. You’ll earn 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter you activate, then 1% after that and on all other purchases.
- Cashback match. Discover will match all of the cash back you earn in your first card year.
Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card
The Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card can help you build credit, and you can earn rewards while you spend.
- Wells Fargo Business Card Rewards Program. When you open your card, you can enroll to earn cash back or points.
- Cash back. If you choose the cashback program, you’ll earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase.
- Points. If you choose the points program, you’ll earn 1x points on every purchase. Plus, you’ll earn a 10% bonus when you redeem points online.
BBVA Compass Business Secured Visa Credit Card
- Get this card if: You want an intro annual fee.
It’s difficult to find a secured business card with no annual fee, so you might like the next-best thing: no annual fee for the first year.
- Annual fee waived the first year. You’ll pay a $40 annual fee starting the second year.
- Rewards. Earn 3x points at office supply stores, 2x points at restaurants and gas stations and 1x points on all other purchases.
- Employee cards. You won’t pay extra to get additional cards.
The Kabbage Card
- Get this card if: You’re willing to consider a line of credit.
This isn’t technically a credit card — it’s a line of credit. However, you can draw from your credit through The Kabbage Card.
- Maximum credit line of $250,000. This is higher than the maximum credit lines of many secured business cards.
- Flexibility. You don’t have to take the funds if Kabbage approves you. Also, you can use as much or as little of your credit line as you want.
How we chose our best cards
We chose cards that business owners could apply and be approved for without necessarily having strong personal credit scores. This largely meant secured credit cards, which include great options. The ones that made our list came with features that secured cards don’t typically offer, such as rewards or an intro APR.
For a line of credit, The Kabbage Card stood out because of its flexibility, allowing business owners to use only the credit they need.
What’s changed in 2019
It’s business as usual for these options in 2019. The Discover it® Secured continues to be one of the top personal secured cards. And Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card and BBVA Compass Business Secured Visa Credit Card still stand out with their rewards.
How to get a business credit card with no credit
If you’re worried you can’t get a business card with zero credit, first be clear on which type of credit you lack.
Without a business credit score, you can likely still get an unsecured business credit card. A provider will look at your personal credit score when deciding whether to approve you.
If you don’t have a personal credit score, it’s more difficult to get an unsecured business card. A provider might not check your personal credit if you have strong business credit. But if you have neither personal nor business credit, consider these options:
- Apply for a secured business card. You have much better odds of approval because you have to put down a security deposit.
- Explore an option that doesn’t require a minimum credit score. Look into Kabbage loans, for example, as its minimum requirements revolve around your business revenue.
- Get a business partner to apply for a credit card. Then, they can add you as an authorized user.
Can I get a business credit card without a Social Security number?
- It’s difficult to get a business card without a Social Security number, but it’s not impossible. Here’s how to do it:
- Get an ITIN — an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.
- With your ITIN, you can get an EIN — an Employer Identification Number.
- Look for a business card you can apply for with your EIN instead of your Social Security number.
How to compare business credit cards for no credit
- Look at what type of credit you’re missing.
If you don’t have business credit, it might not be an issue as long as you have strong personal credit. If you have neither type of credit, consider building your personal credit first.
- Annual fee.
Secured business credit cards typically have annual fees between $30 and $50. You have more choices if you want a secured personal card with no annual fee.
- Credit line.
A secured business card will likely offer a much higher maximum deposit, and therefore a higher credit limit, than a secured personal card. With a line of credit, you may have an even higher credit limit.
Check if your business spends in a card’s bonus-rewards categories. If your business spends relatively even across many categories, you might like a flat-rate rewards card.
- Employee cards.
Some providers offer free employee cards, while others charge for them.