Methodology for rating business loans

You’ll find star ratings on some of our business loan provider reviews. Here’s how we came up with them.

You may have noticed that some of our business loan pages and tables come with star ratings. What do these stars mean? Well, they let you see at a glance how good a business loan is. We explain below what goes into making the business loan star ratings.

Finder score

We rate credit cards using a system of one to five stars.

★★★★★ — Excellent
★★★★★ — Good
★★★★★ — Average
★★★★★ — Subpar
★★★★★ — Poor

How it works

We’ve scored business loans across several criteria. The different criteria as well as the categories have been weighted to reflect their importance. The final product is a star rating that gives you a full picture of how the business loans fare against each other.

Finder score

So, how do we score business loans?

We dive into the details of each loan, including:

  • Amount range. How little or how much can you borrow?
  • Term range. How short or long can you borrow for?
  • Repayment holiday. Does the provider let you take a break whilst repaying back the loan?
  • Early redemption penalty. Will you be penalised if you repay the loan before your contracted term agreement?
  • Repayment changeable. Can you change how much you want to repay?
  • Overpay without penalty. Can you overpay when repaying back the loan?
  • Same day funds. Can you potentially receive funds the same day you apply?
  • Lump sum payments. Can you repay in lump sums?
  • Existing customers only. Is the loan only available to existing customers?
  • Ethical or green lending. Does the provider reduce its impact on the environment or help the local community?
  • Open-banking. Does the loan use open-banking to help decide whether or not to approve your loan application?
  • Transparency. Is the provider transparent with their fees?

From these details, we can get a good picture at which lenders offer the best flexibility and transparency. We then rate how these loans against the average market performance to get the overall Finder Score.

Your reviews and our customer survey

You can see review stars at the top of our review pages, if we’ve received more than 10. These are from consumers just like you who use our site and want to review the products and providers they use. We include responses we’ve received in our annual customer satisfaction surveys. We also show the results of each survey in a league table in guides and in our awards pages.

In December 2023, we ran a customer satisfaction survey on business loans. 400 people answered and told us how happy they are with their business loan provider. We’ve turned their answers into a star rating of between 1 and 5 and we show this in our annual league table of bank account providers.

★★★★★ – Excellent

★★★★★ – Good

★★★★★ – Average

★★★★★ – Subpar

★★★★★ – Poor

Customer satisfaction score methodology

The survey asked respondents how satisfied they are with their business loan on a scale from 1 to 5, and also whether they would recommend it to a friend or not.

We turned the answers into an overall star rating that takes into account:

  • How many people would recommend the business loan vs how many people wouldn’t. If you say you’d recommend your business loan provider to a friend when sitting at the pub in front of a pint, it must mean it’s really good (the provider, not the pint). This forms 50% of our customer satisfaction rating.
  • How many people rated a provider five out of five. Wow, five out of five? This counts for 25% of our customer satisfaction rating.
  • The average score each current account provider got. This tells us if a provider offers quite a solid service even though it doesn’t have loads of top ratings… or if it’s just not that great. This parameter forms the last 25% of our overall customer satisfaction score.

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