You can't carry large amounts of cash around with you everywhere you go and so having the use of a credit card is especially useful. It also offers the benefit of record where and when you bought things and how much they cost, making record keeping a lot simpler and less of a memory test. Properly used, a business credit card allows you to clearly separate business expenses from personal expenses while facilitating business transactions made by phone and the internet. It is therefore essential to find one that suits your business.
There are an enormous number of business credit cards available. Some companies simply choose a business credit card based on who offers the lowest APR, but there are other considerations:
Estimate the amount of varying credit you think your business will need on a monthly basis as well as how much you can afford to pay off, then apply for that credit limit
If you have employees, you will need to decide exactly how many cards the business will need and which employees will require cards – remember: once you give an employee a card you are entrusting them with your business' credit; this is not something to decide lightly
Examine and assess your business' need for other services – for example, do you regularly travel on business? If so, then look for card issuers who provide Air Miles or free travel insurance.
Consider other factors, such as low or no annual membership fee, overdraft protection and account reports customised for your business needs.
Be careful of over-generous introductory interest rates – these are designed to tempt you and, after an initial period of around 12 months, can rise dramatically.
Do not apply for a card promising more credit than you can afford to repay. As with other types of credit, failure to discharge the agreed amount can severely damage the credit rating of your business. Many banks before issuing a card will want to see if your business has a history of successful trading and has a good credit history. Be prepared to provide the appropriate documentation such as cash flows and accounts.