Best Business Checking Accounts for Startups and Entrepreneurs
It is important to consider the best business checking accounts for startups and entrepreneurs since business banking is a fundamental requirement for every business. Every entrepreneur needs a business bank account to pay their business insurance, take care of payroll, collect money, have a merchant account to accept credit card payments, and so forth.
Depending on your business type will determine which of the best business checking accounts you might want to consider. They each have their own advantages and disadvantages.
The top seven best banks for startups and entrepreneurs:
- Best Online Bank Account for Startups: BlueVine
- Best National Bank for Startups: Chase
- Best Bank for Brick-and-Mortar Locations: Wells Fargo
- Best Ecommerce Bank for Startups: Capital One
- Best Bank for Tech Startups: Silicon Valley Bank
- Best Bank for Startup SBA Loans: US Bank
- Best Real Estate Investment Bank for Startups: Consumers Credit Union
Best Online Bank Account for Startups: BlueVine
If you operate an online business, or a business that doesn’t often deal with cash, then having an online business bank account will provide you with many benefits that a brick and mortar bank won’t provide.
For example, BlueVine lets any business make as many transactions as they like, without a fee. The biggest benefit, though, is that they don’t charge a fee for having the account. If you are operating a brand new business, it’s nice to know you don’t have to worry about where the money will come from to cover the bank account fee. It takes time to build a business, and sales don’t always happen overnight.
BlueVine offers online entrepreneurs several benefits. You don’t have to worry about paying a monthly fee, you don’t have to worry about penalties for making too many transactions, but let’s see what else BlueVine has to offer.
Here are some additional business checking benefits offered by BlueVine:
- 1% interest on your balance
- No hidden fees (e.g., no incoming wire fees, etc.)
- No ATM fees at over 38,000 Money Pass locations
- No non-sufficient funds fees
- Two free checkbooks
- BlueVine mobile app
- Dedicated support
What to Look Out For
BlueVine is perfect for online businesses and even works for brick and mortar businesses in the sense that you can make cash deposits into your business bank account using any of the 70,000+ GreenDot locations nationwide. There is a caveat that you should know about before depositing money through GreenDot — BlueVine charges a $4.95 deposit fee for each GreenDot deposit.
Who Is BlueVine Best For?
BlueVine is great for businesses that primarily do business online. BlueVine is probably one of the best business checking accounts for online startups and entrepreneurs in particular.
This is because they make business banking convenient and hassle-free. Their customer support is excellent. Their website and mobile app are user-friendly, cutting-edge, and ultra-convenient for the online business person who likes innovation without having to read the fine print.
Recommended: Learn more about BlueVine Business Banking on How to Start an LLC.
Best National Bank for Startups: Chase
Chase is the best national bank for startups because it is the largest bank in the United States that has mastered how business banking should be done.
They have everything a startup business needs, like no minimum deposit requirement for opening an account and many branches and ATMs throughout the country, which is extremely convenient.
The Chase Business Complete Banking℠ account is arguably one of the best bank accounts for startups and entrepreneurs. Besides being the largest bank in the US with more than 4,700 branches and 16,000 ATMs, Chase bank offers many other perks for being a business banking customer.
Here are some additional business checking benefits offered by Chase Bank:
- Mobile banking
- Online banking
- Send and receive wire transfers
- Pay bills online through online bill pay
- Setup and monitor accounts for employees
- No fees for military members
- Get free ATM/debit cards
What to Look Out For
Bigger may be better “sometimes,” but there are some things to look out for when you open an account.
Here are some things you need to know before opening a Chase Business Complete Banking℠ account:
- Earn $300 when you open a new Chase Business Complete Checking account. For new Chase business checking customers with qualifying activities.
- More ways to waive fees. Multiple options to waive the Monthly Service Fee, including maintaining a minimum daily balance or purchases on your Chase Ink® Business credit card
- Built-in card acceptance. Accept card payments anytime, anywhere in the U.S., and get transparent pricing with Chase QuickAccept(SM).
- Same-day deposits with QuickAccept(SM). Free up the cash you need to keep your business moving forward with same-day deposits at no additional cost.
- Alerts to help you stay on top of your account activity.
- Easy account management through Chase Business online and the Chase Mobile® app.
- Unlimited electronic deposits, ACH and Chase Quick Deposit(SM).
- Convenient access to 16,000 ATMs and more than 4,700 branches.
Who Is Chase Bank Best For?
You can “bank” on Chase bank (pun intended) as being the best national bank for startups and entrepreneurs who want the best business bank account.
The Chase Business Complete Checking account offers every feature you might expect in a national bank, plus perks not offered by other national banks (e.g., $300 bonus, the most branches and ATMs, etc.). They can help you get your business off the ground and going.
Recommended: Read our full Chase Business Checking Review.
Best Bank for Brick-and-Mortar Locations: Wells Fargo
The Wells Fargo Simple Business Checking account is the best business checking account for startups and entrepreneurs who need a local presence from their bank.
This is true for one simple reason – Wells Fargo makes business banking simple because they offer four unique business bank accounts fitted for every stage a business is at.
Wells Fargo has been around for a long time. It is the oldest bank in America. It has a history that has helped it thrive and meet and exceed customer’s needs over the years.
One thing we like about Wells Fargo is that you can open up a Wells Fargo Simple Business Checking account if you’re a sole proprietor business owner, but then as you have more monthly transactions, you can upgrade to the Wells Fargo Best Choice Checking account. You’ll probably want to start with the Wells Fargo Best Choice Checking account if you want to form a limited liability company (LLC).
From there, you can keep upgrading two more levels, depending on how well your business is doing. So Wells Fargo does a great job of giving options to businesses.
Here are some additional business checking benefits offered by Wells Fargo:
- Zero Liability Protection on debit cards and 24/7 fraud monitoring.
- Easily monitor business banking activity with account alerts.
- Stay in control of cash flow with easy options to make and receive payments.
- Access your account anytime on multiple devices or from one of more than 13,000 ATMs.
- Fee waivers and discounts
- Customize your business debit card with your logo and tagline
What to Look Out For
We love how Wells Fargo offers the best business bank account for brick and mortar businesses, but even so, there are a few things to keep in mind before opening an account with them.
Here’s what you want to look out for before opening a Wells Fargo Simple Business Checking Account:
- Limited to 50 transactions per month
- $10 monthly service fee if your account balance falls below $500 average balance
Who Is Wells Fargo Best For?
Wells Fargo is the best bank for brick and mortar businesses. This is true because they cater to businesses of every size, have branches throughout the United States, and have a history of successfully helping startup businesses and entrepreneurs to grow their business.
Recommended: Read our full Wells Fargo Business Checking Review
Best Ecommerce Bank for Startups: Capital One
The best business bank account for ecommerce startups and entrepreneurs is the Spark Business Checking Account from Capital One. The reason for being the best in this category is because Capital One is able to leverage its internet-based banking institution to implement low fees for its ecommerce banking customers.
An ecommerce business (electronic commerce) is a business model that connects buyers and sellers over the internet.
This business model may connect businesses to businesses, businesses to consumers, or even consumers to consumers, but at the end of the day, it’s about doing business entirely online without the constraints of time and place. It is a great business model for setting up an autopilot business where a business owner can still make money, even when sleeping (think of Jeff Bezos and Amazon).
Here are some benefits of opening a Capital One Spark Business Checking Account:
- Unlimited transactions
- No monthly service fee
- No minimum balance
- No ATM fees at over 39,000 Allpoint ATMs
- No cash deposit fees up to $5000 per month
- Free debit card
- Highest interest rates
- Remote check deposits
- Killer mobile app
- 700 brick and mortar locations
- Helpful customer service 24 hours a day
What to Look Out For
Capital One offers the best business checking account for startups and entrepreneurs looking to build an ecommerce business empire. While you may have your head in a “cloud” (pun intended) with all the wonderful benefits just mentioned, it’s practical to note the flip side of the coin.
Here are some things to look out for when opening a Capital One Spark Business Checking Account:
- You need to maintain a $2,000 balance to keep from paying a $15 monthly service fee.
- There is a $1 fee per $1,000 deposited in the account after the first $5,000 per month.
- Watch out for ATM fees when you’re not at an Allpoint ATM.
- Currently, Capital One has restricted access to this account, though they do have a message on their site indicating that access should resume soon for new business owners.
Who is Capital One Best For?
The Capital One Spark Business Checking Account is the best business checking account for ecommerce business owners. This is true because Capital One is matchless in its ability to provide every single benefit an ecommerce company would want in a bank.
We could not find another bank that provided the 24 hours telephone banking and the zero fees for things that would matter to an ecommerce company like what Capital One delivers.
Recommended: Read our full Capital One Business Checking Review
Best Bank for Tech Startups: Silicon Valley Bank
If you are curious about the best bank for tech startups that will offer you the best business checking accounts, then you’ll be surprised to learn that Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) is utilized by 50% of all venture-backed tech startups, and for good reasons.
SVB is the go-to-bank for tech startups. They have access to resources that benefit tech companies, specifically access to venture capital connections. Besides helping tech startups get their foot in the door, they offer a great business checking account for tech startups.
Here are some additional business checking benefits offered by Silicon Valley Bank:
- Unlimited free wires – including incoming, outgoing, domestic, international, and all currencies
- Multiple checking accounts available at no extra charge and an optional debit card
- No minimum balance requirements
- Proprietary reports
- Peer insights
- Practical finance and startup advice from the SVB team of startup experts
- Network with investors and other founders at their local networking events
What to Look Out For
Silicon Valley Bank is the best bank for tech startups and offers the best business checking account for techs, but there are a few things you’ll want to look out for as you bank with them.
- No maintenance fees for three years. After three years, the fee is a whopping $50 per month. The idea, though, is that, with their help, your tech firm will be able to easily justify spending the $50 by then.
- SVB has only 12 brick and mortar locations, and they’re all in California. If your business is outside of California, you may want to consider other options.
Who Is Silicon Valley Bank Best For?
Silicon Valley Bank is best for tech startups and seasoned tech firms. If you’re considering starting a technology company, Silicon Valley Bank is definitely the best choice bank for getting your business off the ground and scaling it fast.
Check out Silicon Valley Bank’s Startup Banking on their website.
Best Bank for Startup SBA Loans: US Bank
US Bank offers one of the best business checking account for startups and entrepreneurs looking to build business credit and get a Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) loan. It’s helpful to bank and borrow money for your business under one roof.
Besides being convenient, it is a great way to build a strong working relationship with your bank to help ensure your business’s success. This can also help you build business credit.
Getting a small business loan can be a real challenge if you don’t know what you’re doing. There is a process for getting a business loan that ideally starts when forming your business. The mistake most businesses make is not planning far enough in advance.
The SBA 7(a) loan will require some time to get, plus there’s a mountain of paperwork to complete, plus you’ll want to establish business credit, so you have a chance of qualifying. That being said, US Bank is a great bank for businesses starting out. They don’t charge monthly fees for having an account, so new startups can rest easier knowing they’re not being charged money before they’re making money. They are also good at helping small businesses navigate the lending route, and customer service is great at this bank.
Being a long-standing business bank with a good reputation, US Bank knows the business of business financing well. It’s no wonder they do such a great job helping startups to get the funding they need through the SBA loan lending program.
Here are some benefits of opening a Silver Business Checking Package account:
- 25 free cash deposits per month
- 125 free transactions per month
- $100 minimum opening deposit requirement
- 50% discount on your first check order up to $50
- 50% discount on the personal Gold Checking Package monthly maintenance fee
- Free mobile check deposit
What to Look Out For
Though US Bank offers the Silver Business Checking Package account with no monthly fees, something we love about this bank, they will hit you if you start going over the 125 free transactions per month.
Here are some things to look out for with US Bank:
- A $0.50 fee is charged for each transaction above the account’s limit of 125 per month.
- A $5 fee is charged for paper statements.
- If you’re an ecommerce company or restaurant or retailer with many merchant transactions each month, this account may not bode well for your bottom line given the higher rate charged per transaction over 125. In this case, you may want to reassess your banking options.
Who Is US Bank Best For?
US Bank is one of the best business checking accounts for startups and entrepreneurs wanting to learn how to build business credit and get an SBA 7(a) loan. This bank has lots of branches; last we checked, they had 3,067 branches. They also have great customer service and tend to work well with businesses seeking out business loans, especially through the SBA 7(a) loan program.
Read our full US Bank Business Checking Review on How to Start an LLC.
Best Real Estate Investment Bank for Startups: Consumers Credit Union
The best banks for real estate investors are credit unions, and we like Consumers Credit Union since they offer the best business checking accounts offering the highest interest rates.
High-interest accounts and zero transaction fees up to the first 100 transactions per month make Consumers Credit Union the best business checking account for startups and entrepreneurs pursuing real estate investing. Consumers Credit Union also offers business money market accounts, business credit cards, business loans, business savings accounts, and other business services.
Here are some benefits of opening a Freedom Business Checking account:
- The current interest rate is 5%
- $0 minimum average collected balance to avoid monthly transaction fees
- 100 transactions allowed with no charge
- $0 monthly maintenance fee
- Business online banking
- Business bill pay
- Electronic statements
- Paper statements
- Surcharge-free ATMs in the co-op network
- Shared branching locations in the co-op network
What to Look Out For
Consumers Credit Union offers the best business checking account for startups and entrepreneurs looking to build a real estate investment empire. While they offer the best business checking account for real estate investors, there are some things you should note before opening an account with them.
Here are some things to look out for when opening a Consumers Credit Union Freedom Business Checking Account:
- Midwest branch locations. Consumers Credit Union has its main credit union branches in Illinois, in and around the Chicagoland area. They do, however, offer complete online banking services and have partnered with the co-op network.
Who Is Consumers Credit Union Best For?
The Consumers Credit Union Freedom Business Checking Account is the best business checking account for real estate investment businesses.
This is true because Consumers Credit Union really caters well to businesses with a whole suite of business products and account types. We could not find another national credit union that provided great interest rates, sought out by real estate investors, without the hidden fees many banks charge.
Check out Consumers Credit Union’s Business Banking options on their website.
Why Use a Business Bank Account?
We have discussed in detail the top seven banks for startups and entrepreneurs, detailing the best business checking accounts for startups and entrepreneurs for a range of uses, but we haven’t really explained why you should use a business bank account. It is important to know why your business needs a business checking account.
The most important thing a business can do is open up a business checking account, so owners and shareholders do not pierce the corporate veil.
The verbiage “piercing the corporate veil” refers to a legal situation in which the courts get rid of “limited liability” and hold owners and shareholders personally liable for a business's actions. This means a business owner may risk losing their personal assets and property should the business get sued or run into other legal troubles, which is not a good thing.
Having a business bank account protects the owners because it ensures that all business-related expenses are kept separate from personal expenses. You never want to make the mistake of mixing personal and business accounts, expenses, records, etc.
Once you open a business bank account, it is important to use the account. It helps you build business credit, establish a working relationship with the bank, and helps ensure you do not pierce the corporate veil.
Our Choice for the Best Business Bank Account
Choosing the best banks for startups and entrepreneurs was no easy feat; however, with loads of determination and countless hours of analysis, we feel sure we’ve picked the best business checking accounts for startups and entrepreneurs.
BlueVine is outstanding because it was originally established as a business loan provider. Later it became a bank, offering a powerful business checking account designed to help startups and entrepreneurs take advantage and leverage the power of lending capital while managing and growing capital in a business checking account. BlueVine offers a solid 1% interest rate on funds in the checking account and great business loan rates too.
Though BlueVine is an entirely online bank, their customer service is unmatched in our opinion. They don’t hide behind the internet and are completely transparent about their rates and fees. They’re not out to “get you” or “pull the wool over your eyes”; rather, they seem to want to help startups and entrepreneurs succeed in business. They’re our top pick overall.
Chase is huge in terms of branch locations and the options they provide businesses for the long haul. Many businesses get started by opening a Chase business bank account and then staying with Chase as their business grows. They have case studies on their website to inspire the entrepreneurial spirit, and we feel they really get the mindset of investors overall.