Best Unsecured Business Credit Cards for Startups 2023

Woman holding credit card with words Best Unsecured Credit Cards for Startups.

Businesses with a high enough credit rating are eligible for unsecured cards that offer better benefits and perks. This type of card does not require you to put up any collateral, and it can be a great way to build your credit history. 

In this article, we will teach you about what unsecured cards are and give you a full breakdown of the best ones available.

Recommended: Find the best bank for your startup's needs by reading our guide to the best banks for startups and entrepreneurs

What Is an ‘Unsecured Credit Card’?

Unsecured credit cards essentially mean you do not have to put a down payment or collateral payment to begin using the card. Once approved, you are given a credit limit which allows you to make purchases up to the limit amount without exceeding it. Each month, you will be required to make at least the minimum payment on your balance.

These cards differ from secured credit cards that require a down deposit, which ends up being equal to your credit limit amount. For example, if you made a $200 down payment, this would be your overall credit limit. You would have to prove to the bank you were trustworthy enough to increase the credit limit amount after multiple payments on time. 

The reasons unsecured cards are more in-demand than secured cards is that they often include:

  • Better rewards systems
  • Higher credit limits
  • Better perks

The only downside to applying for an unsecured card is they require a higher credit score to be considered. This is the tradeoff for not having to put a down deposit on your card. 

Your business has already proven the company can trust you, so they don't require any upfront money. Instead, you must fall within a certain credit score range to be approved.

1. Chase Ink Business Cash - 4.5/5 Stars

The Chase Ink Business Cash has the highest reward tier of any other on this list, making it an attractive unsecured credit card for startups.

  • 5% cash back on purchases at office stores, internet service, cable service, and phone service up to the first $25,000 spent each anniversary year. 
  • 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent on purchases at gas stations and restaurants
  • 0% intro APR for the first 12 months on all purchases
  • No annual fee

With no annual fee, a sign-up cash back bonus, and one of the highest point rewards given, the Chase Ink Business Cash card is a must-have for any business starting out with unsecured business credit cards.

Recommended: Read our full Chase Ink Business Cash review.

2. American Express Blue Business Plus Credit Card - 4/5 Stars

One of the best business credit cards for entrepreneurs who don't have huge budgets, the AmEx Blue Business Plus Credit Card will help you earn rewards and save money without needing an exceptional credit history.

  • 2x membership reward points on up to $50,000 of business purchases in the first year (1 point per dollar for all purchases thereafter)
  • 0% intro APR for purchases made within the first 12 months (variable rate of 16.24%–24.24% applied thereafter)
  • 15,000 reward point bonus after spending $3,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months of card membership.

As long as your business has a good to excellent credit rating, there is little reason not to apply for the AmEx Blue Business Plus card. It has a high reward system, an intro APR offer, an intro bonus point offer, and no annual fees. The only issue is your rewards are capped at a certain amount, so big spenders may need to look elsewhere to get the most out of their spending habits.

Recommended: Read our full American Express Blue Business Plus Credit Card review

3. Capital One Spark Classic for Business - 3.9/5 Stars

Businesses with a fair or average credit rating can still get approved through the Capital One Spark Classic for Business card, and they'll even be able to get employee cards with all the same perks.

  • 1% cash back on all purchases in any location (no limits or category restrictions)
  • Free employee cards
  • No annual or foreign transaction fees

You won't find unsecured cards directed at people with fair or average credit scores so the Capital One Spark card stands out from the crowd. Although, the high 26.99% variable APR interest rate should prevent any business from carrying a large balance. 

Recommended: Read our full Capital One Spark Classic for Business review.  

What's the Difference Between Unsecured and Secured Cards?

Unsecured cards allow companies to spend up to the credit limit given to them by the credit card company. These limits are often based on your credit score and history with the company. The credit card company is trusting that you will make payments on time and in full. 

In contrast, a secured card requires the business owner to put down a deposit equal to the credit limit. This deposit is held by the credit card company as collateral in case the business can't make its payments. After a set period of time, usually 6 or 12 months, the business owner may get their deposit back. 

Secured cards are often easier to qualify for than unsecured cards since the credit card company is not taking on as much risk. You won't have as much spending power, but it will help you develop better spending habits. 

It's important to try and find a secured card that reports to the major credit bureaus. The only way you'll raise your actual credit score is by making good financial decisions. reported to the bureaus. Without any reporting, you will still have the opportunity to rebuild your trust with credit card companies, but it won't help your overall credit score. 

Unsecured cards usually have higher limits and better perks than secured cards. That's why they're often the better choice for businesses that can qualify. 

Over time, your company has the ability to upgrade from a secured card to an unsecured card as long as you make consistent payments and keep a low balance. 

Which Business Credit Card Should You Use?

The Chase Ink Business Cash card has the highest rewards offered for every dollar you spend, an intro bonus offer, and an intro APR for the first 12 months. Your business will need good to excellent credit, but the Chase Ink Business Cash card is worth the investment for the number of rewards you'll rack up. 

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