Reward cards typically fall into two different categories – those who deliver rewards in the form of redeemable points, and those who offer straight-up cash back. Chase’s Ink family of credit cards offer both types – while the Ink Business Preferred covers those who like to use points, the Ink Business Cash offers business owners a simple cash-back option for rewards.
To make the most out of your business purchases, the Ink Business Cash credit card works on a tiered cash back system, ranging from 5% on purchases made at office supply stores or for cable, Internet and phone services, to 2% at gas stations and restaurants, to 1% everywhere else.
Along with that, the Ink Business Cash offers a welcome bonus of $300 if you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of membership. With these rewards, along with a 0% introductory APR and no annual fee, the Ink Business Cash is a great starter card for those hoping to maximize their business expenses.
Our Overall Rating
As far as cash back business credit cards go, the Ink Business Cash is an extremely solid option. With its no annual fee and introductory APR rate on par with most personal card offers, there’s a very low barrier to entry to getting this card (provided you have sufficiently good credit of 690 or higher).
Once you have it, the Ink Business Cash provides decent support for very specific types of businesses – those who spend a lot on office supplies, or on gas and restaurants. Otherwise, you won’t get much more value out of your purchases than most other business cards, even with the respectable signup bonus.
Despite those caveats, it’s rare to see a business card actually provide no interest for an introductory period and forego their annual fee – traits for which the Ink Business Cash should be lauded. As a business-focused credit card, you could do a lot worse.
Where it Wins
Maximum value for regular business purchases. The multi-tiered cash back system ensures that Ink Business Cash cardholders get to push a little more value out of their business expenses than if they used a personal card. Suddenly, office supplies and business lunches seem a bit more affordable, since you get that much more back in cash rewards.
A business card with no interest for 12 months. Most often, we’ll see things like no annual fees, or a 0% introductory APR, reserved for personal cards – card companies expect that businesses can more easily swallow those added costs. By including those freebies for a business card, the Ink Business Cash stands out from the rest of the pack.
Ink Business Cash Credit Card Rewards & Benefits
5% cash back on office supplies and cable/phone/Internet. We have to start at the cash back tier that gives you the most rewards – 5% cash back on purchases made for cable, phone and Internet services, as well as purchases made in office supply stores. Getting that much more back on such frequent business expenses will really make a difference.
2% cash back on gas and restaurants. While this tier doesn’t give you as much in cash back, it’s still nice to get a modest bonus for car travel expenses like gas, and to help subsidize all those business lunches you have to go on in your work.
1% cash back on everything else. Outside of business-specific expenses, however, the Ink Business Cash card also provides a baseline 1% cash back on all remaining purchases. While the other tiers are limited to $25,000 in combined purchases, the 1% tier applies to all purchases, with no limit to the amount of cash back you can earn.
$300 bonus cash back signup bonus. A lot of card offers live or die with their welcome bonuses, and the one for Ink Business Cash is generous – if you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months of card membership, you get $300 in cash back rewards. It’s not a bad way to incentivize heavy spending, and it should soften the blow of your startup purchases.
Free employee cards. If you’re running a business that has multiple employees, and you don’t want to have to pass around the company credit card, Chase allows you to get extra employee cards at no additional cost.
Zero liability protection. Identity theft and account security are everything, especially to a small business. The Ink Business Cash offers zero liability protection so you’re not on the hook for unauthorized purchases, which could come in handy for a cash-poor business.
Ink Business Cash Credit Card Costs & Fees
No annual fee. Shockingly enough for a business card, the Ink Business Cash card offers no annual fee. Compared to the different kinds of business cards you can choose from, that’s a savings of anywhere from $100-200 a year – it may not sound like much, but every little bit helps.
A 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months. In addition to having no annual fee, the Ink Business Cash card also gives you interest-free spending for the first year of membership. This is ideal for small business who need help affording some of their starting expenses, and is rare for a business card.
14.49 – 20.49% variable APR. Once your introductory rate lapses, however, the Ink Business Cash card has one of the lowest variable APR rates we’ve seen for a business card. If you plan on holding a balance on that card during its use, it will help that much more to accrue less in interest.
Who is this card best for?
Given the categories in which the Ink Business Cash card excels, this card will be best used by small business owners and entrepreneurs who plan to spend a lot at office supply stores and on cable/phone/Internet utilities. It should also be perfect for small business owners who are just starting out, with its no annual fee and low introductory rate.
For those business owners who run businesses that don’t rely on office supplies or Internet utilities, this might not be the card for them. You just won’t get as much out of the specific rewards tier categories the Ink Business Cash offers. Cardholders who travel a lot, for instance, should look for cards that give you more rewards in that category.
How to Apply
Applying for a Chase Ink Business Cash credit card functions pretty much the same way as any other business card application. Just head to Chase’s application portal, and you’ll be asked to enter your basic business information. This includes stuff like the type of business, tax ID number, name and address, and projected revenue/employees.
From there, the rest is simple – entering your personal card information (and that of any employees whom you might like to give cards to), security information, and a quick review of your information. After you e-sign the disclosure form, you’re good to go.
Ink Business Cash Credit Card Alternatives
Chase Ink Business Preferred Card. If you want the benefits of the Ink Business Cash, but prefer rewards points to cash back, it’s hard to beat the Ink Business Premium. Not only that, it has an astounding 80,000 point sign-up bonus and a greater focus on travel expenses.
Citi Double Cash. If you’re looking for a modest, cash back business card, but want to shy away from Chase, the Citi Double Cash is a reasonable second option. However, its bonuses don’t quite match Ink Business Cash, with just 1% cash back on all purchases and 1% cash back when you make your minimum payment.
Amex Business Gold. The Amex Business Gold has more in the way of travel and hotel-related rewards ($75 credits with the Hotel Collection, 3x points on airfare), but it also has a steeper $175/year annual fee. Still, for customers looking to expand their rewards points possibilities, this is one of the greater values out there.