For business owners, keeping company finances separate from personal ones is a smart decision. However, for small business owners in particular, that can be easier said than done. If you find yourself using your personal credit card to cover business purchases, you’re certainly not alone – in reality, more than 65% of all SMB owners use credit cards on a regular basis, and less than 50% of those cards are in the company’s name. Here are some of the key advantages that enterprise cards hold over their personal counterparts.
Procuring a business credit card establishes a distinction between your personal and business purchases, which can help you avoid some major bookkeeping headaches. When you mix the two, you’re commingling expenses, which makes your company vulnerable to risk and could potentially threaten its overall integrity. You’ve worked hard to build your business – don’t jeopardize it.
Having well-organized records of your business purchases and expenses is essential when preparing to file your business tax returns. If you combine business and personal expenses using a personal credit card, you have to then manually pore over the account at year-end and determine which expenses are for the business. To echo the famous U.S. Navy design principle, “Keep it simple, smarty.”
Business credit cards often come with tools that can help you organize and categorize your business spending. Getting multiple cards for employees will make streamlining your spending even simpler, and as the owner, you can easily limit not only their monthly spending ability, but also the geographic areas in which they can use their card.
Numerous cards offer incentives and rewards for spending, and since your company will have more expenses, you can earn bonus points that are often tied to a specific category. Letting your business reap the benefits can actually help your bottom line.
If you get a business credit card, you'll likely have a business credit score. If you use your card responsibly, you could improve your score and get lower interest rates in the event you need to take out a business loan. If your card issuer reports your business card activity on your personal report, this could improve your credit score, too.
For these reasons and others, it makes sense to clearly define the lines between your personal and corporate accounts. In other words, keeping things separate keeps things simple.