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How to maximize Chase Ink business credit cards

Whether you’re building or maintaining a business, you’re constantly investing in its success

Summary

Use Chase Ink business credit cards to get rewarded for your spending now and in the future.

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You may feel like you’re constantly spending money left and right in hopes your business improvements pay off in the long- term — but why not get rewarded for your spending in the present as well as the future? The Chase Ink business credit cards allow you to do that.

Whether you choose Chase’s Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card for consistent 1.5 percent cash back on all business purchases, the Ink Business Cash® Credit Card for 5 percent cash back on select business spending categories or the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card for 3X points on travel, shipping and other business categories, you’ll always get rewarded for your business spending.

But that’s not all these cards offer. Let’s take a closer look.

Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card

The Ink Business Unlimited is for the business owner who wants to get rewarded for business spending but doesn’t want to mess around with trying to remember which spending categories give them the most cash back. Instead, they’d rather get cash back on everything for their business.

Sure, the rate of 1.5 percent is lower than you may get on other business credit cards that offer cash back but with that rate on all your business spending, the cumulative cash back could quickly add up. Plus, there are other benefits that sweeten the offer:

  • $900 bonus cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening
  • 0 percent APR on purchases for the first 12 months after account opening, with a 16.24 percent to 22.24 percent variable APR after that
  • No annual fee
  • Additional employee credit cards at no extra cost

Ink Business Cash Credit Card

This card offers 5 percent cash back on business expenses like office supplies, cable, internet and telephone services for the first $25,000 spent annually and 2 percent cash back on gas and dining on the first $25,000 spent annually. After that, you get 1 percent cash back on these purchases and all other purchases with no limit to how much you can earn.

If that’s not enough, there are a few additional benefits:

  • $900 bonus cash back after you spend $6,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening
  • Cash back: 1 cent per point for a statement credit, as cash in most checking or savings accounts, on gift cards or on travel and Apple purchases through the Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Additional employee credit cards available at no extra cost
  • No annual fee

Ink Business Preferred Credit Card

If points are your preferred reward for business expenses, the Ink Business Preferred is the card for you. It offers 3X points on common business purchases like travel, shipping, advertising and internet, cable and phone services (on up to $150,000 in combined spending per year).

The $95 annual fee may turn you off, but it comes with several additional benefits, including a higher sign-up bonus than what’s offered from Chase’s Ink Business cash back cards:

  • 100,000 bonus points (equal to $1,000 cash back and $1,250 in travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards) when you spend $15,000 in the first three months after account opening
  • No points expiration for as long as your account is open
  • Redemption options: cash back, gift cards, travel experiences and more

Chase Ink vs. other business credit cards

The Chase Ink cards are solid choices for small-business owners who want to be rewarded for their spending, but let’s compare them to other business credit cards to see how competition on the other side stacks up against the Ink Business line.

Capital One

Chase Ink Business is probably most closely compared to Capital One’s Spark business line. The Capital One Spark Cash Select — $500 Cash Bonus is the closest card to the Chase Ink Business Unlimited on the market. It offers the same rate of 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases with no cap on the amount of cash back you can earn — and it comes with no annual fee.

However, where the Spark Cash Select gains some ground over the Ink Business Unlimited is in its sign-up bonus — $500 if you spend $4,500 in the first three months. The Capital One card also now offers 5 percent cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, a bonus category that the Ink Business Unlimited lacks. Unfortunately, the Spark Cash Select doesn’t offer an introductory APR.

Meanwhile, the Ink Business Preferred doubles the sign-up bonus on the Capital One Spark Miles for Business, but in exchange the former’s spending threshold is much higher. With the Capital One Spark Miles for Business, you can still earn 50,000 miles (worth $500) if you spend $4,500 in the first three months.

The Ink Business Cash gives you 5 percent cash back on select business purchases and 2 percent back on restaurants and gas stations, followed by 1 percent after you hit its bonus category spending limits. Even though the Capital One Spark Cash Plus offers 2 percent on all purchases and 5 percent on select Capital One Travel, a 5 percent cash back on important office expenses is difficult to beat.

American Express

Both the American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card and The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express have no annual fees and offer 0 percent intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening (then 16.99 percent to 24.99 percent variable APR).

However, although the Blue Business Cash offers 2 percent cash back on all eligible purchases up to $50,000 per calendar year (then 1 percent), it falls short compared with the Ink Business Cash’s elevated bonus categories.

Similarly, the Ink Business Preferred gives 3X points on certain business categories up to $150,000 worth of combined purchases in a year, whereas the Amex Blue Business Plus offers 2X points on all purchases. So, Chase’s offering might be more valuable if you don’t expect to shell out more than $150,000 in business expenses in a year.

How to earn and redeem your rewards

It’s easy to earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the Ink Business cards, either through each one’s massive sign-up bonus or by spending money on eligible business purchases, such as shipping, internet, phone and cable bills and office supplies. The value of your rewards depends on what you’re redeeming them for.

Cash back

If you’re redeeming for cash back, log in to your Chase account and go to the “Rewards” page, click “Cash Back” and decide how many points you want to redeem. One Chase Ultimate Reward equals 1 cent. It takes up to three days for the cash back to appear in your account.

Travel

On the Chase Ultimate Rewards page, click “Travel.” Once you select flights, cruises, car rentals or hotels, select your dates and destination and you can see what’s available. You can extend your options by combining Ultimate Rewards points with cash to pay for your trip. And if you have the Ink Business Preferred Card the value of your points redeemed through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal increases by 25 percent, making each point worth 1.25 cents.

Gift cards

Click “Gift Cards” on the Chase Ultimate Rewards page, select the gift card you want and the amount you want on it. You will receive the card via email.

Apple products

From the Ultimate Rewards page click “Apple” and you’ll be redirected to the Apple Ultimate Rewards Store. Here, you can select the Apple product you want, adjust its specifications to your preferences and check out. All Apple products ordered through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal get free shipping, and you can combine your reward points with a debit or credit card to make your purchase.

Which Chase Ink card is best for you?

If you prefer cash back you can redeem for statement credits or gift cards to invest back in the business, go for either the Ink Business Unlimited or the Ink Business Cash. You’ll still have access to the Chase travel portal if you need it on the rare occasion you travel for work, but it’s not the main focus of your business credit card.

If you will more often redeem rewards for travel, Apple products and gift cards, go for the Ink Business Preferred, but know that it’s the only card of the three with an annual fee. However, in exchange, you can earn rewards up to a high spending ceiling and redeem points for travel at an increased 25 percent value.

As for deciding between the cash back options of the Chase Ink cards, it depends on your spending habits. If your business spends widely across different categories and you want the same rate of cash back on everything (with no spending cap), choose the Ink Business Unlimited. If you spend significant amounts on shipping, office supplies or your telecommunications bills because you have an office to maintain and still want cash back, go with the Ink Business Cash.

Bottom line

The Chase Ink Business suite of credit cards has solid options if you want to avoid either the exorbitant annual fees attached to premium business rewards cards or don’t want to pay any annual fee, but still want rewards for your spending.

The Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card is good for those who love a good flat-rate option, while the Ink Business Cash Credit Card suits small businesses that require working in person at an office. If your business calls for frequent travel and digital advertising, the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card is unlikely to disappoint. Of course, be sure to reach the spending goal quickly to earn your sign-up bonus, which easily ensures the card’s value to your wallet from the beginning.

Editorial Disclaimer

The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. It has not been provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

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