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Chase Ink Business Cash vs Ink Business Unlimited

Which is better for you?

Summary

Both offer a large sign-up bonus, generous intro APR and benefits for small business owners – but the rewards rates are tailored to a certain kind of spender.

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If you are a small business owner and a fan of cash back, Chase has two great offerings: the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card and the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card. Both cards offer cardholders a large sign-up bonus, generous intro APR on new purchases and the ability to rack up plenty of rewards on your everyday business spending. So how do you decide which is best?

The two Chase cash back business cards offer very different rewards structures, making it easy to align one or the other with your spending habits. While the Ink Business Unlimited card offers a flat rate of cash back on every purchase, the Ink Business Cash card offers a higher rate in particular categories.

Since both these cards offer comparable benefits for small business owners – such as free employee cards and a mobile wallet app to track receipts – deciding between them comes down to how you plan to use your card.

Ink Business Cash vs Ink Business Unlimited

Ink Business Unlimited
Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
Ink Business Cash
Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Rewards rate1.5% cash back on every purchase
  • 5% cash back on internet, cable and phone services and at office supply stores ($25,000 in purchases per year)
  • 2% cash back on gas and dining ($25,000 in purchases per year)
  • 1% cash back on other purchases
Sign-up bonus$500 if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months$500 if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months
Annual fee$0$0
Credit requiredExcellentExcellent
Card benefits
  • No fee for employee cards
  • Set individual spend limits per card
  • Mobile wallet app to track receipts
  • Transfer points to other Ultimate Rewards cards to potentially boost their value
  • Purchase protection
  • Extended warranty
  • Car rental insurance
  • No fee for employee cards
  • Set individual spend limits per card
  • Mobile wallet app to track receipts
  • Transfer points to other Ultimate Rewards cards to potentially boost their value
  • Purchase protection
  • Extended warranty
  • Car rental insurance

Why should choose the Ink Business Unlimited card?

Best for cardholders looking for one card for every purchase

If you are the kind of cardholder who prefers to use just one card for all your purchases, then the Ink Business Unlimited card might be best for you. With the same flat rate of cash back on every purchase you make, the card is designed to reward those who don’t spend heavily in any one particular category.

For example, imagine you put $48,000 per year on your business card, with $6,720 of that spend on the bonus categories with the Ink Business Cash card (internet, cable and phone services, office supplies, gas and dining).

Even when you consider the Business Cash card’s higher rewards rate on select purchases, you can earn more in cash back from the flat rate on the Ink Business Unlimited. In fact, we estimate that a cardholder who spends this much earns an average of 1.47 percent cash back with the Business Cash card.

Estimated yearly rewards value: $6,720 bonus category spend + $41,280 general spend

Ink Business UnlimitedInk Business Cash
$48,000 spend x 1.5% cash back = $720$48,000 spend x 1.47% average cash back = $706

Best for Ultimate Rewards card jugglers

For Ultimate Rewards fanatics, adding a flat-rate to your rotation can be a great way to combine Chase cards and maximize rewards points. Though the Ink Business Unlimited card is marketed as a cash back card, it earns Ultimate Rewards which can be transferred to any Chase Ultimate Rewards card.

See related: Earn more Ultimate Rewards points with the Chase trifecta

Because the Ink Business Unlimited offers a solid, flat rate of cash back, you can stack it with personal Chase cards with a high rate in bonus categories to maximize your rewards potential. Plus, some Chase cards offer a higher point value when you redeem for travel in the Ultimate Rewards portal, meaning you can take rewards earned with the Ink Business Unlimited and stretch them further by transferring.

See related: Why are Chase Ultimate Rewards points so valuable?

For example, you could combine the Ink Business Unlimited with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and Chase Freedom®. Use both the Sapphire Preferred and Chase Freedom for spending in their bonus categories, and then round out the trio by putting all other purchases on your Ink Business Unlimited. Finally, transfer all the points you earn to the Sapphire Preferred to get a 1.25 cent-per-point value when you redeem for travel on the Ultimate Rewards portal.

Ink Business Unlimited + Chase Sapphire Preferred + Chase Freedom
Rewards rateEstimated yearly rewards value ($48,000 spend)
  • 5 points per dollar on rotating bonus categories that you must activate each quarter (up to $1,500 in purchases per quarter, then 1 point per dollar)
  • 2 points per dollar on travel and restaurant purchases
  • 1.5 points per dollar on other purchases
$1,273

For small business owners wanting a go-to card for business spending – who are still focused on pairing Ultimate Rewards cards to maximize points – consider adding the Ink Business Unlimited as your flat-rate card.

Why choose the Ink Business Cash card?

Best rewards for setting up an office

On the flip side, the bonus categories on the Ink Business Cash card can prove incredibly lucrative if your business spending aligns with them.

Say, for example, that you are setting up an office and need to spend a significant amount on your office supplies, phone and internet services. By putting all that spend on your Ink Business Cash and earning 5 percent cash back on those purchases (up to $25,000 in purchases, then 1 percent), you significantly boost your overall rewards.

If you find yourself reaching for your business card when it comes time to restock the office, the Ink Business Cash can be incredibly lucrative.

Best for client dinners and commutes

Similarly, the Ink Business Cash card is a good choice for businesses who spend a significant amount on gas and dining. If your business sends employees on client dinners or regularly needs to fill the tank for commutes, the bonus categories on the Ink Business Cash can bring in significant rewards.

Though dining and gas purchases only bring in 2 percent cash back (on up to $25,000 in purchases per year, then 1 percent), if you spend enough money on these kinds of purchases you can boost your overall rewards rate.

Bottom line

Both the Ink Business Cash and Ink Business Unlimited credit cards from Chase can help small business owners rake in cash back on their everyday spending. Deciding which offers more potential value for you comes down to taking a good look at your businesses budget. Spread your purchases across multiple categories? The Ink Business Unlimited’s flat rate is top-notch. Spend more on office supplies, phone and internet services? You can maximize the Ink Business Cash’s bonus categories.

Alternatively, you could apply for both of these cards. By pairing the Ink Business Cash card’s high rate on bonus categories with the Ink Business Unlimited card’s flat rate on general purchases, you can bring in more rewards with the two combined.

What’s up next?

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This guide will show you seven ways you can use your everyday spending to rack up Ultimate Rewards points faster.

Published: August 23, 2019

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Credit Card Rate Report Updated: October 16th, 2019
Business
15.18%
Airline
17.11%
Cash Back
17.25%
Reward
17.13%
Student
17.29%

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