The Best Rewards Credit Cards for Small Businesses in 2022

Business rewards cards are great tools to earn rewards and keep business and personal spending separate.

A Discover card among other credit cards
(Image credit: Getty Images)

 A business rewards credit card can be a handy tool for small-business owners. Business credit cards may offer maximum rewards on travel purchases, gas, office supplies or other key spending areas for businesses, or they may offer a solid flat rate of cash back, miles or points on every purchase. Business cards often come with special features, such as employee cards and spending reports that break down cash flow. And business credit cards provide a way for business owners to separate business spending from personal spending. 

If you’re self-employed—whether through ownership of a full-fledged business with employees, freelancing or a side hustle—you may qualify for a business credit card. However, in the wake of the pandemic, card issuers seem to be scrutinizing sole proprietors (for example, a freelancer who uses his or her own first and last name as the business name) more closely, says Brooklyn Lowery, of CardRatings.com. Such applicants may face delays in being approved or lower credit limits than larger businesses might receive. But issuers are more commonly increasing credit limits after a few months of consistent, responsible use, says Lowery. Whatever the size of your business, be prepared to hand over information such as your business’s name and location, tax identification number (or Social Security number for a sole proprietor), and annual revenue when you apply.

The credit cards below provide ample rewards for business owners. For each card, we’ve calculated a typical annual rebate that assumes $32,000 spent annually on the card. A couple of the cards offer 0% introductory interest rates, too, which can be helpful for business owners who want to finance a large purchase interest-free.  

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If you’re instead looking for a card that provides strong cash-back rewards for users of all ages, see The Best Cash-Back Credit Cards. And if you’d like to open a card that offers points or miles for travelers, see The Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards

American Express Blue Business Cash 

  • Website: www.americanexpress.com (opens in new tab)
  • Interest rate: 0% for 12 months, then 16.24% to 24.24%
  • Annual fee: None
  • Top rewards rate: 2% back on up to $50,000 spent each year
  • Sign-up bonus: $250 back if you spend $3,000 in the first three months
  • Typical annual rebate: $640

 With Amex Blue Business Cash, you can earn 2% cash back on up to $50,000 spent each year, then 1%. Cash back is automatically added to your account as a statement credit. 

When needed, you can spend beyond your card’s credit limit—the amount adjusts based on your card usage, credit record and other factors. You can also add employee cards to your account, designate an account manager who has access to the account, and receive a year-end summary that charts your annual spending.

Capital One Spark 2x Miles Mastercard 

  • Website: www.capitalone.com
  • Interest rate: 23.99%
  • Annual fee: $95, waived the first year
  • Top rewards rate: Two miles per dollar on every purchase, plus five miles per dollar on hotel and rental-car bookings through Capital One Travel
  • Sign-up bonus: 50,000 miles if you spend $4,500 in the first three months
  • Typical annual rebate: 71,680 miles, worth $717 in travel bookings 

 If you travel regularly for your business, this card can help you accumulate plenty of miles to put toward trips. It offers five miles per dollar spent on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and two miles per dollar on all other purchases. Exchange miles at a rate of a penny each for account credits on travel purchases or for travel bookings through Capital One. Or transfer them to any of Capital One’s partner airline and hotel loyalty programs, including those of British Airways and Choice Hotels. 

Cardholders also get a credit of up to $100 every four years to reimburse the application fee for the Global Entry or TSA PreCheck airport-screening programs and two free yearly visits to Capital One’s airport lounges. 

Benefits for business owners include free employee cards and controls to set spending limits on them, plus the ability to download purchase records into various formats (such as Excel or Quicken) and assign an account manager.

U.S. Bank Triple Cash Rewards Visa Business Card 

  • Website: www.usbank.com
  • Interest rate: 0% for 15 months, then 16.99% to 25.99%
  • Annual fee: None
  • Top rewards rate: 3% cash back at gas stations, electric-vehicle charging stations, office-supply stores, cell-phone service providers and restaurants, plus 5% back on prepaid hotel and car-rental bookings through U.S. Bank’s Travel Rewards Center
  • Sign-up bonus: $500 back if you spend $4,500 in the first 150 days
  • Typical annual rebate: $569

Prepaid hotel and car rentals booked through U.S. Bank’s Travel Rewards Center get 5% cash back, and purchases at gas and EV charging stations, office-supply stores, cell-phone service providers, and restaurants get 3% cash back. Other spending earns 1%. Redeem rewards as a statement credit, deposit into a U.S. Bank deposit account or a U.S. Bank prepaid debit card. Each year that you have 11 consecutive months of subscription fees to eligible software services (such as FreshBooks or QuickBooks) charged to the card, you get a statement credit of $100.

Lisa Gerstner
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Lisa has spent more than15 years with Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and heads up the magazine’s annual rankings of the best banks, best rewards credit cards, and financial-services firms with the best customer service. She reports on a variety of other topics, too, from retirement to health care to money concerns for millennials. She has shared her expertise as a guest on the Today Show, CNN, Fox, NPR, Cheddar and many other media outlets around the nation. Lisa graduated from Ball State University and received the school’s “Graduate of the Last Decade” award in 2014. A military spouse, she has moved around the U.S. and currently lives in the Philadelphia area with her husband and two sons.