Post by Affiliate: Mercantile
Five Things New Optical Shops Should Look For in a Business Credit Card
Are you planning to start a new optical shop? One of the important things you’ll need to decide is which small business credit card is the best fit for you and your new business. This can be a complex question, so here are five things to consider when you’re shopping for a business credit card:
This is sort of an obvious one, but whether you’re starting a new business or looking at a new business credit card for an established business, APR is key. It’s important to compare rates among available cards, and make sure the one you choose is reasonable; carrying a balance for any length of time can cost you a tremendous amount if you have a high APR.
Typically, these rates range from 5% to more than 30%, and are based on factors like your business’ credit score, annual revenue, and more. The impact of these interest rates cannot be overstated—consider how much you’ll be paying each month if you’re carrying a balance at 20% to 30% interest.
Every extra percentage point of interest that you’re paying is essentially throwing money away, so it’s critical to make sure your card has the lowest APR possible.
2. Credit Limit
The credit limit that any card you’re considering is prepared to offer you is also important to look at; you’ll want to make sure it will meet your spending needs, and that you won’t be paying any penalties if you reach or exceed that limit. Many cards do charge over-limit fees if you reach or exceed the card’s credit limit; it typically starts at $25 to $45 per instance.
As far as the limit meeting your needs, that’s another particularly important point of consideration, especially for a new business. That’s because you’ll probably be making more large purchases in the first year than any other time. Think about things like office furniture, computers, and capital equipment you’ll need for patient care. Plan out when you might be making each large purchase, and ensure the card’s spending limit will support your timeframes.
3. Annual Fees
One thing to watch out for with rewards cards is that some of them can have significant annual fees. You’ll want to take a close look at those—and whether the rewards you’ll potentially earn outweigh them, or not.
For example, the AmEx Business Platinum Card☨ allows you to earn rewards points and also has perks like airport lounge access. But it has a $695 annual fee—so you’ll have to assess the actual dollar amount of the perks and rewards it offers, and make sure you’ll use enough of them to justify the cost.
4. Discounts That Will Help You Most
Some business cards—like the the OAA Business Card*—offer special volume purchasing discounts (like a buying group), as well as exclusive discounts with specific vendors. When you’re starting a new business, having a card with the right discounts can save you a significant amount of money as you make big purchases.
Think about the major purchases you’ll be making in terms of equipment, technology, furnishings, and supplies. Additionally, consider what frames and contact lenses you might want to keep in stock, and see what discounts you might be able to get from a business card. (Hint: the OAA card, being tailored to opticians, will have the most relevant deals for you!)
5. Rewards and Cash Back
Because most business credit cards have incentives like rewards or cash back (most have both), it’s also important to take a close look at these. First, you’ll want to evaluate whether the things you’ll be earning rewards toward are valuable and relevant to you and your business. Also, will you accrue them in an amount that is meaningful?
Additionally, revisiting the point made earlier, it’s important to determine whether the value of the rewards that you’ll actually use is greater than the costs. Often, if you do some quick math to figure out the actual value of the rewards is significant enough to matter—especially when weighed against the costs of the card.
* Conditions apply. Subject to approval. Mercantile Financial Technologies, Inc. is a financial technology company, not a bank. The OAA Credit Cards are issued by Hatch Bank pursuant to a license from Mastercard. Mastercard is a registered trademark, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Review the cardholder agreement here.
☨ As of 3/25/2023 - American Express Business Platinum Card.
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