Executive Summary -
One of the better cash back credit cards for the small business owner. 5% cash back on office supplies and wireless services and 3% cash back on gasoline spending is a very good deal for cardholders. Extra discounts can be gotten by making purchases from their OPEN partners (like Marriott and Fedex).
Is this the best cash back business credit card out there? - The SimplyCash® Business Card from American Express is the latest business cash back credit card from American Express and is in our opinion, one of the most rewarding business cash back credit card today. The great thing about this card is that there are no tiers on what you can earn on the card and you get to earn more than the standard 1% rebates on selected categories.
How Would Business Owners Earn Cash Back on this Card - If you have been researching the cash back world in credit cards, you would realize that there is a big difference in the consumer and business space. The consumer space in characterized by rotating categories, online shopping malls and tiers on their cash back system. Thankfully, this trend has not entered the small business world and in that sense, the cash back formulas in business cards are more intuitive and simple to understand.
If you are a cardholder, this is what you can expect to earn in cash back. You could earn 5% at U.S. office supply stores & on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers, 3% at U.S. gas stations and 1% on other purchases . One thing to note is that the 5% and 3% earnings are valid for up to $12,000 in purchases in each 5% and 3% category per rebate year, then 1% That means that you can spend up to $12,000 for these individual categories and earn the cash back stated above. Once spending in that particular category exceeds $12,000, you earn 1% cash back.
There is no limits to the amount of cash back you earn and cash back earned will be automatically credited to your statement every month.. So essentially, what you will see is a reduction in your credit card bill based on the cash back you have earned. And unlike other cards where you have to wait for a year to get back your cash back, you will reap the rewards every month.
You will also get discounts (3% to 10%) automatically from OPENSAVINGs merchant partners, which include AT&T Fedex, Hyatt.
$100 Statement Credit For Travel Purchases - This is a perk that is offerd in many other Amex card and also present with this card. Basically, if you spend $3,000 on a cruise or travel vacation that is offered by Amex and book it through American Express travel with you card, you will get a $100 statement credit. This feature might be helpful for the business person who travels or have the annual company retreat away from headquarters!
Managing Employees Card - If you are looking to issue your employees with a card, you will be glad to know that there is no annual fee as well. You can set their credit limits, though Amex may exclude things like tips and hotel expenses (so that your employee will never be embarrassed on a business trip).
Get Your Business Administrator to manage your card - American Express also allows you to authorize another person to manage your card. This is a great feature for the business owner because they can assign this task to their office or business manager.
Fees and APR - There is no annual fee or additional card fee. The grace period is 25 days, which is longer than the standard 20 days that most credit card issuers give.
Other Benefits - Like all Amex cards, you also get benefits like purchase protection plan, travel insurance, car rental collision insurance, online account management.
SimplyCash Versus Other Business Cash Back Credit Cards
Let's now do some basic comparison of the SimplyCash versus it's peers. The first point to make is that this card will blow away any standard card that offers just 1% rebates. One of it's strongest rival in this space is the Chase Ink Cash.
Versus Chase Ink Cash - The Chase Ink Cash is actually one of the better cash back cards for business owners. The highlight of that card is that you can earn 3% rebates for spending on gasoline, restaurants, office supplies, hardware and home improvement stores. And obviously, you earn 1% on every thing else. The advantage that the SimplyCash has over the Chase Ink Cash is that for wireless phone service and office supplies, it beats it because it offers 5% rebates rather than 3%. But the Chase Ink Cash has a couple more categories that earns you 3% rebates - restaurants, hardware and home inprovement. They both have no annual fees so that is a wash in the fee area.
Versus Plum Card - The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN is anothe cash back credit card for business owners that Amex has to offer. It offers a 1.5% flat cash back (unlimited) as long as you pay earlier (10 day grace period). It does come with a $250 annual fee (though the first year fee is waived) because it allows the cardholder to pay only 10% of their balance and take an extra month (total of 2 months) to pay off the remaining 90%. This acts as a 0% line of credit for 60 days. It is also a charge card which means that there is no preset spending limit. The SimplyCash® Business Card from American Express OPEN is obviously taylored to the business owner who does not anticipate vendor type financing feature that the Plum Card offers. Also, from an annual fee perspective, this card will appeal to more business owners.
Versus BOA Cash Rewards MasterCard and Visa - Bank of America has cash back visa and mastercard that offers 3% rebates on office supply stores, gas stations and for computer network services. From the rebate perspective, the SimplyCash is better because it offers 5% on wireless and office supply expenses and matches it for gasoline (3%).
Versus Capital One No Hassle Cash for Business Owners - Capital One has a No Hassle Cash card for business owners that pays 1% cash back on all purchases. It is simple, but unfortunately, like all 1% rebate cards, the SimplyCash will simply blow it away because it allows you to earn 3% and 5% on more spending categories versus a straight 1% card.
SimplyCash® Business Card from American Express OPEN Verdict
Verdict - The SimplyCash® Business Card from American Express is a great cash back business credit card for the small business owner who is looking to earn cash back from their business expense. It sure beats regular 1% cash rebate cards and is probably one of two or three business cards to consider. There are a couple of cards like the Chase Ink Cash that will give it a run for the money. You must analyse your expenditure and see which card gives you the most bang for the buck. You should also check if all your vendors accept Amex (that could sometimes be a stumbling block). But for many business owners, this will make a fine cash back card. And if you really want to get as much cash back as possible, there is nothing stopping you from getting this card and another card with slightly different rebate formula to max out your cash back!
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