Best Bank for Small Business
Best For New Businesses and Solopreneurs
Best for all types of real estate investors
Best for More Established Businesses
GREAT FOR ECOMMERCE BUSINESSES
GOOD FOR IN-PERSON BANKING
ONLY FOR VENTURE-BACKED STARTUPS
EXCELLENT PAYMENT PROCESSING INTEGRATION
In our approach to small business banking, we researched:
- Total cost (e.g., monthly maintenance fees, transaction fees, account opening fee, etc.)
- Number of useful features: This will depend on your business's specificities and industry
- Bank requirements: How strict are the requirements of each business checking account? Is each bank account available to foreign owners of US companies?
- Other perks: The best business bank accounts offer discounts on accounting and tax software and expedited payments through popular ecommerce platforms.
- Security: What precautions are taken to ensure safe transactions? Is each small business bank account FDIC insured
Our Top 6 Business Bank Accounts:
- Lili: Best for new businesses and solopreneurs
- Baselane: Best for All Types of Real Estate Investors
- Relay: Best for more established businesses
- Novo: Great for ecommerce businesses
- Chase Bank: Good for in-person banking
- Brex: Optimal for venture-backed startups
- NorthOne: Easy payment processing integration
1. Best for New Businesses and Solopreneurs: Lili
Lili offers many great features and is very affordable. Having said that, its limitations (when it comes to the total amounts that are transferable) make it ideal for freelancers and/or microbusinesses rather than businesses looking to scale. Lili only sets up accounts for single-owner businesses.
Lili's offers two small business checking accounts:
Lili Standard: $0/Month/Account
- No minimum balance requirements
- Automatic savings features
- Built-in expense tracking
- Expedited payments (i.e., up to two days faster)
- Free ATM withdrawals in over 38,000 ATMs
Lili Pro: $9/Month/Account
- Visa Business Debit Card with cash back features
- Fee-free overdraft up to $200 per account
- Advanced tracking to assist with tax deductions
- Ability to create and send an unlimited number of invoices
- Generous cash back program (e.g., Mailchimp, Microsoft, TaxAct, etc.)
Schedule of Fees Summary
- Direct Deposit: Capped at $25,000 per day or $50,000 per month.
- Cash Deposit: Capped at $1,000 per day or $9,000 per month.
- ACH Inbound Pro: Capped at $1,000 per day or $5,000 per month.
- ACH Inbound Standard: Capped at $500 per day or $2,000 per month.
- Expense management — businesses can categorize different expenses from Lili's online and mobile banking app in real-time
- If you deposit money from online platforms into your Lili account, you can get your money up to two days earlier (e.g., Uber, Lyft, Shopify, etc.)
- No minimum balance requirements or hidden fees
- Business cash back rewards on everyday purchases
- Highly secure — FDIC insured, real-time transaction notifications, ability to freeze and unfreeze debit cards at any time through your app
- Lili pre-fills your annual 1040 Schedule C form, saving time when you need to file it with your accountant or with the IRS
- Very affordable
- No foreign transaction fees and you can use Lili debit card internationally anywhere where VISA is accepted
- Invoicing tool to manage your bookkeeping by creating an unlimited amount of invoices through Lili's online and mobile banking app
- Can save and download all invoices as PDF documents directly from Lili mobile app
- Funding limits can be inconvenient unless very small business (e.g., $2,000 a month in ACH Inbound, etc.)
- No 24/7 hour support — available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.–7 p.m. EST
- Business account only available for single-owner LLCs and sole proprietorships
- Foreign Activity: If you move outside of the US or have frequent international transactions, you may be contacted for additional verification of your address. If you “will not be returning to the US, your account may be closed”
- Does not accept deposits in foreign funds or checks drawn on banks outside the US
- Cannot make deposits at an ATM
- No wire transfers
- No checks
Check out Lili's services if you are a freelancer or a single owner of a business.
*Lili is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services are provided by Choice Financial Group, member FDIC.
2. Best for All Types of Real Estate Investors: Baselane
Baselane is a financial institution that focuses on providing banking services tailored to the needs of real estate investors. With a deep understanding of the industry, Baselane offers a range of products and services that cater to the unique requirements of property investors. This review is aimed at real estate investors looking for a banking platform designed for their industry.
Key Features and Benefits
- Dedicated real estate investment accounts
- Competitive interest rates — 4.25% APY
- Easy online account management
- Access to a network of real estate professionals
- Customized loan products for property investments
- $300 bonus for new account openings
- Free to use
- Designed to manage rental income
- User-friendly dashboard and app for tracking finances
- Supports multiple payment methods
- Easily access financing options for real estate investments to buy, fix and flip properties
- Up to $250,000 in FDIC insurance
- Limitations on high-interest cash back
- Debit card processing fee (tenants)
- No tenant screening tools
Baselane offers banking built for landlords where you can collect rent from multiple properties, earn a 4.25% APY, and find financing options for your next investment.
*Baselane is not a Bank. FDIC insurance is provided by Blue Ridge Bank, N.A.; Member FDIC.
3. Best for Established Businesses: Relay
Relay is a no-fee online banking and money management platform. We placed Relay as a top option because of its exceptionally low fees, flexible structure, and good value.
Relay offers its users two subscription packages:
Relay Standard: $0 monthly service fee
- No monthly checking account fees or minimum balance requirements
- $0 bounced checks
- Cash withdrawals in 32,000 AllPoint ATMs and 24/7 customer support service
- Up to 20 no-fee checking accounts and up to 50 virtual or physical debit Mastercards
- Payments via ACH, wire, or check
- Ability to invite team members to Relay
- Automated spending limits for team members
- Third-party integrations, including Xero, Quickbooks Online, Expensify, Gusto, Plaid, Wise, etc.
- iOS, Android, and Web app availability
- Online and mobile banking check deposits
- 1-2 day ACH delivery time
- Domestic wires available for $5
- Partner Program and Client Portal
Relay Pro: $30/business month
- Automatic importation of bills from Quickbooks Online and Xero
- Ability to view, approve, and pay all bills from a single dashboard
- Ability to set up and automate multi-stage approval workflows for bills
- Ability to pay bills in batches
- Free domestic and international wires
- Free same-day ACH transfers. Same-day ACH delivery time
- Auto-import bills from QuickBooks Online and Xero`
- Multi-step approval rules for bill payments to increase security
Schedule of Fees Summary
- Direct deposits or ACH Transfers initiated from an outside financial institution: Limited to $1 million/day
- Wires initiated from an outside financial institution: Limited to $1 million/day
- ACH Transfers: Limited to $100,000/day
- Wires: Limited to $200,000/day
- Bill Pay Checks: Limited to $40,000/day
- Internal Transfers: Limited to $1 million/day
- 4.5 stars on Trustpilot
- Free Relay Demo offered with live Q&A
- Relay Partner Program, with which you can earn very generous revenue share and discounts by adding clients (e.g., 17% revenue share by adding 10 clients, etc.)
- Collect payments from PayPal, Stripe, Square, and much more
- No account fees, withdrawal fees, overdraft fees, or account minimums
- High security — accounts are FDIC insured up to $250,000, cards are covered by Mastercard’s Zero Liability Policy, and two-factor authentication for logins is provided.
- As an accountant, you can log into multiple clients’ Relay accounts by using one set of credentials. This means you do not need to share client passwords and 2FA codes.
- Extremely scalable — very high limits on wires, direct deposits, and ACH transfers.
- Not as many integrations and free rewards as other providers
- Relatively high monthly fee, although this is made up through the no-fee financial transactions.
Try Relay's premium digital banking platform for small businesses.
*Relay is a financial technology company, not a bank. Relay deposits are insured for up to $250,000 per user through Evolve Bank & Trust, member FDIC.
4. Great for Ecommerce Businesses: Novo
Novo is a financial technology banking platform that is sponsored by Middlesex Federal Savings.
As a business checking account, Novo is very direct about its "no-hidden" fees policy and makes it very easy for users to know exactly what they will be subjected to before signing up. We also liked how Novo offers refunds for all ATM fees — both outside and inside the US.
Novo's small business online platform offers the following features:
- Free ACH transfers
- Free mailed checks
- Free incoming wires
- FDIC Insurance
- No monthly fees or minimum balance requirements
- Refunds all ATM fees
- Thousands of dollars in exclusive perks
- One virtual card for immediate and secure spending
- High number of integrations, including QuickBooks, Shopify, Stripe, Xero, Slack, Wise, eBay, Etsy, and more
- No early closing fee
- No monthly service charge
Schedule of Fees Summary
- No account, transaction, or deposit fees.
- Minimum balance required to open: $0
- Minimum amount required: $50
- Insufficient funds charge: $27
- Uncollected funds returned fee: $27
- Very secure — includes EMV chip, bank-grade encryption, and a disposable virtual card
- FDIC insured up to $250,000
- $20,000 in fee-free card processing with Stripe
- 6% cashback on all Booking.com trips when you pay with your Novo debit card
- $3,000 in Google Cloud credits
- 100% discount on first three months of any Gusto package
- 40% discount on first six months of any QuickBooks Online package
- 30% discount off first year HubSpot subscription, as well as 15% for all the following years
- $25,000 in segment credit for the first two years
- Free 6 months on any Zendesk Suite licenses
- $150 in Snapchat ads credits
- Online and mobile banking check deposits
- Only US residents are eligible for Novo's business accounts
- Limited industries — if you work with cryptocurrencies, privately-owned ATMs, or gambling, you will be unable to use Novo
- Minimum balance required to open is $0, but the minimum amount required is $50.
- Some Novo Apps' advanced functionalities may incur fees charged by Novo's partners (e.g., Wise integration, etc.)
Recommended: Novo’s premium integrations make it an ideal service for ecommerce businesses.
*Novo is a fintech, not a bank. Banking services are provided by Middlesex Federal Savings F.A., member FDIC.
5. Good for In-Person Banking: Chase Bank
If you are operating a business that makes frequent large cash deposits (e.g., a retail or restaurant business, etc.) Chase may be the right bank for you.
They are a good fit for businesses that handle a lot of cash transactions and for businesses that operate multiple physical locations. Chase has more than 5,200 brick-and-mortar locations nationally. Chase also offers several competitive account options that are tailored to different business sizes.
Here is a quick summary of what Chase's online banking offers for small business owners:
- Access to over 17,000 Chase ATMs and more than 5,200 Chase branch locations
- Low fees when opening an account
- Several opportunities to waive monthly fees
- Variety of packages tailored to different business sizes
- Higher interest rates and other benefits if you link multiple accounts together
- User-friendly website and mobile app
To open a business checking account with Chase, you'll need to visit their website or go to a branch and fill out an application and submit your business formation documents, tax ID number/Employer Identification Number (EIN), driver's license, or state-issued ID card, and other basic personal and business information.
Extra perks: Chase offers several business checking account types. What's more, they offer a couple of business savings accounts too. Each account they offer is designed to help different types of businesses operating under different circumstances.
- More than 5,000 branch locations and over 17,000 ATMs
- Largest US bank, most assets
- Numerous business bank account types, lots of versatility
- Great mobile app and website
- Several ways to eliminate fees
- 24/7 customer service
- Potentially avoidable monthly fee — the Chase Total Checking account allows users to avoid the $12 monthly fee if they satisfy certain transactional and account-finance requirements.
- Business savings account interest rates are on the lower end.
- Premium business checking is expensive — their Platinum Business Checking account costs approximately $95 per month
- No free business checking account option
Recommended: Learn more about Chase Business Complete Banking
6. Optimal for Venture-Backed Startups: Brex
Brex stands out to us because of the high number of features that its free business checking account offers.
With no account, domestic and international transaction, or minimum balance fees, as well as a high number of rewards and bonus-based initiatives, Brex left little to be desired as one of the best business account options in 2023.
Brex's main features include:
- No account fees
- No transaction fees
- No hidden fees
- No minimum balance requirement
- Live chat, phone, and email support
- Can create up to eight different accounts in Brex mobile banking app or dashboard to separate operational expenses
- Can schedule payments to and from any account
- Unlimited transactions when it comes to ACH and wire transfers
- Fee-free international transfers
- Can deposit checks for free
- FDIC insured up to $250,000
Schedule of Fees Summary
- Domestic ACH: No cost
- International ACH: No cost
- Checks: No cost, serving and receiving
- Domestic wire transfers: No cost, incoming and outgoing
- International wire transfers: No cost, incoming and outgoing
- Account maintenance fees: None
- Account opening fees: None
- Expedited payments for ecommerce platforms: Including Amazon, PayPal, Shopify, Square, Stripe.
- High number of third-party integrations: Rippling, Gusto, Expensify, QuickBooks, Xero, Slack, and much more
- Partner perks worth over $150,000
- Up to $100,000 credits via AWS Activate
- 3x rewards on eligible Apple purchases, including hardware purchases
- 40% off your first 12 months of QuickBooks
- 50% discount every time you ship with UPS
- Up to 150% in Google Ads
- FDIC insured up to $250,000 per account
- No transaction, account, or international fees
- No monthly fee
- Credit cards available
- Needs a pre-existing business bank account — you must connect at least one Linked Account to your Brex account, these are required to be business bank accounts
- Must be in business for six months and be venture-backed to be considered for an account
- Cannot be used to withdraw money from an ATM
- Cannot deposit cash into your Brex account
Recommended: Looking for a zero-fee business account? Check out Brex.
7. Best for Payment Processing Integrations: NorthOne
NorthOne is an easy-to-use, straightforward business account that currently supports over 190,000 American businesses.
Even though NorthOne does not offer a free plan, we found that the business banking app's monthly fee of $10 per month remained quite affordable for most businesses.
NorthOne's main features include:
- Can send ACH and wire payments from your phone or computer
- Can keep individual tabs on payments regardless of where you are
- Can automatically budget a percentage of your payments to increase savings
- Accounting integrations (e.g., Gusto, Freshbooks, QuickBooks, Wave, etc).
- Payment processing and ecommerce integrations (e.g., Amazon, PayPal, Shopify, Stripe, etc.)
Schedule of Fees Summary
- Sending domestic wire: $15 per transaction
- Receiving domestic wire: $15 per transaction
- Monthly account fee: $10 per month
- Optional expedited card mailing fee: $25 per card, standard delivery is no charge
- Cash withdrawals limited to five per day, $2,000 per transaction, $2,000 per day
- ACH payments: Limitless number of transactions, up to $10,000 per day, up to $300,000 per calendar month
- Wire transfer (domestic): Up to $10,000 per wire, per day, maximum of $300,000 per calendar month
- Can open an account in as little as three minutes
- Email, phone, and live chat support
- FDIC insured up to $250,000 per account
- Secure: Includes multi-factor authentication, ability to freeze cards instantly, as well as touch and face ID
- Optimized landing pages to promote businesses
- Access to exclusive promotions and rewards
- Partner and affiliate programs
- Can make deposits from anywhere
- Mastercard debit cards with withdrawals at any MoneyPass ATM in the US
- Activate and freeze debit cards from your phone
- Needs a US physical address, not applicable to foreign owners of US businesses
- No "free" plan
- Quite expensive — $15 for sending and receiving domestic wires
Recommended: NorthOne’s wide array of accounting and payment processing integrations make it a good choice for some small businesses.
NorthOne is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services are provided by The Bancorp Bank, member FDIC.
Small Business Banking FAQ
Why do you need a business bank account?
There are several reasons why you may want a business bank account.
Most importantly, a basic business checking account effectively distinguishes you from your business and acknowledges that you operate as two separate financial entities in law. This can safeguard your incorporated protections, and avert a situation where you accidentally pierce your corporate veil.
An online bank account offers additional benefits, including:
- Greater access to small business loans
- Small business credit cards
- Business banking services
If you are interested in benefiting from banking-related services, we recommend Relay's online business checking account platform.
Is Bank of America one of the best banks for small business?
Bank of America is not one of the best banks for small businesses due to the higher number of requirements involved (e.g., you need to maintain a monthly balance of $5,000 in order to avoid monthly fees, etc.) as well as higher account and transaction fees involved.
Who has the best small business checking account?
The best basic business checking account will be the one that offers low to no domestic or international transfer fees, as well as has additional perks, discounts, and features that you will personally benefit from.
For businesses with more than one owner, our top choice is Relay's online banking and money management platform because it has excellent reviews, as well as no account, withdrawal, and overdraft fees.
For $30 per month, users on the Relay Pro subscription are also privy to free domestic and international wires.
Do credit unions offer better business checking accounts?
Credit unions do typically offer business accounts with better rates and lower fewer fees, but this does come at an opportunity cost.
For example, most credit unions have a lower amount of features than the best banks for small businesses.
For this reason, we recommend weighing the pros and cons of both types of business checking accounts before making a final decision.
Which business bank account is best for LLCs?
The best business bank account for your LLC will depend on your LLC's needs and budget.
As a small business, you will want to ensure that your business checking account offers a high number of features, a low — or ideally no — account monthly fee, and low transaction fees.
If your LLC works with international freelancers and/or businesses, you will also want to prioritize a business checking account that does not charge any fees for international wires.
What should a small business look for in a bank account?
A small business should look for the following features in an online business checking account:
- Cost (e.g., monthly fee, transaction fees, etc.)
- Number of useful features (e.g., are wire transfers available, can cash be deposited, etc.)
- Third-party integrations
- Accounting and tax tools
- Discounts and other perks
For example, a digital banking and business account platform like Relay or Brex will give you a high number of perks, low fees, and high withdrawal limits.
Do I need a small business accountant?
Even though you may not necessarily "need" a small business accountant, you will definitely benefit greatly from hiring and working with one.
An accountant can save small business owners thousands of dollars on taxes. They can also ensure that your business's bookkeeping is effectively managed, including your payroll.
This can save you a huge amount of time, which you can then invest into other more important aspects of your business.