The first thing you need to know about a business checking account is that it is similar to a personal checking account in almost every way—except for the obvious fact that the former is specific to your business.
A business checking account is a financial equivalent separating your personal life from your work life. The accounts help small businesses better track and manage their professional finances. In the most basic sense, this includes services geared towards better cash management and features that make it easier to track day-to-day business transactions and payments.
A free business checking account does everything a regular one does—except that you don’t have to break the bank paying for the service. There are several free business checking accounts that you can choose from, and they work by either having no monthly fee or a way for you to waive that fee.
Free business checking accounts might offer either full-service banking products or be specialized in a specific banking product. But, the best option for you will always be the one with features and services that most aligns with your business and its goals. And if you’re already in the market to open a new account, business checking promotions normally offer up to $500 in new account bonuses.
To help with that, we’ve separated the best free checking accounts in the market into the categories in which they excel. Let’s dive in.
Free Business Checking Accounts Summary
Bluevine Business Checking: Best Overall
Bluevine Business Checking has been around since 2013 but didn’t start offering business checking accounts until 2020. The checking account is fully online-based and offers amazing deals, making it suitable for small businesses that don’t require branch-based banking services.
Live Oak Small Business Checking: Best for Sign Up Bonus
Live Oak Bank is designed with simplicity for newly-formed businesses, solopreneurs, gig-workers, freelancers, and side-hustlers.
Kabbage Business Checking: Best All-in-one Platform
Most notable for its free monthly service charge, Kabbage Business Checking has built a name for itself amongst small businesses nationwide. That, combined with its other features, like an above-average interest rate, keeps Kabbage above the ladder when it comes to business checking accounts.
Chase Business Complete Banking℠: Best for Chase Customers
A starter business checking account from Chase Bank, Chase Business Complete Banking operates over 4,700 branches and caters to small businesses nationwide. The account includes Electronic deposits and deposited items, ACH and ATM transactions, Chase QuickDeposit℠, debit card purchases, and internal transfers at no charge.
Novo Business Banking: Best for Tech Integrations
Available nationwide, Novo Business Banking provides online-only banking services that are hard to beat. Its easy-to-use mobile platform can be integrated with other business tools like QuickBooks, Stripe, PayPal, Shopify and others—to improve your banking experience significantly
Axos Basic Business Checking: Best for Less Banking Activity
Axos Basic Business Checking is an online-only bank that offers amazing perks for startups and small businesses. With smaller-than-average fees and no minimum balance requirement, Axoz Basic Checking helps you to hold on to more of your cash.
Grasshopper Business Checking: Best for Cashback
Unlike most business checking accounts, Grasshopper Business Checking asks for no monthly fee, no minimum balance and gives great cashback rewards—making it invaluable for small businesses. It also has a top-tier mobile app that allows for hassle-free account opening as well as other benefits.
U.S. Bank Silver Business Checking: Best for Convenience
The U.S Bank Silver Business Checking has over 2,000 branches nationwide, making it perfect for small businesses that prefer the assurance of a physical location. And even if you don’t live close to one of the Bank’s locations, you can easily use one of several MoneyPass ATMs for no charge.
Mercury Banking: Best for Startups, E-commerce
Mercury offers fee-free banking services and is better suited for small business that doesn’t necessarily require a physical location. The business checking account is a boon for startups because of its hassle-free account opening and high-quality mobile and desktop app that makes it easier to manage financial transactions without undue stress.
Lili: Best for Freelancers and Gig Workers
Fully digital, Lili is a business checking account that caters specifically to freelancers and solo entrepreneurs using a great mobile platform that grants unique features. Its low monthly fees, expense tracker and Visa Debit card with cashback earning make it a great choice when looking for a business checking account.
Bank of America Business Advantage Banking: Best for Fluctuating Needs
Bank of America grants a versatile banking experience for your business. It provides two business checking account options and allows you to switch between the two, depending on your needs.
Wells Fargo Initiate Business Checking: Best for Smaller, Growing Businesses
The Wells Fargo Initiate Business Checking has become a great choice for small businesses and startups. Amongst its other benefits, Wells Fargo has several physical locations spread out across the country, offers a waivable monthly fee and provides a full range of banking services that are perfect for a growing business.
Digital Federal Credit Union: Best Credit Union for Business
Digital Federal Credit Union is best known among its peers for having the best credit union option for businesses. Apart from this, DCU also offers a business checking account without monthly fees or requirements for minimum balance—making it supremely attractive for startups and small businesses.
Free Business Checking Accounts
1. Bluevine Business Checking: Best Overall
Even with only one account option available, Bluevine Business Checking has many amazing features that place it at the top of the ladder. It is an online-only bank, which means it does not have a physical location, but that does not limit its benefits.
Bluevine Business Checking has no fees to speak off and grants unlimited transactions to its customers. The Bluevine Business Checking is one of the best interesting-earning accounts for small businesses. With it, you can earn up to 1.5% APY (annual percentage yield) interest with a balance of up to $100,000.
- No monthly fees, minimum deposits or balance requirements
- Unlimited transactions
- Interest-earning for account balances up to and including $100,000
- No branches for in-person services
- Charged cash deposits at Green Dot Locations
2. Live Oak Small Business Checking: Best for sign up bonus
Live Oak is an FDIC-insured bank built to serve small businesses. In addition to being the nation’s top SBA lender, Live Oak offers high-yield business savings accounts and small business checking accounts built for the self-employed. The small business checking account can be opened and managed online for free and provides human-powered customer support.
Receive a $300 cash bonus when you open a new Live Oak Bank small business checking account by November 18, 2022, with qualifying activities. Must be a first-time Live Oak small business checking customer to be eligible for this bonus offer.
- $300 cash bonus for new users with qualifying activities
- Human-powered support
- Open an account online in minutes
- Access over 55,000 free in-network ATMs
- No account opening or monthly maintenance fees
- Deposit checks, pay bills, initiate transfers completely online
- Sign up bonus expires soon
- Live Oak does not accept cash deposits.
- Live Oak Bank is branchless and cashless, so all interactions with Live Oak will be done through online banking
3. Kabbage Business Checking: Best all-in-one platform
Like Bluevine, Kabbage Business Checking doesn’t require a monthly fee or minimum deposit. Similarly, with the business checking account, you can earn up to 1.10% APY for account balances up to and including $100,000
Kabbage Business Checking is an online-only bank that offers unlimited transactions to its customers. However, where the business account shines is that it can be integrated with other Kabbage services like Kabbage Funding which allows you to apply for lines of credit—which can be invaluable for small businesses or startups that need loans.
- No minimum deposits, monthly fees or balance requirements
- You can earn 1.10% APY for a balance up to and including $100,000
- Unlimited transactions
- Grants access to Kabbage Funding and Kabbage Insights
- Online-only bank. No physical location
- Does not integrate with third-party tools
- Cash deposits require a fee
4. Chase Business Complete Banking℠: Best for Chase Customers
|Monthly Fees||$15. Waivable|
With its amazing features and services, Chase Business Complete Banking makes it easier for small business owners to keep track of their finances. The account is easy to open and grants a signing bonus of up to $300 if you deposit $2,000 or more within the first month of opening the account.
Though Chase Business Complete Banking requires a $15 monthly service fee, it provides several options that you can use to avoid the charge and conditions that are easy to meet. The monthly fee can be waived if you:
- Maintain a minimum of $2,000 daily
- Use Chase QuickAccept or another Chase Payment Solution transaction to deposit a minimum of $2,000 into your account
- Spend $2,000 or above using a Chase Ink Business Card
- Link a Chase Private Client Checking account
- Sign-up bonus of $300
- No minimum deposit is required to open an account
- Unlimited electronic deposits
- Fee-free cash deposits up to $5,000
- Monthly fee of $15
- Relatively high overdraft fees
- No interest in accounts
5. Novo Business Banking: Best for Tech Integrations
Novo Business Banking is best known for its low minimum deposit requirement, does not charge a monthly account fee and offers fee-free transactions. However, Novo Business Banking also has an amazing mobile app that makes it easier to manage your finances on the go.
With Novo Business Banking, you can seamlessly integrate your account with popular third-party tools like Stripe, PayPal and QuickBooks to better manage your professional finances and access amazing discounts on several software through the Novo perks program.
- No monthly fee or minimum balance requirements
- Novo offers no charge on ATM transactions and actively reimburses any ATM fee you face, depositing the charges into your account at the end of the month.
- Unlimited transactions
- Top-tier mobile app
- Integrates with third-party tools like QuickBooks, Stripe, PayPal and Shopify for amazing benefits
- $50 minimum deposit requirement
- Doesn’t allow cash deposits.
- No annual percentage yields
6. Axos Basic Business Checking: Best for Less Banking Activity
Basic Business Checking is only one business checking account that Axos Bank offers. Still, Basic Business Checking carries no monthly fees, requires no minimum balance and grants the first 200 transactions every month for free—all of which combine to make the option very appealing to small businesses and startups.
The Business Checking account provides unlimited free ATM access throughout the nation, a means for cash deposits through MoneyPass and AllPoint, and grants a $200 welcome bonus for new customers.
- No monthly fees or minimum balance requirements.
- Unlimited transactions and free ATM fee reimbursements in the U.S
- Grants a $200 welcome bonus
- Cash Deposits through MoneyPass and AllPoint networks
- Compatible with QuickBooks
- No physical location
- No annual percentage yields
7. Grasshopper Business Checking: Best for Cashback
Grasshopper Business Checking is best suited for small businesses and startups that make a lot of online and in-store purchases using a debit card. It requires no monthly fees or minimum account balance, making it ideal for getting more savings in your checking account.
Grasshopper Business Checking has many amazing features, like its fee-free ATM withdrawals and its mobile app that allows customers to deposit checks instantly. However, the business checking account is best known for its 1% cash back reward for all purchases made with a debit card.
- No monthly fees or minimum balance requirements
- 1% cash back on qualifying debit card purchases
- No overdraft fees
- Up to 1% annual percentage yield (APY) for balances above $10,000
- Grasshopper is an online-only bank without a physical location
- No cash deposits
- The balance requirement for top-tier APY is high
8. U.S. Bank Silver Business Checking: Best for Convenience
Silver Business Checking is the free option offered by the U.S Bank, and it is designed for small and/or new businesses. To this end, it has no monthly fee and a low minimum deposit requirement. Furthermore, Silver Business Checking has a strong physical presence for businesses that require in-person service.
For convenience, you can easily open an account, hassle-free, online, in-person or over the phone. Additionally, the Business Checking account comes with several payment options, including mobile apps and in-store payment terminals. New customers also earn a $300 bonus upon opening an account.
- No monthly fee and low minimum deposit requirement
- Hassle-free account opening
- More than 2,000 branches nationwide
- $300 sign-up bonus
- No cash deposits
- Relatively high fees for wire transfers
- Relatively low cash deposits
9. Mercury Banking: Best for Startups, E-commerce
Since its founding, Mercury has catered to small businesses and startups nationwide. Its business checking account offers top-tier products tailored specifically to help small businesses better manage their finances.
Once signed up with Mercury, you’re granted access to a slew of digital tools that you can use in your business to customize your banking experience. Such customization can include designing internal dashboards, more conveniently making bulk payments, and many more. Small businesses also get access to digital tools that help to track transactions, make and receive payments online, etc.
- No monthly fees, minimum deposit or balance requirement. Unlimited transactions
- Digital Tools Access
- API access helps to customize your banking experience
- Third-party integrations
- Unavailable to sole proprietors
- Online-only bank. No physical location
- No cash deposits
10. Lili: Best for Freelancers and Gig workers
The Lili business checking account is designed specifically for freelancers and gig workers to help them better sort out finances. To this end, Lili uses one of the most developed mobile apps in the business for maximum convenience. The app has integrated tools to help plan for taxes and manage both incoming and outgoing payments.
Catering to freelancers, sole proprietors and independent contractors, Lili offers no monthly fees and has no minimum balance requirements. It grants unlimited transactions, fee-free ATM access and cash deposits through Green Dot Network. Overall, Lili is one of the best banks for freelancers looking to level up.
- No monthly fees or minimum deposit requirements
- Fee-free ATM access through MoneyPass
- Grants access to integrated tools for managing expenses, expense tracking and saving for taxes
- Unlimited transactions
- The early payment feature allows you to receive funds up to two days earlier than otherwise
- Cash deposits incur a fee
- Low monthly limits for external bank transfers and check deposits
- No joint accounts
11. Bank of America Business Advantage Banking: Best for Fluctuating Needs
Bank of America offers two options for a business checking account, providing more flexibility when meeting your financial needs. Additionally, with thousands of branches nationwide, Bank of America Business Advantage Banking offers excellent brick-and-mortar services, convenient access to your cash, merchant services, the Preferred Rewards Program, a Cash Flow monitor, and an easy-to-use mobile platform.
The Bank of America Business Advantage Fundamentals Banking has a monthly fee of $16 that can be waived with a minimum monthly balance of $5,000 (or by meeting several other criteria). In the same way, its other business checking account option, the Business Advantage Relationships Banking has a monthly fee of $29.95, which can be waived with a monthly balance of $15,000 (or by meeting another criterion.)
- Grants access to the Preferred Rewards for Businesses
- Thousands of branch locations for in-person service
- Easy access to your cash through its large network of ATMs
- Monthly fees can be waived
- Various Bank of America promotions are readily available
- Relatively high monthly fee
- Lack of interest-earning on accounts
- Relatively costly wire transfers
12. Wells Fargo Initiate Business Checking: Best for Smaller, Growing Businesses
|Monthly Fees||$10. Waivable|
|Balance Requirements||A daily balance of $500 or an average balance of $1,000 in the ledger|
Wells Fargo Initiate Business Checking is just one of the business checking options offered by Wells Fargo Bank. However, this checking account is designed specifically to cater to small and growing businesses and is equipped with many amazing tools that make it invaluable.
For one, Initiate Business Checking provides free transactions for the first 100 transactions made monthly. Similarly, the first $5000 worth of monthly cash deposits carries no fee. The Initiate Business Checking has a $10 monthly payment that is easily avoided by keeping an average monthly balance of $500 or a ledger balance of $1000.
- Physical branches for in-person service
- Hassle-free online opening
- Check deposits through the mobile app
- Service carries a monthly fee
- Low transaction limitations
- High ATM fees
13. Digital Federal Credit Union: Best Credit Union for Business
Digital Federal Credit Union has made a name for itself with its nationwide credit union option that allows anyone to join as long as they’re a participating credit union member.
It charges no monthly fees or minimum deposit, but you can earn a 0.2% annual yield if your balance is up to $100,000. Additionally, Digital Federal Credit Union has a large network of ATMs that you can use fee-free.
- No monthly maintenance fee, minimum deposit or balance requirements
- Unlimited check-writing
- Up to 0.2 APY for credits up to $100, 000
- Requires membership to a credit union
- Relatively high wire transfers
- No sign-up bonus
Novo is the best business checking account that is well known for this. There are zero hidden charges and it offers great services nevertheless.
Bluevine has an end-to-end platform that ensures that small businesses get the best out of their platform. Additionally, with an APY of 1.5% for balances above $100,000, its business checking account has one of the best interest-earning potentials for small businesses
Most business checking accounts require a minimum amount to open, but not all of them. Usually, the minimum needed for deposits ranges from $5 to $1,000 or more. But, if you’re looking for a free business checking account without a minimum opening deposit, consider Bluevine, Mercury, or U.S. Bank.
Apart from helping to manage your professional finances better and track your business’s expenses, most free business checking accounts come with a slew of benefits that make them invaluable.
Even more confusing, there is no shortage of options when it comes to free business checking accounts, and picking the right one for your business might be a little overwhelming, especially with the benefits each offer.
Before making your choice, a general rule of thumb is to determine the type of services that your business needs, how much you’re willing to spend on monthly fees and general banking transactions—your preference when it comes to digital-only banks or traditional banks and such others.
Hence, narrowing down the options and finding the best fit for your business becomes easier with that knowledge.
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