Discover it ® Business Credit Card Review

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The top business credit cards make it easy for business owners to earn rewards on their spending and gain consumer protections for everything they buy. Some cards offer lucrative rewards schemes that let you transfer points to airline and hotel partners, any many let you rack up bonus points in business-related categories like shipping or advertising. Some travel-focused business credit cards also offer special perks for travel such as primary auto rental coverage or trip cancellation/interruption insurance.

The new Discover it ® Business Card offers none of those things, but it is still a solid card option many business owners should consider. While there aren’t a ton of perks, the Discover it ® Business credit card will never charge you an annual fee. And since you earn a flat 1.5% cash back on all your purchases, you can avoid jumping through hoops to earn or redeem cash-back rewards and focus on running your business instead.

If you’re wondering whether the Discover it ® Business Card is worth it or whether you should consider a different card instead, keep reading to learn more.

Discover it ® Business Card Key Takeaways:

  • Earn a flat rate of cash-back. Unlike other business cards with complex rewards schemes, the Discover it® Business Card lets you earn a flat 1.5% cash back for each dollar you spend.
  • Receive matched rewards the first year. Discover promises to match the rewards you earn after the first 12 months.
  • Get a free FICO® score and Social Security number alerts. These perks are offered for free to cardmembers.
  • No foreign transaction fees. You won’t pay any fees to use your business card abroad.

Discover it ® Business Card: A No-Nonsense Business Card

You aren’t going to score a ton of travel perks or benefits with this card, but you won’t have to pay for overly generous benefits, either. Over all, the Discover it ® Business Card is a very basic business card that offers a simple value proposition: Use your business card for all your purchases, earn 1.5% cash-back for each dollar you spend, then redeem your rewards whenever you’re ready.

Since Discover promises to match the rewards you earn the first year, months one through 12 could be especially lucrative. With your rewards matched, you’re earning a flat 3% cash-back on all your business spending. Even the top business credit cards on the market — ones with big annual fees — don’t offer that kind of return in every category.

The best part about the Discover it ® Business Card is that it allows you to avoid all the stress and confusion over popular rewards programs. You’ll never have to try to figure out how to transfer points to a different program or the best ways to redeem them, for example. You can also avoid spending time figuring out bonus categories or dealing with earnings caps. The Discover it ® Business Card offers a stress-free way to earn rewards — and without an annual fee to boot.

The benefits this card offers may be basic, but they’re still good ones. Getting a free copy of your FICO® score each month can help you monitor your credit, and the complimentary Social Security number alerts can help you avoid or squash identity theft. A lack of foreign transaction fees is always a good perk if you travel overseas or buy business supplies from overseas vendors. Finally, Discover is well known for their 100% live, U.S.-based customer service.

Discover it ® Business Card: Where it Falls Flat

While the Discover it ® Business Card can be a smart option for business owners who want to earn cash-back without any hassle or stress, it’s obvious where it falls short. The card doesn’t offer many of the perks competing business credit cards offer. There’s no airport lounge access like you get with the The Platinum Card® from American Express or the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card, for example. You don’t have the option to transfer points to airline or hotel partners, either.

Depending on your business spending, you could be earning a higher rate of return with a different card for years — even when you consider the fact that you earn 3% cash back with the Discover it ® Business Card the first year. For example, the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card offers 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 in select categories that include shipping, and online advertising consistently and not just the first year.

Finally, the Discover it ® Business Card doesn’t have a signup bonus. This is a huge disappointment but also not surprising since Discover doesn’t offer signup bonus like many of its competitors do. At the end of the day, it’s hard to get excited about a credit card that don’t provide an initial rush of rewards for signing up — especially since competing cards offer bonuses worth up to $1,000 when you meet a minimum spending requirement.

Finally, Discover isn’t as widely accepted as Visa and Mastercard. This is just another nail in this card’s coffin.

Who This Card is Good For:

  • Business owners who don’t want to pay an annual fee for a credit card
  • Anyone who wants to earn a flat rate of cash-back instead of flexible rewards
  • Business owners who don’t travel and prefer not to pay for travel-related perks

Who Should Skip It:

  • Business owners who travel a lot and want airport lounge access, travel insurance, and other perks
  • Anyone who wants flexible rewards they can transfer to airline or hotel partners
  • Someone who wants to earn a big signup bonus the first year

How Does it Compare to Other Business Credit Cards?

While we like the Discover it ® Business Card for its simple value proposition, there are cards that offer similar rewards schemes that may be a better deal. One such card is the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business. The chart below shows an overview of how these two cards stack up.

 Discover it® Business credit cardCapital One® Spark® Cash for Business
Annual fee$0$0 the first year; $95 thereafter
Earnings1.5% back on all purchases; match the rewards the first year2% back on all purchases
Signup bonusNoneEarn a one-time $500 cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
Redemption optionsCash-back, gift cards, or merchandiseStatement credits

As you can see, the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business offers a big signup bonus — 50,000 points worth $500. This card does come with an annual fee, but it’s waived the first year. The Discover it ® Business Card may offer 3% back the first year after Discover matches your rewards, but it doesn’t offer a signup bonus.

The result is that the Discover it ® Business Card won’t leave you better off the first year even though you earn 1% more back than you would with the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business. With the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business, you would earn 90,000 points worth $900 in cash back if you spent $20,000 on your business the first year. With the same level of spending on the Discover it ® Business Card, would earn 60,000 points worth $600.

Further, since the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business is a Visa card, it will be more readily accepted by merchants — especially outside the U.S. On the flip side, the Discover it ® Business Card doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees but is less likely to be accepted by international vendors.

Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business

Apply Now on Capital One's secure website

Highlights
  • Earning unlimited 2% cash back could mean thousands of dollars each year going back into your business
  • Plus, a one-time $500 cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Use Spark Cash across all your business spend, with no categories to limit your purchasing
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $95 after that
  • Rewards won't expire for the life of the account, and you can redeem your cash back for any amount
  • Get employee cards at no additional cost, and earn rewards from their business spend

Want Travel Rewards? Try This Card

If you’re someone who does travel a lot and wants to earn flexible rewards, you may be better off with a business credit card aimed at on-the-go consumers. The Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card is one of the best on the market. Not only does it offer a reasonable annual fee of $95, but it lets you earn 3x points on business categories such as travel, shipping, and online advertising.

Also note that you earn a huge signup bonus that can make the first year well worth it. Finally, the card’s rewards program lets you transfer points 1:1 to popular loyalty programs such as Southwest Airlines, JetBlue, Marriott Rewards, United MileagePlus, and British Airways.

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Apply Now on Chase's secure website

Highlights
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases - with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Redeem points for travel, cash back, gift cards and more – your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Employee cards at no additional cost
  • $95 Annual Fee

The Bottom Line

If you’re in the market for a business credit card and don’t want to pay an annual fee, give the Discover it ® Business credit card a second look. You’ll earn a flat 1.5% back for each dollar your business spends and Discover promises to match the rewards you earn in the first 12 months. It’s hard to beat that.

Still, there are plenty of other business credit cards to consider if you think you may be willing to pay an annual fee for better perks. Make sure to compare cards and all they offer before you decide.

Holly Johnson is an award-winning personal finance writer and the author of Zero Down Your Debt. Johnson shares her obsession with frugality, budgeting, and travel at ClubThrifty.com.

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