5 Smart Ways To Use Your Small Business Credit Card

June 15, 2017 - 9:00 am
  A business credit card can be an essential tool for small business owners. In the right hands, it can keep a company afloat during tough times and allow it to prosper during an upswing period. However, when used without a strategy, a business credit card can be detrimental to a company's financial standing. Ensure that you are making intelligent choices with your company card with these five tips.   Budget, Budget, Budget Even with the assisted cash flow benefits of a small business credit card, you're going to need a budget or else spending will quickly escalate to undesirable heights. To keep outflow under control, monitor financial statements to ensure that you are holding yourself accountable to the budgeting goals that you set.   Be Aware Of The Rates If you plan on carrying a balance, be aware of interest rates and late fees. Knowing these details will ensure that you are not caught off guard by penalties. Only use your card once you have asked all the important questions about and thoroughly understand all terms and conditions.   Don't Make It Personal Make sure you only use your company card for business expenses, not personal use. While it may be tempting to use your company card for personal charges, your account could quickly spiral out of control -- especially because rates and terms for business cards differ so much from those of personal cards. Avoid conflating business charges with personal purchases to ensure that you maintain a healthy, manageable balance on your business credit line.   Keep A Schedule It is essential to be aware of dates. Make sure you know not only payment deadlines, but also statement closing dates, when promotional offers end and when rewards points expire. To avoid accidentally missing a deadline, set up an automated payment schedule based on the minimum. That way if you ever forget to make a payment, at least your minimum will be covered.   Make Your Employees Work For You Authorize your employees to use your card. If you are on vacation and your office runs out of toner, instead of someone making a cash purchase and then submitting the receipt for reimbursement, just put the purchase on the company card. This makes it easier to keep all your business transactions in one place.   The foregoing information is provided by City National Bank (CNB). Unless otherwise stated, opinions expressed are those of the respective authors and not necessarily those of CNB. The information is provided without warranty and no recommendation or endorsement by CNB is intended or should be inferred unless specifically stated. Visit City National Bank's News & Insights for small business tips, trends and updates.   For more tips and inspiration for small business owners, visit Small Business Pulse Los Angeles.