Starting your brand new business already generates more than enough initial expenses. Therefore it’s wise to choose a convenient and cheap-to-use business account to avoid paying too many fees while sending and receiving your first transfers. Good account makes it much easier to handle the basic finances of the company and you can avoid getting overloaded with paperwork and accounting responsibilities.

1. Online Platforms or Mainstream Banks?

It all depends on your business specification...

What are the most popular business bank accounts?

In some cases your country’s law may require you to open an official bank account for your business. Most of the mainstream banks are oriented towards huge enterprises, which have accounts personally suited to their needs with flexible fees and various agreements.

HSBC Business Banking and CitiBank Business Account seem to get frequent positive reviews. However, if you already have your personal account in a particular bank, you can set up a meeting with a representative and discuss business account opportunities, because it may be convenient for you to handle all of your finances in one place and they may also get you some discounts for being a loyal customer.

On the other hand, online financial platforms got very oriented towards startups and small companies. They offer features such as mobile apps to handle your transfers on the go or let you connect their systems to your site to keep track of the sales and deals.

What are the most popular online business accounts?

PayPal is currently the most popular platform, however they are not the cheapest on the market, so maybe it’s worth considering some alternatives? Of course, PayPal is the most reliable out there, as it has been operating for many years and become the leader of online finances.

Another popular choice is TransferWise, you can read a review of TransferWise for Business account here. Their main feature includes support for multiple currencies, which you can hold in one “borderless account”. With good exchange rates it makes it easy to run business internationally with them.

There is also Tide Business Banking and Revolut Business, which have been gaining startups interests lately. They might be oriented more towards small businesses, as you will come across limitations when it comes to transfer amounts and yearly balance.

2. Make sure you can do your business internationally

Even if for now you might want to focus just on your local market, today’s in the age of globalisation it’s so easy to run your business internationally. Your bank account shouldn’t limit your expansion dreams.

Nowadays, with so many people around the world having an internet connection and with a well-developed international shipping market, an online store can get purchases from potential clients anywhere in the world. Just make sure your account can support currency conversions and check if the rates are in any way acceptable. Be careful with “free exchange rates” platforms. Sometimes they claim to convert your currencies for free, and there are no fees in fact, however they use their own exchange rates, which differ from the official ones, which leads you to getting less currency than you were supposed to get.

Check if you will be able to send and receive international payments and how much it costs. While online platforms usually don’t make it too complicated, mainstream banks can charge you just for receiving a payment from abroad. You can also look up some tips on how to save money on international transactions in this helpful guide.

3. Be careful with maintenance fees and penalties

Rarely are there truly free accounts. You need to prepare to pay some type of monthly “maintenance” fees. They might not be very high, as it’s often as much as $5, but remember to double check these costs to avoid unnecessary surprises.

At first your business might not generate too many sales, which is okay. However, in some cases there are “inactivity” penalties and charges if there are not enough transactions on your account each month. It may generate great costs especially if your business takes breaks or have worse sales periods.

4. Make sure it has API support for e-commerce

Depending on the character of your business you may want to check how good the platform’s API is and what features they offer. It comes in handy especially for e-commerce businesses. A good business account will let you connect it with your website to automatically track the sales and handle customers transactions.

This makes it easier for your customers to pay for your products or services. But it also makes it easier for you to do the accounting job. The stats, invoices, gains and losses will be available for you to analyze.

Obviously in that matter PayPal is the market leader. You can find their logo at almost any checkout when shopping online. It’s because of this payment gateway the user can conveniently pay with a credit card or their paypal account and you as a merchant get the transaction instantly to your business account. Of course there is a small fee deducted for such support.

5. Research and compare the offer

Last but not least remember to compare the offer and fee structures from the companies that caught your interest. It may sound obvious but don’t forget to read some first hand experience comments and reviews from other business owners.

There are various platforms which let you do this research conveniently. For example, aggregates users’ ratings and reviews of many services. You can read both positive and negative reviews to get a picture of strong and weak sides of the platform of your choice.

There is also which provides convenient cost tables and comparisons and, which combines both expert and user reviews and lets you filter the offer available on the business account market depending on the features you are interested in. For example, if you are looking for a secure account you can simply sort the accounts list based on safety, if you want the lowest costs turn on the fee filter, etc.

With these few essentials in mind, you are now ready to save some money for your business by choosing the best and cheapest account for it.

Author's Bio: 

Experienced financial researcher, senior author, advisor for start-ups. Have been auditing, aggregating and quality controlling business-related financial services. Author of various online rankings and tutorials.