Benefits of switching to the right business bank account

In case you were in any doubt, here are five key benefits of switching your business bank account – and how to make the switch.

Switching a bank account can be one of the first steps a business can use to take control of their finances. Once a business owner is clear about what they want their bank account to do, they can start to look for it and once they find what they are looking for they can switch to it. From finding the right account with the right bank and the right business manager, to new ways to control revenue and outgoings, to better digital support, all of these things can persuade people to switch.

However, research from Small Business reveals that 20 per cent of entrepreneurs are using their personal current account for their business banking.

Though it may seem more convenient to bank on your personal current account, you could be putting yourself at a disadvantage. Here, we outline some benefits of switching to the right business bank account.

Here are the benefits in summary:

  1. Better functionality
  2. Fees & charges
  3. Greater protection for you and your business
  4. A better relationship with your bank
  5. Incentives

1: Better functionality

Are you able to carry out all the functions you need in your business account? The one you are using now may be cheaper, but you might not be able to carry out some vital business functions. Does your business account have digital services that allow you to manage cashflow or expenses? Does it link well with money management apps or payment systems? Do you have the right level of access to a business adviser? Are you able to easily deposit cash or do you need support to help your business go cash free?

List the services you need then match them to an account before you plan your switch.

2: Fees & Charges

Those little fees and hidden or recurring charges that some banks’ accounts impose can add up quickly. All though quite some research might be required, if you can find a provider that suits your type of business better in this regard you could save your business I tidy amount of money every month.

3: Greater protection for you and your business

A good business bank account is a means of protecting your identity as the account will be under your business’ name. As the number of transactions you make will likely be higher than on a personal account, you’ll need greater security. Banks tend to have information in place to warn business banking customers of potential scams, as well as security systems that can help you spot scams. If you are worried about fraud, switching to a bank that offers more protection could be a business-saver.

4: A better relationship with your bank

Having a business account may help you build a better relationship with your bank. You may have a business banking manager as part of your account. They can also give you advice to help drive your business forward. You might also want to seek other financial assistance from them at a later stage so it’s a good idea to get acquainted with them early on.

Eight per cent of survey respondents said they have the type of bank account they have due to it being required by their bank. In some cases, your bank won’t let you use your personal account for business transactions, even if you’re a sole trader. If your bank catches on that you’re using your personal account for business, they may close your account – and sever any kind of relationship that you previously had.

Compare business bank accounts now – Easily find the top business bank accounts from a range of providers here.

5: Incentives

Of course, you were expecting this one. Business bank accounts offer perks which could be useful for your operation, such as free accounting software or a card reader. Some give you a free banking period too, say 12 or 18 months.

I’m not sure what type of account I use

Rather worryingly, two per cent of survey respondents weren’t sure what type of account they had. If you’re not sure, check your online banking service – it should tell you, even if it’s purely based on the name of account you have. If that doesn’t confirm it, contact your bank.

It is also worth mentioning that there can be perks to having your personal and business accounts with the same bank. You may be entitled to discounts and other perks if you have both accounts with one provider – you’re depositing more money with them, after all. It does feed into a couple of the reasons mentioned above, like building a stronger relationship, which in turn can help with moves like taking out a loan later down the line.

A simple and stress free way to switch your account

To switch your business account using the Current Account Switch Service between participating banks or building societies, you must have fewer than 50 employees and an annual turnover not exceeding £6.5 million.

First, you need to find a new account, looking for some of the features above. Once you’ve found it you need to go through your payments, cancelling the ones you no longer use so they won’t be switched to your new bank account.

Then you need to get your documentation ready so your new bank can carry out the necessary security checks. Your new bank will tell you what you need, but it might include your trading address, a Companies House registration number, and other documents relating to the business and proof of identity like a passport, driving licence or bank statement. You may want to ask for documentation like statements from your old bank before switching.

Then contact your new bank, open an account, negotiate the right arrangements, such as an overdraft and choose your switch date, allowing for seven working days and making sure you don’t set up new payments during that period. Then you can ask your new bank to start the switch. Thanks to the Switching Guarantee, everything will be protected. Then you can start using your new account and start enjoying the benefits of taking control.

Further resources

Opening a business bank account – how-to and best accounts – Choosing the right business bank account is an opportunity to get your business fundamentals right from the beginning.

Half of SME owners have never switched business bank account – It can be tempting to stay with the familiar when it comes to your business account. Here’s why you should switch and how to do it

12 of the best digital banking platforms for small business – These platforms all offer an alternative to traditional high street accounts, they are quick to set up and operate entirely from your smartphone where you can access all their digital banking services.

Get a business bank account quote today – click here.

Important Information – Some of the products promoted are from our banking and affiliate partners from whom we receive compensation. While we aim to feature some of the best products available, we cannot review every product on the market.

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Anna Jordan

Anna is Senior Reporter, covering topics affecting SMEs such as grant funding, managing employees and the day-to-day running of a business.

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Business Bank Accounts