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or small business owners, choosing the right business checking account is key to monitoring your business’s financial health, facilitating tax preparation, preparing for growth, and more. For some business structures, having a business checking account is a legal requirement!
While many entrepreneurs turn to big banks like Chase for their business banking needs, there are several alternative options better optimized for small businesses. In earnings calls for JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo, Novo found that big banks don’t distinguish small businesses from “consumer banking” customers – both are viewed as consumer segments. This suggests that big banks are neither equipped to meet needs specific to small businesses nor focused on providing a tailored experience for their small business customers.
Not sure how to choose a business checking account? In this article, we'll compare and contrast the features of Novo and Chase to help you determine which option is right for your business.
Overview of Novo
Novo Platform, Inc. (“Novo”) is a powerfully simple® checking account and banking platform built for small businesses and self-employed individuals. Novo enables small businesses to get paid faster, automate budgeting, and seamlessly connect with other business tools. Novo also offers:
- No monthly fees, no minimums, and all ATM fees reimbursed
- Free and unlimited invoicing from directly within your Novo account
- Integrations with other business tools, including Quickbooks, Xero, Shopify, eBay, PayPal, Stripe, Square, and more
- Human-powered customer service
- Thousands of dollars in perks
- Novo Reserves, a feature that allows you to allocate funds into different budgets for upcoming expenses
- A fully digital experience and application that takes less than 10 minutes
Novo is optimal for businesses that primarily make money online or via card payments, so it might not be the best fit for businesses that frequently deal with cash. Additionally, due to regulatory requirements, Novo does not open accounts for cryptocurrencies, privately-owned ATMs, cannabis companies, gambling businesses, crowdfunding businesses, money services businesses, or adult entertainment businesses.
Note: Novo is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services are provided by Middlesex Federal Savings, F.A.; Member FDIC.
Overview of Chase Business Checking solutions
Chase offers three main checking account options for businesses: Chase Business Complete BankingSM, Chase Performance Business Checking®, and Chase Platinum Business CheckingSM.
With each Chase business checking account, you’ll get access to:
- Chase Business Online
- Online Bill Pay
- Chase Mobile® Banking
- Free Chase debit card, with associate and employee cards available upon request
- Chase business savings account
- Monthly service fee waived if you meet the required minimum daily balance or link an eligible Chase business checking account
- Access to 16,000 ATMs and 4,700+ Chase Bank branches
Novo vs. Chase Business
To further break down the differences between Novo and Chase Business, we’ve put together a table comparing business banking features we believe small business owners value most.
Tips for choosing a checking account for your small business
When choosing the right bank for your small business, consider the following factors:
- Fees: Search for a bank with low or no fees, especially if you're just starting out. Ensure all fees are communicated upfront so you’re never subject to surprise charges.
- Account minimums: Some banks require a minimum balance to avoid fees. When signing up for a business bank account, be certain that you can comfortably maintain the minimum amount in your account.
- Online banking and mobile app: As a small business owner, you need the flexibility to manage your business finances on the go. Access to an online portal and mobile app is essential to staying on top of the health of your business.
- Credit: Do you anticipate needing a loan or a line of credit in the future? If so, consider an institution that offers financing options.
- Integrations: As your business grows, it can become increasingly difficult to centralize your workflows and financial insights. Look for a bank that integrates with your accounting software and other business tools.
- Available features: Do you frequently send customer invoices or make vendor payments? Make sure that the bank you choose offers all the features you need to run operations smoothly – ideally without charging you a premium for those features.
- Location: Will you need to make frequent visits to an in-person branch or have access to an ATM network? Or do you prefer an entirely digital experience? Answer these questions to clarify which business bank you should choose. Note that brick-and-mortar banks typically charge higher fees to account for additional expenses.
- Customer service: Consider the availability and quality of customer service and help articles when choosing a bank. If issues with your account arise, you need a trusted source to turn to for help.
How to switch business checking accounts
Interested in switching from Chase to Novo or another business checking solution? Follow these steps:
- Open a new account at the bank of your choice.
- Update direct deposits connected to your old account.
- Transfer any automatic transactions to your new account.
- Withdraw the money from your old account.
- Download or print any important documents, and take pictures of important checks.
- Notify all clients and vendors.
- Update your accounting software to reflect your new bank account information.
- Close your old account.
- Keep an eye on your new account – ensure all transactions are processing correctly and there are no unexpected charges.
For more detailed instructions, check out Novo's guide to switching business banks.
Sign up for a Novo account
Interested in switching to Novo? Apply today! To get started, we’ll need some information from you – this checklist covers what you’ll need to complete your Novo application.
Business banking FAQs
Q: How long does it take to get a Novo bank account?
A: It typically takes less than 10 minutes to apply for a Novo account. The majority of applications are approved within 24 hours. Once your application is approved, you'll receive your debit card in the mail within 7-10 business days.
Q: What business documents do I need to open a Novo account?
A: At a minimum, you’ll need a copy of your identification to open a Novo account. Depending on your business structure, you may also be required to provide your articles of incorporation and a signed operating agreement.
Q: What do I need to open a Chase business bank account?
A: To open a Chase business account, you’ll need two forms of ID, your tax ID number (either your EIN or SSN), your business information, and your business name filing document or business license. You may also need to provide a partnership agreement, articles of organization, or articles of incorporation.
Q: How do I close a Chase business account?
A: To close your Chase account, you’ll need to call Chase – dial the number on the back of your card or call Chase Business Customer Service at 1-800-242-7338. Alternatively, you can close your account in-person at any Chase branch.
Q: How much do I need to open a Chase business account?
A: There is no minimum deposit required to open a Chase business checking account.
Q: How do I contact Chase?
A: You can call Chase Business Customer Service at 1-800-242-7338.
Q: How do I contact Novo?
A: To contact Novo, reach out through the Novo app or email support at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also call the customer support phone number on the back of your Novo debit card.
Novo Platform Inc. strives to provide accurate information but cannot guarantee that this content is correct, complete, or up-to-date. This page is for informational purposes only and is not financial or legal advice nor an endorsement of any third-party products or services. All products and services are presented without warranty. Novo Platform Inc. does not provide any financial or legal advice, and you should consult your own financial, legal, or tax advisors.