KeyBank offers three small-business checking accounts with minimal frills, but also minimal fees, provided you’re able to avoid the bank’s hefty overdraft charges. The bank’s generous cash deposit limits — up to $25,000 at no cost, $50,000 in some locations — and strong brick-and-mortar presence make KeyBank an ideal option for cash-heavy business owners who want facetime with their banker.
KeyBank business checking is best for small-business owners who:
Prefer in-person banking with online conveniences like mobile banking and online bill pay.
Need to make regular cash deposits, up to $25,000.
Are able to meet balance requirements to have monthly fees waived.
Pros and cons
Free online banking and bill pay.
Generous cash deposit allowance.
More than 1,000 branch locations across 15 states and over 40,000 KeyBank and AllPoint ATMs across the country.
Business checking accounts can be opened in person only.
All accounts have transaction limits.
Website issues make it difficult to access disclosures and rate information.
KeyBank business checking at a glance
KeyBank Basic Business Checking
KeyBank Business Interest Checking
KeyBank Business Reward Checking
$5, waived with $1,000 average monthly balance
$15, waived with $5,000 daily balance
$25, waived with $7,500 average balance
Minimum opening deposit requirement:
Up to 200 fee-free transactions, then 40 cents per item. Bill Pay and ACH transactions do not count toward total.
Up to 100 fee-free transactions, then 40 cents per item. Bill Pay and ACH transactions do not count toward total.
Up to 500 fee-free transactions, then 40 cents per item. Bill Pay and ACH transactions do not count toward total.
How KeyBank business checking works
Established nearly two centuries ago, KeyBank is based in Cleveland, and has more than 1,000 branches across 15 states: Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Vermont and Washington.
KeyBank offers three business checking accounts: Basic Business Checking, Business Interest Checking and Business Reward Checking. All three offer unlimited bill pay and free online banking, but you have to apply for an account at one of the bank’s brick-and-mortar locations only.
To open a business checking account, you’ll need your business formation papers, Social Security number or employer identification number, two valid forms of identification and your minimum deposit ($25).
All of KeyBank business checking accounts allow cash deposits up to $25,000 per statement cycle at no cost (and up to $50,000 in some locations), making the bank a solid option for small businesses that make regular cash drops. While the bank does limit free transactions, customers can effectively extend their limit by taking advantage of online bill pay and ACH transactions, both of which are unlimited on all business checking accounts.
Where KeyBank business checking stands out
Branch access: KeyBank has a strong presence in the areas it operates with more than 1,000 brick-and-mortar branches across 15 states. This is great news for business owners who prefer in-person banking and those who need to make frequent cash deposits.
Free online banking and bill pay: All business checking customers get online banking and bill pay at no additional cost. With KeyBank Business Online, customers can view statements, transfer funds between accounts and make mobile check deposits. Additional features are available for a fee.
Cash deposits: KeyBank allows business customers to deposit up to $25,000 per statement cycle at no cost. In some locations, the cash deposit limit is even higher at $50,000. Some larger banks limit free cash deposits to $5,000 per month.
Civic recognition: KeyBank consistently wins awards for diversity and inclusion. The bank’s accolades include the Human Rights Campaign’s Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality, National Organization on Disabilities’ Leading Disability Employer Seal and DiversityInc’s Top 50 Companies for Diversity. KeyBank was also named to the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index in 2020 and 2021.
Where KeyBank business checking falls short
No sign-up bonus: KeyBank occasionally offers incentives to new small-business customers but, as of this writing, there is no sign-up bonus to open a new business checking account.
Interest rates: While KeyBank does offer an interest-earning business checking account, the annual percentage yield is low compared with other similar accounts. Online banks like Axos typically offer higher interest rates, but there is a trade-off. Axos Business Interest Checking accounts, for example, can earn up to 0.81% APY, but customers receive 50 free transactions per month only, half as many as KeyBank’s Business Interest Checking account.
Transactions limits: KeyBank offers limited free transactions on all of its business checking accounts. This is common practice, and Key Bank’s limits are generous when compared with competitors. Still, transaction-heavy businesses may want to consider an online bank with unlimited transactions.
Overdraft charges: KeyBank assesses hefty fees if an account is overdrawn. Accounts are dinged up to $38.50 per overdraft and could be assessed a recurring overdraft fee of $28.50 if the account stays in the negative for five consecutive business days. Business customers can enroll in overdraft protection by linking a checking account to a KeyBank deposit or Business Cash Reserve Credit account.
Other fees: KeyBank business checking customers could be assessed additional fees, depending on their account activity. The bank charges $34 for stop payment requests and $3 per month for paper statements.
Business Basic and Business Interest Checking customers are also assessed $30 for each outgoing domestic wire transfer. Business Rewards Checking customers get three free per statement cycle, additional domestic wire transfers are $30 for each one sent. Incoming wire transfers are free with the Business Rewards Checking account and $20 each with the other two KeyBank business accounts.