Wells Fargo vs. Chase: Which Is Better for Business Checking?

The two banks stack up pretty evenly for business checking, but Wells Fargo has an edge on in-person banking while Chase is better for online or mobile banking.
Kelsey SheehyApr 7, 2021

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Wells Fargo and Chase are among the best banks for small business. Both banks boast extensive physical footprints, easy online access and business-friendly features.

So how do you pick between the two?

You look at each of the bank’s features — monthly fees, transaction limits, cash deposit allowance and the like — and evaluate it against your business needs.

We broke down the key features of the entry-level checking option for Wells Fargo and for Chase to help you decide which is best for your business.

Wells Fargo vs. Chase small-business checking at a glance

Wells Fargo Initiate Business Checking

Chase Business Complete Banking℠

Monthly fee

$10 Waived if you do one of the following:

  • Have a daily balance of at least $500.

  • Maintain an average account balance of $1,000.

$15

Waived if you do one of the following:

  • Maintain a minimum daily balance of $2,000.

  • Spend at least $2,000 using a Chase Ink Business Card.

  • Deposit at least $2,000 in Chase QuickAccept℠ transactions or other eligible Chase Merchant Services transactions.

  • Link a Chase Private Client Checking℠ account.

Minimum opening deposit requirement

$25

$0

APY

None

None

Transactions

100 free transactions per statement cycle; 50 cents for each additional transaction.

Unlimited electronic deposits; 20 free in-person transactions and paper checks per month.

Cash deposits

Up to $5,000 per month with no fee; after that it’s 30 cents per $100 deposited.

Up to $5,000 per month with no fee; after that $2.50 fee per $1,000 deposited.

Branch access

More than 5,100 offices nationwide.

Nearly 5,000 branch locations nationwide.

Standout features

  • More branch locations than any bank in the U.S.

  • 24/7 fraud monitoring.

  • 24/7 live customer service.

  • Payment processing built into the Chase mobile app, no point-of-sale equipment needed.

Wells Fargo Initiate Business Checking℠ Account
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Chase Business Complete Banking℠
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at Chase, Member FDIC

Wells Fargo vs. Chase small-business checking: Key features

Monthly fee

Advantage: Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo doesn’t just charge a lower monthly fee than Chase — $10 for Initiate Business Checking vs. $15 for Chase Business Complete Banking — it also makes it easier to avoid the fee altogether.

Wells Fargo waives the fee for Initiate Business Checking customers who keep a daily balance of at least $500, compared with the $2,000 daily balance threshold required for Chase Business Complete customers.

Transaction limits

Advantage: Draw

Business owners who have a more traditional operation — paper checks, in-person deposits — will find more breathing room with Wells Fargo, which allows up to 100 free transactions per statement cycle. Wells Fargo counts all withdrawals, deposits and debits (except debit card purchases) against that limit. There's no distinction between in-person and electronic transactions.

Chase Business Complete Banking, on the other hand, offers just 20 free in-person transactions and/or paper checks per statement period. But the account includes unlimited free electronic transactions (mobile deposits, ACH transfers, ATM transactions, internal transfers and the like). That’s great for small-business owners who take full advantage of online and mobile banking.

Opening an account

Advantage: Draw

Chase and Wells Fargo both make it easy to open a business checking account. Both banks let you open an account in person, over the phone or online. There are a few exceptions, though. With Wells Fargo, for example, you’ll need to visit a branch if your business is a trust, publicly traded company or government agency.

Sign-up bonus

Advantage: Chase

Chase offers a $300 sign-up bonus for new business checking customers. To earn the bonus, you need to meet the following requirements:

  • Deposit at least $2,000 within the first 30 days, then maintain that balance for 60 days.

  • Complete five qualifying transactions within 90 days of opening the account. Can be a debit card purchase, Chase QuickAccept deposit, ACH credit, Chase QuickDeposit℠ or wire transfer.

Wells Fargo doesn't currently offer a bonus for new business checking customers.

Online, mobile banking

Advantage: Chase

The Chase Mobile® app goes beyond standard mobile banking. In addition to the expected features — mobile deposit, online bill pay, easy balance transfers — the app has integrated payment processing through Chase QuickAccept. This feature is included with all Chase Business Complete Banking accounts.

With QuickAccept, business owners can manually enter credit card information to process a payment or purchase a contactless card reader to accept tap-to-pay, chip or swipe payments.

Wells Fargo also has a top-rated mobile banking app that includes features such as mobile deposit, bill pay and custom account alerts. It's a great option for business owners who don’t need payment processing as part of their banking app.

Wells Fargo vs. Chase small-business checking: The bottom line

Wells Fargo and Chase small-business checking stack up pretty evenly against each other. The main distinction — transaction limits — may be the deciding factor for some business owners. If your business banking is primarily online or through the mobile app, Chase has an edge. But if your business requires regular in-person deposits or lots of paper checks, Wells Fargo is likely your best bet.