For small-business owners placing big Amazon orders, American Express’ newest card might be worth getting excited about.
On Tuesday, the issuer announced the launch of the Amazon Business American Express Card, a no-annual-fee credit card with choose-your-own-adventure-style rewards. For Amazon purchases made with this card, entrepreneurs with eligible Prime memberships can opt for either 5% back (which can be used to make direct purchases with points on Amazon or Amazon Business or applied as a statement credit on their accounts) or a 90-day interest-free period. Terms apply. No Prime membership? You can choose between 3% back at Amazon or a 60-day interest-free period on these purchases. After that interest-free period ends, interest will begin accruing on a going-forward basis; that is, you won’t be charged interest retroactively. Terms apply.
“We’ve found through our research that small businesses really want that flexibility in their business buying,” says Courtney Kelso, head of U.S. commercial card solutions at American Express. She notes that at checkout on Amazon properties, there are two buttons, and cardholders can choose for each purchase whether they want a percent back in rewards or interest-free payment terms.
The card doesn’t come with spending caps on rewards categories or a limit on how many rewards you can earn.
Key features of the Amazon Business American Express Card
Welcome bonus: Upon approval, eligible Prime members (including Business Prime) will receive a $125 Amazon.com gift card, and other customers will receive a $100 Amazon.com gift card. Terms apply.
Annual fee: $0.
- For eligible Prime members: 5% back or 90-day interest-free payment terms on U.S. purchases at Amazon Business, Amazon Web Services, Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market.
- For non-Prime customers: 3% back or 60-day interest-free payment terms on U.S. purchases at Amazon Business, Amazon Web Services, Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market.
- For all cardholders: 2% back on purchases at U.S. restaurants and U.S. gas stations, and on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers. 1% back on all other eligible purchases.
- Terms apply.
- Metal construction: Cardholders with an eligible Prime membership get a metal version of the card.
- Purchase details: For purchases made with Amazon Business in the U.S., you’ll have access to line-item detail, including cost per item and quantity ordered.
- Small-business benefits: Cardholders get access to a suite of benefits American Express offers to its small-business cardholders, including access to Spend Manager, a mobile app for tracking expenses; the option to connect to QuickBooks; and no-annual-fee employee cards with employee controls (for example, the option to set different limits on each card).
- Terms apply.
Should you get it?
For entrepreneurs with Amazon Prime who spend heavily — particularly at Amazon properties — this $0-annual-fee card could be incredibly lucrative. The easy-to-nab welcome offer makes it even more appealing.
If you’re on the fence, though, here’s something to keep in mind: This card is ideal for those who plan to use it to earn rewards and pay it in full every month. While its unusual payment options are potentially useful, it lacks an introductory 0% APR period; that makes carrying a balance over a longer period of time more costly. And unlike some AmEx small-business cards, this one comes with a set spending limit, and you can’t make purchases that go beyond that limit.
If these are features that are important to you, you might want to look for another small business card. But if you’ll find 5% back at Amazon useful, this is a valuable choice.