Wise Business Bank Account: What You Need to Know
Choosing a business bank account is one of the first and most important decisions that you’ll make in regard to your finances. Not only will a business bank account help you separate your business finances from your personal finances, but you’ll also use this account to store and manage your funds on a day-to-day basis. With all of the different account options on the market, however, you may be wondering how to decide which account will be best for your business.
Although there are a variety of accounts available from traditional banks, business accounts from online-based banks, like Wise, are usually the most accessible and affordable options—especially if you already (or plan to) manage many of your other business processes online. With Wise in particular, you not only have the benefits of an online business checking account, but also a payments platform as well.
Is the Wise business bank account right for you?
This review is here to help you find out. We’ll break down everything there is to know about Wise Bank and their business account—including features, fees, and more—so that you have all of the information you need to make the best decision for your business.
Wise Business Bank Account
Having launched their business account in 2019, Wise (who is backed by BBVA) is actually relatively new to the online banking game. This being said, currently Wise only offers a single account option—which, like other similar digital-based business checking accounts, can be opened quickly and easily online or by using the Wise mobile app.
The Wise business bank account is an FDIC-insured checking account that offers a cash back incentive of up to 1%—0.5% base and 0.1% for every $1,000 purchased on Wise cards. Additionally, not only does Wise offer a business bank account, but they’re also a payments platform. Wise integrates their Wise Pay functionality—so that you can make and receive payments—with your actual business bank account.
One of the most notable features of the Wise business bank account is that there are not many fees. There is a monthly $10 fee; however, there is no minimum balance requirement, no minimum opening deposit requirement, no incoming wire fees, and no early account closing fees.
This being said, the most common times you’ll face fees with the Wise account are either for using an out-of-network ATM ($3 fee) or to receive card-based payments through Wise Pay.
Wise does, however, charge a $10 fee for stop payments, NSF returned items, and ACH returns.
The Wise Bank business account has the following transaction limits:
- 25 free incoming ACH deposits per month, $1 per ACH deposit after that.
- 3% fee on incoming card payments, $2,500 per invoice limit.
- 25 free outgoing ACH transfers per month, $1 per ACH transfer after that.
- 10 free Instant by Wise payments per month, $1 per payment after that.
- Five free mailed checks per month, $1 per check after that.
The Wise business bank account includes a free business debit card, which you can use for free at any in-network ATM. Backed by BBVA, you can use your Wise business debit card—to withdraw cash or deposit checks—at any ATM in the BBVA network, which includes over 55,000 Allpoint ATMs across the U.S.
As we mentioned above, if you use your debit card at an ATM outside of the BBVA network, you’ll have to pay a $3 fee.
Although Wise is a digital-first bank account, it is lacking in terms of deposit functionality. Currently, the Wise app cannot accommodate mobile check deposit—meaning you either have to deposit checks at an in-network ATM or you can endorse your check and mail it to Wise’s processing facility.
In the latter case, checks are processed the same day they are received as long as they arrive before 3 p.m. It typically takes two to three business days for you to see the deposit in your Wise account.
As an online-based account, Wise also does not accept cash deposits. If you want to deposit cash, you’ll need to deposit it through another bank and then transfer it to your Wise Business Account.
Wise does not limit the number of wires you can receive; however, they do not offer the ability to send wires. Instead, you’ll have the ability to send same-day ACH transfers, as well as send payments through Instant by Wise (with the limits explained above).
As we’ve mentioned, one of the most notable features of the Wise business checking account is their integrated payments platform. With Wise Pay, you can pay your employees, contractors, and vendors, as well as receive payments.
Wise Pay allows you to send payments through their mobile app, either by mailing a check, sending an ACH transfer, or using Instant by Wise. With Instant by Wise, you can send money directly from your Wise account to an individual’s bank account as long as they have a U.S.-based debit card. When you send an Instant by Wise payment, as the name implies, the deposit will post in the other person’s bank account within minutes, even on nights and weekends.
In addition, Wise Pay allows you to receive payments—either by sending an invoice or by using a Wise card to accept in-person payments. With Wise’s invoicing functionality, you can use the app to create and send an invoice to your customer—and indicate how you’d like to be paid, either by card or ACH transfer.
If you’re paid by card, you’ll receive the money in your Wise account instantly, but you’ll also face a 3% credit card processing fee per transaction. If you’re paid by ACH payment, on the other hand, it will take one to two business days to receive your funds, but you’ll have the first 25 payments per month free—then you’ll pay $1 per payment after that.
To get paid using the Wise card reader, you’ll have to request one from Wise and once you receive it, you’ll be able to connect it via Bluetooth to your smartphone and process in-person payments using the Wise mobile app.
On top of all of the features we’ve reviewed so far, the Wise business bank account also includes a business owner dashboard, where you can track your spending, monitor cash flow, and instantly pay employees and vendors.
In addition, Wise allows you to add and manage contacts—making it even easier to pay employees and vendors on a regular basis, as well as view your payment history based on an individual contact.
Wise Business Bank Account: Pros and Cons
Now that we have a better understanding of everything the Wise business bank account can offer, let’s break down the most notable advantages and disadvantages of this checking account.
Pros of the Wise Business Bank Account
Overall, the Wise business account is very competitive with other online-based business checking accounts on the market. This being said, however, the biggest benefits of Wise are their low fees, cash back incentives, and integrated Wise Pay payments platform.
As we’ve discussed, the Wise bank account has no monthly fees and does not have any minimum deposit or balance requirements. That said, Wise does come with a cost—$10 per month.
If you’re willing to spend extra, the benefits could outweigh the cost for you. But newer and smaller businesses that don’t have much extra capital to invest in their bank account may want to choose a free alternative instead.
Cash Back Incentive
On top of the fact that Wise does not charge high fees for their business account, the account also offers a cash back incentive. With up to 1% available to earn on this business checking account, the Wise account gives you the opportunity to earn more annually than some high-yield business savings accounts.
Plus, whereas most interest-earning checking or savings accounts charge fees and require a minimum deposit or balance, Wise does not.
Wise Pay Payments Platform
There are a variety of digital-first business bank accounts on the market; however, none offer an integrated payments platform like Wise. Wise goes beyond simple wire transfers and ACH payments and actually connects a full-service invoicing and payments solution to your bank account.
You can send invoices, send and receive digital payments, and even take advantage of Instant by Wise in order to send money to employees or vendors and have it post in their bank account in only minutes. Plus, with the Wise card reader, you can even accept in-person payments as well.
In this way, the Wise business bank account is an ideal option for smaller B2B, online-based, or service-based businesses that don’t need a complex invoicing software, and instead, could take advantage of affordable invoicing and payment tools that are integrated with their bank account.
Cons of the Wise Business Bank Account
On the other hand, there are also drawbacks of the Wise Business Bank Account to consider as well. When it comes down to it, Wise’s biggest downsides are their deposit limitations, lack of branch access, and time on the market.
For all of its pros, this business bank account is lacking in the ability to accommodate different kinds of deposits. Not only can you not deposit cash with your Wise account (which isn’t all that uncommon for an online-based bank account), but you also don’t have mobile check deposit capabilities.
This is a huge drawback to the Wise business bank account, as mobile check deposit is typically a standard feature among online-based and traditional business bank accounts alike.
Although it’s very likely that Wise is working on adding this feature to their account, in the meantime, the lack of mobile deposit makes check deposit much more difficult for small business owners—who then either have to mail their check to Wise or find an ATM to deposit it.
No Branch Access
The next major drawback of the Wise bank account is their lack of branch access. This is a common downside of any online-based bank; however, if you are looking for personalized, in-person accessibility, it’s worth noting that you won’t get that with Wise.
If branch access is particularly important to you, you’ll probably want to direct your search to more traditional, brick-and-mortar banks, like Chase or Bank of America. Similarly, a brick-and-mortar bank will also likely be better-suited for businesses that operate in cash, as these institutions will have cash deposit capabilities at all of their ATMs, as well as in-branch.
Time on the Market
For a bank that does not have years of experience behind it, Wise offers an extremely competitive product. This being said, however, their lack of time on the market can also be a pretty significant downside.
Therefore, if you don’t want to wait for some of the features that Wise is missing, or are wary of the possible risks associated with a newer product, you might consider some more established online-based small business banks, as well as your traditional brick-and-mortar bank account options.