Manage Your Business
5 creative ways your small business can use credit card rewards points
Chase Ink Business PreferredSM partnered with Business Insider's BI Studios to show small business owners how they can grow and improve their companies by using credit card rewards points in creative ways.
As a small-business owner, you sometimes have to get creative with your funds. One way to do that is to be smart about how you redeem your rewards points from your business credit card.
"Some small-business owners are just focused on their day-to-day operations," says Ariana Arghandewal, who blogs at PointChaser. "They don't even think about using their credit cards to earn valuable rewards. But there are a lot of great things you can do with them."
Being resourceful about credit card rewards can pay off. Mark Isreal, the founder of Doughnut Plant in New York City, used points from his Chase Ink Business credit card to jump-start the production of the Ripple, a buzzworthy doughnut.
Although your business may not be launching a new viral product, there are plenty of interesting ways to redeem your credit card rewards points—beyond getting cash back—to invest back into your business.
Here are five ideas for using your credit card rewards points:
1. Invest in the future
Small-business owners always have to be one step ahead to keep things running smoothly—while also thinking about a growth strategy. But all of that comes at a price, of course. This is another area where using your business credit card can pay off. Your credit card rewards points can be used to fund projects, such as research and development, that can propel the business forward. Or you can use them to upgrade office technology and other supplies. For business owners, every cent counts. Turning your credit card rewards into cash and investing that cash in future projects is a no-brainer.
2. Extend your business trip into a weekend getaway
You've been working extra hard this quarter and need to take a breather. One way to reward yourself is to extend a standard business trip into a weekend of sightseeing and relaxation. With the Chase Ink Business Preferred card, you can earn 80,000 bonus points after spending $5,000 in the first three months—which is $1,000 in travel rewards.
3. Thank your employees for their work
If your employees have been putting in long hours and seem overstretched, consider giving them an incentive to keep up the good work. You can redeem credit card rewards points for gift cards, which are an easy, convenient, and valuable way to make employees feel recognized and appreciated. It's even better if you can personalize the gift card to their hobbies or shopping preferences. For example, if your programmer has been talking about an upcoming camping trip, a gift card for outdoor gear and supplies would be perfect.
4. Take clients out to coffee, lunch, or dinner
Every now and then, you have to "wine and dine" clients, but that can take a toll on your limited funds. Fortunately, you can redeem your credit card rewards points for gift cards to select restaurants and cafes. Before meeting a client, redeem your points for a gift card through the Chase Ultimate Rewards. You could even buy a few and carry them around in case any last-minute meetings pop up.
5. Make your employees' commute better
If your employees have to travel for business—including hustling around town to close deals and attend networking events—you can make their trips a little easier. With the Chase Ink Business PreferredSM card, you can redeem your credit card rewards points to purchase Uber gift cards to pass on to your employees. This gives them the option of taking an Uber to important business meetings and events, which can cut down on their overall commute and help them be more efficient during business trips.
"Small-business owners should take a step back and think about how to get the most value out of their points," says Jason Steele, a credit card expert and contributor to The Points Guy blog. "Don't always do the simple thing and redeem them the same way every time."
Regardless of how you use your points, it's better to do something than nothing. "A lot of business owners don't know the balance of their credit card rewards," Arghandewal says. "If you're not managing your rewards, you might be passing up opportunities."
Business owners mentioned here have been compensated for their participation.
Valerie Lai is a Chase News contributor. Her work has appeared in Business Insider and Nerd Wallet.