top of page
Support Group Session



    An Appropriate Business Name Is Important for Your Business Credit There is a lot that goes into a business name. ​ Is your Business Name Unique? It is important to make sure that your business name is unique so it can be Trademarked if you choose to do so. ​ Also, it is very important to ensure that your business' name is not resemblant of a high-risk or restricted industry. Names can be a barrier to an approval if they resemble a restricted industry or one that is high risk. Scroll down to see a list of restricted or high-risk industries which can help you with your search. If you have a business name or business that is higher risk, we can help you with this. ​ Below you will find links to every State's Secretary of State where you can search to find your unique business name. If you do not have a business name registered, do so at your State's Secretary of State website or you can use our partner service (below). Start Your Business By Clicking on Our Partner Incfile's Image - Packages begin at $79 for outstanding service.
    Search Secretary of State Records for Your Business Name Alabama Alaska Arizona (LLC or Corp) Arizona (all others) Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware District of Columbia Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana ​ Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana ​ Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan ​ Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana ​ Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey ​ New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota ​ Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania ​ Puerto Rico Rhode Island South Carolina Tennessee ​ Texas Utah Vermont Virginia ​ Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming
    Banks and lenders do not like risk. So, the riskier the industry, the harder to get business credit. So... what to do? First, know what those industries are and we will work with you through some of the barriers which will get in your way. Restricted industries (automatic decline) include: ​ Ammunition or Weapons Manufacturing; wholesale and retail Bail Bonds Check Cashing Agencies Energy, oil trading, or petroleum extraction or production Finance: (Federal Reserve Banks, foreign banks, banks, bank holding companies, loan brokers, commodity brokers, security brokers, mortgage brokers, mortgage bankers, mortgage companies, bail bond companies, or mutual fund managers) Gaming or Gambling Activities Loans for the speculative purchases of securities or goods Pawn shops Political campaigns, candidates, or committees Public administration (e.g., city, county, state, and federal governmental agencies) X-rated products or entertainment ​ High-Risk Industries (subject to stricter underwriting guidelines): Agriculture or forest products Auto, recreational vehicle or boat sales Courier services Computer and software related services Dry cleaners Entertainment (adult entertainment is to be considered restricted) General contractors Gasoline stations or convenience stores (also known as c-stores Healthcare; specifically nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and continuing care retirement centers Special trade contractors Hotels or motels Jewelry, precious stones and metals; wholesale and retail Limousine services Long distance or “over-the-road” trucking Mobile or manufactured home sales Phone sales and direct selling establishments Real estate agents/brokers Real estate developers or land subdividers Restaurants or drinking establishments Software or programming companies Taxi cabs (including the purchase of cab medallions) Travel agencies
    It is important to have an EIN for your business. In fact, the United States Government requires all business entities to have an EIN (Employer Identification Number). Similar to a Social Security Number, and EIN is unique to a business. ​ As we establish business credit, we are establishing business credit on your EIN, not your Social Security Number. ​ You can establish an EIN number on the IRS website or through our service.
    It’s important for a business to have a business address. ​ For lower level credit lines having a home-based business will usually be acceptable. However, the higher up you go in levels it will be important to have a business address for your company that is not your home address. In fact, most lenders prefer that you have a business address that is not a residential address. Banks see home based businesses as negative, especially when pursuing product such as an SBA loan. ​ No P.O. Boxes ​ Do NOT use any type of PO Box for your business address. Many lenders see this as a higher risk business address. Most lenders prefer that you have a physical address. ​ What’s most important is that your business address shows the same on ALL business records. ​ Critical: Secretary of State Filing (Articles of Organization or Incorporation) EIN Letter ​ Also other records like your Dun and Bradstreet Account and your Business Bank Statements should match your Articles and EIN Letter. Virtual Addresses​ ​ Virtual addresses are a way that small businesses can establish a non-home business address. There are several different formats for virtual addresses. For instance, some plans allow for you to use their office space as needed and some only offer a mailbox.​ ​ Also, location is important. While there are several different companies that offer this services, each company has locations which are different from one another. ​ Check the locations of the virtual office so that if you need to have a meeting or need to check your mail that you do not have to drive a long distance to the office. ​ The virtual address company that we suggest you use which is affordable and responsive is iPostal1. Plans start at about $10 per month. Click on the image below to visit our virtual office partner.
    Establishing a Business' Articles of Organization or Incorporation Businesses should be registered with their State and have their business in good standing. ​ You can establish your State Articles of Organization or Incorporation through our service or by contacting your State's Secretary of State. What are Articles of Organization? Articles of organization are part of a formal legal document used to establish a limited liability company (LLC) at the state level. The materials are used to create the rights, powers, duties, liabilities, and other obligations between each member of an LLC and also between the LLC and its members. The state also requires businesses to pay a fee when it files the articles of organization. Articles of organization are similar to Articles of Incorporation and are sometimes referred to as a "certificate of organization" or a "certificate of formation." Understanding Articles of Organization? Articles of organization are filed with a state government, but many counties and cities also have their own business licensing and zoning requirements. Each LLC must meet the specific requirements for the area in which it will do business. Some industries, most notably food service and child care, are more heavily regulated than others. Rather than having to write articles of organization from scratch, many states have fill-in-the-blank forms for filling out and filing articles of organization. For example, the Articles of Organization form from the New York State Division of Corporations, State Records, and Uniform Commercial Code comes in a handy two-page format and is available online. The filing fee is $200 in New York. According to New York regulations, an LLC's operating agreement may be entered into before, at the time of, or within 90 days after the filing of the articles of organization. Although all articles of organization generally require the same basic information, requirements may vary slightly from state to state. Many filers of articles of organization hire lawyers to assist them with the process. Special Considerations All articles of organization filings tend to require basic information about the company's business name and address, the names and addresses of members of the LLC, the names and addresses of its managers, organizers and directors, the name of the business's registered agent, and a statement of the business purpose: The LLC's name and address (its principal place of business) The nature of the LLC's business, sometimes broadly stated as "to engage in any lawful activity" for greater flexibility The name and address of the LLC's registered agent, which is the person authorized to accept delivery of legal documents on behalf of the LLC The names of the members, managers, and directors of the LLC The articles of organization are reviewed by the filing state's company registrar or secretary of state. Once approved, the articles of organization become the legal basis for the creation of an LLC is a registered business entity and LLCs are then bound by the state laws under which they were formed. In effect, the articles of organization act as a charter.
    Businesses Should be in Good Standing Small business owners and entrepreneurs must balance the grind of their work each day with the compliance requirements to run their businesses effectively and legally. One compliance attribute which our clients and others deal with each year is the filing of their annual report. In this article we tackle what an annual report is and provide resources for small business owners and entrepreneurs to complete their reports. You can also scroll down to see your state's annual filing requirement(s) Corporate Filings are Important Are you a small business owner? Did you file your annual report for 2021? Failing to file your business or corporation annual compliance documents can lead to a business being suspended or in some cases forfeited without small business owners knowing it. What is an Annual Report? An annual report is a document filed by non-profit and for-profit corporations, limited liability companies, and limited liability partnerships must file with their state which the business is filed in, usually each year. The content of the annual report usually outlines the status of an organization. Annual Reports Differ from State to State State governments very in how they require small businesses to file annual reports. Some state Secretary of State offices (or similar agencies) require Annual Reports to be files on different timelines (like biennial or decennial). Our team is regularly asked about when and what to do from clients regarding these filings, so we decided to put together a chart for our clients and others to review. Critical Things Associated with Annual Reports There are some critical things that are associated with annual filings, so we have compiled a list of things to remember when you are considering corporate filings: While nearly every state requires an annual filing of some sort, not every state requires the same information. For instance, Maryland requires different reporting (taxes and operation) and New Jersey requires less information. States that require corporate filings usually require a payment to keep the business in good standing. Those business owners who fail to pay their fees can have penalties added. States process filings at different rates of speed. Some are online only, some mail in only. Small business owners jeopardize their Certificate in Good Standing Status if they fail to file their annual report. This can have a detrimental effect in areas such as funding, grants, or acquiring new licenses. What Are Your State’s Requirements for Filing? Considering each state has different requirements, we try to keep a running list on our website. For our list, we break down both LLC and Corporation requirements. See your state’s filing requirements
    The deeper we get into building your business credit, the more important your business phone number is. Obviously, when you are starting your business you may use a cell phone or home phone number as your main business line. However, as your business evolves, having a dedicated business number will become critical. We look at this several different ways. A Business Phone Number Does your business have a phone number? Creditors prefer to see actual business phone numbers opposed to personal cell phones or residential phones. It’s important to also list your business phone number in the National 411 directory. Keep in mind that unfortunately cell phone numbers sometimes cannot be listed in the National 411 directory. ​ Regardless, if you choose or generate a different phone number, we will add the phone number into the 411 Registry, which is similar to the yellow pages for businesses. In most cases, unless you have your phone number listed in the 411 Registry, a creditor will not deem your request as legitimate. We believe that you can have an (800) number or local number or both for your business. There are benefits of both an (800) and a local number, depending on the industry, etc. ​ Getting a Business Phone Number (inexpensive) To order a business phone number you can use any provider you want to choose. We like Freedom Voice for business phone numbers. Their cost is relatively low and you can set your phone number to a (800) number, a local number, a vanity number, or any combination. Further, you can set up a virtual office and have your calls forwarded to your phone number if you choose. The website for Freedom Voice is and their phone number is (800) 477-1477. A cloud number should be adequate for what you are looking to do and their pricing is here:
  • 411 REGISTRY
    Register Yourself For the 411 Registry The 411 Registry is a database which legitimizes a business' listing. The 411 is a formal listing (similar to yellow pages) where business phone numbers and addresses are listed. Creditors use the 411 Registry to screen potential borrowers. In most cases, the creditors require your business to be registered in the 411 Registry. ​ You can easily register your business for the 411 Registry through our partner The video below provides an overview of how to register your business for the 411. If you have a business phone number with some providers those providers may automatically register you for the 411 Registry. ​ Unfortunately, mobile phone numbers cannot be listed in the registry. CLICK HERE TO USE LIST YOURSELF
    Web Presence​ ​ When it ​comes to business credit, creditors do not usually have a business credit history to pull from during their approval process. Unless you have previous credit history for your business, when starting to build business credit, creditors look at other variables in determining your business credibility. Some of these variables include your business' 411 listing, EIN registration and your business in good standing. Creditors also look at your web presence to determine credibility. ​ In short, if you do not have a website for your business, a domain, or social media or search engine presence, it may hold you back from being approved. This is the case the more credit you build and if creditors search for your business and they do not find a presence, it may count against you. ​ For business credit purposes, we describe web presence as the following: A domain for your business Updated website E-mail address from domain (not or Social Media Presence Search Engine Recognition ​ Domain​ ​ A domain is your business URL - for instance, our domain is You will need a domain for your website and email. There are a bunch of different companies that allow you to buy and register your domain. ​ We recommend IONOS for this service. Using the link allows you to receive special pricing for our clients and discounts. ​ To order a domain you will select the link on the top left - domains are usually less than $20 per year and Ionos will discount the first year. ​ Website ​ It is important that you have a website for your business. If you have a website already, please make sure that it is updated, links are all actively connected to real websites, as well as the copyright date, addresses and phone numbers correct. ​ If you DO NOT have a website: ​ Tech Savvy People - Web hosting companies have drag and drop templates that you can use to design your own website. We recommend IONOS for this service. Using the link allows you to receive special pricing for our clients and discounts. Ionos has several options for you to choose from and their basic sites are around $50 per year and usually include a FREE domain for a year. ​ For People Who Do Not Have Time or Are In Need of Help With Their Website - You can hire people to build your website. This can cost a pretty penny and is dependent on what you are looking to do. If you have a business that would benefit from a website, as most do we do design websites. ​ We turnaround design in less than a week and and we usually are way less expensive than others. Our basic design package is around $200 and includes hosting, domain, and maintenance for 12 months. ​ If you want to take advantage of our service, please contact us at ​ E-Mail With Domain ​ For business creditors, your @gmail address will not cut it. We recommend you set up an email address along with your domain and website. We use as the standard address which passes muster with the creditors. We recommend IONOS for this service. Using the link allows you to receive special pricing for our clients and discounts. ​ We can also do the set up for you for an additional cost. If you want to take advantage of our service, please contact us at ​ Social Media ​ It is recommended that you have a social media presence for your business. Not only will this improve your credibility, it can lead to more business and further building your brand. There are a host of different Social Media platforms you can choose from (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram). ​ Search Engine Recognition ​ It is important to have search engine recognition for your business. Further down the list of credibility, we will go over registering from Google. Many other search engines pull from Google, which registration is free.
    E-Mail With Domain ​ For business creditors, your @gmail address will not cut it. We recommend you set up an email address along with your domain and website. We use as the standard address which passes muster with the creditors. We recommend IONOS for this service. Using the link allows you to receive special pricing for our clients and discounts. ​ We can also do the set up for you for an additional cost. If you want to take advantage of our service, please contact us at
    Sometimes, businesses are required to have a license to operate. For instance, an electrician would require a license to operate in the State of New York. Real Estate practitioners are also another industry which requires licenses to be maintained. ​ Some business owners do not need licenses. ​ When you file your business entity the state will tell you if a state license is required. You can always go onto your city's website or call your city offices to see if your type of business requires a city business license. ​ We also have included a tool below that is maintained by the United States Small Business Administration where you can check and apply for licenses and permits at the Federal and State levels. Also, we have included another tool that reviews licenses at the city level. ​ If your type of business requires a license, file immediately to prevent delays in approvals or funding. ​ Make sure you use your correct business information to set up your license. The business information on your license should match the information on all other business records to boost credibility with lenders and others. ​ Renew your business license as required to stay in good standing. CHECK TO REVIEW REQUIREMENTS AND APPLY FOR LICENSES - US SMALL BUSINESS ASSOCIATION CHECK TO REVIEW REQUIREMENTS AND APPLY FOR LICENSES - CITY APPS
    Do you ​have a business bank account? ​ It is important that if you do, the address on your business bank statement be the same as your Articles of Organization or Incorporation, or your EIN letter. If your business bank statement does not match your Articles of Organization or Incorporation, or your EIN letter then you should take these forms to the bank and change your address so that it matches. ​ Failure to have matching bank statements to your Articles of Organization or Incorporation and your EIN letter will be a barrier as you build your business credit. No Business Bank Account​ ​ If you do not have a business bank account, you should get one. Without a business bank account, lenders will likely decline you as your legitimacy will be in question. ​ These are not acceptable to most lenders: PayPal Statements Bluevine Statements Cash App Statements Personal Bank Account Statements ​ When you go to the bank to set up your business bank account, make sure you bring your Articles of Organization or Incorporation and your EIN letter as the bank will likely ask for this when you set up your account.
    Accept Credit Cards & More Payment Options Take the hassle out of accepting payments at your business with BRP ONESTA, a leader in merchant services and payment processing. Trusted by more than 250,000 businesses nationwide and some of the country's biggest and most well-known brands, we are a credit card processing company that provides quick, efficient, and dependable merchant services solutions to keep your business moving. With free equipment, easy setup, in-house operations, and multi-device functionality BRP ONESTA elevates the satisfaction of your customers and improves the way you do business. Whether you want to accept credit cards in-store or provide a better e-commerce experience to online shoppers, we have you covered. We are so much more than a credit card processing provider. We are an ally for your business, always there when you need us, ready to help you improve and evolve your merchant services as your business grows. Besides our low credit card processing rates, free equipment, and risk-free terms, you can count on our team to ensure your business has the best service and support whenever you need it. Contact your advisor now for fast and affordable options. In most cases our solutions do not cost you anything.
    Google My Business (GMB, formerly known as Google Places for Business) offers companies a fantastic opportunity to appear in Google search results, but the best thing about creating a Google My Business listing is that it’s free! Importantly, when creditors look for your business, they will find you on Google, indicating your legitimacy as a business. WHAT IS A GOOGLE MY BUSINESS PAGE? Google My Business provides you with the ability to list your business location on Google Maps and local search results. You can display important information about your business, including the opening/closing times, contact details or a link to your website. More recently Google has also released a new feature allowing you to post a link to articles or up and coming events. More about that later. The listing is free but it should be regarded as a necessity by all businesses. If your business is an online business and you don’t have a physical shop then you should still consider having a Google My Business page. IMPROVE YOUR BUSINESSES LOCAL SEARCH VISIBILITY Setting up your Google My Business listing is one of the simplest and most effective ways of setting your business up to be found online. More and more search queries are becoming geographically specific and Google’s algorithms have been developed to consider user intent. You’ve probably done a Google search at some point such as, ‘places to eat near me’, if so then you’ll notice that Google returns a list of three locations where you can eat based on your current location. The three businesses that have shown as a result of your search query have a GMB page and are one step closer to attracting you as a customer. If these places to eat did not have a GMB page then they would not have shown. Think about this in the context of your business, whatever product or service you may be selling. How can local searches benefit your business and what might you be missing out on without one? As Google makes regular changes to its algorithms, if you want to get found in local search you need to have a Google My Business listing and be optimizing it on a regular basis. HOW TO OPTIMIZE YOUR GOOGLE MY BUSINESS PAGE After you’ve set up and claimed a GMB page for your business, the next step is to make sure it’s optimized and you’ve filled in all the important information. You should aim to include as much information as possible on your GMB listing as possible. When people have done their search and found your business in the search results, their next step will be to click on your business to find out more information, such as contact details and directions. The way people search is changing and information needs to be accessible instantly. If you haven’t set an accurate business address then it won’t be easy for people to physically find you. If your business isn’t easy to find then people will go somewhere which is. It's as simple as that. This is the online environment businesses must now compete in, so make sure your business is taking advantage of the way people are searching online and don't let it hinder your ability to attract new customers. GET YOUR DESCRIPTION CORRECT Take the time to write a good description to add to your listing and try make it as local as possible where you can so it’s more relevant to the user. The description is used as an overview about what your business does and keywords related to your business can be used here. Your GMB description can be up 750 characters but it’s worthwhile getting the most relevant information in the first few sentences. Try to include 2-3 keywords that describe your business best. Add Posts to your Google My Business You can now attract more interest by adding posts to your GMB profile. The content will show in Google search and on map results. To add a post all you have to do is go to your GMB account and create a new post. You will be able to upload an image, write up to 300 words of text or an event title, which should include the start/end date. There is then an option to add a call-to-action with a variety of button choices including ‘Learn more’, ‘Reserve’, ‘Sign up’, ‘Buy’ and ‘Get offer’. The post option gives you great flexibility to promote events, share your content and promote your products or services, highlighting when you are running special offers. The post will last for 7 days before you will need to replace it with a new post. Google will email you a reminder to do this. The screenshot of the Innovation Visual GMB page here shows how we used the post feature to promote our Google Retail & Shopping Livestream event. As you can see a clear date and time is shown, alongside a clear call-to-action to ‘Sign-up’. If you have set up Google My Business, but haven’t yet used the posts feature then hopefully you now know enough to give it a go. Remember to keep an eye on your posts, as it appears that Google posts expire after seven days of posting them, meaning you will have to update them weekly. Events can be listed for longer and automatically expire on the day of the event, which is handy. Add Up to 10 Photos or Videos to GMB posts As of February 2020, you can now add up to 10 photos or videos to Google posts. This means you can do even more to elevate your posts and stand out from the competition. Images and videos can help tell a story and the ability to add multiple images will definitely benefit e-commerce businesses as it will help you add multiple images of products. Add Images on a Regular Basis You may have added core images such as the exterior/interior of your business, your logo and your team but you shouldn't stop there. Post images as much as you can. This will show Google you're active and it will favor you when it comes to showing you higher in map or local search results. Collect Reviews If you want to rank higher in search and map results then collect reviews. Reviews act as real world signals of what people actually think about a business and are a key factor when it comes to ranking in local search. Not only this, but they act as social proof to your potential customers and help them make a decision on whether to do business with you or not. The best way to collect reviews is to ask for them. Seek out customers who you know what been satisfied with your product or service. To make it easier to collect reviews, set up a templated email but make sure you personalize it where possible before you send! Respond to Reviews Whether good or bad (and especially bad) – make sure you respond to ALL reviews so your customer knows you’re serious about them and their experience with your business. This will also help other customers build trust in you as a brand. Acknowledge and thank customers who leave a good review as it shows a level of engagement at the post-purchase stage. Finally, you can use your reviews as an opportunity to get better as a business; learn what people like and what they didn’t like and improve upon it. Reviews are valuable data to a business. Don’t Miss Out on the Benefits of Google My Business Make sure that your business has an up to date and detailed Google My Business page. If you have not taken the time to create and optimize one then you’re missing out on one of the best free ways of appearing in Google search results. It's also highly adaptable and can be updated as needed to reflect day to day changes. All it takes is time and knowledge to optimize your page, so make sure you do it. You could see the benefits instantly.
    Is Your Background Acceptable To Creditors? ​ One of the unique features of our Business Credit Program (Platinum) is that we do thorough background searches to ensure that there are no surprises when you apply for business credit. That is, we want to make sure that background information that the creditors will see is accurate and if inaccurate, we eradicate those inaccuracies. ​ Se, when we do our work we make sure that a business owner will be approved for credit when they apply. There is no reason that anyone can do this work themselves and we encourage you to do so on your own. ​ There are several clearinghouses that creditors use when reviewing your file for approval. We utilize PACER, LexisNexis, CHEX Systems and CLEAR. ​ LexisNexis ​ LexisNexis provides business research and risk management services to various industries. These include lenders, insurance companies, vendors and more. These companies use LexisNexis to verify personal and business credit history, public records, and application history. And they use LexisNexis to assess risk on applicants. Inaccurate information, data which doesn’t match your application, or negative items in your LexisNexis report can have a drastic negative impact on your business. This is especially true during the application process. We recommend all business owners request a copy of their LexisNexis report. Verify all data as an individual and on the business. We’ve made it simple with the link and instructions to request your LexisNexis report below. Proactively address inaccuracies and decrease the probability of surprises during the application process. Take control of your company’s fundability by requesting a copy of your LexisNexis report today. Click Here to Request Your Report ​ PACER ​ The Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) service provides electronic public access to federal court records. This mainly includes criminal history, tax history, as well as Bankruptcy records. ​ Register to access your PACER report HERE ​ CLEAR ​ Thomson Reuters CLEAR® is powered by billions of data points and leverages cutting-edge public records technology to bring all key content together. They locate hard-to-find information and quickly identify potential concerns associated with people and businesses to determine if further analysis is needed. This service is paid for so if you would like to review your CLEAR report, please reach out to Thomson Reuters HERE. ​ CHEX Systems ​ Chex Systems provides business and consumer information on deposit accounts to primary banks and credit unions. These companies use Chex Systems to verify personal and business deposit accounts, history of delinquent use of accounts and more. Inaccurate information, data which doesn’t match your application, or negative items in your Chex Systems report can have a drastic negative impact on your business. This is especially when you try to establish banking products. We recommend all business owners request a copy of their Chex Systems report to verify all data on them as an individual and on their business is accurate. We’ve made it simple with the link and instructions to request your Chex Systems report below. Proactively address any inaccuracies and decrease the probability of surprises when establishing bank products for you or your business. Take control of your company's fundability by requesting a copy of your Chex Systems report today. ​ Click Here to Request Your Report
    MONITOR YOUR BUSINESS CREDIT​ Setting up a NAV Account ​ If you have not done so yet, please register for a Free NAV Account. You will want to use NAV to monitor your business credit. While NAV also does other things which we do not encourage you to use, their best asset is Business Credit Monitoring. It is similar to Credit Karma or Identity IQ for personal credit. NAV has a free account which is easy to set up and it takes about 5 minutes. Please go to and register for the FREE NAV account - this takes about 5 minutes. This service is what you want to use to monitor your business credit. Further down the road, we may recommend upgrading to a Business Boost account, which has a monthly fee but reports to the BIG 3 business credit bureaus as a tradeline. ​ ***We do have NAV as a Level 1 Tradeline and do recommend the service as when you pay for Business Boost you will have a tradeline reporting to all 3 Tradelines which is helpful. When you register, they may call you to confirm you are the account holder. Do not let them sell you anything - you just want the free business credit monitoring.
    Our team is consistently asked by our clients and potential clients regarding the importance of credit and business credit so we put together a resource regarding descriptions which we utilize from our partner at NAV, as it provides an overview of consumer and business credit. ​ What is a Business Credit Score? Personal credit scores rank creditworthiness of individuals, business credit scores do the same for businesses. Personal credit scores range from 300 to 850. Business credit scores range from 0 to 100. Major business credit reporting agencies Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, and Equifax produce business credit scores and reports. FICO scores for small businesses are known as “FICO SBSS.” ​ If you try to compare business credit to personal credit, you’re likely to get frustrated. That’s because business credit scores differ from consumer credit scores in some key ways: ​ Credit Score Ranges: Personal FICO scores range between 300 to 850; business credit scores typically range between zero to 100. Paying on time to lenders and/or creditors is the best thing you can do to establish a good business credit score. ​ Free scores: There are over 150 places where consumers can check and monitor their consumer credit scores for free. But free business credit scores are available from a very limited number of sources, such as Nav. ​ Access: Anyone can check a businesses’ credit scores, unlike consumer scores which are restricted to anyone with a “permissible purpose” under federal law. ​ Accuracy: A study published in the Wall Street Journal found as many as 25% of business credit reports may contain errors or are missing key information. If the credit report contains mistakes, the scores produced may not accurately reflect the risk of the business. ​ Factors that determine business credit scores The following factors may be used to calculate business credit scores. Each scoring model is different, though, so some of these factors may not carry much weight, or may not be used at all.+ Payment history Age of credit history Debt and debt usage Industry risk Company size By far, the most important factor when it comes to business credit scores is payment history: does your business pay its bills on time? Some credit scores are almost exclusively calculated based on payment history. Business credit reports may report bills that are just a day or two late, so paying on time is crucial to maintaining strong scores. In fact, to earn the highest D&B Paydex score, you must pay early, before your due dates! ​ Business Credit Scores ​ Business Credit Score Score Range ​ Dun and Bradstreet PAYDEX 0 - 100 ​ Intelliscore PlusSM from Experian 0 - 100 ​ FICO® LiquidCredit® Small Business Scoring Service℠ 0 - 300 ​ Equifax Business Delinquency Risk Score 224 - 580
bottom of page