Phoenix Synergistics: Credit Cards and the Small Business Market

May 2021 | Personal, Business, and Premium Cards | Payment Method vs. Credit Source | Rewards and Enhancements | Online and Mobile Account Management

Card issuers are aggressively competing for their share of the large, lucrative small business market segment. While many small businesses use business credit cards, a notable number still use personal credit cards for business purposes. What is driving usage of personal cards over business cards? To what extent are there opportunities for converting personal card usage to business card usage? Business credit cards can provide small businesses unique benefits, such as separating business and personal expenses, providing capital, helping with cash flow, and furnishing cash-management features. What do small businesses see as the top reasons for using business credit cards?

To stand out from the crowd, issuers can implement a number of strategies, such as rewards, special services, premium products, and account-management services. What types of rewards have strong appeal in the small business market? Premium-level business credit cards offer upscale perks for cardholders and provide fee revenue for issuers. Are there opportunities for expanding premium card use in the small business market? Online account management has become an essential element of credit card programs. Can online features or services provide any type of payoff beyond parity with the competition? How extensive is usage of mobile channels for a variety of credit card applications—from account access and alerts to point-of-sale applications—among small businesses?

Small businesses not only use credit cards for making purchases and payments—they also accept credit card payments from their customers. Are there problems, concerns, or unmet needs for these small businesses when accepting credit card payments? In today’s competitive marketplace, it is essential for credit card issuers to understand the card market from the small business owner’s perspective.


National Survey

A total of 1,000 online interviews will be conducted with owners and executives of small businesses with annual sales of $50K to $5M in industries including manufacturing, wholesale, retail, and services.

Project Report

The final report, available in late May 2021, will present results of a Phoenix Synergistics in-depth analysis of national survey results. It will feature a Strategic Insights commentary examining the small business credit card market.

Major Competitor Profile

A profile of overall financial activity for the top financial institutions used will be included as part of the project report.

Project Report Outline

  • Strategic Insights with key findings and implications
  • Competitive Intelligence
  • Survey Analysis
  • Survey Methodology

Email sent!