A business credit score has some similarities to a personal credit score. As with a personal credit score, a business credit score will show your company’s history of debt obligations and the payment history on those obligations.
However, a business credit report also gives viewers information about your company’s history, current revenue numbers, and information about ownership and key personnel positions. This is why it’s important to ensure your business’s credit report is accurate.
What Is A Good Business Credit Score?
Whereas personal credit scores can range from 300 to 850, business credit scores range from 0 to 100. There are varying opinions as to what a good business credit score is.
However, most banks and other business lenders like to see a business credit score of at least 75 before they will lend to a business. If you find your business credit score is below 75, you may want to take steps to improve it.
Why You Need a Business Credit Score
Of course, having a business credit score can be crucial to obtaining funding for your business, but it’s not the only reason to have a business credit score.
One reason you need a business credit score is to form partnerships with vendors and suppliers. This can be important if you need to open trade lines to get supplies for your business.
And having a good business credit score is good for helping to establish a reputation for your business. A business credit score shows potential clients, vendors, and lenders that your business is legit and established.
In short, having a business credit score — and a good one at that — is crucial for growing your business and maintaining a good business reputation.
Next, let’s talk about how to get your business credit score for free.
Where You Can Get Your Business Credit Score For Free
To be entirely honest, we couldn’t find any companies that will give you your business credit score for free. Some will give you score ranges, and others will give you your business credit report for free.
However, those reports will not contain your actual business credit score. The companies that offer business credit reports all charge to give you your company’s actual credit score.
Here is the information we found on how to get your business credit score for free.
Nav is a company that helps businesses find the best loans and credit cards. The company offers several different products that can help you monitor and improve your company’s credit score.
Nav’s free credit report program will give you a summary of your credit score ranges and reports from the following agencies:
- Dun & Bradstreet
- Ansonia (an Equifax company)
If you’re looking for regular access to your full credit reports and scores, you’ll need to upgrade to Nav’s business manager product, which costs $29.99 per month.
Other upgraded products with additional features are available through Nav as well. While Nav will at least give you a range of where your company’s credit score may fall at no cost, the companies we mention next will not.
They do give you free business credit reports without a score, however.
Get Your Credit Report For Free (But No Score)
These companies will give you your business credit report for free, but this will not include the score.
CreditSignal by Dun & Bradstreet
Dun & Bradstreet has a product called CreditSignal that helps you build a good business credit score. The basic CreditSignal product is free and will give you your Dun & Bradstreet PAYDEX score for free during the first 14 days you have the product.
It will also show you how to improve your credit score and alert you to changes to your report. If you want to be able to check your actual business credit score you’ll need to upgrade to CreditSignal Plus.
CreditSignal Plus offers expanded features and benefits for monitoring and improving your business credit score and costs $15 per month. Or you can save money by paying annually at $149 per year.
Creditsafe exists to help companies solve credit issues and build a good business credit score. You won’t find pricing on their website except to say that products come with a free trial.
Your free trial will get you your initial business credit report without your business credit score.
However, using the product to continually monitor and build your business credit score will cost you via a customized monthly subscription amount. They don’t display prices on their website.
Data Axle (Formerly Credit.net)
Data Axle will also give you your business credit report and business credit score. The company specializes in sharing financial insights for businesses around the globe.
You can get credit scores and other important details for your businesses and for companies you’re considering doing business with. Data Axle offers three different plans starting at $17.95 per report.
There are also monthly subscription plans available for those who want access to the credit scores of several different companies.
Equifax And Experian
Consumer credit reporting agencies Equifax and Experian also offer commercial credit scores. However, you will have to pay money to get those scores.
Equifax charges $99.99 for a single business credit report including the credit score. And then do offer discounts for those wanting multiple business reports.
Experian charges between $39.99 and $99.99 for a business credit report including the score. Or you can sign up for a yearly subscription at $179 per year and have unlimited access to business reporting information.
Business Credit Reports
There’s also a company called Business Credit Reports that can help you get your credit report and score from a variety of sources. Of course, you will have to pay for this service.
However, according to the website you can get comprehensive business credit reports from a number of agencies starting at just over $20. This might be a site to check out if you want reporting information from more than one agency.
The bottom line is that you’re probably going to have to pay money if you want to get your business credit score. Once you get your business credit score, you may want to learn how to improve that score.
How To Improve Your Business Credit Score
There are multiple steps you can take to improve your business credit score. Here are some of the more effective suggestions.
Get An EIN
Your business’s credit score will be better able to be monitored and improved if your business has its own EIN. Note that you may want to consider establishing your business as its own entity if you haven’t already done so.
You can get an EIN for a sole proprietorship, however, having your business listed as your name does leave room for business and personal credit reports and scores to be commingled.
If you establish your business as an LLC, partnership, or corporation before getting your EIN you’ll create an entirely separate entity to help your business to build its own credit score and report.
Related: Do I Need an EIN for My Business
Open Business Bank Accounts
Another step to improving your business’s credit score is to open separate checking and savings accounts under your business’s name.
Again, this will help avoid unwanted confusion between your personal credit score and report and your business credit score and report. Today’s business checking accounts are affordable and easy to access whether you open online or at a bank or credit union near you.
Related: The Best Business Checking Accounts
Get A Business Credit Card
Getting a business credit card in your name is another step you can take to help you improve your business’s credit score.
As with business bank accounts, there are plenty of companies offering business credit cards to help you build business credit.
Use your business credit card to make small purchases you can pay in full every month in order to get the maximum benefit to your business credit score.
There are several other action steps you can take to improve your business credit score–or to establish a business credit score in the first place. See the article suggestion below for more information.
While you may not be able to get your business credit score for free, you can pay to get your business credit score. And as a business owner, you may find it well worth it to pay for that service.
The cost is typically tax-deductible, and having your business credit report along with the score will help you have a starting point in which you can monitor, maintain, or improve your business’s credit reputation.
Have you checked your company’s credit score? If so, did you find it helpful? Has having a good business credit score impacted your business in a positive way? Feel free to leave a comment and share your experience.