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As a small-business owner, if you feel like your bank is not meeting your needs, you’re not alone. According to a recent study by J.D. Power, only 32 percent of small-business banking customers feel that their current bank understands their needs, and only 37 percent feel their bank appreciates their business.
When it comes to financial services, small-business owners should never feel forgotten. However, many financial institutions provide small businesses with antiquated cookie-cutter products meant more for consumers rather than providing small businesses with true business-grade products typically reserved for corporate clients.
Evaluating your current banking priorities may inspire you to seek new alternatives and make a switch, especially if there are critical warning signs that your current bank is not meeting your needs. Let’s explore some of the most common warning signs, and on the flipside, what great banking for 21st century small-business owners should look like.
Warning Sign #1: You’re paying tons of fees.
Getting a new business off the ground can be costly, but your bank shouldn’t be the one setting you back with expensive and confusing fees. Being charged a “service” or “maintenance” fee — which is usually collected when certain requirements are not met — is probably the number-one indiciator that you’re being nickeled-and-dimed by your current bank. Others include in-network ATM fees, bill-pay fees, incoming wire fees, paper fees and transaction-minimum fees.
You shouldn’t need to pay for standard banking services. Instead, you should have a bank partner who allows you to bank how and when you want, whether that means holding a small balance or conducting as little or as much account activity as your business requires. In addition, you shouldn’t be subjected to numerous penalty fees. You should partner with a bank that has your back.
Warning Sign #2: You can’t do all of your banking online.
As a small-business owner, you are constantly on the go, juggling multiple priorities across the business, day in and day out. You need flexible banking services and solutions that are quick, painless and work for your schedule, not the other way around.
Currently, small-business owners continue to make routine visits to their physical bank branch but are constrained by business hours and long lines. If your bank doesn’t allow you do conduct all of your transactions digitally — whether that be deposits or applying for and managing a business loan via mobile app or online — it’s time to think about making a switch.