The Best Business Credit Cards for Advertising Purchases (From Facebook Ads to TV)

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Online advertising has become the major strategy for growing businesses in today’s marketplace.

Estimates vary by source, but according to data research company Statista, in 2017, 90% of U.S. businesses were using social media for marketing.

This was an increase from 86.2% in 2013, and it is expected to increase to 91% in 2019.

Chances are, your business spends money on advertising. Whether you use Facebook, Google, Twitter, or more traditional media platforms such as TV or radio — if a big share of your business expenses falls in this category, you’ll want make sure you’re earning the highest rewards possible.

Fortunately, several of the best credit cards available have been designed to reward common types of business spending inherent to businesses today.

In our article, we’ll cover:

  • Which credit cards are best for earning rewards on advertising purchases
  • Which advertising categories are eligible for bonus earning
  • The benefits of different reward currencies
  • Alternative credit cards for earning rewards on advertising purchases

Let’s get busy making sure every advertising purchase your business makes earns rewards.

Best Overall Credit Cards for Advertising Purchases

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

How to Earn on Advertising Purchases

No need to select a specific bonus category with the Ink Business Preferred — all of the business spending bonus categories automatically earn 3 Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent.

Advertising purchases on social media and search engines are included in the bonus earning categories and also receive 3 points per dollar spent.

You’ll also receive this same level of earning on travel, shipping, and internet/cable/phone services.

There is a $150,000 annual limit on total 3X category earnings, after which you will earn 1 point per dollar spent. If you’re reaching this level of spending on Google and Facebook Ads or other 3% category, that’s a total of 450,000 Ultimate Rewards Points!

Once earned, Ultimate Rewards points are deposited in your Ultimate Rewards account at the end of each statement period and are available for use.

Here’s how the Ink Business Preferred rewards advertising purchases.

Best For:Example of Bonus Earning MerchantsRewards
  • Social media website advertising and search engine advertising purchases
  • Google Ads (formerly “Google Adwords”), Yahoo & Bing Ads
  • Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads
  • Microsoft Bing Ads
  • 3 Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent ($150k annual limit on the 3pts/$1, then 1pt/$1)

Why We Like Earning Ultimate Rewards Points

We like to earn Ultimate Rewards points because of their flexibility and value.

Hot Tip: If your business spends a lot on Google Ads or Facebook Ads, the Ink Business Preferred is an excellent choice for those advertising purchases. Maximizing the $150,000 purchase limit for 3% categories will generate $5625 in travel value when redeemed via the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal. 

American Express® Business Gold Card

How to Earn on Advertising Purchases

You have more productive things to do with your time than trying to determine which bonus earning categories you should select on your business credit card.

With the Business Gold, elevated earning is simple. All of the 4X bonus earning categories are eligible, but your actual spending determines which 2 categories receive the bonus each statement period.

For example, if this month’s statement shows that shipping and radio advertising were your biggest expenses, those are the categories that will receive 4X bonus earnings.

Next month’s spending could change, with airline tickets and computer hardware being your largest expenses. Those will then be the categories earning the 4X bonus.

This process ensures your greatest expenses receive the greatest rewards. If advertising is always your biggest expense category, you’ll always receive 4X earnings for those purchases.

If your business spends a lot on Google Ads or Facebook Ads, the Business Gold is an excellent choice. If you maximize the $150,000 annual purchase limit in this 4X earnings category, that’s 600,000 Membership Rewards Points earned each year!

Here’s how the Business Gold Card rewards advertising purchases:

Best For:Examples of Bonus Earning MerchantsRewards
  • Online ads, television and radio advertising purchased in the U.S. for the purpose of promoting a business
  • Google Ads (formerly “Google Adwords”), Yahoo & Bing Ads
  • Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads
  • NBC TV
  • CBS Radio
  • 4 Membership Rewards points/$1 spent on 2 categories
  • Limit of $150,000 for both 4X earning categories combined (learn more)

Why We Like Earning Membership Rewards Points

Membership Rewards points are one of the most valuable rewards currencies, as there are so many ways to earn the points and a variety of good value redemption options.

The value you receive for your points will depend on which redemption option you select. You can purchase travel through Amex Travel, redeem your points for gift cards, or donate to charity to easily receive 1 cent per point in value.

Transferring Membership Rewards points to travel partners (especially airlines) can yield even greater value and be the best option for maximizing your Amex points.

While there are several other redemption options, choices such as statement credits, shopping at Amazon, Best Buy, or the American Express shopping mall will yield significantly less value for your points.

TV channels
Whether you use traditional media or social media, advertising expenses can earn big rewards. Image courtesy of Spectrum.

American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card

How to Earn on Advertising Purchases

If advertising is your greatest expense, you can consistently earn 2% cash-back with the Blue Business Cash card. Bonus 2% earnings are limited to up to $50,000 in purchases per year.

Why We Like Earning Cash-Back

If you’re operating your business on a tight budget and traveling is not a priority, cash-back can be a valuable way to bring capital back into the business.

No need for complicated redemption strategies — cash-back earned on the Blue Business Cash Card is applied automatically to subsequent statements, helping to offset expenses and improve your bottom line.

Hot Tip: Have a large business purchase coming up that you won’t be able to pay off right away? The Blue Business Cash Card has a stellar introductory 0% APR period for purchases. This 0% APR period will allow you to make that large purchase and pay the debt back over 12 months without incurring interest charges. 

Sky advertising banner
No matter how you advertise, all of your purchases can earn rewards. Image courtesy of

Best Business Card for Unlimited Advertising Purchases

The Business Platinum Card® from American Express

If your business spends an inordinate amount of money on advertising each month, you’ll want to make sure every dollar is earning rewards. Plus, you’ll want to have a card that comes with additional benefits you can use.

While there are several cards that earn multiple times rewards points and cashback for advertising purchases, most elevated earnings are capped annually. The Business Platinum Card offers unlimited earnings and rewards larger purchases.

Plus it comes with a long list of benefits that make it a valuable business resource.

Why We Like the Card for Advertising Purchases

  • Every purchase you make earns at least 1 Membership Rewards point per dollar spent
  • Every purchase of $5,000 or more, including advertising, earns 1.5 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent
  • There is no limit on the amount of Membership Rewards points you can earn

Why We Like the Card Overall

The Business Platinum Card is a premium travel rewards card that comes with premium travel benefits including the following.

  • Complimentary access to over 1,200 airport lounges worldwide including the prestigious Centurion Lounge network
  • Up to $200 in airline fee credits
  • Flights and prepaid hotels booked through Amex Travel earn 5X points per dollar spent
  • 35% points rebate on flights with your selected qualifying airline booked through Amex Travel
  • Global Entry fee statement credit
  • Hotel elite status with Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors

If your business is spending big on advertising, considering a card like the Business Platinum Card, with no spending limits, might be a rewarding option.

Alternative Credit Cards for Advertising Purchases

If you want to earn rewards on all of your purchases including advertising, you can accomplish this with several credit cards.

Let’s take a look at several no-annual-fee credit cards that deliver earnings on every purchase you make.

The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express

The Blue Business Plus card earns 2 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent on the card on everyday business purchases, including advertising like Google Ads and Facebook Ads.

There is an annual $50,000 limit on total 2X purchases so if you maximize that limit, you’ll earn 100,000 Membership Rewards points, which is an excellent value for a no-annual-fee credit card. After that, all purchases will earn 1 point per dollar spent.

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

With 1.5% cash-back on every purchase your business makes, including advertising, this no-annual-fee credit card is worthy of consideration.

Cash-back rewards are earned in the form of Ultimate Rewards points, which can be redeemed for cash-back at 1 cent per point.

You can, however, transfer the Ultimate Rewards points to premium Chase credit cards such as the Ink Business Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card for 25%-50% more value when redeemed for travel.

There is no limit on how much cash-back (in the form of Ultimate Rewards points) you can earn with the Ink Business Unlimited Card.

Citi® Double Cash Card

There are no complicated earning structures to keep track of with the Double Cash Card. You’ll earn 1% cash-back when you make a purchase and 1% when you pay off your purchase.

With 2% cash-back on every purchase, including advertising like Google Ads and Facebook Ads, the Double Cash Card makes earning easy. There’s also no limit on the amount of cash-back you can earn.

Hot Tip: If your advertising expenses exceed the bonus category limits that come with a specific credit card, a combination of 2 cards that match up with your spending levels may be the ultimate solution. For example, the Ink Business Preferred and the Business Gold Card, cards with elevated advertising earnings, have a $300,000 annual limit combined. 

Final Thoughts

If your business is heavy into advertising and the expense is significant, selecting a credit card that earns rewards for these purchases makes good business sense.

It’s also prudent to look at your other major expenses and select a card that matches as much of your spending mix as possible.

For example, if your 2 largest business expenses are for travel and advertising, the Ink Business Preferred Card might be a better choice than the Business Gold Card, which limits earning to just airline tickets purchased directly from the airlines.

If your business is small and you have a lot of office supply and wireless phone expenses, the Blue Business Cash Card will have you earning plenty at 2% cash-back on up to $50,000 per year.

Selecting the best credit card for earning rewards on your business advertising expenses should involve looking at all of your expenses to determine which card is the best one overall for your business bottom line.

For rates and fees of the American Express® Business Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Business Platinum Card® from American Express click here.
For rates and fees of The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express, please click here.

Frequently asked questions

Which credit card is the best for advertising?

The best credit card for earning rewards on your advertising purchases will depend on which media you spend the greatest.

For example, if you purchase a lot of TV and radio advertising, the American Express® Business Gold Card or the Amex Blue Business Cash Card will earn rewards on these categories and be good choices.

The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card does not include TV and radio advertising but earns rewards for social media ads on Google and Facebook, which makes the card a wise choice if you use these vehicles for online advertising.

If you spend a lot on print publication advertising, a credit card such as the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card will ensure you earn rewards on every purchase.

Selecting the best credit card for advertising purchases should also take into consideration the total mix of spending and whether other large business expenses could earn even greater rewards.

Which advertising purchases earn rewards?

Each credit card has its own definition of advertising and which merchants qualify for bonus earning.

Some credit cards only include social media, others include TV and radio.

You can access the credit card’s terms and conditions for more detailed descriptions before you apply for any credit card, you should read the “offer and benefit terms” and “rates and fees” information.

The details on which advertising media qualify is located under the”offer and benefit terms.”

Is there a card with no annual fee for earning rewards on advertising?

The Amex Blue Business Cash Card does not charge an annual fee and earns 2% cash-back on advertising purchases (and all other purchases up to $50,000 per year).

How can I qualify for a business credit card?

While the IRS definition of a business is quite broad and includes “any activity carried on for the production of income,” credit card issuers will want more evidence of your business existing.

With that said, even small businesses such as part-time coaching, selling on eBay, or dog walking can qualify.

Registering your business in the state where you operate can help establish legitimacy and improve your chances for approval of a business credit card. A current relationship with the credit card issuer (such as a bank account) can also improve your chances.

However, it is the strength of your personal credit that will ultimately solidify your approval for a business credit card.

Those with good credit, business activity (even it is small), and the bonus of an existing relationship are most likely to succeed in securing a business credit card.

Christine Krzyszton

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine, who lives in Northern Michigan, travels about 300,000 miles a year despite her remote location. Her expertise is traveling the world on a weekend with no pre-determined destination in mind, letting the cost of the airfare determine where she will go. She has over four million flown miles and elite status on all three major domestic carriers.

Disclaimer: Any comments listed below are not from the bank advertiser, nor have they been reviewed or approved by them. No responsibility will be taken by the bank advertiser for these comments.


  1. Hector Patrick August 7, 2019

    I’m the owner of Digital Marketing Gorilla. We have both the Ink Business Prefered and the Amex Gold Business. As a small marketing agency spending roughly $30-$40k a month in ad revenue, my advice is that if you want to accumulate points for travel via ad spend, the Amex Gold Business is your best bet. Transferring points to their travel partners can yield a 2-3x return on points. However, if cashback is your motive, the Ink is your best bet as you get a 1 to 1 return on cash which equates to roughly 3% cashback on ad spend.


  2. A word of caution for businesses that advertise internationally:

    1. some of these spend bonuses only apply to US ad spend. So if you advertise with, say, Amazon Europe, you only get the base 1x points. This is true for the Amex Gold Biz.

    2. some of these cards above charges Forex fees! The Simplycash Business, Chase Ink Unlimited, Blue Business Plus, all charge 3% Forex. Learned this the hard way with my own business.


    • Thanks for that reminder, Kent. It’s always good to check a card’s rates, fees, and bonus category details before applying for any card, to make sure it’s right for your situation.


Any thoughts or questions? Comment below!

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