Looking for a way to keep tabs on your office supply costs and business travel expenses while earning cash-back? Then the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express could be a good fit.
This card offers expense management solutions that are designed to give companies more control, along with a much clearer picture of their business spending. In doing so, the more you spend, the more cash-back you can earn.
Card Summary Table
- Card Bonus & Info (Partner Content)
- Card Provider
- Card Type(s):
- Card Focus:
- Cell Phones / Landlines
- Gas (Driving)
- Office Supplies
- Select Computer Services
- Travel (General)
- Annual Fee
- Foreign Transaction Fees2.7% of each transaction after conversion to U.S. dollars
- Typical UsersBusiness Owners
- Customer Service Number
- Login Link
- PartnersAmerican Express partners with a variety of hotels, airlines, car rental agencies, and retail establishments. Visit the AMEX Rewards Center for additional details.
- Interest Rates
- 0% on Purchases for 9 months
- 13.49% - 20.49% Variable
- Late fees ?
- 29.99% Variable
- Balance Transfers
- Cash Forwarding
- See Rates & Fees
The Ideal Cardholder
Sign-Up Bonus and Categories for Getting Cash-Back
Right now, cardholders get 5% cash-back on wireless telephone services that are purchased directly from U.S. service providers, as well as on purchases made directly from U.S. office supply stores.
You can get 3% back on another category you select from a list of 8, as well as 1% back on all other qualifying purchases.
When you use the card, the savings can really add up!
Card Bonus Categories and a Unique Feature
Categories included in the 3% are airlines, hotels, car rentals from select agencies, U.S. gas stations, U.S. restaurants, U.S. select advertising, U.S. shipping, and select U.S. computing services (such as cloud storage).
Since each business is ultimately different, it’s great to have the option to choose which category you want. While one business may spend a lot on advertising, another may spend more on shipping.
The most interesting feature of the card, however, is that the cash-back is automatically credited to your card. This is different from most cash-back cards, which make you “redeem” the cash-back for credit.
Note that it won’t appear until the billing statement after the initial billing statement where the purchase was made. You also won’t earn cash-back if you don’t make the minimum payment on your card.
Added Benefits of the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express
In addition, if your business takes you on the road, the card can help you to make it worth your while. That’s because cardmembers get additional benefits such as:
- Car rental and damage insurance
- Baggage insurance
- Travel accident insurance
Cardmembers can shop with more confidence, too, thanks to additional benefits that can keep your purchases safe from theft, damage, and/or loss, such as:
- Purchase protection
- Extended warranty
- Dispute resolution
As a business owner, the card can provide you with additional tools for helping you to run your company quickly and more efficiently.
For example, with ReceiptMatch, you can manage your expenses as you go by adding receipts and corresponding notes to each purchase transaction.
With the account manager feature, you can assign a business partner or trusted employee to handle important tasks such as making payments and reviewing information. This can free up your time for doing other things.
You can also add more cards for your employees, which will also come with tools that integrate with your bookkeeping. This can make it easy and convenient to run the numbers!
Card Drawbacks and Alternatives
The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express has some great earning potential, but there are some drawbacks.
First, the 3% category only offers cash-back for your choice of 1 of the 8 categories. This is too bad, as there are many great categories in that list!
Also, the cash-back is only good on your first $50,000 spent, which means if you have a business that spends a lot on cards you will probably max that out and only earn 1% cash-back afterward.
A comparable competitor card is the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card. With this card, you can earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases on travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year.
Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases—with no limit to the amount you can earn.
A Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card also costs $95 per year, though there is also the Ink Cash® Business Credit Card that earns cash-back in the same categories with no annual fee.
One advantage of the Chase credit cards over the Amex business card is that the points can be transferred to Chase Ultimate Rewards partners and redeemed for much higher value.
Final Thoughts: A Summary of the Card
As a small business owner who makes frequent purchases of wireless phone services, office supplies, and/or travel, the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express can offer you an ideal way to earn cash-back on items your company already needs.
With a variety of different options to choose from, you can earn in multiple categories. By adding employee cards, you can watch the cash-back accumulate even faster!
In addition, this card also offers a number of other benefits via American Express OPEN, such as extended warranty, dispute resolution, and purchase protection on eligible items.
There are also multiple tools that can help you with controlling business expenses throughout the year, such as ReceiptMatch, account manager access, account alerts, and a year-end summary.
Great Card If
- You are a small business owner, especially if you spend a lot on wireless phone service and/or office supplies
- You are a business owner who spends in the other select 3% category
- You are a business owner who spends a lot on travel
Don't Get If
- You are not a business owner
- You are seeking a cash advance
- You are seeking a place to move a balance transfer from another credit card
- You do not spend a lot of money in the primary categories, such as wireless phone service, office supplies, and/or business travel
U.P. Pro Tips
The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express earns cash-back on advertising in select U.S. media, which includes businesses such as Facebook and Google.
If you own an online business that advertises, such as ecommerce or any number of consulting or coaching businesses, this card’s 3% cash-back could really save you some money!
How To Use the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express: The Upgraded Way
Best Way To Maximize Points
Getting cash-back on your SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express is easy. That’s because cash-back is automatically credited to your statement.
Once you’ve made eligible purchases, the credit will automatically appear on your statement during the second billing period.
Throughout the calendar year, cardmembers can receive statement credits of 5% on the first $50,000 of eligible purchases that are made in the following 2 categories combined (Terms and Conditions Apply):
- Monthly wireless telephone services that are purchased directly from wireless service providers in the U.S.
- Office supplies purchased directly from U.S. office supply stores
So, while you may have written out a check for these expenses in the past, using your card to pay the bill can be a great way for you to earn additional rewards in the future. In fact, doing so can really pay off!
You can also receive 3% cash-back on your first $50,000 of eligible purchases in 1 category that you select from the following 8 (Terms and Conditions Apply):
- Airfare purchased directly from airlines
- Hotel stays
- Purchases from select major car rental companies
- Purchases at U.S. gas stations
- Purchases at U.S. restaurants
- Purchases made in the U.S. for shipping
- Purchases made in the U.S. for advertising in select media
- Computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made in the U.S. from select providers
By selecting the category that your business spends the most in, you can also end up getting rewarded quite nicely. All situations are different, so it may take some number crunching, but no one knows your business better than you do!
After that, you will receive back 1% on all other eligible purchases. This includes purchases in the 5% and 3% categories after your first $50,000.
Be sure to use your card throughout the duration of the year, even if you’ve met the dollar limit in your other categories.
Best Way To Redeem Points
Although there are many ways you can benefit from the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express, the main thing that most business owners really want to know is how to earn cash-back.
Just like putting together a good, solid business plan, it’s important to have a strategy for using the card to get the most out your available rewards.
The good news is this can be fairly easy to accomplish!
Tip #1: Be sure to qualify for up to $500 or 2% cash-back in statement credits in the first 6 months of card ownership by spending up to $25,000 on the card. This is in addition to the cash-back you can receive as part of the automatic benefits on the card.
Tip #2: By purchasing all of your company’s wireless telephone services directly from U.S. service providers, as well as purchasing supplies from U.S. office supply stores, you can earn 5% cash-back.
Tip #3: You can earn 3% cash-back on a category of your choice, which you can pick from 8 additional categories. This gives you a wide variety of options when making your business purchases.
Tip #4: In order to truly maximize your cash-back opportunities, be sure to make all other purchases with your card as well. That’s because you can still get 1% cash-back on other purchases that are made with your card.
Tip #5: If you aren’t entirely convinced that the card is worth it, then try it out for free since there’s no annual fee!
The card comes with access to select hotels, airlines, car rental companies, and retail establishments.
Eligible purchases refer to the purchases of goods and services that you make with the card, minus returns and other credits.
If you aren’t really a “numbers person,” feel free to move on to the next section or just look at the Card Math Summaries to get an idea of how certain users could be rewarded with this particular cash-back card.
Determining the cash-back that could be obtained using the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express will help you decide whether or not it could be a good fit for your business needs.
Recapping the Card Details
Just to quickly recap the card’s reward system, users can get the following cash-back per calendar year when using the card (Terms and Conditions Apply):
- 5% cash-back on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers, and purchases from U.S. office supply stores (on up to $50,000 combined).
- 3% cash-back on the first $50,000 of eligible purchases in 1 category (chosen from a list of 8 options).
- 1% cash-back on all other purchases, including those in the 5% and 3% categories after the $50,000 spending amount has been surpassed within the calendar year.
Small Business Spending Example
Using a small business as an example, the following amounts are typically spent in an average calendar year:
|Office Supply||$12,000||Conferences / Networking||$2,000|
|Shipping||$4,000||Travel Expenses Related to Above||$2,000|
|Cell Phone||$2,400||Legal Fees||$10,000|
|Landline||$ –||Advertising / Marketing||$10,000|
|Internet||$1,800||Web Expenses (Including Dev)||$12,100|
|Cable||$ –||Other Transportation||$500|
|Gas Station||$5,200||Accounting Fees||$10,000|
Let’s run some numbers and see how much cash-back we could earn in this scenario.
Cash-Back Summary Table
Applying the cash-back from the above table to our different earnings categories, we can come up with the following cash-back numbers.
We’ll assume this business chose gas stations for their 3% cash-back category.
|5% Cash-Back Category|
|U.S. Office Supply||$12,000|
|U.S. Cell Phone||$2,400|
|Total Spent in 5% Cash-Back Category||$14,400|
|Cash-Back in 5% Category||$720|
|3% Cash-Back Category|
|U.S. Gas Stations||$5,200|
|Total Spent in 3% Cash-Back Category||$5,200|
|Cash-Back in 3% Category||$156|
|1% Cash-Back Category|
|All Other Purchases||$116,200|
|Cash-Back in 1% Category||$1,162|
|Total Cash-Back in Calendar Year||$2,038|
A small business owner at the above spending level could make up to $2,038 per year in cash-back! That’s a pretty great savings.
Medium-Sized Business Spending Example
If you own or run a medium-sized business, you could also benefit from the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express.
Taking a look at the numbers, here is how it pans out for this particular medium-sized business owner:
|Office Supply||$48,000||Conferences / Networking||$8,000|
|Shipping||$6,000||Travel Expenses Related to Above||$8,000|
|Cell Phone||$9,600||Legal Fees||$20,000|
|Landline||$ –||Advertising / Marketing||$10,000|
|Internet||$7,200||Web Expenses (Including Dev)||$12,100|
|Cable||$ –||Other Transportation||$2,000|
|Gas Station||$20,800||Accounting Fees||$20,000|
Cash-Back Summary Table For Medium-Sized Business
Dividing the spending into the different cash-back categories, we come up with the following numbers. This again assumes that the 3% cash-back category is gas stations.
|5% Cash-Back Category|
|U.S. Office Supply||$48,000|
|U.S. Cell Phone||$9,600|
|Total Spent in 5% Cash-Back Category||$50,000 ($7,600 overflows to the 1% category)|
|Cash-Back in 5% Category||$2,500|
|3% Cash-Back Category|
|U.S. Gas Stations||$20,800|
|Total Spent in 3% Cash-Back Category||$20,800|
|Cash Back in 3% Category||$624|
|1% Cash-Back Category|
|All Other Purchases||$168,500 + $7,600|
|Cash Back in 1% Category||$1,685 + $76 = $1,761|
|Total Cash Back in Calendar Year||$4,885|
A medium-sized business owner could earn up to $4,885 in cash-back at the end of the year, which is another pretty good paycheck!
Final Thoughts on the Card Numbers
This Amex business card has no annual fee and may be worth a look if your company spends a fair amount each year on items like wireless phone services and office supplies.
While all situations are different, even just a few quick calculations may be able to help you determine whether this or another AMEX card (such as The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN) may be an asset to you while making business purchases.
The Gritty Details: Everything Else You Need To Know
Just as with any other financial transaction, it’s important to know exactly what you’re getting into before using a credit card – especially when you’re talking major purchases.
Here’s what you need to know about the Amex SimplyCash.
When it comes to allocating your cash-back rewards, not all statement credits will be created equal. Therefore, it’s important to understand which category your spending will be falling into.
In this case, cardholders can receive 5% back on eligible purchases at U.S. office supply stores, as well as on wireless telephone services. Combined, you can spend up to $50,000 per calendar year in these 2 areas and earn 5%.
After that, cash-back will go to 1% for the remainder of the year in these categories.
For the 3% category, you can choose 1 from a list of several categories, including the following:
- Airfare purchased directly from airlines
- Hotel rooms purchased directly from hotels
- Car rentals purchased from select car rental companies
- U.S. gas stations
- U.S. restaurants
- U.S. purchases for advertising in select media
- U.S. purchases for shipping
- U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers
Cardmembers also receive 1% back on all other purchases. There is no limit on the total amount of cash-back you can receive. With no annual fee on this card, the rewards are that much more enticing!
There is also the option of buying above your credit limit in order to make even larger purchases, and getting cash-back on those purchases as long as the balance is fully paid each month.
Additional Card Membership Benefits
As a card member, you’ll get some additional benefits, too.
Purchase protection – If an item you purchase with your card is broken or stolen, you may be covered through purchase protection for up to 90 days. As a business owner, this can be beneficial when buying items for your company or your clients.
Car rental loss and damage insurance – When you use your card to reserve and pay for an eligible rental vehicle and you decline the collision damage waiver, you can be covered if the car is stolen or damaged.
Baggage insurance – Few things are worse than having your luggage lost or stolen when you’re miles away from home! When using your card to reserve your airfare, you can be covered with baggage insurance for eligible damaged, lost, or stolen baggage – checked or carry on!
Global assist hotline – If you travel more than 100 miles from home, you have access to legal, medical, financial, and other emergency services via the global assist hotline. This can provide you with peace of mind in knowing that help is only a phone call away.
Roadside assistance hotline – A flat tire or dead car battery can certainly ruin a trip, whether you’re across the country or just across town. With the roadside assistance hotline, you can call in case of emergency for coordination and assistance service.
Travel accident insurance – Should the unthinkable occur, travel accident insurance can provide up to $100,000 in accidental death and dismemberment coverage while traveling on a common carrier when you’ve paid for your whole fare using your card.
Extended warranty – You can also worry less about your purchases since the original manufacturer’s warranty is lengthened by up to 1 additional year.
No overlimit fees – No overlimit fees, calls to make, or steps to take: this card gives you more options, and more cash-back.
Plus Even More Benefits From AMEX OPEN
As an American Express OPEN member, you’ll get even more benefits. These can be priceless for running your business and maintaining your financial well-being.
Benefits include convenient access to financial tracking and support services that can help you to manage your expenses, manage your spending, and even grow your business based on advice from leading industry experts.
For example, with ReceiptMatch, you can manage your card expenses by adding receipts, tags, and notes to your transactions through your mobile device(s) and/or your desktop computer.
When you make eligible purchases with your card, it will also already be fully equipped with the OPEN Savings benefit that will provide you additional value.
Should there happen to be an incorrect or a fraudulent charge on your statement, American Express will work with you to resolve the issue.
To help you avoid late payments and monitor irregular activity on your card, you can set up account alerts. This can also be set up on employee cards to monitor spending.
Plus, the account manager feature allows you to assign someone else to handle tasks like reviewing statements, making payments, or even disputing fraudulent charges. This can free up your time for other activities.
Online statements lets you view your card statements from just about anywhere. You can also prepare reports to invoice clients, budget your expenses, and view your purchase history on your card.
If you’re a business owner who is on the go, you can easily pay bills, check your card balance, and do a plethora of other tasks – all from your smartphone or other mobile device.
American Express wants to ensure that you have the most up-to-date conveniences with your business card.
In addition, just by being a cardmember, you can also access ideas and information that can help you grow your business and network with other business owners through the OPEN Forum.
All this and more is included with your card. With no annual fee, it may be well worth it to give this card a try!
Photo Credits/Credit/Copyright Attribution:
Woman in Flower Shop on Phone: Kinga/Shutterstock
“Your Ad Here:” Everett Collection/Shutterstock
Winding Roadways: alphaspirit/Shutterstock
Two Women Business Owners: mangostock/Shutterstock
With no annual fee and the ability to earn cash-back on several categories of purchases, the card can be well worth it.
This card's target audience is the small- or medium-sized business owner who spends on office supplies and wireless services.
There are several ways to earn cash-back benefits from the card. These include the following (Terms and Conditions Apply):
- 5% cash-back at U.S. office supply stores and on wireless telephone services purchased from U.S. providers
- 3% cash-back on the category of your choice from a list of 8 select categories, including airfare, hotels, U.S. advertising, U.S. shipping, and more!
- 1% cash-back on other purchases
The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN costs nothing the first year, but costs $250 per year after that. Also, this card only earns 1.5% "cash-back," which is actually an early payment discount.
The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express earns between 1%-5% cash-back in multiple categories, making it potentially much more valuable than the alternative.
Please refer to the rates & fees of this card for up-to-date APR information.
No, there is no annual membership fee for this card.
Just like with most other cards, you will need to have good or even excellent credit in order to qualify for this card. The only way to really know if you qualify is to apply!
Depending on your business goals, you may want a good cash back credit card. Check out our article on best cash back credit cards for small business.