Best Business Bank Accounts: How to Choose

In this article, we’re exploring the best business bank accounts in the UK.

This will include covering how to choose where to open, the specific steps to opening, and the requirements you’ll need to meet.

Plus, we’ll also answer common questions that we receive from members looking to open business accounts in the UK.

This article is part of our free series on banking in Europe, which includes a step-by-step guide on how to open a European business account online, which you can access using this link.

Feel free to use the table of contents to jump ahead to the sections most relevant to you.

Table of Contents

  1. Best Business Bank Accounts
  2. Business Account vs Personal Bank Account
  3. How to Choose the Best Business Bank Account
  4. How to Open Business Bank Accounts
  5. Frequently Asked Questions
  6. Do You Want Help Opening Bank Accounts?

Best Business Bank Accounts

The best business bank accounts for your operation are the bank accounts that offer the specific services you need at a cost that your business is able to afford and that are willing to accept your business as a customer.

Business Account vs Personal Bank Account

The main difference between a business account and a personal bank account is that a business account supports business transactional banking while personal accounts are designed to support the day-to-day transactions of individual account holders.

Not surprisingly, business accounts typically have higher volume transactions, offer payment processing support, and can provide access to other business-related services. On the other hand, personal accounts typically have lower fees, offer financial advisory and investment support, and can integrate directly with the other financial requirements of individuals.

How to Choose the Best Business Bank Account

To choose the best business account in the United Kingdom, you should first consider the specific services your business requires. Next, you’ll need to assess your business’ profile, associated risks, the countries your business transacts with, and other factors that can impact how attractive your business might be to banks.

Here is a closer look at the specific factors that business owners should consider before opening accounts.

Factors to Consider When Opening a Business Account

  • Desired banking services for your business
  • Business activities and each bank support for them
  • Countries your business transacts with
  • The risk profile of the shareholders and directors

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How to Open Business Bank Accounts

To open a business bank account in the United Kingdom, you will first need to identify the banks that you can realistically open accounts with. As mentioned, UK banks do not usually open accounts for non-resident businesses. This includes UK-registered businesses that do not have a presence in the United Kingdom.

Of course, there are several exceptions, which we share with the members of GlobalBanks IQ in our detailed UK banking report. In short, if you know where to apply and which banks will accept your business profile, it is possible to open accounts in the UK for a non-resident business.

Requirements for Opening Business Bank Accounts

The requirements for opening a bank account in the UK vary by bank, customer profile, activities, and jurisdictions involved. That said, there are a range of standard requirements that most businesses should be prepared to provide.

Here is a look at the most common business banking requirements in the UK:

  1. Corporate registration documents
  2. Supporting company information
  3. Detailed business profile including specific activities
  4. Local proof of address
  5. Proof of citizenship for the shareholders & directors
  6. Proof of residence for the shareholders & directors
  7. Overview of customer profiles
  8. Contracts and proof of business
  9. Expected transaction activities
  10. And more

Again, requirements vary depending on the bank that you are applying to. So, it’s important to confirm your requirements before applying for accounts.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are a few of the most common questions we receive from people looking into the best business accounts. If you have further questions you would like to ask our team, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

What Do Business Bank Accounts Cost?

Business accounts cost between GBP 5 to GBP 30 per month on average. However, it is possible to open free (or low-cost) bank accounts in the United Kingdom for small and medium-sized enterprises.

Should I Choose an Online-Only Business Account?

You should choose an online-only bank if your focus is on reducing costs and you do not require any in-person banking. However, it’s important to remember that there are risks as certain online banking platforms do not have the same safeguards as traditional banks.

Which Type of Account Is Best for a Business?

The type of account that is best for most UK businesses is a current account. Current accounts provide access to basic banking services and support for day-to-day transactions. However, more complex businesses may require additional support, including merchant accounts and support for in-person payment processing.

Do You Want Help Opening Bank Accounts?

If so, you can get access to GlobalBanks IQ in just a few clicks.

GlobalBanks IQ is our flagship international account opening solution. It gives you instant access to the…

+ Expert insights on which banks to choose & why

+ Step-by-step reports to open accounts in the best banking hubs

+ GlobalBanks international bank database & detailed bank profiles

+ Tried & tested banks for high-risk, offshore, & non-resident clients

+ Plus, get YOUR most pressing bank account opening questions answered by our team!

And “yes!” GlobalBanks IQ helps foreigners and non-resident individuals open bank accounts.

In fact, GlobalBanks IQ even helps non-resident, foreign & offshore entities open bank accounts.

Use the link in our menu above to learn more about GlobalBanks IQ. Or, contact us directly with any questions!

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GlobalBanks Team
GlobalBanks Team

The GlobalBanks editorial team comprises a group of subject-matter experts from across the banking world, including former bankers, analysts, investors, and entrepreneurs. All have in-depth knowledge and experience in various aspects of international banking. In particular, they have expertise in banking for foreigners, non-residents, and both foreign and offshore companies.

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