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Just as you can maximize spending on dining out, travel, office supply purchases and more by choosing the right credit card, you can also get the most out of your spending on internet advertising if you know where to look. There are three business cards that offer especially generous bonus points on social media and search engine ad purchases.

American Express® Business Gold Card

The American Express Business Gold Card automatically gives you 4 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent in the two categories where you spend the most each month. The six possible bonus categories are:

  • Airfare purchased from airlines
  • US purchases for advertising in select media
  • US purchases for shipping
  • US purchases at gas stations
  • US purchases at restaurants
  • US purchases made from select technology providers

TPG values Membership Rewards points at 2 cents apiece, so you’ll earn a 8% return on spending in the two bonus categories where you spend the most each month. You’ll only earn 4x on the first $150,000 of bonus category spending each year though. All subsequent spending will earn 1 point per dollar, which is the earning rate for all non-bonus category spending.

The American Express Business Gold Card is currently offering an exclusive offer of one year of G Suite Basic for up to three users and up to one year of ZipRecruiter Standard. The offer is in the form of statement credits for purchases of these services within the first 12 months of card membership. If you purchase both G Suite Basic and ZipRecruiter Standard, this offer is worth up to $3,188. If G Suite Basic and ZipRecruiter Standard aren’t valuable for your company, you might alternatively be able to snag a 50,000-point targeted welcome bonus if you’re referred by a friend (subject to change at any time). Per TPG’s latest valuations, the 50,000-point welcome bonus would be worth $1,000. This card has a $295 annual fee and no foreign transaction fees.

For more details on the card’s other benefits, check out our card review.

Ink Business Preferred Credit Card

(Photo by Eric Helgas for The Points Guy)
(Photo by Eric Helgas for The Points Guy)

Launched in late 2016, the Ink Business Preferred offers 3 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on the first $150,000 in combined purchases each account anniversary year spent in these categories:

  • Travel
  • Shipping
  • Internet, cable and phone
  • Advertising on search engines and social media sites

If your spending in the other three categories is low, you could earn the bulk of your 3x points on advertising spend. All other purchases earn 1 point per dollar spent.

Aside from the generous bonus on advertising purchases, this card also is an exceptional value because it’s part of Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program. Points in this program are among the most valuable points currencies available — TPG values UR points at 2 cents apiece. One reason why they’re so valuable: They transfer to a number of valuable hotel and airline loyalty programs. This means you’ll earn a 6% return on bonus category spending.

The Ink Business Preferred also comes with the largest bonus among the three cards featured in this story. You’ll earn 80,000 Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $5,000 in the first three months of card membership. That bonus is worth $1,600 according to TPG’s valuations, which looks even more impressive when you consider this card’s annual fee — a modest $95.

For more details on the card’s other benefits, check out our card review.

SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

Amex’s SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card is another good pick if you spend a significant amount on advertising in the US — especially if you’ve maxed out the bonus categories on the other two business cards above. In this case, though, you’ll be earning cash back rather than transferable points.

You’ll earn 5% cash back on wireless telephone services purchased directly from US service providers and on purchases at US office supply stores. Additionally, you’ll earn 3% back in your choice of one of the following eight categories:

  • Airfare purchased directly from airlines
  • Hotel rooms purchased directly from hotels
  • Car rentals purchased from select car rental companies
  • US gas stations
  • US restaurants
  • US purchases for advertising in select media
  • US purchases for shipping
  • US computer hardware, software and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers

If you select advertising, you’ll be getting a 3% return on eligible purchases within that category, but as with the two cards discussed above, there’s a cap on bonus earnings. In this case, you’ll only earn bonus cash back — meaning both the 3% and 5% categories — on the first $50,000 in purchases in a calendar year, after which you’ll earn 1% back. You’ll also earn 1% cash back on non-bonus category purchases.

The SimplyCash Plus Business card currently doesn’t carry a bonus, but it also doesn’t charge an annual fee. Interestingly, the card also offers the ability to spend beyond your credit limit to make large purchases (determined by factors like your payment and credit history), though you’ll have to pay off this additional spending every month.

What Counts as Advertising on These Cards?

Combine two or more cards to earn rewards on hundreds of thousands of dollars of ad spending. Image by Prasit photo / Getty Images
Combine two or more cards to earn rewards on hundreds of thousands of dollars of ad spending. (Photo by Prasit photo / Getty Images)

Both the Business Gold Card and the SimplyCash Plus are issued by American Express, with the relevant bonus category specified as spending on “advertising in select media.” Based on the terms and conditions, this is defined as “advertising purchased in the US to promote your business online, on television or on the radio.”

So not only will you earn extra rewards — up to 4x on the Business Gold Card and up to 3% cash back with the SimplyCash Plus — for online advertising with Facebook and Google, but also with ad spending across other media formats. Though since online ad spending is so popular among businesses large and small these days, that’s likely where most cardholders will be able to maximize this category.

The terms and conditions on Chase’s Ink Business Preferred are much more explicit: You’ll earn up to 3x on “advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines,” including Facebook and Google AdWords.

Bottom Line

Online advertising with companies such as Facebook and Google has become an integral part of many business strategies, and luckily there are credit cards that reward spending within this category. If you have a large ad budget, you can spread out the cost over multiple credit cards and continue to bring in significant rewards.

The Business Gold Card is a great choice due to its ability to earn 4 points per dollar on ad spending. The Ink Business Preferred is also a solid choice due to its ability to earn 3 points per dollar on ad spending, its low annual fee and its current sign-up bonus. Meanwhile, the no-fee SimplyCash Plus Business card, which offers a lower return due to its straight cash-back offering, is a great option as well — especially if you’ve already maxed out your bonus categories on the other two business cards or don’t want to pay an annual fee.

Featured image by Getty Images.

American Express® Business Gold Card

Get up to 1 year free of G Suite Basic and up to 1 year of ZipRecruiter Standard

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More Things to Know
  • More Rewards: Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month †
  • †4X points apply to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these 2 categories each calendar year.*
  • Airline Bonus: Get 25% points back after you use points for all or part of an eligible flight booked with Amex Travel, up to 250,000 points back per calendar year.*
  • Exclusive Offers: Get up to 1 year free on subscriptions to both G Suite Basic for up to 3 users and ZipRecruiter Standard, a combined value up to $3,188.*
  • Pay Over Time Option: A flexible payment option to help manage cash flow on purchases of $100 or more.*
  • Expense Management Tools: Connect to Quickbooks, access SpendManager℠, receive a Year-End Summary, and more.*
  • Add Employee Cards with a no annual fee option. Earn rewards on employee purchases and track employee expenses with spending limits, alerts, and summary reports.*
  • *Terms Apply
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
16.24% - 24.24% Variable
Annual Fee
$295
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

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