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What Should You Use as a Business Name on Your Business Card Application?

What Should You Use as a Business Name on Your Business Card Application?

Million Mile SecretsWhat Should You Use as a Business Name on Your Business Card Application?Million Mile Secrets Team

Having a small business credit card can be a great way to boost your rewards balances.  Because many business cards offer big sign-up bonuses and great bonus spending categories! 

We get a lot of questions about how to apply for business cards.  Because the application is a little different than signing-up for a personal card!

What Should You Use As A Business Name On Your Business Card Application
Did You Know? It’s OK to Use Your Own Name as Your “Official” Business Name on Business Card Applications

Million Mile Secret Agent Lenny asked:

When applying for small business cards, I am always asked the legal name of my business.  I am an independent contractor, so I do own a business, but do not have a “legal” name for the business.  How do I answer this question?

If you’re applying as a sole proprietor (meaning you’re not in any type of partnership), you can use your name as the legal business name.

So, if your name is John Smith, you can put John Smith as the name on your application AND as your small business’ name.  Because often, when your work for yourself (like writers, photographers, editors, website developers, etc.), your name IS your business.  So you can use it!

Million Mile Secrets team member Harlan uses an EIN (Employer Identification Number) for his business when applying for business cards.  But he still uses his name as his business name.

Team members Meghan and Keith do the same!  Even though they usually apply for business cards as sole proprietors using their Social Security Number.

What Should You Use As A Business Name On Your Business Card Application
Federal Tax ID = Social Security Number

Having an official name is more important if you have a storefront or are selling goods.  Because, for example, no one wants to eat at a restaurant called John Smith.  But they might want to hire John Smith for his skills as a writer! 😉

So in Lenny’s case, he should be fine to use his name as his “official” business name on a small business card application.

For more tips on filling out a business card application, check out this post.  And don’t forget to read about my top 3 credit card picks for small business owners!

Bottom Line

You can use your name as your business’ “official” name on a small business card application, as long as you’re applying as a sole proprietor.

Business cards are worth considering because if you run a small business or even have a side hustle, you can earn lots of miles & points toward travel with everyday spending for your business!

Thanks for the question, Lenny!

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Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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Thank you for this! I was thinking about opening up a business credit card next month, and had this exact question. I didn't want to limit myself to a specific type of business in the name, since I have more than one side hustle.