16 September 2022

What is the easiest way to open a business bank account online?

Our latest guide will show you what an online business account is and why you might need one. Learn more about how to open an online business account.
What is the easiest way to open a business bank account online?

It’s no secret that the traditional banking industry doesn’t treat SME owners with the same respect as their corporate competitors.

High-street banks hold the keys to nearly every tool required to successfully conduct business. Their fear of risk and innovation reluctance sees millions of small businesses unable to open business accounts each year.

The latest research from World Bank suggests that SMEs account for 90% of all businesses and 70% of all jobs worldwide, contributing 50% to the global gross domestic product. If that’s the case, then why is paying locally and trading globally still the luxury of multi-nationals and conglomerates? 
 
Starting and running a successful business is difficult. Trust us, we’ve been there and done it. What frustrates us that, even in 2022, opening a local or international business account continues to be incredibly complicated. It’s time to take back control of our financial lives and make borderless business banking a reality, powered by online business accounts.

What is an online business account?


An online business account is exactly what the name suggests. It is a business account as you know them but opened and managed entirely online. While a high-street bank will give you access to basic online services as an account holder, you are still bound by their antiquated brick-and-motor operational approach.  

Online business accounts are often provided by so-called challenger banks or independent financial services providers. Challenger banks offer customers a legitimate alternative to traditional banking on every level and seek to create a fair financial eco-system for all. 

What are the basic features of online business account?  

  • No physical bank branch location 

  • Online application process 

  • No geographical restrictions 

  • 24/7 account access 

  • Easy to operate

Why do you need an online business account?

If you’re serious about taking your business to the next level, opening an online business account is a first step. Think about an online business account as embracing the future of finance. As well as having the benefits of a traditional business account, you will be able to access a range of innovative and cutting-edge digital tools.  
 
An online business account is faster, cheaper, and more accessible than any equivalent offering from a high-street bank. There’s no limit to what an online business account can offer but these are some of the things you can expect: 

  • Instant global payments 

  • Faster reconciliation  

  • Cheaper foreign exchange solutions 

  • Accounting software integration 

  • Enhanced security & protection 

  • 365-day customer support 

Another thing to consider is that by choosing an online business account you’re helping to reduce your business’s carbon footprint. It’s always good to be seen being green. 

What types of business account are available online?

It depends on what you need. There are plenty of options to choose so it’s worth investing the time to choose the right account for your business. If you’re looking for a domestic business account that enhances the traditional banking experience you could look towards Wise, Revolut. However, they have their limitations. Companies such as 3S Money take things to the next level by offering advance business accounts solutions that go beyond banking.

Who can apply for a business account online?

In theory, any founder or entrepreneur with a legitimate business interests can open a business account. In most cases the person opening the business account will be an individual with significant control, who has the seniority to complete the required administrative checks. 
 
People who are self-employed are not legally required to open a business account, however having one gives you access to better services and can help legitimise your business. It is a legal requirement for all limited companies to have a business account. This not only is best business practice generally, but it also helps businesses manage their financial infrastructure within regulated parameters. 
 
Despite providing their accounts and services digitally, online business account providers are legally required to work within the financial regulations of their operational jurisdictions. In an ideal world, deciding the eligibility for a business account would be based on business acumen. In reality, the decision can be influenced as much by the geo-political climate as it can be by your business plan.

Do I need to be resident to open an online business account?

Generally speaking, anyone of any nationality can open a business account in most countries. The caveat is that your business must be registered in and The Ultimate Beneficial Owner must be resident of the country you wish to operate in. 

This simple but powerful legislation can systematically lock out thousands of entrepreneurs purely based on their nationality and residency status. This issue is equally as present with online business account providers as it with high-street banks.  

At 3S Money, our mission is to stamp out passport discrimination. Our online business accounts give you access to local IBANs in the UK, US & EU and the ability to pay & receive money in 190+ countries – without ever leaving your office.

What documents do you need to open a business account online? 

New businesses are often treated with suspicion by business account providers. This comes from the antiquated view point that new = risky. It’s important to remember that Amazon started in a garage and became the biggest business on the planet.  
 
In any case, it’s better to be prepared and have all your documentation in order. We can’t speak for other providers, but at 3S Money we don’t treat you any differently just because your business is new. We’ll ask for the same documentation as any other applicant when you apply for a 3S Money account, and you’ll undergo the same compliance and KYC procedures.

These are the documents you should always have prepared when making an application:

  • For all company directors & major shareholders

    • Proof of ID 

    • Proof of address 

    For the company itself

    • Company Registry Extract 

    • Document confirming management and shareholding structure 

    • Shareholder register

     

How long does it take to open a business account online?

This process can be completed in a few days but can take several months if your business structure is complex. As a scale-up we know all too well how frustrating administrative delays can feel.

We aim to onboard new clients within 7 days although things can take a little longer if needed – our team will communicate with you every step of the way. The best way to ensure you can open your account and start trading as quickly as possible is to prepare everything in advance.

A new standard for international business payments

Finding the right account for your business can be a complex decision, but it doesn’t have to be. Our multi-currency business accounts support all business types wherever in the world they call home. Reach overseas customers and suppliers from 190+ countries by discovering the right 3S Money business account for you.

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