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What can the big four offer your business?

All the big banks say they’re the best for small business, but they also all want a piece of this large part of the market. To cut through the confusion, here’s an in-depth look at what each bank claims to have to offer SMBs.

Commonwealth Bank

Commonwealth Bank prides itself on its personalised, local service from expert business bankers who understand where you’re coming from as a business owner. It has dedicated business bankers working across the country’s largest branch network.

Realising that businesses don’t just work 9 to 5, it also offers a 24/7 phone service answered by a real person, with no answering machines.

In terms of online banking, the CBA claims NetBank is Australia’s best online banking service and also offers CommBiz, a premium online transaction service with around-the-clock transactional capabilities and access to your business accounts.

A number of business accounts and cards are offered:

•            Business Transaction Account

•            Premium Business Cheque Account

•            Business Online Saver

•            Business Debit MasterCard.

Its Better Business Package is a flexible banking solution that works to simplify your everyday business banking. It gives you everything you need to accept and make payments, manage business transactions, make the most of cash on hand, and access extra funds when you need them.

Its free Women in Focus program is dedicated to inspiring, informing and connecting women across Australia – whatever they do, wherever they bank. Through an online community, events and partnerships, Women in Focus provides a way for women to share inspirational stories, celebrate achievements, promote their business and connect with likeminded women.

The Commonwealth Bank website contains a wealth of information about starting, financing or growing your business, how to write a business plan and even find government grants.

If you want to switch your business bank account to Commonwealth Bank, you can do so using its online service.


NAB shouts about its commitment to small business and is the sponsor of the National Small Business Summit.

Its small business bankers are available locally in branches to assist you with all aspects of small business banking, including your business and personal finances. This means you only need to speak to one person for all of your financial needs. Because the small business bankers have the authority to approve loans, NAB says the person you speak to is the person who can help.

As a small business owner, when you bank with NAB, you also have access to their specialists from Transactional Banking, Asset Finance, Property, International Trade and Financial Planning who can provide you with advice on any of your specialised business needs. And for additional support, there’s the Small Business Support Team, available to help for the times you can’t get to a branch.

Its website has a great selection of free how-to guides on topics from how to use cashflow forecasts to selecting asset finance for your business.

The bank offers a range of rewards cards with Qantas, Velocity and flybuys points, a low fee card and a gold card. However, it doesn’t offer an online switching service.

According an NAB spokesperson, here are the 3 reasons why small business owners should bank with NAB

1. Understanding your business

As Australia’s largest business bank we take time to truly understand your businesses needs and the sector your business is operating in. We recognise that your bank should be more than just your finance provider – they should be your business partner, taking the time to understand your business, your industry and your personal and business aspirations.

2. Personal and business banking needs

Unique to small businesses is the intertwining of personal and business banking needs. This means that, unlike consumers or large corporates, small business operators require their banker to advise them on all aspects of their banking needs; not one or the other. That’s why we have dedicated small business bankers who have the authority to make decisions related to both business and personal banking needs.

3. Accessibility

Recognising that small business are often time poor and often require support outside of normal hours, NAB customers can also access our small business banking team seven days a week. Flexibility and accessibility of their bank are key concerns of small business owners. We provide this by answering calls within 60 seconds, giving small business people the rapid service they need.


At Westpac you can bundle your business products and save money. You start with a Westpac Business One transaction account plus Business Online Banking and a Business Debit MasterCard. Then add at least one of their eligible business credit cards or an eligible EFTPOS facility or Easy BPAY. Then for only $17 per month, you enjoy the benefits of the Business Value Bundle:

•            Access your cash via a full service transaction account with 24/7 access to funds through Business Online Banking and your Business Debit MasterCard.

•            Be more in control of your cash with a range of selected EFTPOS and Easy BPAY solutions that let you accept payments fast

•            Manage cashflow better – up to 45 days interest free on purchases when using your eligible business credit card.

•            Improve your business know-how by taking advantage of a 50 percent discount off the standard fee on short courses in financial education with the Davidson Institute.

•            Avoid costly mistakes with free online access to legal and tax advice.

Ruby Connection is its free community where professional and business women can connect, learn, exchange ideas, gain insight and be inspired, online and at events. Ruby Connection facilitates an interactive online community designed to promote and support Australian women, no matter what they do or where they are.


ANZ has dedicated Small Business Specialists. It also sponsors The Small Business Hub on LinkedIn where you can connect online with other business owners.

No matter what stage your business is currently at, or what size it is, their extensive knowledge and years of experience can help you. Each business customer is assigned a dedicated ANZ Business Banker who will get to know your company, and develop opportunities for you.

You’ll also get to take full advantage of ANZ’s global network that spans across 32 markets and serves over 8 million customers worldwide.

With over 40 years of experience in the Asia-Pacific region, ANZ claim it is the only Australian bank with a significant Asia-Pacific presence and can easily connect you with local bankers across 14 markets.

At the same time, it claims to be a home-grown bank. So while it has grown into a bank big enough for overseas operations, it will also continue working closely with you as a local bank should. It says it will take the time to understand the ins and outs of your business.

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Jen Bishop

Jen Bishop

Jen was the publisher at Loyalty Media and editor of Dynamic Business, Australia's largest circulating small business magazine, from 2008 until 2012. She is now a full-time blogger at The Interiors Addict.

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