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OnDeck vs. American Express® Business Line of Credit: Who is the Best Small Business Loan?

Both OnDeck and American Express Business Blueprint™ are two of the best online lenders for businesses, offering both small business loans and lines of credit. Discover the services and main advantages of each one of these lenders.
Written by: Sarah Brooks, Personal Finance Writer and Editor
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The information on this page has not been updated since September 13th 2023

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OnDeck aims to provide affordable loans for small businesses. The company was founded in 2006 and has helped thousands of small companies ever since. According to its estimate, every $1 it lends contributes to an average increase of $2.31 in sales for the borrowers. Since its inception, OnDeck has disbursed more than $13 billion and counting. The company offers two different loan products: credit lines and term loans. Their repayment terms are flexible and recurrent borrowers enjoy different loyalty awards.

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American Express Business Blueprint™ provides credit lines for businesses along with other financial services, such banking and credit card payment. American Express Business Blueprint™ stands out from the crowd for its fair monthly income requirements. Rather than requiring $10,000 or more in monthly income, American Express Business Blueprint™ requires at least $3,000 in average monthly revenue.

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OnDeck vs American Express® Business Line of Credit: Loan Features
Ondeck Term Length
Line of credit: 12 months
Term loans: Up to 24 months
Ondeck Repayment Period
Line of credit: Weekly
Term loans: Daily or weekly
Ondeck Interest Rate
29.9% and up
Ondeck Loan Amount
Line of credit: $6,000-$100,000
Term loans: $5,000-$250,000
Amex Business LOC Term Length
6,12, or 18 months
Amex Business LOC Repayment Period
Amex Business LOC Interest Rate
6-month term: 3-9%
12-month term: 6-18%
18-month term: 9-27%
Amex Business LOC Loan Amount

Business Line of Credit

OnDeck offers lines of credit up to $100,000 with a 12-month repayment term that resets after each withdrawal. This solution allows you to easily handle cash flow problems but comes with higher interest rates. The repayments are made weekly, and are made automatically. The APR range starts at 29.9%, and OnDeck does not charge any prepayment fees. Businesses can open credit lines of a minimum of $6,000 and a maximum of $100,000.

American Express® Business Line of Credit loan terms are six, 12, or 18-months, and payments are made monthly. Amercian Express charges a monthly fee depending on the length of your loan. For six-month terms, fees are 3-9% of the loan, 12-month terms are 6-18%, and 18-month terms are 9-27%. American Express® Business Line of Credit loans range from $2,000 to $250,000.

Other Loan features

OnDeck has a relatively comprehensive portfolio. Besides credit lines for businesses, the company also offers term loans. Term loans have a loan term of up to 24 months and can be repaid daily or weekly. The amount of money you can borrow varies between $5,000 and $250,000 and the APR starts at 29.9%.

American Express Business BlueprintTM, on the other hand, only focuses on lines of credit. However, this program does have some extra services to offer. Their payment services include invoice processing and credit card payment. The program provides its own online payment platform which includes online payment processing tools and invoicing tools. Both aim to help small businesses get paid faster.

Bottom line: American Express Business Blueprint™ is our pick if you need a small business line of credit, due to their straightforward fee structure and higher loan amount. If you’d prefer a short-term loan, though, our choice is OnDeck.

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OnDeck vs American Express® Business Line of Credit: Interest Rates and Fees
Ondeck Origination Fees
Between 0% - 4%
Ondeck Prepayment Fees
Ondeck Late Payment Fees
May apply
Ondeck Maintenance Fees
$20 per month
Ondeck Interest Rates
29.9% and up
Amex Business LOC Origination Fees
Amex Business LOC Prepayment Fees
Amex Business LOC Late Payment Fees
Late fees may be assessed
Amex Business LOC Maintenance Fees
Amex Business LOC Interest Rates
6-month terms: 3-9%
12-month terms: 6-18%
18-month terms: 9-27%

OnDeck's loans come with higher interest rates compared to some of its competitors, but getting additional funding allows you to access discounts. Repayment terms are relatively short and their fees are low. However, not all of them (e.g. late payment fees) are disclosed. The origination fees vary between 0% and 4%, and the maintenance fees are $20 per month. OnDeck offers different rewards for loyal customers. If you are a recurrent customer, you can enjoy better terms and lower interest rates. The company will also waive some of the loan fees for loyal customers.

American Express Business Blueprint™, on the other hand, doesn’t require origination or prepayment fees. Their interest rate varies depending on the term of the loan. The company does not charge any maintenance fees, and late payment fees are disclosed. For outstanding balances between $35 and $500, the fee is $10. For balances between $500 and $5,000 the fee is $35, and balances of more than $5,000 come with a late payment fee of $100. American Express also offers different discounts.

Bottom line: American Express® Business Line of Credit has no origination fees, no maintenance fees, and a lower interest rate than OnDeck, making them our pick for best overall loan costs.

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OnDeck vs American Express® Business Line of Credit: Loan Requirements
Ondeck Minimum Credit Score
Ondeck Minimum Annual Revenue
Ondeck Min. Time in Business
12 months
No bankruptcy during the past two years
Amex Business LOC Minimum Credit Score
Minimum FICO score of at least 660 at the time of application (The required FICO score may be higher based on your relationship with American Express, credit history, and other factors)
Amex Business LOC Average Monthly Revenue
Average monthly revenue of at least $3,000 (All businesses are unique and are subject to approval and review)
Amex Business LOC Min. Time in Business
Have started your business at least a year ago
They examine revenue consistency and cash flow

OnDeck Loan Requirements

OnDeck requires a minimum credit score of 600, which is lower than some other online lenders. Companies also need to have been in business for the past 12 months. The minimum annual revenue requirement is $100,000. Additionally, the majority of business owners, whose personal credit score will be taken into consideration, should have no bankruptcy for two years before submitting their application.

American Express Business Blueprint™ Requirements

To qualify for a business line of credit from American Express, you’ll need a minimum FICO score of at least 660 at the time of application. Just like its competitor, American Express Business Blueprint™ also requires applicants to have a minimum period of 12 months in business before they apply and an average monthly revenue of at least $3,000. The required FICO score may be higher based on your relationship with American Express, credit history, and other factors. Additionally, applicants are also assessed based on their cash flow and revenue consistency and they need to have a business checking account.

Bottom line: American Express Business Blueprint™ is the winner due to its fair average monthly revenue requirements of at least $3,000. 

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OnDeck vs American Express® Business Line of Credit: Loan Application Process
Ondeck Application Complexity
Ondeck Approval Time
Starting within a few minutes
Ondeck Funding Time
As soon as the same day as loan approval
Amex Business LOC Application Complexity
Amex Business LOC Approval Time
Amex Business LOC Funding Time
In a timely manner

To apply for an OnDeck loan, you need to provide a few details about yourself and your business and submit your application. It takes a few minutes, and you can also apply online or via phone. Your application is reviewed immediately and if approved, you can get instant access to credit lines and loan funds within the same business day.

American Express® Business Line of Credit’s online application process is straightforward, but additional documents may be required. 

Bottom line: OnDeck wins because it can provide funds instantly.

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OnDeck vs American Express Customer Support
Ondeck Customer Support
Call Center and Live Chat: Monday through Friday 9 AM and 8 PM ET
Amex Business Customer Support
Call Center and Email Support: Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 9 PM EST

OnDeck and American Express® Business Line of Credit both offer fast and reliable customer support. Overall, OnDeck enjoys positive customer feedback for this reason. You can reach out to their support department via live chat, phone, or email. Moreover, once you start working with this company, you get a dedicated personal representative for the lifetime of your loan.

American Express Business Blueprint™ doesn’t lag behind in terms of customer support, either. It offers help by email and phone, as well as a help center where you can find different useful resources and FAQs.

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OnDeck vs American Express® Business Line of Credit: User Reviews
Ondeck User Reviews
3.2 rating on Trustpilot
Amex Business LOC User Reviews
4.7 rating on Trustpilot

Both loans enjoy relatively good user reviews and ratings on different platforms. American Express® Business Line of Credit currently has a 3.2 rating on Trustpilot where it has close to 7,000 reviews. Positive reviews mention the excellent service and ease of the process. Negative reviews focus on poor communication and a complicated application. Keep in mind, though, that only 6% of the reviews currently are ranked as “poor” or “bad.”

OnDeck seems to enjoy better customer appraisal. The company has an outstanding 4.7 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot. However, it only has fewer reviews than American Express® Business Line of Credit at just over 3,500. Most customers praise the company’s support service and easy application process. Negative reviews, which account for less than 4% of total reviews, focused on high fees and slow response times.

Bottom line: OnDeck has a better rating on Trustpilot and a higher percentage of positive reviews, making them our top pick. 

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OnDeck vs American Express® Business Line of Credit: Perks and Bonuses
Ondeck Perks
SMART Box tool, automatic payment enrollment and an online portal
Amex Business LOC Perks
Mobile app that allows you to apply and withdraw funds each month

Our favorite perk of OnDeck is their SMART Box tool which gives borrowers full transparency of their loan product prior to signing. Metrics are easy to understand, but you can always reach out to your OnDeck advisor for further clarification. Other perks of OnDeck include automatic payment enrollment and an easy-to-navigate online portal.

Perks and bonuses of American Express® Business Line of Credit, include automatic enrollment in Autopay and an app that allows you to withdraw funds, manage your account, and apply for additional services. While American Express doesn’t state that they offer a grace period, they do say they’re willing to work with you if you can’t make a payment. They recommend contacting them immediately to come up with a solution.

When to Choose OnDeck

OnDeck is a good option for:

  • Borrowers who need fast funding - money can be available the same day you’re approved for a loan
  • Borrowers who want flexible payment options
  • Those who seek a dedicated representative and great customer support
  • Companies who want to choose between a line of credit and a term loan

When to Choose American Express® Business Line of Credit

American Express® Business Line of Credit is a good loan provider for:

  • Borrowers that need a line of credit ranging from $2,000 to $250,000
  • Borrowers with average monthly revenues of at least $3,000
  • Those who are looking for flexible monthly repayments as the terms are 6, 12, or 18 months
  • Applicants who don’t have time to waste with complicated application process