Business Credit Score: Why It Is Important & How To Improve It?

27 July, 2022
10 min
Brett Johnson, AVP, Global Enablement

Table of Content

Key Takeaways
What Is a Business Credit Score?
How Business Credit Scores Work?
What’s the Difference Between a Business and a Personal Credit Score?
Why Is a High Business Credit Score Important?
How Are Business Credit Scores Used?
What Are the Factors That Affect Your Business Credit Score?
How Is a Business Credit Score Calculated?
How to Improve Your Business Credit Score?

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Key Takeaways

  • A business credit score is a numerical rating used to evaluate a company’s creditworthiness.
  • A high business credit score increases borrowing power, unlocks better financing options, and attracts favorable terms from lenders.
  • Companies can improve their credit score by making payments promptly, maintaining a low credit utilization ratio, having a varied credit portfolio, etc.


Financing is critical in driving business success by facilitating smoother cash flow. To ensure your company can unlock better financing options, you must maintain a good business credit score. Business credit scores are a potential indicator of your business’s creditworthiness, helping lenders or creditors evaluate how reliable your company is in establishing business partnerships.

Needless to say, if your business does not have a good credit score, you may be missing out on potential financing opportunities. So, understanding what a business credit score is and its significance is essential to thriving in today’s competitive business environment.

To make it easier for you, this blog covers everything you need to know about business credit scores, from their definition to insights on how to improve your business credit scores.

What Is a Business Credit Score?

A business credit score is a numerical representation of a business’s creditworthiness. It reflects how likely a business is to repay its debts and plays a crucial role in securing loans, insurance, and higher credit limits. Creditors use it to evaluate the risk of extending credit to a business. This is why building a solid business credit score can help your company grow faster, providing better opportunities and greater financial flexibility.

Typically, the business credit score ranges from 0 to 100, depending on the information related to your business’s financial transactions, such as payment history, credit utilization, public records, etc. A higher score indicates lower credit risk, facilitating access to financing opportunities.

How Business Credit Scores Work?

Pretty much like individual credit scores, business credit scores are calculated on the basis of a few essential parameters. Credit bureaus like Experian, Equifax, etc., gather business credit information and employ various scoring systems to calculate the companies’ credit score. For instance, Dun & Bradstreet utilizes the Paydex scoring system, while Experian relies on Intelliscore Plus.

Precisely, your business credit ratings are tied to your employer identification number (EIN), which serves as a unique 9-digit code for credit agencies and authorities to identify different companies for tax purposes. You can use your company’s credit scores to demonstrate financial stability to lenders, suppliers, and other business partners while identifying areas for improvement in your credit management practices.

Unlike consumer credit scores, which vary from 300 to 900, the business credit rating scale varies from 1 to 100. For example, Dun & Bradstreet evaluates scores in three categories: 0 to 49 denotes a high risk of late payment, 50 to 79 signifies a moderate risk, and 80 to 100 reflects a low risk.

What’s the Difference Between a Business and a Personal Credit Score?

A business credit score may sound just like a personal credit score, but it differs in many aspects. While both scores influence your borrowing capacity and creditworthiness, they possess separate assessment criteria and measure different things.

For instance, your personal credit score assesses your personal repayment ability, while a commercial credit score evaluates your company’s aptitude to meet financial obligations. Let’s explore each one in detail.


Business Credit Score

Personal Credit Score


Primarily used by lenders, suppliers, and business partners to determine your business’s creditworthiness.

Mainly used by lenders, credit card companies, and landlords to assess your personal creditworthiness.

Factors Considered

Evaluated based on your business’s payment history, credit utilization, public records, and industry-specific data.

Assesses your personal payment history, credit utilization, credit mix, and public records.


Typically uses a numeric scale ranging from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating lower credit risk.

Generally follows a numeric scale ranging from 300 to 850, with higher scores indicating lower credit risk.

Identification Number

Linked to your business’s employer identification number (EIN) and associated with your business name.

Tied to your social security number (SSN) and associated with your personal name.


Businesses may need to pay to access their business credit reports, and scores

Individuals can access their personal credit reports for free annually from each of the major credit bureaus

Why Is a High Business Credit Score Important?

The advantages of maintaining a strong credit profile are far-reaching and can unlock numerous opportunities for growth and financial stability. Lenders view businesses with solid credit scores as less risky, making it easier for you to secure loans and access the capital needed to fuel your business’s expansion. A high business credit score can help your company in the following ways:

Importance of high business credit score

1. Better financing options

If your company has a good business credit rating, it has higher chances of getting business loans, lines of credit, and other financing options.

2. Enhanced competitive advantage

With a high business credit score, you enhance your company’s credibility and reputation in the business community, resulting in numerous partnership opportunities.

3. Lowered interest rates

Another way a high commercial credit score benefits you is by unlocking chances to get favorable terms from lenders, such as lower interest rates and flexible repayment terms.

4. Improved business relationships

A solid business credit score demonstrates your ability to meet financial obligations, instilling confidence in potential investors and stakeholders.

How Are Business Credit Scores Used?

Your business credit score is an indicator of your business’s financial health. It can help demonstrate your business’s trustworthiness and reputation and establish beneficial credit terms.

To understand this better, let’s consider a few scenarios where it can help:

  • Negotiating better terms with suppliers: ABC Corporation frequently purchases raw materials from suppliers on credit terms. To improve cash flow, ABC wants to negotiate better terms with its suppliers. ABC can use its strong credit score to showcase its creditworthiness and reliability. This encourages suppliers to offer more favorable payment terms, such as extended payment deadlines or discounts for early payment.
  • Securing business loans: ABC Corporation wants to invest in new equipment to increase production capacity. They approach a lender for a business loan. The lender reviews ABC’s business credit score, which is high due to their consistent payment history and financial stability. As a result, ABC is approved for the loan with favorable terms, such as a low-interest rate and flexible repayment options.

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What Are the Factors That Affect Your Business Credit Score?

By now, you know that maintaining a healthy credit score is vital for your business. However, in order to do so, you must know what affects it. Here are some factors that come into play:


1. Age of your accounts

The age of your business has a significant impact on your credit rating. If your company is recently established, it may have limited financial credibility, which may result in a lower credit rating. However, as your business establishes a track record of taking credit and making timely payments, your creditworthiness improves over time.

2. Credit and payment history

A good credit rating indicates the greater credibility of the business, which can be maintained by making timely payments and managing credit responsibly. On the other hand, pending loan payments or defaulting on a business credit card can adversely affect the credit score. This indicates a higher risk to lenders and suppliers.

3. Credit utilization ratio

The credit utilization ratio refers to the percentage of your available credit that you’re utilizing. Maxing out your credit limits frequently can negatively impact your credit rating, as it suggests a higher dependency on borrowed funds or an inability to manage credit effectively.

4. Accuracy of credit reports

Credit reports are crucial for businesses, helping them showcase their financial standing. Surprisingly, at times, credit agencies may occasionally make errors on your business credit report, which can adversely affect your credit score. Therefore, you must make sure that your credit report includes the correct and accurate information.

How Is a Business Credit Score Calculated?

Calculating a business credit score involves a detailed analysis of diverse financial metrics that collectively depict a comprehensive image of a company’s creditworthiness, offering insights into its capacity to handle credit and fulfill financial commitments.

Credit agencies and financial institutions take into account multiple factors when determining a business’s credit score. While the specific calculation methods can differ among credit bureaus, here’s a breakdown of how some of the top agencies calculate business credit scores:

1. Experian

Experian utilizes the Intelliscore Plus model to assess a business’s creditworthiness. This scoring model considers factors such as payment history, credit utilization, public records, industry-specific data, and statistical information. The credit rating is typically presented on a scale ranging from 0 to 100.

2. Dun & Bradstreet (D&B)

D&B, a prominent credit agency, uses the Paydex scoring system to determine business credit scores. The Paydex score ranges from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating better creditworthiness. D&B assesses a company’s payment history with lenders, suppliers, and other entities to calculate the credit score.

3. Equifax

Equifax provides three distinct credit scores that reflect different aspects of a business’s creditworthiness. The payment index score evaluates the payment history over the past year on a scale from 0 to 100. The credit risk score, ranging from 100 to 992, considers factors such as company size, credit history, and credit limits to determine the likelihood of late payments. The business failure score, on a scale of 1000 to 1880, predicts the probability of a company failing within a year based on various data points.

How to Improve Your Business Credit Score?

You can improve your company’s credit score by keeping tabs on financial aspects. Below are some actionable steps you can take to bolster your business credit score:

Improving Your Business Credit Score

1. Pay bills on time

Your payment history plays a major role in determining your credit score. It’s crucial to meet deadlines for paying back loans, credit cards, and other financial obligations. Doing this shows that your company handles credit responsibly, which can boost your credit score. It’s all about demonstrating reliability by managing your financial commitments on time.

2. Maintain a low credit utilization ratio

Strive to keep your credit utilization ratio between 30% – 50% of your total available credit. By utilizing only a portion of your credit limit, you showcase responsible credit management and minimize the perception of financial risk.

3. Establish a diverse credit mix

With a diverse credit mix like loans, lines of credit, and business cards, you can showcase to potential lenders your ability to manage and use different types of credit. This can help you improve your business credit score by indicating a well-rounded financial profile. This will also attract lenders and creditors to establish a partnership with you.

4. Monitor your credit reports

Your business credit reports give lenders a full picture of your company’s finances. That’s why it’s important to check them regularly and ensure that they are accurate. Review your reports and look out for any mistakes. If you find errors, contact the credit agency right away. Give them supporting documents to rectify the mistakes quickly. This will help you keep your credit information accurate and may also help improve your credit score.

5. Nurture positive supplier relationships

Cultivating strong relationships with suppliers who report payment histories to credit agencies can be advantageous. Ensure timely payments to suppliers and negotiate favorable payment terms whenever possible. Positive supplier feedback contributes to a robust credit profile.

6. Communicate with creditors during financial challenges

There may be instances when your business encounters temporary financial difficulties, impacting your ability to meet financial obligations. In such situations, you must proactively communicate this with your creditors. This way, you can work out alternative payment arrangements and ensure transparent business partnerships while minimizing the negative impact on your credit score.


Maintaining a healthy business credit score is not only crucial for accessing financing and favorable payment terms but also for establishing trust and credibility in the business world. A high credit score demonstrates the company’s sound financial condition, which gives them the opportunity to build and nurture strong business partnerships. This financial flexibility is crucial for managing cash flow, expanding operations, and seizing growth opportunities.

To improve your business’s credit score, it’s essential to adopt responsible financial practices, including paying bills on time, managing debt levels effectively, and avoiding overextending credit. So, take control of your business credit score by proactively streamlining your financial decisions and monitoring your credit reports regularly.

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1. What is a good business credit score?

A good business credit score typically falls within the higher end of the scoring range, often considered to be above 75 or 80 out of 100. Your business can improve its credit score by ensuring timely payments, managing credit responsibly, and maintaining an error-free credit report.

2. Is credit score important for business?

Yes, a good credit score is important for businesses. It determines your ability to get credit, secure funding, and get good deals from suppliers. The higher your business credit score, the higher the chances are for your business to maintain collaborative business partnerships.

3. How to keep a healthy business credit score?

To maintain a good business credit score, companies must regularly monitor their credit reports and ensure there is no erroneous information in them. Additionally, they must take care of their payment histories, credit utilization ratios, and other factors that affect their credit ratings.

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