Kabbage vs. OnDeck | Business Loan Comparison

Whether your business is new, in a growth phase, or just needs an infusion of quick cash, a business loan may be a great option. Not all lenders offer the same business-friendly fees and policies, though. That’s why we’re giving you a side by side comparison of two top options, Kabbage vs OnDeck.

Introduction to different types of business loans

There are a few different types of business loans. The Small Business Administration offers loan backing through some lenders for amounts from $5,000 to $5 million. APRs range from 5% to 13% but the application process can take three weeks to several months. You’ll need a great credit history to qualify.

A traditional business loan between $1,000 and $500,000 with repayment terms of about five years is another option. There’s no collateral required, and interest rates range from 7% to 30%, depending on your business’ credit score and revenue levels.

A business line of credit works a lot like a credit card.  You don’t have to have perfect business credit to qualify. Approval could be instant. It takes just a few days to get the money. Typically, the loan needs to be repaid within six months to a year. This type of flexible funding is great to have on hand in case of an emergency.

Merchant cash advances offer a lump sum of money. To pay it off, you authorize the lender to take a certain percentage of each of your sales automatically. APR rates start at 15%, but could easily go into triple digits depending on the lender’s fee structure. Repayment terms are usually between four and 18 months. For businesses with poor credit or a short history a merchant cash advance may be the only viable option.

Here, we’ll take a close look at two established and highly-rated lenders; Kabbage and OnDeck. Both have business-friendly fees and policies. Read on to find out which option will best meet your business needs.

Lines of Credit

Credit lines from Kabbage

For businesses that need flexible, on-demand access to money, Kabbage is a great choice. This lender structures loans as credit lines, so you won’t pay interest on money until you need it. There are no hidden fees.

There are no upfront or application fees associated with Kabbage loans. You can find out whether you are approved in about ten minutes and get instant access to a line of credit between $2,000 and $250,000. You’ll have between six and 18 months to repay the amount you borrow.

Credit lines from OnDeck

You can choose from a conventional business loan or line of credit with OnDeck. Their fees are transparent, and you have several repayment options.

Approval is instant and funding takes just 24 hours. In some cases, you could receive your money instantly or on the same day that you apply. OnDeck loans between $5,000 and $500,000 via a traditional business loan or up to $100,000 with a line of credit. Interest rates go as low as 5.99%. Repayment terms are six to 36 months. OnDeck charges a one-time origination fee.

History and Reviews

Kabbage

The company is 10 years old and was started by three financial entrepreneurs as an option for business owners looking for an alternative lender. Their goal is to connect business owners with capital instantly, and their platform does a great job of providing a reliable automated application system that easily integrates with systems businesses already have in place.

In 2015, Inc. put them on their list of the 500 fastest-growing private companies in the United States.

Kabbage has 83 customer reviews on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website with an average of 4.25 out of five stars. They have an A+ score from the BBB. Reviewers note that the customer service team is friendly and responsive.

OnDeck

They’ve been in business since 2007, and OnDeck uses a proprietary credit scoring system to qualify applicants. This lets them make real-time decisions and get money to small businesses quickly. They also lend in Australia and Canada.

OnDeck has an A+ score with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and 3.5 stars out of 5 from 83 customers who wrote reviews on the BBB website. They receive high praise for their customer service and fast funding options.

Lender Benefits

Kabbage perks

In addition to instant access to funding for your business, if you choose Kabbage you’ll get perks like free help with your finances, service discounts, and a free 60-day trial of Constant Contact. Free Vonage business phone services and no-cost tax and credit consultations are also available for borrowers.

OnDeck perks

The OnDeck customer service team also includes advisors available six days a week to provide support and answer questions about business funding. Borrowers receive a customized business assessment upon request.

How to qualify

Qualifying for a Kabbage line of credit

You don’t need a perfect business credit history to get access to money through Kabbage. The company requires that applicants be in business for one year and that they can prove a minimum of $4,200 of monthly revenue during the past three months or $50,000 during the past year. Applicants must be at least 18 and citizens of the United States.

Qualifying for an OnDeck business line of credit or loan

OnDeck requires applicants to be in business for at least one year and be able to prove a minimum of $100,000 annual revenue. They require a credit score of 600 or higher, as well. Applicants must be at least 18 years old and legal citizens of the United States.

Application Process

How to apply for a Kabbage loan

You can link your business accounts, like eBay, Amazon, PayPal, QuickBooks, and Stripe, to Kabbage’s online portal to prove your revenue meets their minimum requirements. Kabbage considers the following factors when determining whether to approve a borrower:

  • Seller ratings
  • Cash flow
  • Consistency of revenue
  • Average monthly revenue
  • Amount of time you’ve been in business
  • Transaction volume

They’ll also take a look at your credit score and will ask for checking account information to verify your business.

How to apply for an OnDeck line of credit or loan

You can apply online or call OnDeck’s customer service experts at (888) 269-4246 for help with the application process. You’ll know right away if you are approved. OnDeck considers your monthly and/or yearly revenue, credit score, and the time you’ve been in business when determining whether to approve applicants. Here’s the complete list of OnDeck’s qualification criteria:

  • Owner’s personal credit score
  • Owner’s payment history
  • Owner’s percentage of business owned
  • Owner’s total debt
  • Business credit score
  • Annual revenue
  • Public records
  • Cash flow
  • Number of years in business

How to repay a Kabbage loan

Repayment terms through Kabbage are intuitive and simple. Depending on whether you were approved for a six,  12, or 18-month repayment term, you’ll make payments equal to your outstanding balance divided by six or 12 each month plus the monthly fees via automatic withdrawal from your business checking account.

Fee rates range from 1.5% to 10% of the loan principal each month, depending on different business performance factors. You’ll know your fees upfront.

When you make new charges to the Kabbage card, it counts as a new loan, and your new payment is simply added to your previous payments to keep things easy. There’s no prepayment penalty, and making extra payments can help you avoid additional monthly fees.

How to repay an OnDeck line of credit or loan

If you choose OnDeck for business funding, you’ll pay a one-time loan origination fee of $20 and a $20 monthly maintenance fee for lines of credit. You can choose fixed weekly or daily payments and automatic withdrawals from your business checking account.

OnDeck’s average interest rate for business loans is 24.6%, not counting origination fees. Yours may be higher or lower, depending on your credit score.

While OnDeck is a good option for larger businesses with a solid credit history, small businesses and those just starting out may be better off with a Kabbage line of credit to meet their funding needs.

OnDeck charges fees that you won’t pay with Kabbage, but they offer the option of getting a more traditionally structured business loan, which Kabbage can’t provide. When making your decision between the two, pay attention to their minimum requirements. Both companies conduct a hard pull of your credit file, which could drop your score a few points.

As a business owner, you have many options for funding. Alternative lenders charge more interest and fees than traditional banks and credit unions, but the application process and funding is much faster. For a business that needs fast access to cash, lenders like Kabbage and OnDeck are great options.

Rachel Morey Rachel Morey Last update:
Rachel Morey is a journalist specializing in finance content. She has written for some of the major lenders in the online personal and business finance industry. She has been writing professionally for nearly a decade and has projects in print and broadcasting. A native Iowan, Rachel has a special fondness for the open roads of rural America.