Neat Team February 28, 2022 12:05 am

Common Business Expense Categories for You to Consider

We reIn our previous blog post, Introducing Neat Company Corporate Cards, we have introduced and looked into the differences between company and employee corporate cards. Now, let’s move on to the common business expense categories to get you started.

We serve thousands of startup and small business companies over the years to help them grow globally. Here we’ve summarised some of the commonly seen business expense types based on our users’ behavior in 2021 – which should give you a good starting point. 

Keep in mind that if you see multiple or recurring expenses for specific vendors or channels, consider further sub-categorise those expenses by setting up a distinct company card for them. After all, the purpose of company cards is to give you a better overview of where your money is being spent and to save you the hassle of manually grouping the expenditures and adjusting the card limits from time to time. 

Company card expense categories

1. Professional services

Includes all secretarial services, compliance, accounting, legal, trademark incorporation, or other service fees.

2. Business services

This refers to the services that you are currently using to operate your business. It could be payment to dropshipping vendors, such as AliExpress, Amazon, UpWork, or payment platforms like Stripe, TransferWire, etc.

3. Marketing and Advertising

This is applicable to all online and offline advertising, or the systems that you have been using to facilitate your marketing campaigns. Including but not limited to paid media campaigns across search engines and social media platforms, offline print advertising, event sponsorships, Mailchimp subscriptions, and more. You can further break it down by channel like Facebook ad, Google ad, print advertising, billboard advertising, etc. 

4. Software and Subscription Services

Software like G Suite, MS Office, Outlook, Getty image, or other applications subscriptions that are being used by the whole company.

5. Insurance

All the insurance that your company is paying for. It can be health insurance for your employees, property insurance for the office, product liability insurance, and more. 

6. Rent and office utility bills 

Payments that are made towards your office rental and all office bills like broadband, landline.

7. Office equipment 

Include the costs of office furniture, such as desks, filing cabinets, chairs, and equipment including laptops, printers, accessories.

8. Office Supplies

All the miscellaneous and consumable office costs like stationery, postage, copier paper, toner cartridges, snacks, sanitiser, and similar expenses.


These categories will likely cover most of the expenses incurred by an average small business.

Employee card expenses

Now moving on to employee cards expenses. We recommend using employee cards to cover employees’ personal expenses that involve the business. Here are some examples of expenses for employee cards usage.

1. Travel & Accommodation

Let it be international or local, this category covers transportation and accommodation fees that incur on a business trip. It could be airfares, train fares, uber trips, and the expenditures you spend on hotels or other accommodations. 

2. Entertainment expense

Entertainment expenses include the cost of meals employees provide to vendors and clients, It could also refer to other entertainment, such as hamper gifting during festive seasons. 

3. Mobile phone bill

There are times when your staff needs to use their personal phone for work. 


These are just some examples that we’ve seen regularly from our users which we think is a good starting point for you. Make sure you categorise the expenses appropriately and put together a definition list when you set up your cards to ensure everybody is aligned. 


Monitor and save on your business expenditures with Neat

With Neat’s latest company corporate card feature, you can take full control of your business spending and budgeting by setting up unlimited company corporate cards and assigning different purposes for the cards based on your usage. The card aims to give you better visibility on your overall and particular expenses. As with all Neat’s corporate cards, company cards come in HKD & USD, physical & virtual versions, and users are entitled to

  • 1% cashback on all transactions and access to 100+ exclusive discounts
  • Manage expenses and receipts through one dashboard
  • 1.5% foreign service charge waived for all transactions
  • Limited corporate liability and travel accident protection and much more

There are no hidden charges or monthly fees. Sign up now.

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