If you’ve been looking into expense management cards, you might have picked up from insiders that 2021 was the beginning of the expense management war. That includes some outright hostilities between heavyweight Divvy and relative newcomer Ramp.
While that competition means a lot of friction between players, it means great things for users of these cards—namely, that the tools and perks will flow freely as each card tries to win over new customers.
But having so many great choices has its downside, too. A lot of these cards look alike, and there is a metric TON of marketing being thrown at every startup and small business that even looks sideways at an expense card.
(In a hurry? Skip down to the comparison chart.)
The view from where we are is different. Being focused almost solely on SaaS management means we don’t really compete with these other expense cards; but having a card and thus being in Fintech means that we’ve had a front row seat to the fight. (Heck, we have a corporate expense card for startups ourselves.)
So, if we had to choose one of these cards—Divvy or Ramp—where would we place our bets?
With Ramp vs. Divvy, Rewards Are the Biggest Difference
1.5% cash back on everything
Tiered system:Best rewards tied to weekly payment plans (as opposed to semi-monthly or monthly)
Simplicity (for all users)
Flexability and control
We can talk about planning tools, reports, and dashboards until the end of days, but the real difference we see between these two is in their rewards structure.
Divvy’s Rewards Structure
Divvy has a tiered rewards structure, meaning that the more often you make payments, the greater their rewards. For example, if your plan has you paying off your bill weekly, you can get 7x rewards on restaurants, 5x rewards on hotels, 2x rewards on software, and 1.5% on everything else. But if you pay semi-monthly, those go down to 4x, 3x, and 1.75x, respectively. Monthly payments go even lower: 2x on restaurants and hotels, 1.5 on software, and 1x on everything else.
What’s significant here is not the tiered system, but which kinds of purchases earn the most rewards. After all, those carrots are being held out to try and influence spend behavior, and it’s clear here that Divvy was originally designed for travel and corporate entertainment–though the company is targeting small-to-medium businesses, especially those that want to build or establish credit.
Ramp’s Rewards Structure
Ramp, on the other hand, offers a straight 1.5% cash back reward on, well, everything. This fits their model of trying to make the user experience simpler all around.
The question for both, of course, is this: Which companies are choosing a card based on rewards? Open question. The answer will define which clients they can ultimately woo away from other players *cough* Amex *cough cough*.
OK, But What About Those Integrations and Tools?
From what we’ve seen, the fact that Ramp is newer has been a benefit: They come to the table with more accounting integrations (Quickbooks, Netsuite, Sage, Xero) and HR system integrations (BambooHR, HiBob, Rippling, etc.).
That’s not to say that Divvy does not integrate well with many of these common software packages (Quickbooks and Netsuite specifically, with more on the way.) But several integrations are “coming soon,” and instead seeing the full list requires opting in for a demo. Ramp, by comparison, is almost bragging about their integrations.
As for tools, both companies seem to be adding them at lightning speed. They both boast expense management, spend management rules, AP/billing software, and even AI for automating certain functions. If having mobile access is a priority, this is where Divvy wins–Divvy has a mobile app that helps tie in all expense management tools, while Ramp does not.
Our Advice: You’re Overthinking It. Yes, You.
We suspect that a lot of these tools will be table stakes in the expense management/card arena, with a lot of competitors looking alike. Tech writers might smugly smile at turning out phrases like “The corporate spend market mints unicorns,” but the thing about unicorns is that they are one-of-a-kind…and that’s not where things are going in this market.
If you need to choose just one, we feel it comes down to this: What is the company’s main goal? What is the card designed around? What does it reward?
Because expense card companies are adding features just as fast as all those “ramp vs. divvy” reviews getting published, making most of them instantly out of date. Which is why you can’t just look at a features list. You have to understand the underlying business philosophy behind each. That will tell you where the card is headed.
Ramp vs. Divvy
Virtual, physical, or both?
Qualifications and requirements
Set by admin and based on business limit (drawable reserves)
Set by admin and budget owner, set by credit limit and budgets
No annual feesNo transaction feesNo card replacement fees
No annual feesNo transaction fees
Foreign Transaction Fees
No foreign transaction fees
No foreign transaction fees; will refund if they occur
Yes: 100+ integrations
Yes; QBO and Netsuite, with more on the way
Email (dedicated manager)
Email, phone, or chat (dedicated manager)
Best Used For
Simplifying expense management
Simplifying expense management and budget control
Final Decision on Ramp vs. Divvy
Do you want a modern but still very corporate card? Go with Divvy. (But take a look at Brex, too).
Do you want something simpler that will take expense management mostly off your plate? Ramp will probably save you a lot of time and headache.
(And if you are looking to manage SaaS software expenses across your organization, that’s our deal—we have an expenses card that focuses on SaaS purchases.)