Business Credit ABCs: Breaking Down the Basics

In this Business Credit video series, you’ll learn: how business credit is different from personal credit, the importance of having a D&B D-U-N-S Number, factors Dun & Bradstreet uses to help calculate your D&B scores and ratings, and answers to the common myths and misconceptions about business credit. We’ll walk you through the basics of business credit and how you can use it to help you grow your business.

The Basics of Business Credit

Start here to learn how personal credit differs from business credit.

Business Credit vs. Personal Credit

Understanding the difference is just the beginning.

Keeping Your Business' Credit Separate

Did you know using personal credit to cover business expenses can put your business at risk?

Judging a Company’s Credibility

Your business credit can reflect how credible you are as a business.

D&B Scores and Ratings Basics

Understand the fundamentals of the D&B scores and rating system.

Trade References

Banks and suppliers can value your historical trade references as much, if not more, than your cash flow.

Help Improve Your Business Credit

It may be overwhelming to try to improve your business credit, but you can start by taking some of these steps.

Do You Need a D&B D-U-N-S Number?

Find out why this unique nine-digit identifier is used by industries and organizations around the world as a global standard for business identification and tracking.

What is in a Business Credit File?

Your business could lose out on opportunities if your file is incomplete. So, what’s in it?

What is a D&B D-U-N-S Number?

This nine-digit identifier is the standard for tracking more than 228 million businesses worldwide.

How could I have a D-U-N-S number if I haven’t applied for one?

Chances are, your business already has one. Learn why that might be the case.

D&B® Scores and Ratings 101

Understand the fundamentals of the D&B scores and rating system.

Overview: D&B Scores and Ratings

Five critical scores and ratings make up your D&B business credit profile.

Delinquency Predictor Score

Watch to see how this scoring system can help predict whether a business will pay its bills on time.

Financial Stress Score

Is financial stress in a business’ future?

SER: Supplier Evaluation Risk Rating

This score can help predict whether a business can fulfill on its goods and services.

D&B Viability Rating®

D&B's Viability Rating provides a more-holistic assessment of the current and future health of a business.

Understanding the D&B Rating

It’s important that your rating is reflective of your overall company’s condition.


Staying on top of this score can help show outside companies how you’ve paid your bills over the past two years.

What are Trade References

Learn how trade references can impact my business credit file.

How can I avoid or fix mistakes in my Dun & Bradstreet credit file?

Learn how to avoid or fix mistakes in my D&B® Credit File.

Myths and Misconceptions About Business Credit

Beware of these common theories and misconceptions when it comes to your business’ credit.

Myth #1

"My business doesn’t need credit."

Myth #2

"My company is too small for business credit."

Myth #3

"My personal credit has always worked for my business."

Myth #4

"No one is looking at my business credit report.”

Myth #5

"I don’t need to pay attention to my business credit."

Myth #6

"Credit monitoring is too costly."

Myth #7

"My accountant should handle my business credit."

* CreditSignal indicates that your D&B scores and ratings have changed and alerts you to how often your business credit file is being accessed. To view actual scores and ratings, we recommend that you upgrade to one of our credit-monitoring or credit-building solutions.

The information and advice provided by Dun & Bradstreet and its Credit Advisors during business credit counseling sessions are provided “as-is.” Dun & Bradstreet makes no representations or warranties, express or implied, with respect to such information and the results of the use of such information, including but not limited to implied warranty of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. Neither Dun & Bradstreet nor any of its parents, subsidiaries, affiliates or their respective partners, officers, directors, employees or agents shall be held liable for any damages, whether direct, indirect, incidental, special or consequential, including but not limited to lost revenues or lost profits, arising from or in connection with a business’s use or reliance on the information or advice given during any counseling session.

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