Starting your own business is a big decision. Finally reaching that point where you want to work for yourself, set your own hours, and enjoy all of the benefits of running your own business is exciting.
However, before you can open your doors to the public and start operating as a profit-generating business, first you will need to register your business name.
Registering a Business: a Step-by-Step Guide
Registering a business name in Australia is relatively straightforward.
For new business owners, the process may seem complex at first, however, if you take a step-by-step approach, it’s quite simple. In fact, for many business owners, deciding on a business name that is unique, memorable and on-brand is the most challenging part.
Once you have determined your business name, it will need to formally be registered so you can begin your new venture.
Let’s take a look at how to register a business name in Australia with our step-by-step guide.
Check That Your Business Name is Available
In Australia, business names are registered nationally and not by each state or territory. This means that your business name needs to be unique from other businesses around the country.
Visit the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) business names register to check if your desired business name is available. You should also check to see if the corresponding domain name is available and that the name has not been trademarked.
Determine a Business Structure
There are four primary business structures in Australia.
The first option is to choose to be a sole trader, which is the simplest structure and gives you complete control over your business.
You can also choose a company structure that is more complicated and limits your liability. A partnership structure is made up of two or more people who share the losses and profits of the business.
Finally, a trust can be established where a trustee is responsible for the operation of the business.
Before you can register a business name, you will need to decide on a business structure.
Australian Business Number (ABN)
Before you can register your business name, you will need to apply for an Australian Business Number (ABN) or show that you are ready to apply for one.
An ABN is a unique eleven-digit number that identifies your business to the government and the community. You can apply for an ABN via the Business Registration Service.
To apply for your ABN, you will need to have determined your business structure, you will need proof of identity and you will need to provide details of what your business does and who your business associates are.
Receiving Your Business Name
Once you have all of the required information, you can complete your business name registration online in less than fifteen minutes.
Provided that you have your ABN, you pay the associated fee, and have all the correct documentation, you should receive confirmation of your business name in two to five business days, depending on your method of payment.
Registering a business name costs $37 for a single year or $87 for a three-year period. When your business name registration is due to expire, you will need to renew it to ensure that someone else cannot take it.
Register Your Australian Business Name With Confidence
While the process of registering a business name might seem daunting at first, when you break down the steps, it is very straightforward.
Simply decide on your business name, ensure it is available, determine a business structure and apply for your ABN.
Once you have completed these steps, you can register your business name, open your doors to the public and begin your new business venture.