There are many steps to starting a business. Some of the steps are simple and others can be time-consuming and costly. Of course, this depends on the type of business you are starting.
There are many things one must do before starting a business. A well executed business startup takes months…not days.
Some Important Steps To Starting A Business
Name Your Business You need to give careful consideration to your business name. Make sure your business name reflect the image you want your business to portray. Your business name is a part of your branding.
Choosing a Domain Name Now that you’ve developed a business name, you must obtain a domain name. Your domain name should also include your business name. It is also a part of your branding.
Try using dashes (-) between the words if your business name is unavailable or for readability. For example, if your business name is Cory’s Outdoor Signage. You may consider: corys-outdoor-signage.com for readability purposes.
Business Structure You also must decide how you wish to structure your business: sole proprietorship, incorporation, partnership, limited liability corporation, etc.
Below are some of the most common legal requirements; however, please don’t see my list as all-inclusive. Check with your state, city and county regarding any additional requirements.
Business License So before you hang your sign, you must first make your enterprise legal. Many states, cities, counties require that business owners obtain a business license. The cost of obtaining a business license varies from City to City and County to County. The cost of a business license is significantly less than the stiff penalties assessed to businesses operating without a proper license or without other documents.
Depending on the requirements in your area you may obtain a business license from your local city or county. Generally you must complete an application for a business license. A business license is issued for a stated length of time (1 year or multiple years) authorizing you to pursue your business.
Fictitious Name Statement
Some jurisdictions also require that you obtain a fictitious name statement if your business name is called anything other than your own name. In addition, as in Sacramento County, you are also required to publish your DBA (Doing Business As) in a locally approved publication for a predetermined number of weeks.
If you plan to purchase goods at wholesale for the purpose of reselling them at retail, you will need a reseller’s license. Wholesalers and manufacturers will not do business with you without having a reseller’s license. Otherwise you will have to purchase at retail like the rest of us.