How to register a business name

Setting up your business can be an exciting time. But before all the fun begins you may need to register a business name. Here’s our step by step guide to take you through the process before the open sign goes up.

What is a business name?

A business name is a legal trading name in which a person, or another legal entity trades. A business name allows your customer to recognise your brand and also differentiates yourself from your competitors.

A business name needs to be lodged and approved through the Australian Securities & Investment Commission (ASIC) before it can be registered. This can be done through the link below and is free of charge.

Steps to registering your business name

1. Search your desired business name to make sure it is available.

2. Before you register a business name you will need to register for an Australia Business Number (ABN).

3. Once you have registered for your ABN you can register for ASIC connect to register your business name.

4. Pay your ABN fee – this is approx. $35 for one year or $82 for three years.

5. You will then receive a record of registration via e-mail confirming your new business name.

Do I need to register the business name as a trademark?

It depends how much protection you want your name to have. A trademark can be, in some cases, more valuable than your business name. Registering a name will not give you any proprietorial rights to that name – you need to register a trademark to enjoy that protection. A trademark gives the right to stop other parties from trading with it in a way that infringes your trademark.

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