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August 15, 2011 at 11:53 am #974729SophieHMember
- Total posts: 22
I am new to Flying Solo, but have been reading just about every post on this forum over the past year or so. This is a very simple specific question, I just cannot find the answer to it anywhere!
I am in the process of setting up an online store. I have an ABN, and I am setting up a website, have domain name registered etc. by the web design company I am using. I am a sole trader. I was about to register my business name, and noticed for NSW registration, it states:
Trading on the internet
If your business trades only via the internet you do not have to register and display a business name in New South Wales.
I do not have a storefront, I work from home and this is a purely online store. I use my home address for my stock to be delivered to.
QUESTION: Do I need to register my business name?
NB: I also want to register my “business name” as a trademark.
Thanks for taking the time to look at this!
SophieAugust 16, 2011 at 2:25 am #1069951JacquiPryorMember
- Total posts: 2,344
Good question – I know it has been discussed but not sure there is any conclusive answer. I think the best way to get an absolute on this one is to call the NSW Office.
I have read it before and believe the answer to be that you don’t have to if you are in NSW and purely online – however, have not had this confirmed.
Having said that, I suggest you do still register the business name – for just over $100 odd dollars it could ensure no-one else in NSW is allowed to register a trading name for a physical shop doing the same type of thing. Plus, it gives some credibility I feel, because if need be a customer can find you in the business register etc.
For the trademark – happy to answer any questions you have – as a brief bit of information that might help initially:
1. A trademark by definition is a ‘sign’ you use to distinguish your goods/services from others in the marketplace. Therefore, if your name is too common, descriptive or it is likely others will need to use that name/words in the normal course of trade it will be more difficult to register. – For example: Sophie’s Online Shop could be difficult, because other people named Sophie may legitimately need to refer to their business with this same set of words.
2. When you register, you do so in connection with the goods/services you ‘brand’ with your trademark – i.e. “retail services, including online retailing” – ultimately if you are successful in registration you gain the right to use your trademark for the goods/services you have specified.
3. Trademark registration is a country-by-country process so once registered the above mentioned rights extend throughout Australia – if you will actively target/promote in other countries, you may need to consider whether international protection is required.
4. Trademarks are registered initially for 10 years in Australia, and can be renewed each 10 years if still in use/required.
Hope the above helps and I look forward to following this thread.August 16, 2011 at 2:48 am #1069952AnonymousGuest
- Total posts: 11,464
You will have to ring the office on this one..
I dont know how NSW differs from Victoria in this regard, however in Victoria having Suppliers drop off goods and/or having customers come to pick up goods would not constitute a “purely online store”.
You will need to also check with your local council as they have some rules/ specifications in regards to this area (at least in victoria).
example, local council suggested to me, that a piece of A4 paper on my front door would be sufficient based on the fact, that I did not intend on having customers come to pick up goods or suppliers dropping off goods, and all transactions were to be done online.
A lot of people dislike the idea of not being able to hold an online seller accountable like a normal retailer, so things like a postal address, premise address, phone numbers and ABN on your site are considered very valuable/ prefered.August 16, 2011 at 4:40 am #1069953SheInspiresMember
- Total posts: 247
I know when I asked them directly about this they said they (NSW Office) didn’t require me to register a business name but I did anyway because it made it easier all round – bank accounts for example.
I think it is just a government agency that hasn’t caught up with the changes in business. And when they do catch up I want to be ahead of the game with them.
There is no harm is having your business registered anyway.
All the best with your business.August 16, 2011 at 5:57 am #1069954SophieHMember
- Total posts: 22
Thanks for all your feedback guys, I think I will definitely register the business name; it seems more professional to do so and it can’t hurt!August 16, 2011 at 6:28 am #1069955AnonymousGuest
- Total posts: 11,464
to have your registered business name associated to your ABN through fair trading/ consumer affairs… (this is required in Vic) so maybe of some use as a suggestion.August 16, 2011 at 10:12 am #1069956ExplainafideMember
August 17, 2011 at 10:33 am #1069957Pinnacle TMSMember
- Total posts: 19
- Total posts: 76
Hi Sophie – Good luck with your business plans! I just wanted to add to what Jacqui has said. When choosing a name make sure you have it searched by a trade mark searching specialist to ensure you are not choosing a name that has already been taken ie someone else has a trade mark registration or prior pending application for the same or similar brand name. I recommend my clients do this before they start working on website development, business cards etc so no time/money/energy is spent on a name that may have to change. Its a hard lesson when you get a letter from a competitor’s lawyer to stop using a brand six months or so down the track and you have to start again!
We have associates around the globe so if you decide to go into another market we can have the brand searched to make sure it is clear to use in a particular jurisdiction.
Happy to answer any questions!
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