5 Simple Steps to Start Your Business in Australia


Working won't ever make you rich. In this age, it is not enough to be just an employee. Nothing wrong with being one. But if you aspire to reach farther financial milestones, a business can be the best vehicle for you. Just look at this video comparing a business versus a job:



Don't get me wrong. It's not a guarantee. But not trying will surely guarantee you a harder (almost impossible) time in employment. The problem is, how do you actually become one? Here are steps to start your business in Australia.



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Craft a Business Plan

A successful business can't just come out of nowhere. You need to have a business plan to make it successful.

First of all, what's your product? What's the problem that it solves in the market? Who will be your possible buyers? Next, you have to think of the financials. What are your costs? What's your possible selling price?

Finally, check out the competition. What are your competitors offering now? And what can you offer differently to your possible clients? How can you compete with them in marketing? 

Pretty tough, right? But if done well, the rewards are certainly worth it. Take note though, a business plan is continuously evolving. So if you find that you need to adjust one of your key strategies because of market changes, you can do so.


Choose Your Business Structure

After drafting your business plan, it is now time to decide what kind of business structure you want. Choosing the right business structure will help your enterprise to function more effectively. Here are the most common ones in Australia:


Sole Trader

Basically, a sole trader is a business run by an individual. You are legally liable for all the happenings in your business. And unpaid debts will extend to your personal assets.

But the good thing about this business structure is the simplicity in registering and in payment of taxes. And you have full control over the business operations.



company is a business setup where ownership is divided into shareholders. The difference with a sole trader is that the company has its own separate juridical personality. Simply put, it is recognized by Australia as a separate entity like a distinct artificial human being.

Meaning, the debts of the company do not extend to your personal assets only to the company. Therefore, it is relatively safer for you.

Although, setting up a company is complicated and might involve more paperwork. And you don't have full control over the business because you have co-directors and/or shareholders to report to.

As to taxation and registration, check out this comparison chart of the differences between a sole trader and a company for a better decision for you.



If you want to work with some business partners but don't want to incorporate a company, a partnership might be the best fit for you.

Basically, this setup has the same elements with a sole trader except you are with partners. Meaning, liabilities would still extend to you and your partners' personal assets. And you are liable to your partners' business mistakes as well.

The main reason why you set up a partnership over a company is cost. Setting up a company is harder and more costly to maintain in the long run.

If you can't decide what business structure is for you, you can check out this nifty tool by the Australian government to help you decide.


What Business Type Will You Do?

Now that you decided on what type of business structure you want, it's best to know what type of business you are in. Here are just a few types to consider:

  • Start-up

  • Franchise

  • Home-based business

  • Online business

Knowing what kind of business and what industry you are in is vital in starting. For one, you know where exactly is your focus. And two, there are different legal requirement per industry. So please be guided accordingly.


Get Your Australian Business Number (ABN) and Business Name

After considering how you will operate your business, it's time to finally register. You need an Australian Business Number (ABN) to legally operate in Australia. It is a unique 11-digit identification number that is assigned to your business.

After getting your ABN, you can go to the next step. Apply for your business name. 

Take note, before you set up marketing collaterals or buy website domains, it is best to get your business name first. Your business name should be reflected in it. Or else, you have to change everything to the registered name. 

With that, click this link to apply for both.


Register for Taxes

Lastly, whether you like it or not, you need to pay taxes. And if you don't want hefty fines or it's time to register your business on it. Here are some examples of taxes:

  • Goods and Services Taxes (GST) - Taxes levied on selling goods or services.

  • Pay as You Go Taxes (PAYG) - these are taxes withheld when you pay your employees, directors, or businesses that don't quote their ABN to you.

  • Fringe Benefits Taxes - these are taxes levied on extra compensation to your employees on top of their salaries like a company car, health insurance, subsidized meals, and etc.

If you want to know more about it, check this website.



There you have it! Starting your own business can be a daunting task. This article helps you overcome the first steps but the succeeding ones are up to your creativity. I hope you become successful as you run towards your financial goals. Good luck!


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