7 Tips for Starting an Online Business in Australia
7 Tips for Starting an Online Business in Australia
Last updated Jul 26, 2023

Ecommerce is growing the world over and Australia is no different. It’s estimated that the industry will be worth $60.93bn (AUD) in 2022 with an average revenue per user (ARPU) reaching $3130 (AUD).

If you’re a retailer looking to set up shop in Australia’s digital landscape, we cover seven basics to help you get your online business off the ground. Here are some things you need to do to ensure that your online shop is an online success down under:

1. Define Your Business Structure

There are three common business structures in Australia: sole trader, partnership, and company (Pty Ltd). Each has its own pros and cons and the best structure for your company depends on your situation. 

There are a few factors to consider when choosing the most appropriate business structure for your company such as:

  • The kind and amount of resources you have on hand (such as money)
  • The amount of risk and personal liability you’re willing to take on

Most Australian businesses start as sole traderships because they’re easier and cheaper to set up and start. You may find that the other structures are more appropriate once your business has reached its growth phase.

2. Register Your Business and Get Your Australian Business Number (ABN)

Any business in Australia needs to have its business name registered. Businesses must also acquire an Australian Business Number (ABN). Your assigned ABN consists of 11 numbers that represent your business to the government and the Australian people.

To register your business name, submit an application to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). You can apply online. 

To get your ABN, complete an application form and submit it to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

3. Register for Taxation in Australia

In addition to your ABN and business name registration, you’ll also need to register for taxation to operate legally. The ATO is responsible for the administration of Australia’s tax system. It’s important to understand your tax obligations and file your tax returns on time.

There are different types of taxes that may apply to your business, including income tax, goods, and services tax (GST), company tax, and payroll tax. You may also be required to pay stamp duty on business assets and other transactions. The ATO offers a wide range of resources to help business owners understand their tax obligations.

4. Need Funds? Consider How You Can Get Funded

Many businesses need some capital to get started. Online businesses can consider using their personal savings, credit cards, bank loans as well as angel investors for funding.

Personal Savings

Personal savings are the most common source of funding for small businesses. This is money that the owner has saved from their personal income. This is a good option because the owner has complete control over the company and does not have to answer to anyone else. However, the owner is also taking on the most risk if the business fails.

Credit Cards

Credit cards are another popular source of funding for small businesses. This is money that the business borrows from a credit card company.

Just be wary of the high-interest rates that are attached to credit cards. While handy to help cash flow, not keeping on top of the credit card balance will tear through any profits you make while building up your business.

Bank Loans

Bank loans are another source of company investment. Bank loans are a valuable source of company investment. They can provide businesses with the necessary financial resources to grow and expand. A variety of bank loans are available, and each comes with its own set of benefits and drawbacks.

Businesses should carefully research their options before choosing a bank loan. It’s important to find a loan that fits the company’s needs and goals. Bank loans can be a great way to fuel business growth, but you should also consider the interest rate and how you will spend the money. 

Angel Investors

Angel investors are individuals who provide money and/or expertise to startup companies in exchange for an ownership stake in the company. They can be a great resource for funding as they often have more experience with startups than traditional venture capitalists.

Angel investors can be helpful in many ways. They can provide mentorship and guidance, introduce the company to new customers or partners, and help with recruiting. They can also be a valuable source of funding, often investing more money than venture capitalists.

5. Secure an SEO-friendly Domain Name

When it comes to SEO, your domain name is one of the most important factors you need to consider. If you want to rank high in Google and other search engines, you need to make sure your domain name is SEO-friendly. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right domain name for your business:

  • Choose a keyword-rich domain name.
  • Make sure your domain name is easy to remember and spell.
  • If possible, avoid using hyphens and numbers in your domain name.
  • Use .com, .com.au, .net, or .net.au extensions.

Domain names are important because they’re the first thing people see when they visit your website. They should be easy to remember, and they should reflect the tone and purpose of your website. 

6. Set Up Your Online Website and Online Shop 

There are a few key things you need to do to set up your website and online shop. The first is to come up with a business model and a plan on how you will make money. This may include figuring out what types of products you will sell, what your pricing strategy will be, and how you will market your business.

The second step is to create a website. This can be done using a website builder or by hiring a web developer. Your website should be easy to navigate and should showcase your products or services well. You’ll also need to set up payment processing and shipping. 

You’ll need to find a payment processor that can handle transactions from your customers whether they are local or international clients. 

Shipping is another important consideration. You’ll need a shipping partner that can ship your products to your customers quickly and reliably. 

Finally, you’ll need to create a website or landing page where customers can learn more about your products and place orders.

7. Consider What Your Online Website Needs

There are three essentials for any website: a good domain name, interesting and well-written content, and an easy-to-use interface. If you can check all of those boxes, you’re on your way to a successful online presence.

Along with picking an SEO-friendly domain name, content is also key. It needs to be well-written and informative if you want people to do business with you. Finally, make sure that your website is easy to navigate and quick to load on laptops and mobile devices.

Get Your Business on Solid Ground With These 7 Essential Steps

Starting a business is never easy no matter where you are in the world. In Australia, you’ll need to ensure compliance with business regulations. That means getting your business name registered, acquiring an ABN, and getting ready to pay taxes.

Apart from government regulations, you need to ensure that you have sufficient funding and you have a usable website with a good domain name, solid infrastructure, and quality content.

Once you get these basics out of the way, you can focus on your daily operations and troubleshooting technical and customer concerns while building and growing your online business.

Share This