Step 1 – Write A Business Plan

It is helpful to begin with a business plan. A business plan is a blueprint of every aspect of your business. Sales, Marketing, Advertising, Promotion and Location are just some of the categories to consider when creating a plan. Go to the U.S. Small Business Administration website to find a tutorial on how to create a business plan.

Step 2 – Choose A Business Structure

Select a business entity type from the following list for a brief overview of the principal types of legal business structures available in California. Private legal and tax advisors should be consulted before making a determination as to the type of business entity to form.

Step 3 – Choose Your Business Name

Choosing and registering your business name is a key step to legally operating your business and potentially obtaining financial aid from the government. Your business name will frame its identity. There are many factors to choosing your business name. Here are some tips to help you get started with choosing your business name.

Register Your Name
After you have selected a name for your business, you will need to register it to comply with the law.Learn more about how to register your business name.

Next, Publish Your Name
Within thirty days from the date of filing, the registrant shall start publishing the statement in a newspaper of general circulation (FBN Statement Information), in the county in which the principal place of business is located, once per week for four successive weeks. Within 30 days of the completion of the publication, an affidavit shall be filed with the Stanislaus County Clerk. A renewal statement need not be re-published if there is no change from the previous application.

Step 4 – Apply & File Employer Identification Number

Your next step will be to apply for and file your tax and employer identification documents. An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number, and is used to identify a business entity. Generally, businesses need an EIN. You may apply for an EIN in various ways, and now you may apply onlineThis is a free service offered by the Internal Revenue Service. You must check with your state to make sure you need a state number or charter.

Step 5 – Apply & File Local, State and Federal Licenses & Permits

In order to operate your business, you must comply with a wide range of local, state and federal rules. The resource links below can help you navigate through this process. You can simply enter your zip code and select your business type to determine which licenses and permits apply to your small business along with links to web pages, application forms and instructions.

Search For Business Licenses and Permits