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The 5 Steps You Need to Start an Online Business in Canada

Starting an online business from home in Canada isn’t as complicated as many people think, but it will take some time and effort to get everything you need in place. If you’re thinking of starting your own business, these five steps can help you get your venture up and running in no time.

1) Determine the business structure of your online business

One of the first steps you will need to take is deciding what type of business structure you want. This includes deciding whether your business will be a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation.

The last two options offer more protection for your personal assets and you should consider these if you have any other sources of income outside of the company.

For now, we’ll assume that you are starting a sole proprietorship or partnership and it is your only source of income.

If this were the case then the choice would be much easier as there are no legal differences between them from a taxation perspective.

You will also need to decide what type of online business structure best fits your needs.

2) Get a business license or permit

In order to start a business in Canada you need a permit and/or license. In most provinces, online businesses require a provincial permit or license.

For example, if you plan on advertising your business online (e.g., through social media) you will need a provincial permit/license as well as the CRA’s approval.  If you sell goods online then you’ll also need to register for HST with the CRA.

Online Business

3) Register your business name

In order to start your online business in Canada, you’ll need to register your business name. There are two ways that you can go about this process: the easy way and the hard way.

The easy way is to register your business name online through the Canadian Intellectual Property Office’s (CIPO) website using their online form, paying a service fee, and having them do all of the work for you.

For the hard way, you would have to fill out a paper form and send it to CIPO by mail or fax; there are no fees associated with this option.

4) Open a business bank account

Opening a business bank account is one of the first steps you will want to take when starting your online business in Canada. In order to open the account, you will need to fill out a form and provide your banking information.

The bank will then verify that you are who you say you are by sending either a text or email with a verification code for your account.

Once this step is complete, it’s time for paperwork! Most banks require that you have at least three months of personal expenses saved up before opening the account.

Once this step is complete, it’s time for paperwork! Most banks require that you have at least three months of personal expenses saved up before opening the account.

5) Apply for a GST/HST number

It’s easy for Canadians to start their own online businesses. With a little hard work and a lot of research, you can be up and running in as little as two weeks. Here are five steps that will help you get started:

  • Register your business name with the government;
  • 2) Apply for a GST/HST number;
  • 3) Set up your banking account;
  • 4) Open your business bank account;
  • 5) Transfer funds from your personal account into the business account. Once these steps are complete, you’ll be ready to launch your new online Canadian business!

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