How to Start a Bookkeeping Business – Tips to Choose Your Business Name

It is important to have a positive feeling in the business name. It is not essential to have bookkeeping in the title, but many people use it and it makes it clear what people are getting. It is good to keep it relatively short, to make it easy to remember. Words which are synonymous with bookkeeping can be a good start, like balanced, bottom line, in the black or BASic.

It is also important to research what people are searching for when looking for a bookkeeper. Often people will look on line for a bookkeeper. It is import to understand that many people search online for services and if you can have a name which contains some of the key words that people use when looking for a bookkeeper, you will be easy to find. We will go into detail later about marketing and internet search engines, but at this stage it is important to consider the words people may be using to find you. The closer you are to the top of the page in the search engine the more chance you have to be found and promote your services.

Spend some time looking at other business names in the bookkeeping industry, what do you like? What would you look for if you wanted a bookkeeper? Do some research using online tools such as Google niche finder.This tool will show you what people are searching for in relation to bookkeeping and it will give you the volume of people searching and it will give you an indication of the advertising volume for those key words. Ideally it is good to fins a high search volume with low advertising as this equates to low competition.

Once you have thought of your business name, depending on the structure you have chosen, it will determine how you proceed.

If you have chosen a company structure, you have the option of registering a general company name and use trading as names for your bookkeeping business. This may be of value if you are planning on doing a few different arms of your business. For example you might register XYZ Pty Ltd and then register a trading name such as Julias Basic Bookkeeping. You are also then free to market other services which can be run through the Company but via a different trading name, such as Julias Bookkeeping Training. This way you can have multiple business threads via one company which minimizes cost and does not lock the company name into one business stream.

To operate in the above manner, you need to complete the registration of a company form (form 201) which can be downloaded from the ASIC web site. It is then sent off with payment and once processed; you are sent your registration details. You can then register any applicable business names you wish to operate as trading as names. You will then need to open any bank accounts and register with the ATO for an ABN and register for GST if applicable.

If you are registering the company under the chosen name, such as Better Bookkeeping Services Pty Ltd, you can just complete the form 201 from ASIC and send it with the applicable fee. Once processed and your company registration certificate is issued, you can arrange your bank accounts, ABN and register for GST if you are going to do so.

If you are operating as a sole trader, you can apply for your business name in the State in which you are trading. You do not need to obtain your registration certificate before obtaining your ABN as it is issued in your name as a sole trader. This means you can obtain your ABN and register for GST if applicable whilst you are thinking about your business name. Once you have registered your business name you can open any accounts required in your business name.

On another note, your business name will become important at a later date if you ever want to sell your business. It its important to understand what your long term goals are to see if this will have an impact on your business name choice and or structure. You can think about this later and you can always change your name and structure later, but it is important to think about how transferable your business name is.