Online business simply means selling your product or service online in order to reach a much wider audience. Businesses now use the internet to expand their customer base by reaching out to customers wherever they are.
A shopfront is used to tie your online presence with your sales and marketing activities which in return increases your productivity. It also helps people reach you easily and open up your business to a global audience of customers.
Here are some agencies to help you set your business online or provide you with an online shopfront;
- Department of Communications: It gives information on starting a website and selling online.
- The Treasury: Provides the Australian Guidelines for Electronic Commerce publication.
Online Business – Shopfronts: Laws & Regulations
1- Spam Obligations:
Under the Spam Act 2003, it’s illegal for you to send unsolicited commercial electronic messages.
You can reach Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) via;
- Website: http://www.acma.gov.au/Industry/Marketers/Anti-Spam
- Phone: 1300 855 180
2- Privacy Obligations:
Under the Privacy Act 1988, it’s one of your obligations to protect your customers’ personal information you collect and use online as well as offline.
You can reach the Australian Information Commissioner via;
- Website: https://www.oaic.gov.au/agencies-and-organisations/business-resources/
- Phone: 1300 363 992
3- Consumer Protection & Competition Laws:
Under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (formerly known as the Trade Practices Act 1974), it is illegal to make any misleading claims to your customers.
You can reach the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) via;
- Website: http://www.accc.gov.au/
- Phone: 1300 302 021
Online Business – Planning Your Online Presence
As you always do, you start with an online business plan in order to outline what you hope to achieve and how by following a few simple steps:
- You define your goals; why do you want to go online with your business?
- What kind of online activities would be most beneficial to your business?
- Consider the establishment costs and the ongoing costs of your web solution.
- Can I do all myself (DIY vs outsourcing)?
- Consider the challenges and constraints (Technical, Legal, Resources and Timeframes and Competitors and Collaborators).
A few more tips:
- Use SEO, Search Engine Optimization
- At the beginning, you might not be able to create your own website but at least you can create a presence on existing websites (e.g. Facebook, Google, LinkedIn … etc.)
- You can also sell your products on existing online marketplaces (e.g. Amazon, eBay, Gumtree, Trading Post … etc.)
The following website is to help you find an attorney before you decide on accepting a legal term relating to your online business.
Online Government Services
The Australian government offers you a number of online services which are designed to help you:
Your feedback and participation is highly appreciated.
We wish you the best of luck with your venture.
Take time to digest the best business option for you:
Part One - Business Startup Australia – Introduction Part Two - Business Startup Australia: Getting Help and Support Part Three - Business Startup Australia: Business Structure Part Four - Business Startup Australia: Business Plan Part Five - Business Startup Australia: Obtaining Finance Part Six - Business Startup Australia: Registering Your Business Part Seven - Business Startup Australia: Registering Business Name Part Eight - Business Startup Australia: Understanding Australian Taxes Part Nine - Business Startup Australia: Home-based Business Part Eleven - Business Startup Australia: Employing People Part Twelve - Business Startup Australia: Workplace Health & Safety Part Thirteen - Business Startup Australia: Online Marketing Part Fourteen - Business Startup Australia: Securing Your Online Business Part Fifteen - Business Startup Australia: Importing Part Sixteen - Business Startup Australia: Exportation