How To Start A Small Business 

Have you been playing around with the idea of starting your own business, but sure where to start? Well, you have found the right place! We are here to guide you through those initial stages around what is involved and how you can your business dream become a reality. 

Setting up your business is a crucial stage, and it’s an opportunity to start off with good habits and routines, something your future self will thank you for. To get you on the right track we’ve created some tips and tricks to help navigate your new business journey. With a bit of effort and a well thought out plan, your business is going to be ready for new and exciting things.

The grand plan 

Creating a business plan is like creating a blueprint for your business and its road to success. A plan is there to help you identify some of your business’s key areas like understanding who your competition is, financial strategies and to set some goals for the future. 

Once you understand how your business is positioned and what it is you want to achieve, it’s an opportune time to also establish some visions and targets. You may want to do this by creating a mission statement or monthly goals that you are setting out to reach. 

It’s official 

It’s time to get into the nitty-gritty of making your business official. Depending on what type of business you’re running the process may be different, but here are some of the main things you need to think about.  

  • Registering your business name– Once you have a business name in mind, use the ONECheck tool to see if it’s free to use. This will quickly let you know if it is available to use as a business name, trademark, web domain and social media username. 
  • Selecting a business structure– Whether you are starting out as a business with staff or going solo, you will need to choose a structure that works best for you. Some of the most common types of structures include sole trader, partnership or a company. All of the structures have different benefits and features and depending on the structure you select. For more information check out the Business Government New Zealand’s Choose a Business Structure page. 
  • Get your New Zealand Business Number (NZBN)- Your NZBN is a unique series of numbers that identifies your business and links to other important details about your business like your trading name, phone number or email. Having this number will make your life a whole lot easier and if you are operating as a business you will automatically get a NZBN. If you are a sole trader or self-employed you will need to register online  
  • Arrange your RealMe® login – If you need to get a few registrations from government agencies, save time by getting your RealMe® login. This is one central login which is used across multiple government sites, helping you save time. 
  • Registering your company- If you decide to structure your business as a company you can register it online with the Companies Office. This is a quick and low-cost process that can be accessed with your RealMe® login. You can also register your business for GST at the same time. 

For more information about the government requirements and process of setting up your business check out this easy guide to starting out a business in New Zealand. 

With of the finer details taken care of, another thing you need to make official is your website to start letting people know you are open for business. There are many website options available which vary in price and degree of difficulty to set up. These sites provide details on plans and how to set up your own site: 

Financial Safety  

When you’re setting up your business, getting your finances sorted and ensuring they managed correctly is vital. This is where the help of financial professionals like tax agents, accountants, bankers and financial planners can help when dealing with important financial decisions during this early phase of your business. Some of the other financial areas of your business you need to think about include: 

  • Setting up your business banking– it’s always a good idea to keep your business and personal banking sperate. Depending on the type of business you are running you may need payment facilities like EFTPOS machines too. 
  • Talk about tax– have a chat with your tax agent to get a grip on your tax obligations from the start. Keeping your books in order and understanding what you can and cannot claim will  keep your business on track. 

Protect your business with insurance 

After all that hard work to get your business up and running, it makes sense to have the right business insurances in place to protect it from unwanted challenges. Each business is unique with their own exposures to risks, so take the time to understand what your business needs to be protected from.  

You can start by looking at the different kinds of risks your business may be exposed to. There are many kinds of business insurances available*, but you don’t necessarily need every coverage on the market.  

Some of the typical kinds of business insurance include: 


 Start your new business journey with peace of mind knowing your business is insured with BizCover. We’re experienced when it comes to protecting our customers at all stages of their business. , compare and get covered in minutes. Experience insurance made easy today.  


 * As with any insurance, cover is subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions contained in the policy wording.  The information contained on this website is general only and should not be relied upon as advice.  

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