Online Business Start Up Costs In A Nutshell

All businesses are going to incur start up costs and if you are truly serious about having a successful online business, then you’ll need to make the necessary investments in time and money.

More often then not you can still get away with starting your online business with a very small amount of capital.

I’ve compiled a list of average business start-up costs that you may sustain when starting your online business. Some of these costs may or may not apply to you, but you’ll get the idea.

Disclaimer: These are start up costs that I have incurred with my online business and suggestions are based on my own experiences. Always, consult with a lawyer and/or accountant when in doubt about proper filings for your particular business.
  1. Website – variable (software is free if you go with and use a free template)
  2. Web Hosting – $6-$20 per month
  3. Internet Service – up to $50 per month
  4. Email Service – $9 plus per month (depends on your list size)
  5. Shipping Service – Free is you use USPS, otherwise $11-$19 per month
  6. Shipping Supplies – variable (can save by purchasing in bulk)
  7. Inventory (if you are selling physical products) – variable
  8. Software Programs – variable
  9. Video Recorder – $150
  10. Business Papers Filing Fees – up to $300 (if you do it yourself)
  11. Trademark and Patent Filings – variable
  12. Lawyer and Accountant Fees – variable
  13. Office Supplies – variable
  14. Office Equipment – variable
  15. Business Cards – $10 per 100 cards (standard cards)
  16. Research Materials – variable
  17. Computer – $400 and up (assuming you don’t have one already)
  18. Printer – $100 and up
  19. Website Template – free to $100 (on average)
  20. Business phone line – up to $50 per month (on average)

My suggestion to you is to startup your online business with the bare minimum until you see it’s a viable business. Once you start making money, then reinvest it back into the business to continue to grow it.

Depending on what type of business you are looking to start, you may or may not need to file business papers with the Department of State. With many online businesses you can simply file a schedule C at the end of the year with your accountant for any income accrued.

However, if you are dealing with physical products or have a home business where clients are entering your property, certain permits may be in order.

Check with your states’ Department of State and County Clerk for necessary filings. As well, check with an accountant on tax filings. Your business may require you file quarterly taxes on income. Also, if you are collecting sales taxes, you will need to file quarterly sales tax forms with the IRS.

Note: If you will be selling physical products and are required to collect sales tax, you will need to apply for your Certificate of Authority at least 20 days before the date you go live with your online business.

There may be more start up costs not listed here so feel free to add them in the comment system below.

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