5 min read

Do You Need a Business License to Sell on Amazon in 2023?

Written by
Vanessa Hung
Published on
September 4, 2023

Deciding to sell on Amazon is an exciting step, but can you do it without a business license? Here's an intriguing fact: Amazon itself does not require one, but your local regulations might. The requirements for starting an online business vary depending on your location.

In this article, we'll simplify the intricate aspects of selling requirements and guide you on whether or not you need a business license. We'll also dive into the different business structures and help you decide which one would work for your business.

Ready to be enlightened? Let's get started!

Who Needs a Business License to Sell on Amazon?

To sell on Amazon, you need to understand the local regulations and requirements, as well as the different business structures available to you.

Local regulations and requirements

Selling on Amazon can be easy, but you need to know the rules. Your town or city might have its own rules for online selling. These are called local regulations or requirements. Depending on the city or county where your business is located, you might need to obtain a business license or permit. This requirement can differ from one jurisdiction to another. It's important to check with the local city or county government to determine

So, before starting your store on Amazon, check what your local laws say about online businesses. You don't want to break any rules!

Types of Business Licenses

There are several types of business licenses that you might need to operate your Amazon business, depending on your location and the nature of your products. Here are a few:

  1. Sales Tax License: If you're selling products that are subject to sales tax, you may need a sales tax license. This license allows you to collect tax from customers and remit it to the state.
  2. Wholesale License: To purchase goods in large quantities directly from manufacturers or distributors, you may need a wholesale license. This license can also enable you to sell these goods without charging sales tax to customers who have a reseller's permit.
  3. Home Occupation Permit: If you're operating your business from home, some local governments require a home occupation permit.
  4. Professional Licenses: Certain professions and trades require specific licenses to operate. For instance, if you're selling food, cosmetics, or health-related products on Amazon, you might need a health permit or other professional licenses.

Potential benefits of having a business license

Having a business license can offer several potential benefits for Amazon FBA sellers. Firstly, it provides legitimacy and professionalism to your online selling venture. Customers may feel more confident buying from a seller with a registered business.

Secondly, having a business license allows you to access certain wholesale platforms and suppliers that require proof of being a legitimate business entity. This can give you access to better product pricing and more reliable inventory sources.

Lastly, obtaining a business license may also allow you to qualify for certain tax deductions and incentives that can help reduce your overall tax liability as an Amazon seller.

Steps to Obtaining a Business License for Selling on Amazon

Research local regulations, choose a business structure, and register your business to obtain the necessary licenses and permits for selling on Amazon.

Researching local regulations

To sell on Amazon, it's important to research the local regulations. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Local governments may have specific requirements for selling products online.
  2. Different regions might have different rules and regulations.
  3. Check with your local government office or business bureau for information.
  4. Look into any permits or licenses that may be required in your area.
  5. It's essential to understand the laws and regulations that apply to Amazon sellers in your location.
  6. Compliance with local regulations can help ensure a smooth selling experience on Amazon.

Choosing a business structure

When starting your Amazon FBA business, you'll need to choose a business structure. Here are some options to consider:

  1. Sole Proprietorship: This is the simplest and most common structure for small businesses. It allows you to operate as an individual without forming a separate legal entity. You'll report your business income and expenses on your personal tax return.
  2. Limited Liability Company (LLC): An LLC provides liability protection for your personal assets while offering flexibility in terms of management and taxation. It's a popular choice for many Amazon sellers because it combines the benefits of a corporation with the simplicity of a sole proprietorship.
  3. Corporation: If you plan on scaling your business or attracting investors, forming a corporation may be a good option. It offers limited liability protection but requires more formalities and ongoing compliance.
  4. Partnership: If you're starting your business with someone else, forming a partnership allows you to share profits, losses, and responsibilities.

Each type of business structure has its own advantages and considerations, so it's important to research and understand your options before making a decision. Keep in mind that the choice of business structure may impact factors such as taxes, legal liability, and operational requirements.

It's always recommended to consult with a professional or seek legal advice when deciding on the best business structure for your Amazon selling venture.

Registering your business and obtaining necessary licenses and permits

To sell on Amazon, you may need to register your business and get certain licenses and permits. Here's what you need to do:

  1. Research local regulations: Find out what licenses and permits are required in your area for selling online. Check with your city or county government offices or consult a lawyer or accountant who specializes in e-commerce.
  2. Choose a business structure: Decide on the type of legal entity you want for your business, such as a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, or corporation. Each structure has different requirements and implications, so it's important to choose the right one for your situation.
  3. Register your business: If necessary, register your business with the appropriate authorities. This may involve filing documents with your state's Secretary of State office or getting a tax identification number from the IRS.
  4. Obtain necessary licenses and permits: Determine if you need any specific licenses or permits related to your products or industry. For example, certain products like food or cosmetics may require additional certifications.
  5. Comply with sales tax obligations: If you're selling taxable products, you'll likely need to collect and remit sales tax. Register with your state's Department of Revenue or Taxation to obtain a sales tax permit and learn about your responsibilities regarding sales tax collection.

Do You Need an LLC to Sell on Amazon?

It’s not mandatory, but opting for a Limited Liability Company (LLC) structure for your online business may offer several advantages that can positively impact your operations and legal protections. Here are some key benefits:

It's important to note that while LLCs offer numerous advantages, the specific benefits for your online business can vary depending on your unique circumstances, goals, and the laws of your state. Before making a decision, consider consulting with legal and financial professionals who can provide tailored advice based on your situation.

Beginning Your Journey as an Amazon Seller is Easier Than You Think

Selling on Amazon does not necessarily require you to have a business license or register a company. However, it's important to research and understand the regulations of your local government because they may have their own requirements.

While Amazon itself does not require a business license, complying with state or local government regulations is still necessary. And if you're embarking on your journey as an Amazon seller, taking a proactive step towards compliance may lead you to more success. Research and secure the appropriate business licenses required by your local authorities. 

Don't hesitate – it may be time to explore the licensing requirements in your area and pave the way for a thriving Amazon business. Your dedication to meeting these standards will set you on the path to long-term achievement. Good luck!


1. Do I need a business license to sell on Amazon?

Amazon does not require a business license but your local government might. It depends on factors such as the type of products you are selling and your location. Some states or countries require a business license, while others do not.

2. How can I find out if I need a business license to sell on Amazon?

You should check the regulations and requirements set by your local government or tax authority to determine if a business license is necessary for selling on Amazon.

3. What happens if I sell on Amazon without a business license?

Selling on Amazon without the required business license may violate legal requirements and could result in penalties, fines, or even suspension of your seller account.

4. Can I use my personal information instead of obtaining a business license to sell on Amazon?

Using personal information instead of obtaining a proper business license may not comply with legal requirements and could lead to issues with taxation, liability, or other legal matters. It's best to consult with relevant authorities for accurate guidance.

5. What is the best business structure for selling on Amazon?

The best business structure for selling on Amazon depends on various factors such as your long-term goals, financial situation, and legal considerations. However, the most common business structures used by sellers on Amazon include sole proprietorship, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation.

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