If you’re looking to start a new business in the United Kingdom, you need a catchy name to attract new customers. We’ve created this United Kingdom business name search guide to help you design and register the perfect business name.
Generate Business Name Ideas
Prepare For Your United Kingdom Business Name Search
Here are some simple tips to help you create the perfect United Kingdom business name.
- Conduct a web search of existing UK businesses and note exciting business names.
- Use these names as inspiration for your business name, perhaps by using similar language techniques.
- List some distinctive keywords that represent your brand and the services you provide.
- Find combinations of these keywords that could be used as your business name by using our business name generators.
How To Search Available Names In the United Kingdom
You can take steps to ensure your chosen business name is one-of-a-kind and won’t be rejected by the UK government.
A good starting point is to conduct a web search for your proposed business name. This will give you a general idea of whether your name is available. If your search produces results for existing companies, it’s time to return to the drawing board.
You can also visit Gov.UK and use their company name availability checker. This is a free service and doesn’t require an account to use. Simply enter your proposed company name, and this tool will tell you if that name is available or already in use.
How to Register Your Business Name In The United Kingdom
Having a domain name corresponding to your business name makes it easier for customers to access your products and services. You can check domain name availability by toggling the ‘domain name availability’ option on any of our business name generators.
Visit Gov.UK to begin your business registration journey. From here, you can select your business entity (sole trader, limited company, or partnership) and follow the step-by-step guide to setting up your business.
You’ll need a Government Gateway user ID and password when registering. You can register using Gov.UK’s online portal, by post, using an agent or using third-party software.
The United Kingdom Business Name Registration Policies And Procedures
Certain naming regulations are involved when registering your business name in the United Kingdom.
Sole Traders and Partnerships
- You can trade under your own name(s) or choose another name; you don’t need to register your name.
- Sole trader names mustn’t include phrases like limited, ltd, limited liability partnership, LLP, public limited company or PLC.
- They mustn’t be offensive or imply a connection with the government or local authorities.
- You can’t choose a name similar to another registered company; otherwise, you risk receiving a complaint.
- Registered names must end in Limited or Ltd (or the Welsh equivalent.)
- Names can’t contain offensive or sensitive language or be affiliated with the government.
- You can adopt a trade name that differs from your registered name. A trade name can’t contain the words limited, Ltd, limited liability partnership, LLP, public limited company or PLC.
The United Kingdom Business Registration Office
|Phone:||0303 1234 500|
|Address:||England and Wales|
DX 33050 Cardiff, UK
32038 Linenhall Street
DX481 N.R. Belfast 1, UK
Edinburgh Quay 2
Edinburgh Eh3 9FF
DX ED235 Edinburgh 1, UK
|Hours:||8.30am – 6pm, Monday – Friday|
How to use an Online Portal to Register your Business Name in the United Kingdom
The fastest and easiest way to register your business in the United Kingdom is to use the government’s web services. From here, you can register your company with Companies House and sort out taxes with HMRC.
They can usually process applications within 24 hours, as opposed to paper filing, which takes up to 5 days. Online filing is also the cheapest option and costs around £12.
How Costly Is It To Register Business Name In The United Kingdom
The costs for registering your business name in the United Kingdom depend on your chosen method.
- The fee for filing your application using third-party software is £10 or £30 for ‘same day’ service
- If you’re registering using the Companies House web service, this costs £12 or £27 for a Community Interest Company (CIC).
- Paper filing is £40 or £20 if you’re a Welsh company filing your documents in Welsh.
Why Should I Register A Business Name In The United Kingdom?
Registering your business name in the UK comes with various key benefits.
- Grants and funding schemes. Having a registered business name makes government funding more accessible.
- Bank account. You can’t open up a bank account for your business without a registered business name and proof of ID.
- Name Ownership. Registering your business name protects it from being used by other businesses.
- Tax Purposes. Registering with HMRC is a legal requirement, and failure to do so could lead to penalties.
Support When Registering A Business Name In The United Kingdom
Gov.UK has excellent resources to support you in your new business venture.
- Get advice and financial assistance from government-backed schemes.
- Access a list of useful contacts or visit your local growth hub (if you’re in England.)
- Schedule a video appointment to speak to an expert about the business registration process.
- You can also get advice on registering for tax with the HMRC.
Our United Kingdom business name search guide gives you all the information you need during the name registration process. It covers how to create the perfect name, check if it’s available, and register it with the UK Government.
Browse our business name search list for information about the business registration process in other countries.