Los Angeles, CA asked in Business Formation for California

Q: In short, questions regarding affiliate marketing for a California LLC.

Hi, in California. I plan on opening an LLC for affiliate marketing purposes.

1. Does my LLC name need to match my website names that are for affiliate marketing purposes? (two different websites for two different affiliate marketing campaigns, clothing and technology).

2. Do I have to register my different websites as a DBA to be able to legally receive income from the traffic of users clicking and purchasing products by those affiliate links?

3. Are DBA registrations public information or private information? Like for example www.clothingexample.com and www.technologyexample.com will those websites link publicly to a LLC for example "LLC New business 145453" even if I don't state the LLC name on those websites?

4. When marketing on social media such as youtube, twitter, and reddit with affiliate links, do I need to disclose my LLC name in the account profile or be required to register them as a DBA?

5. Do I need a business license to affiliate market under an LLC?

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3 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Here's a concise response to your questions:

1. No, your LLC name does not need to match your website names for affiliate marketing purposes.

2. You are not required to register your websites as DBAs to legally receive income from affiliate marketing. However, if you want to do business under a different name than your LLC's official name, a DBA would be necessary.

3. DBA registrations in California are public records. However, simply having a DBA does not automatically make your website names publicly linked to your LLC. It depends on how you structure and present your business.

4. You are not mandated to disclose your LLC name on social media profiles or register them as a DBA when using affiliate links. However, platforms may have their own rules about disclosures.

5. No, you do not specifically need a business license just for affiliate marketing under an LLC, but check local municipality requirements as they might have business license or permit requirements for operating a business.

Remember, while this is a brief overview, it's always advisable to conduct more detailed research or consult with a local attorney for specifics related to your business.

Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp agrees with this answer

Shawn R. Jackson
Shawn R. Jackson pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Rohnert Park, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Well, you have about five strands of law that interact based upon the facts/scenarios you have presented ... and a conversation ... within a free initial video call with one or two business development attorneys ... would be your next best step ... the answer to your question will depend upon additional facts ...

Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp
Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Beverly Hills, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: The LLC name does not need to match the web domain names. Neither must you record fictitious name statements for the specific sites. It is true that fictitious name statements recorded with counties in California are publicly available, but not of concern if you are not recording any. Whether you need a business license depends on local requirements in your city or county. Your questions can be posed in a free initial consultation.

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