So you have the product in your hand and willingness to sell online. But clueless about the list of documents you need to sell online?
Indian Online Seller is here to help.
Get your notepad ready. Below is the list of basic documents/registrations that marketplaces’ ask a merchant to furnish during the seller on-boarding process. If you have the below things ready, you can sell on any of the Indian marketplaces.
Personal ID Proof
The first two documents on the list may seem like a no-brainer to some. But believe it or not, there are many people in this country who don’t have a proper ID or address proof, except maybe a ration card. And ration card at times is not accepted as a valid ID or address proof.
Some of the documents that are a valid proof of identity:
- Photo PAN Card
- Valid Indian Passport
- Voter Identity Card
- Aadhar card
- Driving License
Personal Address proof
Just like ID proof, an address proof falls in the ‘good to have’ list of documents for any seller or business. Some of the documents that can be used to confirm your address are:
- Electricity bill
- Bank statement
- Aadhar card
- Valid Indian Passport
- Voter Identity Card
A registered company is the legal identity of your business. You can register as sole proprietorship, partnership, LLP, Private Limited Company OR One Person Company.
Besides filling up the various forms depending on the type of company you wish to incorporate, below are the documents Indian Nationals need to start the company registration process:
- Apply for name of the company that flouts no trademark/copyright rule by filing Form INC-1
- Photograph of each Director
- PAN card of each Director
- Address proof of each Director (Passport, Election Card or Voter Identity Card, Ration Card, Driving License, Electricity Bill, Telephone Bill, Aadhaar Card). In case of bills, it can’t be older than 2 months.
- Residential Proof of each Director (Bank Statement, Electricity Bill, Telephone Bill)
- Registered Office Proof (Ownership/lease/rent agreement, NOC from landlord and telephone/electricity/gas bill not older than 2 months)
Company PAN Card
Company PAN Card is different from your individual PAN Card. This is the ID proof of your company. Application process is the same, except that you have to fill company details in the form. Most of the popular marketplaces like Flipkart, Snapdeal, Amazon, Shopclues ask for Company Pan Card copy.
VAT (Value Added Tax)/TIN (Taxpayer Identification Number)/ CST (Central Sales Tax) is a mandatory information asked by majority of the marketplaces. TIN/VAT/CST number is a must unless you wish to sell unstitched apparels, handicrafts, books or online education.
It is also compulsory for manufactures and traders with an annual turnover of more than Rs.5 lakhs. Few marketplaces may allow you to list on their platform without VAT, provided you give them a proof of your ongoing VAT application process.
While the registration duration differs from State to State, but it typically takes around 15-workings day to obtain VAT certificate. One has to pay registration fee and security deposit through Demand Draft drawn in the name of the State VAT office bank. Documents required to obtain VAT certificate are:
- PAN Card copy of each Directors/Partners and the business
- ID proof of each directors
- Permanent residential address proof of each Director/Partner
- Business address proof
- Proof of constitution of business such as Partnership deed, Memorandum & Articles of Association, Incorporation Certificate depending on your business establishment type
- Recent passport size photograph(s)
- Cancelled cheque of current account
- Profession Tax number of Directors and Company
- Authorization letter(s) wherever required
Apply for VAT online by filling out basic details about your business along with scanned copies of the abovementioned documents. You will be given the list of documents required during the online application process. On successful completion, you will receive a downloadable acknowledgment/receipt with date, time and address to appear at the State VAT office before Registering Authority along with original attested copies of the documents submitted.
An active bank account in the name of the business is necessary. A copy of blank cancelled cheque, bank account number, account name, bank name, bank branch name, bank IFSC code is asked during marketplace registration process.
The list of documents required to open a business bank account varies depending on the nature of the business, establishment type and bank. Just to give you a fair idea, read here to know the documents required to open Current Account in ICICI Bank.
It is best to ask people from your social circle and seller forums to recommend a trustworthy bank for business operations.
On marketplaces such as Flipkart and Amazon, one can’t list products without getting brand approval, unless you have the barcodes or are planning to sell already existing products. For this brand approval, some additional documents are required.
If you are the manufacturer of the brand then you need to provide the registered trademark copy/application to trademark copy/brand authorization letter on the company letterhead. If you are a reseller/distributor, you need to provide brand authorization by the manufacturer on the manufacturer’s letterhead.
On eBay, one has to furnish only bank account, contact information, email address and few other details such as address proof, ID proof & PAN Card to create a PaisaPay registration.
On the other hand, mobile app platforms such as Shopo, which is Snapdeal’s zero commission platform, asks for no documents from sellers. KartRocket’s Kraftly is a similar C2C company where sellers can register without the need of any paperwork. Shopo lets buyers & sellers to chat and decide the mode of payment & delivery arrangement just like Quikr, and OLX. Kraftly functions as a proper ecommerce platform with payment and delivery assistance. Such platforms offer excellent opportunity to homepreneurs, small merchants, and hobbyists.
We have covered all the essential documents required to sell online. Still, did we miss out any one? Sellers, were you asked to submit any different document than the ones mentioned above? Are you aware of similar ‘no paperwork’ platforms like Shopo and Kraftly? Do write to us.