California does not require all businesses to obtain a license, but most will need some form of California business license. Most counties and cities in the Golden State require businesses to have a local license, and many businesses will need a seller's permit. The state provides the CalGold website, a tool that allows you to search by city or county and type of business to see what permits you will need and which regulatory agencies administer them. The cost of a standard commercial operating license can vary by location, and some cities even exempt small businesses from paying any fees.
Each agency in California handles business licenses differently, but most require that licenses be renewed annually or biennially. In addition to the local business operating license, you may also need other licenses or permits depending on the type of activity your company is carrying out or the location in which you are operating. Small businesses represent 99.8% of all businesses within the state and employ 48.8% of the state's workforce, making them a vital part of the Golden State economy. You can run a business as a sole proprietor (only you) or general partnership (you and one or more partners) rather than forming a business entity such as an LLC or a corporation.
No matter what type of business you create, you should consider opening a separate business account to make it easier to track your income and expenses.