6 steps to start a legal digital business. www.brittanyratelle.com

6 Steps to Start a Legal Digital Product Business

Jul 27, 2023

contracts, ecommerce, Internet law

6 Steps to Start a Legal Digital Product Business


Do you sell digital products? Maybe you have an online course, a membership program, or sell templates or other similar digital products. It can be tricky to know how to protect your business and products, especially if it is solely online. If you’ve ever felt this way, this post is for you! Here are 6 steps to start a legal digital business that will ensure protection for your products. 






What kind of attorney would I be if this didn’t have a disclaimer? I’m a licensed attorney and I practice in Utah and Idaho. I am not your attorney. This is not official legal advice. If you have any questions, please consult with a legal professional in your jurisdiction.

6 Steps to Start a Legal Digital Business



6 steps to start a legal digital business. www.brittanyratelle.com



Legal Digital Business Step #1: Get the proper rights. 


If your main stream of revenue for your business comes from your digital products, you want to put all of your focus on making sure your products are legally legit and protected. Some things you should be 100 percent sure about are who created your product, where the information came from, who edited it, and who helped film it or write it (if applicable). 


If you had anyone help you create your digital products you want to make sure that these people legally signed away their rights for this product so you can go and legally sell this product as your own. To properly complete this step, they would need to sign a copyright transfer agreement–and I have a template you can check out HERE


Legal Digital Business Step #2: Fix your footer. 


If you have a website for your business, you want to have several things in the footer of the website to make sure it is legally compliant. These things are only needed if you are selling digital products from a personal website. If you are selling products on a marketplace website (e.g. Etsy, TPT, Amazon) then these linked documents are not necessary to have. 


Some of the documents you need to have set up and linked in your website footer include a privacy policy, terms and conditions, disclaimers, and a copyright statement. You can check out my best-selling Website Bundle HERE which will give you everything you need to make your website legally legit. 


Legal Digital Business Step #3: Set usage boundaries. 


Have you ever purchased a digital product and had to check a box agreeing to the terms and conditions when you were checking out? This little excerpt links to something real, and it’s something you want to have for your own digital products. 


Setting up this usage boundary will keep your products protected by having your customers acknowledge and agree to what is and is not OK with how they use your digital products. 


If you are selling your products on a joint marketplace site (like I mentioned earlier) then they usually have terms and conditions already in place. Since you aren’t able to add your own, I recommend including your licensing terms as a picture with your product photos and in your product description. This will help consumers see and agree or disagree with your terms BEFORE they buy your products rather than after. 



how to start a legal digital business. www.brittanyratelle.com



Legal Digital Business Step #4: Register your entity. 


You will definitely want to register your business in your state to ensure legal protection for your assets. If you are operating as a sole proprietorship–which is like the default status–you don’t have any legal protection or separation between your personal money and business money. 


It’s super important to set up this business boundary just in case there’s any kind of litigation wave that tries to knock over all your buckets. Registering your business as an LLC sets you up for long-term success and legal protection. You can check out my post HERE which walks you through the easiest way to register your business in your state. 


Legal Digital Business Step #5: Sign the business prenup. 


One of the best things you can do for your new business is to create and sign a business operating agreement. Some banks and states even require this business prenup in order for you to get approved for a business loan. I recommend having an operating agreement no matter what, but I will say they are CRITICAL to have if you have a business partnership. I have a customizable contract HERE that you can check out and alter to fit your business needs. 


Legal Digital Business Step #6: Set up team boundaries. 


If you work with team members in your business, it’s important to set up clear boundaries so everyone knows what is expected of them and most importantly, so they can work together to protect your business. Whether you have independent contractors or W2 employees, both should be covered by some sort of written agreement.


Some main things you will want to include in this written contract are protection for confidential business information, a work-for-hire intellectual property agreement, and language about how they will be paid. 


Also, depending on your type of business these contracts may be helpful for you:



how to legally protect your digital products. www.brittanyratelle.com



6 Steps to Start a Legal Digital Business


Following these 6 steps to start a legal digital business will get up set up for success! It’s better to figure out all of this now rather than when you’re in the thick of growing your business or when a business downfall happens. Get your business legally legit and you’ll never regret it. I’d love to keep in touch, so make sure you are following me on Instagram @brittanyratelle




Download my free legally legit workbook HERE – your free guide to getting your business set up, protected, and ready for growth. When you sign up you’ll also get access to my newsletter with tips and tricks for YOUR growing creative business.




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