Verify Your Business Name With a South Carolina Business Name Search

South Carolina Charleston

Swyft Filings is committed to providing accurate, reliable information to help you make informed decisions for your business. That's why our content is written and edited by professional editors, writers, and subject matter experts. Learn more about how Swyft Filings works, our editorial team and standards, what our customers think of us, and more on our trust page.

Swyft Filings is committed to providing accurate, reliable information to help you make informed decisions for your business. That's why our content is written and edited by professional editors, writers, and subject matter experts. Learn more about how Swyft Filings works, our editorial team and standards, what our customers think of us, and more on our trust page.

Alexis Konovodoff
Written by Alexis Konovodoff
Written byAlexis Konovodoff
Updated December 05, 2023
Edited by Zachary Ace Aiuppa
Share this guide

When you’re starting your business, finding the right name can seem like an overwhelming task. You’ll need to do research and check it for availability. Afterward, you can register it by beginning the filing process with the South Carolina Secretary of State.

This might seem like a time-consuming process for many. However, you can make it easier with the right business entity search tool.

Our free business name search tool allows you to check for a business name availability through three simple steps:

  1. Input your desired business name and essential information in the search tool

  2. Allow the tool to check the database of the South Carolina Secretary of State for availability

  3. Receive an email within one hour notifying you if the business already has the name

Once you receive an answer, you can reserve the business name or try again if it’s already taken.

Free South Carolina Business Name Search

See if your company name is available in South Carolina with our free business name search service. There is no cost or commitment on your part. We will email you within 1 hour to let you know if your name is available Alaska and how to reserve it today.

This specialized search tool will save painstaking hours of scouring business entities online or visiting institutions such as the Chamber of Commerce. It doesn’t cost anything and requires no commitment.

Key Takeaways

  • To register a business and choose a name, you’ll need to abide by the specific business name conventions of South Carolina.

  • An entity search with the proper tool will save you time and free you of the potential risks of choosing a business name.

  • Once you find your unique name, you can proceed by reserving it, buying a domain, and finally filling for a limited liability company or LLC.

South Carolina’s Business Name Conventions

Understanding the business naming conventions of South Carolina is crucial before you begin to file for registering your business. This will decrease the chance of being rejected for registration.

First and foremost, your proposed business name has to be unique. You can check this using a business name search tool that scans the Secretary of State’s database. 

According to the South Carolina Legislature, one crucial convention on restrictions is that your name has to indicate you are a private business.[1] It must not include terms similar to government agencies. When selecting a name, avoid using words like:

  • Treasury

  • State Department

  • Legislative

  • National

Any other words that may imply a government agency or are otherwise ambiguous can lead to rejection. There are also common instances of service restriction.

For example, if you use the word “bank” or “attorney” in your name, you must turn in paperwork confirming you can provide the service legally.

Finally, your entity type must have the appropriate abbreviations.[1] For example, if you’re starting a limited liability company, it must have the abbreviation “LLC.” Corporate filings for names must include abbreviations such as “INC.”

Once you have a name following the conventions above, you can move on to filing to become an existing entity.

Many future owners want to get everything right when doing business. An entity name often carries an effective brand identity of a business while complying with state rules. By using the entity search tool, you get both of the best worlds, plus benefits like:

1. Ensures Name is Distinguishable and Unique

This is one of the main prerequisites for establishing a company. With a thoroughly checked and unique name, your entity won’t be vulnerable to legal complications and trademark issues that could potentially cost you valuable resources in the future. This can be incredibly taxing on small businesses.

2. Saves Time and Money

With a reliable entity search, you’ll avoid the risk of having to complete this process twice while paying double the registration filing fees.

3. Enables Selection of a Better Name

With a quick entity search, you can verify which names are available and which aren’t. This gives you more time and a broader scope of options, allowing you to choose your favorite name instead of the first name available.

4. Promotes Marketing Research

By seeing which names are available, you can tell which popular words others use in your industry. This can be a valid piece of information when forming an overall marketing strategy for your business.

Myrtle Beach at sunset in South Carolina | Swyft Filings

Next Steps

Finding an available name is only the beginning of the business registration process. You’ll still need to reserve it for further use, buy a website domain, and in some cases, consider a DBA. The final step is filing your LLC and officially starting your business.

Complete Your Name Reservation

So you’ve found your proposed business name is available. However, the safest action is to reserve the name before initiating the registration process. This will ensure that nobody else can register it while you’re filling out and filing necessary forms for your business.

By filing the relevant form, you can hold the reservation for 120 days while completing the registration process.

  1. Create an account with the South Carolina Secretary of State. 

  2. Fill out the relevant reservation form to reserve your LLC for 120 days.

Within 120 days, you can start the other necessary procedures for business registration, such as collecting the appropriate forms and filing them with the Secretary of State.

Choose a Domain Name

Choosing a domain name is a fundamental step in your business. Creating such a domain gives you plenty of ways to improve your new business, such as:

  • A source of information for potential customers: With the right domain, your customers can get the information they need, including your address, contact information, and mission.

  • A unique brand identity: A well-designed website with a good domain name makes your business stand out, reinforcing your business’ brand identity through a coordinating color scheme and logo. 

  • A better impression: A business with a domain signifies dedication and professionalism, putting customers’ minds at ease while making you appear more legitimate.

Squarespace’s easy-to-use domain search tool can help you quickly find and register a domain name that matches your South Carolina business. You can then choose from Squarespace’s flexible website templates, pre-designed layouts, and curated design elements to build a website — no coding required. Start your business with Swyft Filings and receive a free domain from SquareSpace for one year.

Consider a DBA

If you run into an unavailable name using an entity search, you might be able to use it if you consider applying for a DBA (“doing business as”). This means you can still do business as your preferred name while registered under a different name.

However, you can’t complete this process through the Secretary of State of South Carolina since they don’t file DBAs.[2]

Instead, the Chamber of Commerce suggests contacting the county clerk in your jurisdiction and your South Carolina Clerks of Court for the relevant forms and filing fees.

The process, state fees, and forms can differ from one county to the next.[3] To be eligible to file for a DBA, you’ll need to have your registered business under its official name.

File Your LLC Online

The steps above are the preconditions most must fulfill before completing the last stage of business filings. This can be a long process that requires registering your business with the South Carolina Secretary of State. However, there is an easier way. 

Swyft Filings streamlines the process, allowing you to file for LLC registration in just a few minutes. Our online service is more convenient than dealing with all the complicated paperwork yourself, including annual reports, online filings, and articles of organization.

Free South Carolina Business Name Search

Enter your desired South Carolina company name to see if it is available with our free business name search.


How do I determine if a business name is available in South Carolina?

You can find out if a business name in South Carolina is available using the business name search tool. You’ll receive an email verifying if the name you’ve chosen is available.

It is a tool that enables users to verify that their chosen business name is unique and approved by South Carolina as long as it complies with state laws.

How do I find an LLC in South Carolina?

There are multiple ways to find an LLC in South Carolina. You can use the business entity search to do so and locate your intended name. You can also check with the Chamber of Commerce and other official institutions in the state.

How much does a South Carolina business entity search cost?

A South Carolina business entity search is free. After searching for the name, you’ll receive an email within one hour notifying you of the name’s availability.

The multiple benefits of a business entity search include the following:

  • Ensuring your name is unique and available

  • Avoiding trademark and legal complications

  • Accelerating your business registration process by choosing a name sooner

How do I start an LLC in South Carolina?

To start an LLC in South Carolina, you must first select a business name with the entity search tool, reserve it, and then file for registration with the South Carolina Secretary of State.


  1. South Carolina Legislature. “South Carolina Code of Laws.”Accessed May 18, 2023.

  2. South Carolina Secretary of State. “FAQS about Business Entities.” Accessed May 18, 2023.

  3. Chamber of Commerce. “How to File a DBA in South Carolina.”Accessed May 18, 2023.

Originally published on June 29, 2023, and last edited on December 05, 2023.
business types

Learn more about each type of business

No matter the business type, Swyft Filings can help you form your new company.