If you want to do a business in China seriously you have to apply a ICP license for your website. It’s a legal ID for your website. To gain the trust from your Chinese customers.
There are so many foreigners want to start a business in China and totally have no idea why there website couldn’t visit by customers in China. After consulting they heard the name of ICP license and host website in China.
Few things you should know before you decide to do ICP application for yourself. The internet laws in China change all the time and it’s really hard for a foreigner to follow the instruction step by step to finish the job. All the sites are in Chinese and even a native speaker who don’t understand internet language will find it to complex.
Also, some registrations need a China mobile number to do verify. You may have payment issue as well. Since most of the sites don’t accept international payment methods. Well, welcome to China.
What is ICP license?(click the link to know what and how to apply for it)
Do you have to apply for it?
Sorry to tell you that the answer is yes if you want to host your website in Mainland China.
Choose to host your website in Hongkong as an alternative
If you really don’t want to do the application and want your customers in China to have a good user experiences of your website, then choose to host your website in Hongkong. Hongkong is a special area belong to China and geographically near Mainland China. It run by another legal system.
What will happen If you don’t have ICP license?
Difficult to say, maybe you’re so lucky that nothing happen at all or in one bad day you find that you whole business plan for China is go up in smoke.
You can’t host your website in Mainland China either because all servers will ask you for ICP license, it’s kind of permission for server rent or buying in Mainland China.
What document do you need to apply for a ICP license?
There are two types based on the owner of the website:
Chinese citizen: Chinese citizen ID
Foreigner: passport, but need to physically to stay in Mainland China long enough to meet some registration requirements.
A Business license (company registered in Mainland China), namely the owner of the website.