Finding the right business name for your startups can have a significant impact on your success. The wrong name can be worse than failings to connect to clients it can also results in insurmountable business and legal hurdles. On the contrary, a clear and powerful name can be extremely helpful in your marketing and branding efforts.
Here are 10 helpful tips on how to create a winning name for your business.
Avoid Business name that are hard to spell
You don’t want potential customers confused about how to find your business online. I never understood why Flickr was promoted as the name of the photo-sharing site. You want to avoid having to continually correct the misspelled version of your name. Keep it simple.
Don’t choose a name that can limit the growth of your company
Choosing a name that is too narrow can cause you problems in the futures. Imagine if Jeff Bezos had chosen the name OnlineBook instead of Amazon. So avoid names like San Francisco Wedding Dresses or LugNuts Unlimited. You don’t want to limitsyour business to a particular products or a specific city.
Conduct a thorough Internet search
Once you’ve determined a name you like, do a web search on the name. Most of the time, you will find that someone else is already using that business name. While that won’t be a total success, it should give you pause.
Get the .com domain name
My main preference is that you secure the “.com” domain name for your business over alternatives like .net, .org, .biz or others possible domain extensions. Customer tend to associate a .com name with a more established business. No doubt someone will already own the desired .com name, but many domain owners are willing to sell their name for the right price.
Think of acquiring the .com name you want as a business investment. You can check the availability of a domain name on sites like GoDaddy.com or NetworkSolutions.com, and if the domain name is taken, you can often track down the owner of the domain name and see if they are willing to sell it. by using the “Whois” tool at GoDaddy or Network Solutions.
Also be sure to get your desired business name on popular social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Use a name that conveys some meaning.
Ideally, you want the business name to convey something meaningful and positive about your business. Can people instantly understand what your business is about While nonsensical name like Google, Yahoo, or Zappos have some appeal due to their appeal, these types of name will cost you a lot more for the brands.
Some examples of clear, simple and intriguing domain names include Canny.com, Cling.com, Afire.com and Administer.com. A domain name like “OnlineTickets.com” is great as it conveys the meaning of the business and is useful for search engine optimization.
Conduct a search of the Secretary of State
Since you likely want to structure your business as a corporation or LLC, you should search the Secretary of State records to make sure your name is not too similar to a business name that’s already registered. If it is too similar to an existing name, the Secretary of State may not allow you to register it. Your corporate attorney can help you conduct this type of search. See 10 Big Legal Mistakes Startups Made.
Assess if the name is catchy
Obviously, you don’t want a boring name for your business, but you also don’t want to pick something that’s too “off the mark.” You want your employees to be able to say where they work without hesitation, and you want your name to resonate with your target audience.
Get feedback on the name
Come up with 5-10 names and then check them out with trusted friends, family and colleagues. Get feedback from your target audience as well. And make sure the name doesn’t have negative connotations (like when GM named its new car model “Nova” without realizing that the name meant “no va” in Spanish.
Make sure you are personally happy with the name
You, as the business owner, will have to live with the name for a long time, so make sure you’re happy with it and believe it will resonate with your customers. Take the time to get it right from the start.