How to Pick a Winning Business Name

Choosing the right name for your company is one of the most important decisions you will have to make as an entrepreneur. The name of your company will be one of the most important aspects of your brand. It’s the first thing potential customers associate with your company. This is not something that you should think of as an afterthought because it isn’t as easy as you might think.

There are a lot of things to consider when choosing the right name. Experts will tell you that your choice can make or break your company. Choosing the right name may also include some legal considerations, which is why it is sometimes advised to consult with lawyers and/or hire a company that specializes in creating names and branding to help you out.

Here are some tips to help you choose the right name for your business:
1. Understand your business
Before you start brainstorming about possible business names, it’s important to create a clear business plan. Set out a clear vision of what this business is going look like and what it will offer. Consider your target market or audience for this business and think of names that would be appealing to this group. Having a clear understanding of your whole company will help in finding the best business name for your great idea.
2. Avoid choosing a difficult name to pronounce or spell
Ease of use is important. If your company name can’t be pronounced properly without using a dictionary, customers are less likely to remember it and share your business with others. You might also want to steer clear of choosing a name that is hard to spell. You don’t want to lose potential business just because your company name didn’t show up in search results because customers had difficulty spelling it.
3. Don’t be too specific
Choose a name that doesn’t limit your scope or your potential to grow. For instance, you named your company “Cookie Cutter” because you’re selling cookies, but what if you want to expand and sell doughnuts and coffee as well? In this case, your name may end up misrepresenting or limiting your brand. Try to think of the future scope of your business and the possibilities you have for expansion.

Another example is that it may be best to avoid inserting your specific location into your company name. If your business expands into a chain with multiple locations it may cause confusion. Keep a name that will still be a good representation of your company even if you grow and expand into other industries and cities.
4. Make it meaningful
Choose a name that means something not only to you, but to your customer base. A name that embodies what your company is about and captures the attention of your target audience is ideal. Make it simple, unique, understandable, and marketable. The perfect name should resonate with your audience and create an emotional bond with them as soon as they hear it. Once they see your name, potential customers will ideally already understand what your company is about and have some interest in learning more about your brand.
5. Choose a name that will stand out
If want your brand to stand out from other companies, be creative when choosing your company name. You want a name that is short, simple and easy to remember, but at the same time, it should be unique. If you plan to invent a word as the name of your company, make sure it is catchy and marketable and is a good representation of your brand. Having a name that stands out will also be beneficial for SEO reasons because a unique business name has a better position in online searches giving it a higher chance of being discovered by potential customers.
6. Search the Internet
Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, you should conduct an Internet search. Searching for a name online will allow you to check if other companies have the same or similar names that you have in mind. Having a name too similar to other companies may create confusion among customers and make your business harder to find.
7. Ask for feedback
Once you have a list of names, ask your friends, family, colleagues for feedback. You can even conduct a survey and ask your intended target audience for their opinions. Try to create an open environment for constructive criticism and be open-minded about suggestions you receive. Say the names aloud and ask if they have a hard time pronouncing or spelling the names you have chosen. All of this feedback can be very helpful but remember to keep your overall vision in mind when making your final decision. Imagine yourself as a customer of your business and ask yourself honestly, “What would I think of this company based on the name?”
9. Search the Secretary of State Database
If you are planning to make your company into a corporation, it is important to check the Secretary of State records. The records will show if the name you have in mind for your company is already registered to another company. If that is the case, they will probably not allow you to register your chosen company name. Also, if you choose a business name that is too similar to a name that is already registered you may face legal issues as a result.
11. Make sure that YOU like the name
Most, if not all, the tips have centered around external factors. While it is important to have a name that resonates with your target audience, it also imperative that YOU as the company owner likes the name. Imagine if you don’t like the name, you will be stuck seeing it every single day when you go to work. What a mood breaker right? So, make sure that you like the company name that you have chosen so that it can inspire you to keep growing your business.

Team work makes the dream work so let’s work together! Wherever you are in your journey, we’d love to help your dreams take flight.

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