4 Key Considerations When Naming Your Business

Finding a name for a new business is rarely as easy as you think it will be. You might have ideas, but when you test them out, they suddenly just begin to sound wrong. Naming a business correctly is as much of an art as it is a science - and here are five ways you can perfect it. 

1. Choose A Single Word 

Think of the biggest businesses in the world: Google. Microsoft. Apple. Amazon. Even the fictional company "Hooli" on the hit HBO comedy show Silicon Valley making fun of tech companies. What do they have in common? They’re all single words. 

Why? Quite simply, single words are easiest to remember. Your customers can hear them once and retain that information. It’s far easier to remember “Microsoft” than it would be to recall “Microsoft Computers and IT Information”. So keep it simple. 

2. Check For Similar Names 

Your business name needs to be unique. No exceptions. It needs to be immediately identifiable as you. Not only does this help in terms of SEO, but you also want to avoid a situation where your customers are confused. If they go to look you up, then you want to be sure that your company is the only one with your name. 

This is somewhat contradictory to the above note on single words. The reason that so many people tend to give businesses long names is because someone else already has their single word ideal name. However, there are still thousands of single words that are yet to be businesses - you just need to look for them. There are even services to help you do this: the likes of Nameperfection have identified short possible business names just waiting for a clever entrepreneur to take advantage of them. 

If you still can’t settle on a name, then opt for a portmanteau as a last resort. If your name is John Smith, then your business can be “JoSmi”. It’s short and unique, as well as having an undercurrent of meaning underpinning it. 

3. Don’t Be Literal 

Names don’t have to perfectly illustrate what the business does. Amazon isn’t about a river; Apple isn’t about a fruit. So be creative with your company or brand names. 

In fact, it can actually be better if you don’t spell out your entire business in the name. It creates a sense of intrigue, as well as affording you the space to stick to a single word. If John Smith were to call his business “John Smith’s Digital Media Agency” then sure, it works, but it’s not catchy. There’s nothing there to make a potential customer peer deeper; it’s all too on the surface. That can mean that people skip over your company, without realizing how you could actually help them. 

4. Protect It 

When you have settled on a name, protect it from anyone else using it. Registering a legal trademark can be expensive, but you need to factor it into your startup costs. If you don’t, then you leave yourself vulnerable to someone else deciding to use the name. 

I did so with my online fitness media company Frugal Fitness through Legal Zoom for a very minimal one time investment and it was worth the cost. If you don't have that registered trademark, it could render all of your existing branding work utterly useless, so don’t be tempted to skip this step. With a good name in place, you’re ready for the next steps in your business journey.

I hope you enjoyed this article about some important considerations to take into account when naming your new company.

Interested in more articles about business law?

Read My Posts:

- 5 Ways To Protect Your Business Trade Secrets

- 4 Ways To Keep Your Business In Line With The Law

Published by Michael J Schiemer
Owner of Bootstrap Business
Money - Marketing - Motivation
Digital Marketing | SEO | Social Media
Mike Schiemer Builds Better Business

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