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How to Create the Perfect Business Name

So you’ve come up with the perfect business idea, but now you’re stuck: you can’t figure out a good business name. Most new business owners go through this, and it can get very overwhelming. How can you create a good business name when all good names already seem to be taken? Don’t worry: the pool of possible business names is endless. You just need to dive in and find yours. Below are some great tips that will help you create a catchy business name.

1.  Check competitors

Before naming your business, you should get to know the names of all major competitors, specifically the most successful ones. The name of a company has major influence over how successful it is, so analyzing competitors will help you get in the right direction in terms of style. For example, are your competitors’ names more formal or more playful?

However, don’t make the mistake of copying your competitors. If you want your business to succeed, you want to have a unique name, not just a different version of a competitor’s name.

2.  Brainstorm words

Pick up a pen and paper and start writing down all of the words off the top of your head when you think of your new business. Once you have some words, examine them all one by one. Which of the words seem appealing to you visually and emotionally?

Pick out a few words you’d like to work with and start combining them or adding some extra words. A business name generator is a great tool to use once you’re down to one or a few words. This tool will automatically create dozens of business name ideas containing any word you enter.

3.  Be clear

When people hear your business name, they should be able to figure out what your business is, or at least the niche. Avoid using generic words that can fit anything from a construction company to a photography studio. It’s also best to avoid using your own name: it doesn’t convey any message to people, especially since most of your customers won’t know who you are.

Acronyms also aren’t the best choice for a business name. Sure, business names like BBC or CNN sound very professional, but they work because everyone knows who they are. If you use an acronym with a few random letters to name your startup, nobody will have any idea what your business is or what you sell.

4.  Don’t get too limited

Avoid names that limit your business to just one product or service. If you’re starting a candle business, avoid names like “Alice’s Candles”. You might want to expand in the future and start selling incense, lotions, essential oils, etc. When that day comes, “Alice’s Candles” will no longer be a suitable name for your business, so go for something not directly related to your initial product. Maybe focus on words like “smells” or “scents”.

5.  Recite the name out loud

You want your name to not only look good on paper but also to sound good. Say your name out loud to yourself. Does it sound as catchy as it looks? Is it easy to pronounce? The last thing you want is a name that’s so tricky to pronounce that people avoid saying it out loud. If you’re happy with how it sounds, get some outside opinions by asking your friends and family how they think your business name sounds.

6.  Make sure the name isn’t taken

Think you’ve thought of the perfect business name? Before pouring the champagne, make sure that the name isn’t taken yet. Sadly, the absence of an official trademark registered on your country’s or state’s official website is not enough to conclude that your business name is available.

You also want to check social media accounts, browse Google, and see if the domain name hasn’t been purchased yet. If someone already has your desired domain or Instagram account name, you might want to keep brainstorming. If not, go ahead and buy the domain name immediately and create social media accounts (even for platforms you don’t plan to use yet).

7.  Pick a name that appeals to you

The most important thing in business is that you love it: the niche, the product, and the name. Take your time when thinking of a business name. You probably won’t think of a name overnight, but if you put in enough time and effort, you’ll eventually think of something that both you and all of your customers will love.

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