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How to Pick a Name for Your Business

Aug 10, 2008
Starting your own business can be a nerve racking process as so many different things must be considered before your business can get off the ground. You need money, space, employees and hundreds of other things to make the business you want happen. With all these "to-dos" cluttering your head, it is best to step back and take one thing at a time.

First things first, your business needs a name! This may seem a silly and frivolous task, but there is a lot to be considered when choosing a name for your business. The name of your business has great impact on how customers view you and your product. Choosing a business name is important not only because of its impact on customers but also because it will be with your business for life. So take some time to think about what goes into picking a name.

Stand Out

Pick a name that is unique to you and your business. Try to stay away from generic names like Betsy's Flower Shop or Bob's Car Repair, but instead find something a little more interesting. This is not to say you can't use your name in the business name, but also look to other options. A business name with a story is always of interest to customers and will get them to spread your name around.

Spell It Out

When creating a name, stay with words that can easily be spelled by customers. Some business owners try unique word spellings to make their business stand out, but this can be trouble when customers look your business up in the phone book or try to refer you to others. Stay with traditional word spelling and try to avoid unfamiliar words.

Keep it Simple

Make your business name short one customers can remember it easily. This will also help when marketing your name as you won't need as much word space. If you like, you can make your business name an acronym for a longer title, but just be sure to list your business by this acronym in the phone book.

Make Some Sense

Occasionally, business owners will choose business names that are nonsense words. Although this does make you stand out, it creates a problems for the customer. Words create visuals for people and if the title of your business is a nonsense word, it will be difficult for customers to envision what your business is about. Use words that convey your line of business and the feeling you want customers to get when they come to you.

Give a Clue

Try to include in your business name some information about what your business does. Calling your light fixture business Rise and Shine is appropriate, but the same name would not do well for tow truck business. Your business name should match your business in order to remind customers what services you provide.

Don't Box Yourself In

Avoid picking names that don't allow your business to move around or add to its product line. This means staying away from adding geographic locations or product types to your business name. With these additions, customers will be confused if you expand your business to different locations or add on to your product line.

Jump Start Your Brainstorming

If you are having trouble thinking of business names, try giving your brain a jolt by looking through a thesaurus for alternate words. A dictionary may also help by giving you words that define your line of business. You can even try looking to competitor business names to give some ideas. However, be careful not to create a name that is too similar to a competitor's as this will lead to confusion for customers.

Try It Out

Come up with a few different name choices and try them out on friends, co-workers, and potential customers. Ask questions about the names to see if they give off the impression you desire. Be sure to come away with a few different names in case another business has already snagged your first choice. The next step is to register your name and get your business going!
About the Author
Melissa Mashtonio writes for Manta.com, the go-to site for company research. The site, http://www.manta.com, offers free market research on more than 45 million companies worldwide.
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