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Things to Consider When Naming Your Business

Naming-Your-BusinessComing up with an effective name for a business is extremely important. A business’s name has a big effect on how it is perceived by the public. Come up with an extremely relevant or memorable name, and it will be on the tip of everyone’s tongue, when they have a need for what your company offers.

However, deciding on a great name can be an extremely challenging task. You do not want it to be too generic, or it will get lost in the shuffle. If it is too abstract, it will be difficult for customers to remember. The list of potential pitfalls goes on.

Here are a few tips on what to consider when naming your business.

Keeping It Relevant

Simplicity is often a virtue, when deciding what your business will be known as. After all, the shorter and simpler it is, the easier it will be for customers to remember. A name that is basic and relevant to the nature of the business makes it easy for customers to know, at a glance, what types of products or services are being offered. This can save time and eliminate guesswork for your customers, and therefore, make you more money.

Just for the sake of an example, let’s pretend there are two surfboard shops. One is called “Surf Shop,” and the other, “Hot Dog!” Initially, at least, Surf Shop is going to have an advantage. Potential customers know just by looking at the sign, what they can expect to find inside. However, Hot Dog! is more of a mystery, to the uninitiated. Do they cater to fans of catching big waves, or fans of eating small sausages? It’s hard to say. That’s why choosing an illustrative, relevant name can give a business an advantage, at least at first.

Getting Creative

While we can see that the aptly named Surf Shop has an advantage at the outset, there is something catchy about Hot Dog!, isn’t there? It does not spell out exactly what the business offers, but it is simple, easy to remember, and relevant to the surfing community, in a classic sort of way. And, it’s more exciting than the Surf Shop, which is illustrative, but some may find it lacking in imagination. However, care should be taken not to give a business a moniker that is too abstract, as it will be difficult to remember.

Multimedia Translation

We live in a multimedia world, so it is important to consider how a business’s name will translate to different formats. If a name is too long, or contains foreign, difficult, or alternately spelled words, it might be easier to secure the domain name and social media handles, but it may make it more difficult for prospective customers to find your business online.

On the other hand, if your business has a very simple name, it may make it more difficult to get a good website URL. Obviously, is what you want to aim for, but most of the websites for very simple names are already taken, and the social media handles are likely to be in use, too.

How a business name will appear in print and on signage is another important consideration, especially for companies that plan to do most of their business from a physical location. Names that are too long tend not to translate well to logos, and therefore, they do not typically work well for signage, business cards, or stationery, either.

The Right Stuff

As you can see, there is a lot to consider when choosing a name for a business. The best business names strike a delicate balance between uniqueness, relevance, and in pop-songwriting argot, hookiness. They stick in your head like a catchy tune, are easy to find online, and express both the personality and the purpose of the business in question. Find a name that accomplishes all of the above, and you should be set.


John R. Klaras is a serial entrepreneur and small business professional, a writer, and an educator by trade. With nearly a decade of experience in the telecommunications industry, he is currently in the process of building a burgeoning new microbusiness. He has written for leading companies in a wide variety of verticals, including travel, finance, motorsports, and real estate.