There is no doubt that choosing a business name needs some thought. When starting your first business you may think that it is a great idea to use your own name as part of the business name or you may think that using a ‘misspelled name’ is the answer because it will be unique.
I have used both of these techniques and sometimes they have worked well and at other times they have not really had much impact.
This brings me to some thoughts that I would like to share with you because I have learned over the years that there are certain choices you make and certain choices to aviod when deciding on a business name.
Consider these comments when choosing your business name:
- as far as I am aware (check in your state or country) you can register your own name as your taxable business name and have a separate trading name – this allows you to have several businesses under the one taxable name using different trading names
- don’t limit your business opportunities unless you are 100% sure of your business type by choosing the wrong name, e.g. saying Funky Decor instead of Funky Homewares and Decorating which indicates a wider range of product types
- give some thought to the future – if you want to sell your business at a later date then it would fetch a better price if the name of the business is not personalized, such as Joe’s computer repairs, or Mary’s homemade chutneys, etc. The same also goes for using a home town name, just in case the new owner wants to shift the business
- the name should give an indication of what you do
- don’t intentionally misspell the name because when people want to look up your business in the phone book or on the internet a misspelled name does not come up meaning that you will most likely lose that contact
- try to keep the name to a maximum of 5 words, preferrabley 1 – 3 words
- if you are going to be relying on internet sales then the name is even more important and you most definitely need to do keyword research so that you use the best keyword in your name which will allow your customers to find you more easily – this is really important and if you cannot do it then pay someone to do it for you
I hope this does not stress you because I know just how hard it is to find the right name for your business. Fortunately I have a husband who has a very active mind and if I give him the ideas he usually comes up with something for me.
How To Decide On Your Business Name
- do your keyword research to find the word that your target customer will use to search for your business
- write down a list as long as you possibly can of different names you can think of
- show them to your family and friends and see if they can add to it – ask them which they think is best
- then check with your tax department to see if the name is registered already because you cannot use it if it is
- after that check to see if it is available as a domain name and if so you want it register it right away (this usually costs about $10)
At this point if all is positive then it looks like you have found yourself a name for your new business.
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