Building up a business isn’t easy, nor is it easy to come up with the perfect name for it in a jiffy. It takes time to come up with a name, and if you try to rush it just so that you can get your website up, then you might probably end up with a lousy name.
Name of the company is what people would remember and associate the brand with, just like we know what someone means when they say Google or Adidas. This name is what will drive the future sales and growth. The process of naming might seem trivial but it is as important as laying the foundation of the building. Unless the foundation and the structure are strong and well aligned, the whole building is going to be off and the problems will simply multiply. So, if you think that deciding on a name for your business is an important thing, then you’re right.
Unless you want a name that is unlikely to be remembered or is so bad that it is remembered for wrong reasons, then below are some mistakes that you should consider avoiding to make sure you don’t mess up with the name.
Choosing a name which is too long or is hard to pronounce
While your focus might be on having a unique name for your company, you might also want to make sure that people can pronounce it easily. What’s the point if you have a fancy name but your real audience cannot understand it? And to make the matters worse, if the name is overly long then it sure makes it difficult for your customers to keep up. To make sure your brand communicates efficiently with your customers, decide on your company name which is short and easy to remember, and also anyone in the world would find it easy to say it. Just keep it simple, with no complex words so that even when you have to tell it on the phone, people would understand it clearly.
A name which does not adequately reflect the mission of your business
You wouldn’t want your customers to think you are selling cars especially when your business is to sell food products. Using a name which gives an impression to the people that you are selling a different product than what you sell, is a bad idea. The name of your business must resonate with what you are selling, the mission of the company, and what the company is really about. The name of the company is one of the few things that make up your company’s brand, along with the logos, colors, website and other things. If you can’t get it right, then it will not only confuse your customers but will also cause damage in terms of Google rankings. Let the name be such that it showcases what the business is truly about without being too insipid about it.
Choosing a name which sounds similar to other brands
It might sound great at first, but believe me, it is a bad idea. You don’t want the search engine to put you down on the list, so don’t give a name to your product or company which is similar to some other popular businesses. The worst that could happen is people will look for the brand they know and will forget about you. Again, in this case, you might also want to get an Intellectual Property lawyer who can then review the name before you spend millions on marketing and building your brand by that name. In many cases, businesses have had to change the names because of extreme similarities.
Getting too many people involved
Yes, we all want an opinion from our family, friends, and colleagues, and it might seem as a right decision at the moment, but unless you are asking them to make a choice from a list that you have already curated, it will create some problems. The first problem that you may encounter is that you will try to go with a name which has everyone’s consensus, but that may not necessarily be the best fit. Also, choosing one of the suggestions might create an unwanted tiff amongst the members. So, instead of making it a big hassle, you might want to involve only those in this process who are important to your business. By that, I mean the key decision makers who understand your business and what it does. But again, limit the number of people you approach and have a good mix of brains so you not only come up with something unique but also something sensible.
Not checking on the domain names and choosing wrong domains
No matter what name you decide on for the company, you will need to have a domain name for it as well. Let’s be realistic, there is a high possibility that the domain name already exists. Hence, before you fall in love with the name that you just conjured, you might first want to check it up to see if there is already something on the web by that name. Again don’t forget that you can always go for .co domains rather than .com. People are pretty used to different sorts of domain extensions, so don’t empty your wallet on getting a .com domain.
Now, since there are different domain extensions, do you know which one you should get? Choosing a .co over .com is fine, but should you select .in or .com can be a factor to decide. If your business is going to focus on only Indian customers then .in is good enough, but if you are going to reach out to customers in other countries as well then a .com or .co would be better. Again, if your wallet permits then you can even register your company name in as many relevant domain extensions you can and redirect them to your main domain so that it will hinder competitors from getting those domains and misguiding visitors who were, in fact, looking for you.
While it is important that you have a good name for the company, don’t spend too much time as well looking for the perfect name, especially if you are sacrificing your hours from building a great product or service. In the end, a great name cannot salvage you if you have a crappy product to offer. So don’t make a huge fuss about it, spend time only as much it is needed and get going with it.
[This post by Abhishek Shah first appeared on ThugStart and has been reproduced with permission.]