Should You Change Your Business Name?
When I first started my online shop on Etsy, I didn't give too much thought into my shop/business name. It wasn't until someone purchased my dot com address - right after I accidentally let it expire, that I had to decide on a new business name.
It was hard coming up with a business name (more about that at the bottom of this post) but I knew it had to happen. For some of you reading this, you may be forced to come up with a new business name, or feel like you need a change for one reason or another. Well, I am here to help you. If you want to consider changing your business name OR if you are forced into changing your business name, I have some things you NEED to consider before you do so. It will save you money, time, and a headache - trust me!
Things to consider if changing your business name
1) Is Your Business Name Easy To Remember?
When you finally think of the business name that you want it, you need to make sure its easy to remember. Why? Well because you want repeat clients right? If your name is hard to remember, then how will they ever remember to visit your website? Or how will they remember your name when they want to refer you to their friends and family? Oh, you mean with that business card that threw away or that's under a pile of other stuff on their desk? No thanks! Making a business name easy to remember, is one of the keys to repeat business and referrals.
2) Is Your Business Name Easy To Spell?
Similar to my point above, you want your business name easy to spell so when they search for you online or type in your web address, there won't be any confusion - come on guys! Don't make customers work harder than they already have to. Having your business name easy to spell will also certainly help with referrals so while you want it easy to remember, just remember that you need to make sure its not a creative way to spell the words you are using, otherwise you will have people typing it in wrong, therefore not connecting to your online store again.
3) Does Your Business Name Describe What You Sell?
This is a big one for a few reasons. If your name describes what you sell the google search engine will love you! Having those descriptive keywords in your URL will make google believe you are more relevant for the person who is searching for a phrase that contains those words. Besides that, it's good to have a name that describes what you sell because it makes sense for branding AND people can immediately understand what you sell so they are not left confused.
4) Can You Branch Out With This New Business Name?
I will tell you first hand, that sometimes you never know where your business will be in 2-5 years, its true! Just read up on this blog post where I discuss how I tripled my business. I never knew I would be where I am today and that includes my product line. Your business name should allow to lend itself to growth just in case you will experience it within 2-5 years. At the moment, you may not feel like you can handle any type of growth (you can barely eat at normal hours during the work day), but just know that business owners adjust and growth can indeed happen. Having a business like Vicky's Decals, can only let Vicky create decal items and while that has many ideas for expansion alone, she may may want to try to name her business "Vicky's Personalized Gifts", or "VT Personalized Gifts". This is just an example but you get the point, right?
5) Have You Cleared Your Name For All Platforms?
So you think you have a good business name, huh? Cool, but don't forget that you need to check and see if it's available across the internet and that it's not associated with anything bad.
- You first want to check if your URL is available for purchase (dot com is preferred)
- You then want to check if ALL of the social media platforms have your name available (even if you have no plans to use it all, you certainly don't want others to get a hold of your name).
- Then you want to do a google search to see that if there is anything similar to your name that may have people confuse you for the other business AND that the business name that you used isn't associated with other things. If you do a google search and find not many direct matches to your business name - great! That means you don't have to complete with other pages on google to get to the top of the search that has your business name in it. If you find that there are many direct matches that uses the words in your business name, then you might want to rethink some things (this normally happens when you use a common string of words together).
- Check and see that the business name you want isn't already registered or doesn't infringe on anyone's trademarks.
Not sure if getting your own dot com is right for you? Then check out this blog post that gives you 4 great reasons why you should upgrade to your own website.
6) Alert Everyone! Well Kinda!
If you have already changed your business name or want to, gather the email address of blog owners and such that have featured your work so they can make the name change on their post as well. This is a simple process but don't forget it!
You also want to change the name on all the platforms you already have AND change the URL that is usually linked in that platforms profile settings.
7) Having Trouble Coming Up With A Business Name, Try This....
A creative way to try and come up with a new business name is to write down words that describe your style, or business. (EX: creative, mastermind, handmade, online) cut each word out on the piece of paper, and rearrange them in a way that works for you. This might sound silly, but I used this very exercise with my current business name (but I did it in my head, haha) and it worked great! However, doing it on pieces of paper is better so you can move them around easily to see what sparks your interest. Have another paper and pen by your side, just in case you need to write down some great business name ideas so you don't forget them. Ready to change your business name? Well then I hope this mini guide helps you make the right decision and helps you come up with the perfect business name!
Still need more help with deciding whether or not you should change your business name? Then I would suggest that you read this book that Oprah and Martha Stewart recommend.
GOT ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS? LET ME KNOW BELOW, I'D LOVE TO CHAT!
Oh and I also have a private Facebook group you can join and ask questions and my awesome members and I will answer :) JOIN THE GROUP
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