Call us at (866) 642-6669
Join our next live webinar

How To Pick The Perfect Name For Your Business or Startup

Browsing around /r/Entrepreneur and other entrepreneur communities I see that one roadblock many new entrepreneurs run into is picking a great name for their business.

How to pick a good business name howtogoodbusinessname1


Name selection is often an overwhelming, frustrating, and exhausting experience.

Featured – Download The Ultimate Guide To Picking Your Perfect Business Name

I can remember how stressful the naming process was for me when launching my first couple of projects. It would start off fun and loose for the first couple of names, but I would quickly become trapped in a mind numbing list of gibberish.

Several hours into it, I could feel my standards dropping and eventually lost all confidence in my ability to even judge the names I was coming up with. That was usually the point where I would put up a desperation post on some forums like this (or the ones you see above) –


And while I think it’s a good idea to ask somebody but yourself, this isn’t the best way to come up with a good name. Not by a long shot.

What I always ended up with were names that I settled for. Terrible names that doomed my projects before they had even started.

And that’s not what I want for you…

So here is the method I have developed over the years to avoid the naming labyrinth and picking the perfect name for your business.

 Step 1 – Know What Makes a Good Name

Most people already know intuitively what makes a good business name, so in the spirit of brevity I won’t go in too much detail here.

If you are over-thinking things and want some direction, check out this article for an awesome breakdown of what makes a good name.

Then come back here, because this guide picks up where that one ends…

Step 2 – Brainstorm a List of Names

Once you are confident you’d know a good name if you saw one, you need to come up with a few keywords to get you started.

You probably already have a few in mind. If you don’t, you should probably go back to the last step.

If you’re still lost, look for successful competitors and rapid-growth companies and use them for inspiration.

Huge time saver – Bust-A-Name

Open up Bust-A-Name (the best tool there is for brainstorming domain names) and enter in your initial keyword ideas. I’ll be using StartupBros as the example in this post, since we did use this method to decide on that name (StartupBros was originally going to be IncomeLabs).

So your initial list should look something like this –

Initial Keyword List

As you can see, Bust-A-Name checks all possible combinations of the keywords you put in and gives you the available domains containing those.

Though we just started the naming process, there are already a few good names on the board that I would save. SmartIncomeLabs, StartupIncome, and IncomeBros are all decent names already on the board (and of course StartupBros would have been on this board if it were available).

Add onto initial keyword list

Once you have some initial keywords on the board, you’ll want to expand on those ideas to come up with synonyms/similar keywords.

Bust-A-Name has a feature that will help you with this a little bit –

Keyword Synonyms

Mmm – Synonyms…

I also use LeanDomainSearch at this point to expand on ideas and get some ideas going –

lean domain search

Those are really the only two sites I use to come up with keywords. I sometimes also use Thesaurus, but even that is rare.

At this point, you should have a pretty decent amount of name combinations to look through.

Step 3 – Narrow It Down to a Few Decent Names

Now the mind-numbing part of it all – combing through the list of names.

Try to avoid the temptation to get caught up in this stage. Every startup name will have pros and cons to varying degrees.

Bust-A-Name will save you a huge amount of time by only showing you name combinations with available domain names. All you have to do is scroll through and pick the ones you like.

I usually have over 500 names to go through. You’ll probably end up around there.

90% of the names Bust-A-Name generates will be duds, you’re panning for the gold in them…

There is no real process at this point to what names you should be picking – just save the ones that sound decent.

Try to find 25 out of them that you think are decent, then whittle those down to 15…

Then 10…

Then 5…

Then move onto the next step.

Step 4 – Find Out Which One Is Perfect

Now my favorite part – we test to see which name is the best!

This is where everybody screws up…

It seems everybody thinks they should get their naming advice from friends, family, and Facebook friends – I suspect out of desperation.

That is a stupid thing to do.

Ask the audience

I would much rather A/B test my possible business names to find out exactly how much more or less receptive my target audience would be with each name.

I use the same method highlighted in 3 Steps to Validate Your Business Idea For FREE…almost

  • Head over to Unbounce(I now use and would recommend LeadPages for this) and sign up for a Free Trial account.
  • Make an identical landing page for each possible name (you can just duplicate your first page in unbounce)
  • Make a quick logo for each possible name with and put one on each landing page (don’t forget to publish your page after you’re done!
  • Run traffic to your landing page.

Your landing pages should look something like this –

landing page

Original StartupBros Landing Page

Landing Page

One of four variant landing pages


Make sure the traffic you are running to these pages is targeted. I’d recommend Facebook Ads for this – check out this article for a great breakdown on how to target the correct people.

Step 5 – Domination

After a few days and $50-100, you’ll end up with something like this in Unbounce –

Business Name Test

StartupBros wins!

As you can see, the StartupBros name performed 13% better than our original name idea, IncomeLabs.

Thinking about what that 13% means completely baffles me, and I would love to hear your opinions on it.

Does that mean that everything we do at StartupBros will grow 13% faster and perform 13% better than if we were doing it under IncomeLabs?

I suppose there is no way to know for sure…

But what I do know for sure, is that our target market responded better to the StartupBros name more than any other name we could come up with – and that’s why we chose it.

And I wouldn’t have it any other way 🙂

We read and reply to every one!
  • Pingback: How To Pick The Perfect Name For Your Business or Startup | Online Marketing Hub |

  • Pingback: How To Pick The Perfect Name For Your Business or Startup | Greg Beazley |

  • Pingback: How To Pick The Perfect Name For Your Business or Startup « Greg Beazley’s Blog()

  • Pingback: 6 Traits You'll Find in Every Successful Entrepreneur – StartupBros()

  • Pingback: Blog de Jean-Christophe Lavocat » 30DSTART – Day 4 – Startup Name()

  • I’m agree with your opening words that finding a good name for startup is stressful and no doubt even the experienced and old players face it again and again.

  • Ben

    Some good points here. A bad name can spell disaster for a company so it’s important to get it right straightaway.

    • Definitely with you there Ben – a name doesn’t have to be perfect, but it does need to be damn good.

  • Pingback: Playin' The Name Game? 9 Tips for Naming Your Business()

  • noe

    would i have any problems if i add ” .COM ” to my business name ? Would i need to give the ” .COM ” $ for adding it to the business name ?

    • If you mean ‘add it to your business name’ as in when you tell people about it, on your cards, as the title to your Facebook Page – In most cases no. There are some businesses this works with, but it will make most brands look cheap these days. You don’t see Google, Amazon, Facebook, etc calling themselves ‘Google dot com’…

      If you mean legally, it doesn’t make much of a difference. We’re legally StartupBros LLC, I don’t think you need to put the .com on there.

  • On a more logistical note, make sure you can trademark the name and if so, that you are able to purchase a good domain for your startup.

  • Mike

    One effective branding technique for startups is to review BrandStarters ( ) or similar brandable domain marketplaces to locate a name. This approach helps to know that the name will ultimately be available for purchase at a known cost rather than engaging in frustrating, unsolicited negotiations with indifferent owners. Even if you do not purchase a name, you may wind up generating some great ideas through the process of window shopping.

  • Pingback: Cómo elegir el mejor nombre para tu startup - Carlos R Cobian()

  • Pingback: Cómo elegir el mejor nombre para tu startup | Yasta()

  • Siddharth Nahar

    Hey we are planning for rebranding and came across your article…I think this is a perfect guide unless it helps me…because the process is too lengthy for me at this time as I have been in the process from last two months and have been scratching my head…!!

  • Mo

    Did you do the testing before you launched your full site? We’re torn between 2 really great names for a web app. One is a descriptive straight forward of what we offer, 3 syllables & its a dot com. The other is a .co but the name is 1 syllable word that uniquely says what we do like the word “twitter” does for twitter. I own the domains for both. Do I launch the app first with 2 different urls/landing pages or do I do this with pre-launch landing pages? Don’t want to put out too much information on functionality before we launch.

  • I’m also in the process of rebranding. I really don’t like researching names. This article helps to take some of the pain out of the process.

  • Garnet

    My wife won’t be happy I read this – fixing the garage door just became a secondary project for this weekend!

  • Johnnie

    Absolutely ingenious methods you have here on the site, Will! Do you think hiring a designer full-time is good later down the timeline?

  • Elisa

    Would you use Leadpages built-in A/B testing feature or use it in conjunction with Visual Website Optimizer?

  • Angel Ored

    A friend just sent me this post, and I have to say it’s one of the more interesting branding methods I’ve seen to date. I’ve signed up to check out some of your eBooks and things of that nature, and it all looks top notch.


  • Brigette

    Damn, too bad I’ve already set my name in stone! I have it on my business cards, invoices, and website… Oh well, next time 🙂

  • I believe that shorter names are most of the times better than names that describe your industry.With the right company name , you can build a strong brand like Ikea, Nike e.t.c.I have some examples on my website if someone is interesting to see.

  • Anthony

    “I believe that shorter names are most of the times better than names that describe your industry”
    Says the one whose company name is called a lengthy and generic “Buy a company name”

  • Those are all good in the hood but what about places that sell already registered names (like where they come with a logo? I see a lot of great names here with exorbitant prices. Although high in price I see the merit in most of them and looks like quite a few get sold. I’ve tried several of the options you supplied here but for some reason nothing I am generating is worthwhile. And how do you fall in love with a name that you can find available for registration? Wouldn’t it be registered if it was so good? I am conflicted but more frustrated with finding great domains.

    • I probably wouldn’g go the brandroot route, your business’s image probably could use a personal touch.

      There are an infinite amount of great business names out there – you just got to put work into making them. Tommy Coffee isn’t bad at all!

      A lot of time the name is only awesome after the branding and product. Feel free to email if you need more help!

      • Hi Kyle,

        Thank you for your reply. I actually just found a name there I am very happy with. A name I know would have been impossible to find available for registration. They r super helpful their too. I would recommend them as an additional resource to your list above. I got the domain on the same day I purchased. TBH the others produced little results for me but thank you for the article. It did ultimately lead me to this name I am excited to get developed!

  • You need to take part in a contest for one of the best blogs online.
    I am going to recoimmend this web site!

  • Pingback: The Coaching Identity | CCC Blog()

  • Pingback: Moon And Owl Marketing A Business Name for Your Start-Up | Moon And Owl Marketing()

  • Good day! Would you mind if I share your blog with my facebook group?
    There’s a lot of folks that I think would really enjoy your content.
    Please let me know. Cheers

  • Will,
    Adding a negative term in the startup name also leads to a negative impact on the audience. We should always avoid punctuation and Negative terms in a startup name. Do you think the same way?

  • RiZvi

    Hi Mitchell, great post! thnx for sharing.

  • Nice article.

  • Pam

    Hi Will,
    I was hoping to pry your brain. Your article was helpful but I have a few questions. My partner and I are looking to open a finance and legal documents preparation company. We are preparing a business plan. Do you suggest using thus method just to find internet domain names or would this method also work for finding an overall business name for an actual location/office?

  • Ant

    Just go to For a fee, theyll broadcast your request to social media in a contest. You pick you business name, the winner who submitted it gets money – win/win

  • sk

    hello..i want to create a compan for my business. my work is forex service,mobile recharge,DTH recharge, freelancer work and data entry. i provide all this kind of service online. plz suggest me a perfect domain name that shoud be company name also.

  • glitch

    Thanks you so much for this detailed article, StartupBros!
    After a month of driving myself crazy, I was able to finish my search for the right domain name. By keeping my eye on the important points highlighted in your article and using the helpful tools suggested, I am happy to say I bought my domain name today.

  • David Shaw

    Hello, I have searched for the last couple of days and can not find an answer to my question. I came across your site and found it interesting read with great information.
    We are in the process of inventing a product. We have secured a domain name and email addresses for the product. In the near future we are looking to create an LLC.
    My question to you is should the name of the LLC match the product name or should we change the name of the LLC to something creative or more broad in case the future of the product changes or we add different products?


  • Rakesh

    Hello, I have searched for the last couple of days and can not find a name to my companyt. I came across your site and found it interesting read with great information.
    We are in the process of manufacturing electrical Control Panels.

    My question to u is Please give a short and smart name


  • Pingback: 13 Things You Really Need Before Starting a Business | daily sandals()

  • vivek panchal

    Hey i am starting a new bussines . Which is related with recruitment services. So can you guyes suggest me any name for my company

  • Susan li

    Interesting article. I got my name created by a young naming agency Highly recommend them!

  • danish

    Any one please suggest me a best name for my gloves company my favourite names are (Tillman,midas,hillbro,long view) but that also registered names please suggest me like that names’

  • John

    Interesting infos Mitchell – thanks!

  • Mic

    Hi I have online advertising website need a perfect name for it.

  • Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact used to be a
    enjoyment account it. Look complicated to more brought agreeable from you!
    By the way, how can we communicate?

  • @Will

    The hardest is the will to begin and to start your own business.

    Hope your ideas will work…


  • Pingback: The Myths about Naming your Brand()

  • Michael

    Hi There! I’m following the steps in this post to A/B test a few names for my startup, it’s been super helpful so far! I’m now at step 4 but wondering if I need to actually buy each domain name in order to test them out? Because right now I’m looking at $171 for 5 (GoDaddy price), and you mention an estimate of $50-100 after the facebook ads and all. Am I missing something?

  • starting and selecting best name for a bussiness is not a easy thing you have wait until that u understand all the thing you want i have some ideas for some starting busiines and tips that help people for selecting names

  • The first important thing is to pick a good name for business after starting up that it may affect the business strategy.

  • Friends,

    I want to get a name for 3 star hotel that should a french tone………… Please suggest me one…………also u can combine with place……… Place name is CALICUT………..Try to start the name with HOTEL word……Waiting for ur kind reply, i will forward you some names, if u couldnt select one, please find one……..
    Hotel Duke’s Mansion
    Tranquil Bliss Regency
    Lord’s Oak Residency
    Hotel Light Ribbon
    Hotel Southern Sublime
    Hotel Zamorin’s Mansion
    Hotel Kalifo
    Hotel Qaliqut
    Calico Cloth Regency
    Hotel Calico Caliyan

  • Tim

    When setting up the page variants in unbounce, do you set the weight equally for all the pages you want to test (variants of different business names)? Or test one page at a time with 100% weight?


  • Charlotte Buffett

    I am testing 7 different potential business names using Unbounce (I chose them over Lead Pages because they have a 30 day free trail). I have published each of the pages and I am wondering if there is anything I should do to drive traffic to the sites or am I supposed to just leave them and wait to see which business name does the best.

  • Jeremy

    I changed my small business name and logo several times before landing on Spacer Creative (though it was decently easy for me as I am a graphic designer). Now I’ve actually gotten quite a few compliments on the name! Though I wonder if having it tested first would have made me reconsider..

  • Chris

    J&DS Engine Works

  • handsomerandyblackladbrad1953

    I want to start a brand name which refers to us 55+ lads.Any ideas for such an appellation?

    • Jen


  • Declan

    Interesting and helpful.. Thanks!

  • irfanmahmood

    this is boring and not helpful

  • Greg

    Hi! This is Greg from OneClickName. OneClickName is a new marketplace where entrepreneurs can buy and sell premium domain names. We’ve got a powerful semantic engine so it’s easy to fing great names. People looking for creative names should really give it a try. Thanks!

  • Siddharth Mehta

    Any good name suggestion for a new IT Technologies startup? Focusing providing solutions and services.

    • Absallam


    • Absallam

      Solved Solutions

  • Hiral Pandya

    A perfect name for a company leads with photography, video, editing & all other event capturing equipments…..

    • absallam

      Spectrum Concept

  • noriii

    Any good names for clothing business?

  • titi

    i need a perfect name for my company
    its about beauty products

    • Absallam




  • Samin Mohebbi

    Any idea for a investment consultant business name?

    • Rhiannen Kirkland-Cox

      Try Illerteration, Mohebbi Money Management!

  • Ekezie c.frank

    I need a perfect name for my beer parlour business

    • Rhiannen Kirkland-Cox

      Ginger’s Ale






  • fakhar

    Any name suggestion for the Sports and Accessories (leather wallets and sports wears and boxing gloves and printed and Sublimated shirts and shorts)

  • lavakumar reddy

    iam going to start a advertisement company
    so i need perfect name for that kindly help me


    Hi I really need a perfect name for my Import and export company

Lets Get Personal

Sign up for your weekly dose of value-packed actionable content for Internet Entrepreneurs...