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

how to choose a good business name

how to choose a good business name 3

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

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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) –

How to choose a good business name 2

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 Creatr 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 🙂

Author

Will Mitchell

Will Mitchell is a serial entrepreneur and Founder of StartupBros. You can learn more about him at the StartupBros About Page. If you have any questions or comments for him, just send an email or leave a comment!

  • Tay DAVID says:

    Good and helpful. Thanks

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    Any suggestions for a healthy chocolate bar/buttons

  • Sonia stewart says:

    what would be a good name for a buying and selling biscuit
    and cheap vacation on a Caribbean island

  • Kavitha.k says:

    Hi
    This s kavitha I am from bangalore I want to put excellent name for our paper plate company I need one name help Urswick sir

    Thank you sir

  • Rooma says:

    I want to give name to new government services office in dubai …..my name Rooma. Husband Nisar and sons Talha Taha and Yaseen

  • JAYAKRISHNAN says:

    hai,
    Iam jk from kerala I want to put excellent name for our new adhesive manufacturing company I need one name help .

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  • Madhur Sorout says:

    I want a name for my company.
    It is a group of organizations namely –
    PokeClub (Pokemon Club)
    DisClub (Disney Club)
    Detective Club
    Edu Org (Education Organization)
    Our company technologies

  • Hello.Thiss article was extremely interesting, especially because
    I waas searching for thoughts on this subject last Wednesday.

  • Darci says:

    Interesting read, I re-designed my blog and then the serps took a huge
    fall
    Posted this to my Twitter, very good!

  • Hi pls suggest me perfect name for business of CD and computer job work .suggest me perfect name for my shop

    • Joel Oquendo says:

      Try and let your potential customers decide your name for you. If you think of 5 different names you like, you can run traffic to a poll and see which name sticks!

  • Naana says:

    I need a very unique name for a company that will be doing General supplies

    • Joel Oquendo says:

      Sometimes it might be easier to come up with a name if you choose to sell something a little more specific

  • […] Neil Patel * StartUp Bros * Search Engine […]

  • qwe says:

    Startupbros… well that’s a shitty domain…

  • £2 plus postage and packing.

  • Really!! Name selection is an overwhelming and frustrating experience. But it is the great information shared by you, will make the name selection process easier for the people thinking about starting a new business.

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  • Cally says:

    I loved this article! But I find it hard to find information on more “private-based” businesses. For example, the business that I am currently starting is a forensic Science lab. We will not be offering a lot of services to the public but it’s important that we have a website for information that the public has a right to know, I.e. Our scientific processes etc.

    I was being shortsighted and named the LLC after my dog…she’s a basset hound…anyway, it’s Layla Moore Laboratories LLC and while we can file a DBA, everyone seems to kind of hate it, (I love it though). How would you go about making a domain name for this? I want to do this right I’m just worried I’ll get it wrong. :/

    • Clare the bear says:

      Don’t worry, Ms/Mrs Cally! I think Layla Moore Laboratories is a great name, it sounds formal, sensible, yet not boring. If I were you, I would go for something that was similar to the name after your lovely basset hound dog. By the way, I am so sorry but what is a LLC and a DBA? I am only nine and am helping my dad (or trying to) with his hard business, and I am too dumb to yet have learned that. Sorry! :/ Anyways, Ms/Mrs Cally you should be proud of your great businesses and go with a name that you think suits the business, is maybe unique, or somehow special. I hope this was helpful! *^^*

  • Shashidar says:

    Hai,
    I am Shashidar from Hyderabad.I want to put a excellent name to our new company.

  • Noor says:

    New name shold be genaral for all buisness.

  • Vera Kitunga says:

    Thank you so much for your article. I want to open a business selling shoes , clothers, especially for ladies. Kindly advice.

    My name is Vera and my husband is Mugisha

    • Clare the bear says:

      Hello Mrs. Vera! A ladies’ clothing and shoe store sounds wonderful. I personally think it sort of depends what sort of fashion you would like to do, so old school clothing should be something maybe simple, goth or pop clothing being wild or unique, etc. I hope this advice helped. Good luck with your store! *^^*

    • 92ideas says:

      VeraClothing can be a good name or VarashaClothing

  • gaurav sharma says:

    hello plz me my it company name

  • Esimaje Sandra Anireju says:

    I want to open a cake and cooking business but I don’t know any name to give please help

  • Matiullah says:

    Hi
    I want to start export and imprt busines i need uniqe name for my company start by A

  • […] bisa menggunakan perusahaan konsultan bisnis untuk membantu Anda memutuskan sebuah nama untuk bisnis Anda, tapi Anda juga bisa melakukannya sendiri. Tidak diragukan lagi Anda akan menghabiskan berjam-jam […]

  • Paul says:

    Hi Guys, Racking my brains for a cool new business name that I am about to go and venture in to. The business is going to be predominately for dog walking / pet sitting. Thoughts please.

    TIA

  • […] Many people struggle to find a business name they are happy with and it certainly delays the start of the business. https://startupbros.com/how-to-pick-the-perfect-name-for-your-business-or-startup/ […]

  • Whitney says:

    This is great, thank you! And i think startupbros won because its relateable. Thats who your target audience is. Incomelabs is catchy but it lacks differentiation and doesnt relate to anyone personally. I could be wrong but thats why i think it won.

  • RETHEESH RAVINDRAN says:

    Want to name my new construction company with stylish meaningful name

  • Charity says:

    I want to open a. Clothes shop and I want a good combination of Charity and Daisy

  • victoria obeng says:

    Hi
    This is victoria from Ghana i want an attracting name for my savings and loans company.

  • Julie pearl says:

    Hi my real name is julie pearl and my partner name is joven.. i want to give my store a name. Can you help me?Please reply. Asap. Thank you

  • Saj says:

    Eny suggestion shirt and tshirt brand name?

  • Brandon says:

    With just a yes or a no respons, what does everyone think of “Super Shady Dog Grooming”

  • sharon says:

    Hi there. I need a name for cpr trainining…. maybe using Swanson or a combination of Leigh, Nicole and Taryn
    Thanks

  • DB SINGH says:

    Give your suggestions for garments business for online or offline for
    My son’s name is khushansh and vedansh

  • sanjeev says:

    Please suggest me good firms name of Housekeeping Services in India, it should be meaning full name and that would be great if this can match with my sons name Yohansh & Aryansh

  • Pekka L says:

    I need name for new minihouse company… Any idea?

  • […] that your business name has an impact on how the brand is perceived, which brings us back to the points of consistency and […]

  • Mercedes says:

    Hello everyone, I am hoping you will all be able to help me out here. I am an event planner starting my own business. My name is Mercedes Brown, soon to be Mercedes Randeraad. I have recently given birth to a beautiful girl Olivia. Trying to decide on what to call my event planning company. Ideally something that relates to all and that people will take seriously. I will be focussing mainly on Weddings, Showers, Birthdays, and Retirement parties. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.
    So far I have come up with Country Aisle Planning.
    Thank you in advance for your help!

  • Vinoda says:

    Hi There,

    Planning to start up Health insurance data collection business for now and planning to add Ad-operations as well. now searching for a best name to be registered, kindly help

    Thanks,
    Vinoda

  • sandra says:

    I’m a network marketing entrepreneur, i help people generate extra income for their future, my name is sandra ! what should my logo name be how does successful dreams with sandra sound ?

  • MD. Afzal says:

    Sir i am going to start a company for (IT solutions) give your some sugesstion about this

  • The Kindle e-book Choosing a Winning Business Name may help some of the people who have already commented and are looking for a way of coming up with a good and catchy name.

    • Mohnish says:

      Hi I am starting new company for catering marketing weeding planner and job placement also so just want give one unique name plz suggest me Thanx

  • Neetu says:

    Need a good brand name for Namkeen, Papad.. plz suggest

  • […] The original article was written by StartUp Bros. https://startupbros.com/how-to-pick-the-perfect-name-for-your-business-or-startup/ […]

  • Aditya says:

    i want a new name for my new firm. we are selling bedsheets online.

  • | 20|30 says:

    […] purpose to mind while still being playful and off-center. There are plenty of resources online on how to come up with a good name, and even some online name […]

  • madrid fotolela says:

    Hi,i want to open a company to sell Brazilian hair and clothing, my name is Madrid and my two daughters name are ndapewa and grace. Any suggestion please.

    • obrifor says:

      Hi Madrid fotolela having the right business name for brazillian hair company is the right step to take as the right name will give it an identity which will make your business thrive among its counterpert..

  • Madilyn Abbie says:

    I also use LenDomains – it works really well and you can find some cool pieces there. Another interesting thing to use when you run out of ideas