How to name your business - top 4 tips
1. Check the market
Research your competitors to see what types of name they tend to go for, and consider doing the opposite.
If they all have traditional names, then go modern …or vice versa. To stand out and get found online, don’t use generic words in your name.
2. Try to be evocative, not descriptive
Don’t try to describe your business literally and accurately through your company name.
Many successful brands have names that hint at what they do, or send subtle messages about how they do it. They have names, not descriptive labels.
3. Be memorable, not safe
Your name is usually the first thing a customer sees or hears, so don’t waste the opportunity.
An unusual or unconventional name will stand out and be remembered. A bland, boring name won’t.
4. Be brave, don’t compromise
Don’t just add words to a common name (e.g. ‘Athena Consultancy Services’) – this will make your business forgettable, and invisible online.
Safe, generic sounding names aren’t catchy, memorable …or brandable. Be bold. Be creative.
What makes a unique company name idea?
Several factors go into making a successful business name, and ideally a name should contain all or most of these qualities:
Shorter business names, and names that are easy to spell and say, are easy to remember.
Unique, distinctive names get noticed and get found online. Names that follow the herd risk getting ignored.
Evocative names make a connection with customers on a human level - and help to build brand engagement.
A perfect .com domain is essential for building a brand with long term value.
Find a catchy business name for your new venture
So if you have a great business idea or have ambitious plans to develop your company – but have found it difficult to find the right name – then you’ve come to the right place. At Novanym you’ll find hundreds of best-in-class name ideas for every business sector.
And, vitally, every single Novanym name comes with a no-compromise .com domain, and a logo design. Start browsing for your brilliant new business name now.
A Guide To Naming Your Company
1. Research your competitors
Making a list of competitors will help you see what names work (and don’t work) in your marketplace – and help you avoid accidentally copying a competitor’s company name.
2. Brainstorm ideas
Write lists of words and their synonyms that are relevant to your business and sector. Try combining these words to create original compound or portmanteau words, or play with spellings.
3. Two heads (or more) are better than one
Brainstorming on your own is OK, but it’s fun to share the challenge. Get ideas from a friend, ideally someone creative who is good with words.
4. Try a company name generator
A name generator is a great tool for kickstarting ideas. A high quality name generator will provide inspiration, even if you don’t find exactly the right name.
5. Brief a business naming agency
A naming agency can come up with ideas, do the research, and check for trademarks and domain availability. There’s no guarantee, but if you have the time and budget, an agency is worth considering.
6. Check domain availability
Every business needs a website, and you’ll really want to own a .com domain. But most .com domains are already taken. Company naming can be frustrating!
7. Choose a brandable domain name
To solve the problem of getting a great quality .com domain for your business, you can buy a domain ‘off the shelf’ – known as a brandable domain.
8. Build a shortlist
As you go through the above steps you’ll build a list of names that are soon whittled down to a shortlist. Listen to your instincts: names that just ‘feel right’ are often the ones that turn out to be the right decision.
9. Check for trademarks
Most people won’t need to trademark their company name, but it’s still good to do a trademark check, to avoid treading on the toes of an existing business in your sector.
How Novanym’s creative business name generator works
Novanym’s company name generator combines a clever systems algorithm with human branding expertise to generate distinctive and evocative business names – with .com domains that make them brandable.
Unique business names created by branding experts
We know a good name when we see it. So when we generate a business name it’s carefully designed to be a brand name - not just a set of letters combined by a spreadsheet, and not just random keywords sandwiched together.
Choosing a new business name: Expert Tips
1. The shorter the better
Short names are good, but length is more to do with syllables than the number of letters.
Expert Tip: A maximum of three syllables is best.
2. Keep it simple
Names should be easy to read, pronounce and spell. That way they sound good and get remembered.
Expert Tip: Say the name out loud.
3. Don’t be too weird
Unique spellings are great, but you should still obey the basic rules of language and grammar.
Expert Tip: Break the rules, but only gently
4. Focus on credibility
Names should always be business-like. Not everyone shares the same sense of humour, or understands puns or word play.
Expert Tip: Don’t try to be funny
5. Be open to interpretation
Great names are not literal or descriptive. You may regret being overly specific when your business changes in the future.
Expert Tip: Don’t limit your options
6. Can you own the .com?
Don't add words or hyphens or use obscure domain endings. An exact-match .com domain protects a brand, and gives it credibility.
Expert Tip: Don’t compromise on the domain
7. Check for namesakes
Do some basic online checks. Your name doesn’t need to be totally unique, but you need to make sure it's not used by a competitor.
Expert Tip: Check for registered trademarks
Read More About Naming Your Business
Frequently asked questions
All you have to do is enter a single keyword, choose your industry and choose the style of name that you’re looking for. That’s it. We'll generate some great name options for you. Each name is available to buy today with the exact-match .com domain that’s an essential element in building and protecting your brand.
If you’re trying to pick a great business name from a shortlist, or trying to come up with a name form scratch, you might find this checklist useful:
10 qualities of a great business name
1. It’s got an exact match .com
There’s no two ways about it - a .com domain shows you mean business. It gives your business credibility and authority, and it protects your brand name. Can you think of a major brand that doesn’t have a .com domain? Thought not.
2. It’s short and sweet
Short is good, but it’s not just about character count - it's more to do with syllables. A name shoud be quick and easy to say, and easy spell too.
3. It passes the phone test
If the pronunciation isn't obvious, people will struggle to remember your name or pass it on. And if it's awkward, you'll soon get fed-up repeating it 20 times a day when you answer the phone.
4. It’s distinctive, not weird
Names that break spelling rules are perfectly OK if it’s done with care. But if your brand name is too strange, it becomes distracting. And if customers can't spell your name, they can't search for it online.
5. It has credibility
If you want to be taken seriously, avoid puns and humour. If your business is all about fun - go for it!
6. It’s not a set of initials or an acronym
Although many businesses are just initials, it’s not a great place to start. Initials are anonymous, bland and confusing.
7. If it's invented, is it safe?
Coining entirely new words is full of branding potential …but make sure you check for ambiguity and translation risks (the internet is full of names that seemed a good idea in English, but were hilariously obscene in Spanish or French).
8. It’s suggestive not descriptive
You can't build a brand out of a purely descriptive name - but hinting at the nature of your business is a good idea. If you choose with care, your name can give your target customers an idea about what your business does, its strengths or its benefits.
9. It’s ownable, even if it’s not unique
It’s very rare indeed to find a name that’s not used by someone somehwere in the world. It’s a big place - and we only have 26 letters to choose from. Do some basic online checks to make sure your name is not used by a competitor. And check for registered trademarks in your country or region. But don’t obsess about uniqueness. If you’ve got the .com domain, you’re the only one that matters.
10. It doesn’t paint you into a corner
A good name is name is open to interpretation and doesn’t limit your options. Even if you're fully focused on the here and now, you may regret being overly specific when you want to develop or expand your business later.
In an ideal world, you would come up with a business name yourself. But it’s not easy. Especially when you know you want to have a no-compromise .com domain.
You’re focused on your business and you have big plans - you don’t want to delay things because you don’t have a name.
Buying a brand name solves this problem - fast.
By choosing from a selection of names that have been developed by branding experts, you know that the name has the qualities that make an effective business brand name. And you only pay for a name when you know you like it.
And if you buy a name from Novanym you’ll also know that it comes with the perfect .com domain that turns a good business name into a great brand name.
1. Using a .com address tells people that you mean business. All serious businesses use the .com domain. It adds credibility and authority from Day One.
2. Owning the exact match .com can put your mind at rest - it shows that no major-player competitor is using your name, and it’s a great indication that your ideal name isn’t ubiquitous.
3. Owning the .com protects your brand name. No major business is going to use your name in the future, because they can’t own the .com domain.
4. Adding extra words or hyphens to your brand name to create a compromised web address confuses your branding. Your brand name should be the name your customers use when they think or talk about you. Adding a .com to your name doesn’t alter that.
5. It’s the world’s default. The .com domain has been around for over 30 years, so everyone recognises it as a web address.
6. Using a .com address means that your customers and potential customers don’t have anything else to remember. They remember your name, so they’ll remember your web and email addresses, too.
7. It’s global and universal. If your business deals with customers outside of your home country, or might do in the future, operating with a country-specific address could be confusing and limiting.