7 Attributes of a Great Company Name
There are a few characteristics that set apart good business names from the bad. So, what are some of the factors that make it easy to spot a great company name? Find out below.
1. It's descriptive.
Your business name is opportune real estate for a mini elevator pitch before you even speak to a prospect.
To brainstorm a descriptive company name, consider stating what you do and how in a few words. Then, pare it down to the essential words or phrases. See how those look on screen and sound out loud.
Example: Measured Results Marketing
If you don't measure your marketing and sales efforts, do they really matter? Measured Results Marketing makes its value clear with a descriptive company name.
The company helps sales and marketing teams establish effective metrics and reporting systems, leveraging operational infrastructure to drive revenue and help you meet goals. The name reflects what the team does. This gives prospects confidence there will be no gray or unmeasured area in the client’s work.
2. It reflects your mission or values.
Your brand is so much more than a logo. Your company name can broadcast not only what you do but also why it matters.
What's one thing every sales and marketing professional wants? To have an impact on their business and their customers.
IMPACT is an award-winning agency that helps marketers and salespeople achieve their goals "and look like a rockstar in the process." This business name reflects that mission and clearly states that it exists to make you look good at work.
3. It takes into account what your prospects are searching for.
Your name can make your business relevant for non-branded search queries. This could give you an edge when attempting to rank on search engines for your highest-value keyword.
Example: Flawless Inbound
If you're Googling agencies to help you implement an inbound sales and marketing strategy, you'll likely search "top inbound agencies" or "great inbound."
When a company called "Flawless Inbound" populates on your search page, it'll likely grab your attention. Working keywords your user might be searching for into your title is a smart way to stand out.
4. It's simple.
You want prospects to remember and recognize your brand. To help in this effort, your business name should be simple and easy to spell, pronounce, and recall. This will ensure that no one gets frustrated typing your name or saying it aloud to devices like Alexa.
You may have heard email automation being referred to as "drip sequences" or "drip campaigns." These automated emails are dripped out one at a time.
The company Drip took this word associated with their product — one that's only one syllable and only four letters — and made it their identity
5. It's fun or clever.
One way to make sure your business gets remembered is by being witty. Jokes, puns, and wordplay are all ways to make your prospects chuckle at your business name and get it stuck in their heads.
Influence always requires a bit of spin, right? This clever play on words sets this inbound marketing agency apart. It's catchy, witty, and memorable — all important elements of a strong business name.
6. It demonstrates the value you provide customers.
One marketing tip is to position your business as a problem solver rather than a product seller. You can start that positioning with your business name.
Example: Search & Be Found
Every company in the digital age wants one thing: to be found when their customer or prospect searches for them. Search & Be Found stated the benefit of using the agency in the title of its business.
Work with Search & Be Found and ... be found by more customers.
7. It's unique.
The last thing you want to do is decide on a business name and run into trouble securing its domain and other branding assets — especially if these assets are already taken. Or, worse, you can run into legal trouble for trademark infringement.
Plus, you don't want to cause confusion when prospects land on your website but are looking for the other company (or vice versa).
Example: Zoom LiveTrak vs. Zoom.us
I was once in a podcasting group where someone was asking questions about "recording on Zoom." I thought the individual was referring to Zoom.us, the video conferencing platform, but he was actually talking about Zoom LiveTrak, the audio mixer.
This is a simple mix-up that didn't result in any harm to either company. A more severe issue, however, is possible with more egregious naming errors than the one in this scenario.
This can be avoided by ensuring the business name is not trademarked or taken.
Now that you’ve learned the attributes of a good business name, let’s learn the steps you need to take to name your business.
How to Name a Business
1. Understand your business.
Before deciding on a name, you should have a clear idea of your business's mission, goals, target audience, and value proposition. If you've already created your business plan, this will be a great resource for you to review.
You should be able to answer the following questions:
- What does your business stand for?
- What product/service are you selling?
- Who is your target audience?
2. Think of descriptive keywords.
Once you know the core focus of your business, take some time to brainstorm keywords that describe your business. With a few descriptors of your business and brand, you'll be able to identify the ones that reflect the image you'd like to create.
For example, if you're starting a photography business, words like "camera," "snap," "shoot," "capture," and "lens" are all good starting points for your business name.
3. Consider SEO in the naming process.
Part of a good name is the ability to get found by potential prospects. For this reason, consider how well your name can position you on search engines.
Consider the following things as you make this evaluation.
One strategy is to name a business based on a highly searched keyword to make the business relevant for that keyword. For example, 24 Hour Fitness may appear when someone searches for their brand and when someone searches for any gym that's open around the clock.
You don't want to choose a name in which the SERPs (search engine results pages) are too heavy with competition.
For example, let's say you chose "Five Star Restaurant" as a name for your new establishment. You later notice the SERP for this keyword is dominated by review sites like Yelp and local newspaper columns.
In this case, you may not get enough authority to compete, resulting in you not being found even when prospects are actively searching for you.
When thinking through your business name, make sure it matches search intent. For example, naming a tax business "Maximize Your Refund, Inc." may not be a good idea. Searchers looking for "maximize my refund" aren't searching for a business but rather strategies.
You can evaluate your names based on these three considerations using a combination of manual Google searching and SEO tools such as Ahrefs and SEMrush.
4. Choose a name style.
How do you plan to create a unique name? You can use the keywords in your business name.
Here are a few other naming options to consider:
- Include the names of the company founders.
- Use a single word.
- Change, add, or remove letters from keywords.
- Combine two or more words.
- Use a metaphor.
- Create an acronym.
5. Tell a story.
After you've settled on an idea, think about the thoughts and emotions you want the name to evoke. If it doesn't align with the mission and value proposition of your business, you’ll need to return to the drawing board.
Make sure reflects the story you want to tell customers.
6. Ensure the business name is not trademarked.
If another organization has trademarked a name, you risk having legal action taken against your business if you violate that trademark. If you're in the U.S., you can search the United States Patent and Trademark Office database for your potential business name to ensure that there isn't an existing trademark for it.
7. Ensure the business name is not otherwise taken.
If there's no trademark, a business name is fair game. However, that doesn't mean there are no other businesses operating under the name you want.
The best business names are unique so that you can avoid confusion. You may want to check your state's Secretary of State entity filings and DBAs for other businesses operating under the name. Each state will have a different process for this.
It's also good practice to run a Google search for your desired name to see what's out there. This can also alert you to existing organizations that have similar names.
8. Verify that the .com domain name and social media handles are available.
You can verify domain name availability by searching on a domain registrar such as GoDaddy or Namecheap.
If a .com domain name is not available or if it is too expensive, weigh your options between choosing a different name or going with a less desirable top-level domain (TLD). While other TLDs are fine, .com remains the most widely used and is the easiest to remember.
In addition, it would be a pain to settle on a name only to find out that your social media handles are taken. Having variation between social media handles could confuse prospects, so it's best to avoid this where possible.
One easy way to verify the availability of social media handles is by using a tool such as Namechk, which checks multiple platforms with a single search.
9. Register your business name.
Once you've researched and decided on your name, you're ready to register your business name.
Depending on the type of company you're registering for, the registration process will vary. You may also need a DBA if you're a sole proprietor.
This resource from the U.S. Small Business Association will help you determine which registration process is right for you and your business.
Company Name Examples
Looking for inspiration? Check out some examples of real company names below.
Everything great and interesting in the digital world begins with a swipe, and SwipeWire Company is no different. Their narrative is reflected by their fun and open-minded group of creatives, who claim to be sharper than a warrior's knife.
By having swipe in their name, they're letting their customers know they have plenty of options to choose from based on their interests.
2. Secure Smart Solutions
In 2023, hackers can have access to all your company documents in one click. That means securing programs, devices and technologies will require smart and creative solutions. Secure Smart Solutions offers the answer.
Using their creative name, they let their customers know that they're not getting any average cyber security. They’re offering the best.
3. Exela Movers
When you're looking for movers, you want a company that is big enough to handle all your needs and small enough to care for you. Exela Movers does this. From their name, you can expect that your experience working with them will be excellent.
4. Kaboom Fireworks
Kaboom Fireworks is a big company that deals with fireworks. While the company's name is pretty straightforward, the kaboom part conveys the experience you're getting from their products.
Formonix is a company based in China that specializes in distributing pressure, level, calibration, and temperature instruments. They pride themselves on their customer service, assuring flexibility, speed, and personal connection.
This is exactly what their name stands for. Monix means someone who loves to mingle and socialize with others and can meet all situations at ease.
6. The Knot
When someone gets married, many people use the phrase “tying the knot.” Wedding market place the Knot makes use of this common idiom in its name. Visitors know the brand takes care of all things wedding from the name alone. That includes websites, invitations, registries, and more.
Kiddily is a learning platform that sells products to make early childhood education fun. The name is adorable — just like the target customers. It's also relevant to what the company does.
While you may not know exactly what Kiddily does, you'll definitely know that they work with kids.
For kids and teens, band camps allowed them to hone their musical ability. Campers also create new art and share their songs.
Music-sharing site Bandcamp references this nostalgic summer staple. This reinforces that their platform gathers musicians and gives them a way to share their songs.
9. The Manifest
In the modern spiritual world, manifesting means making your dreams come true by being intentional with your thoughts and actions. The Manifest does the same thing by helping you manifest more sales from your business. They do this by teaching you about the customer's journey and how to utilize the marketing tools to win them over at every juncture.
Vision Swipe helps its customers promote their new technology, leverage technology, and help businesses through the digital age. They employ the digital narrative that you can swipe left or right to get what you want, making it very relatable. Their mission is to swipe your way through something visionary.
This health and environmentally-conscious e-commerce company created a funny and unique name by branding its business as brandless.
The name communicates that "better doesn't have to cost more." You don't need to pay a hefty price for a brand-name item in order to get high-quality products.
Using a human name personalizes this pet food business and makes the brand approachable. Ollie offers fresh meals for dogs that can be delivered straight to your doggy door.
13. Screaming Frog
The contrast between the name of the business and what it does is quite ironic. While the name might seem nonsensical, it actually does something remarkable.
Screaming Frog gets people asking questions about the company. Like, “Frogs can scream?” And, “Why is the frog screaming anyway?” The answer might surprise you.
14. Big Ass Fans
Does this one need an explanation? The company sells huge industrial fans to businesses. It’s rare to see a B2B company have such a consumer-focused presence with a name like this, but it works.
Profanity makes us giggle, and in this case, it’s funny and descriptive.
As a mainstay app for many professionals and students to stay connected, Slack’s name goes against the goal of the app. Originally, CEO Stewart Butterfield coined the name as an acronym for “Searchable Log of All Conversation and Knowledge.” But we all know Slack is really just a hoot of a name.
16. Squatty Potty
As the name suggests, the squatty potty is a device used to help people go a little easier. It’s descriptive and playful which is perfect for the task at hand. While the product is backed by research and science, at the end of the day, it’s still a product to help you #2. And that’s always going to be a little funny.
17. Flagship Funding
This brand specializes in fast funding for people who are short on cash. The name flagship means the most important thing owned or produced by an organization. The finance company is telling their customers they are leaders within the industry and have the resources to serve their customers.
18. Recycle Bookstore
Avid readers may be looking to downsize their collections, selling books they no longer need. Others may be looking for a bargain by buying books used. Recycle Bookstore, a used bookseller, offers both services. From the name alone, you can tell the store specializes in used, pre-loved books.
19. Platinum Home
The word platinum is accompanied by all things premium. The company claims to be one of America’s premium lenders and offers services related to mortgages.
20. Asian American Girl Club
This apparel brand puts its target audience in the company name. Here you can buy shirts, hats, hoodies, and other products that proudly read “Asian American Girl Club.” You know exactly who you’re supporting from the name alone.
21. Hydration Station
Hydration does wonders not only for your skin but for your body. This brand name gives the impression that you’ll leave hydrated. It’s perfect for a store that sells coffee, specialty drinks, and smoothies.
22. Petite Galleria
Gallerias gather together different shops and businesses in one place. This shop conveys that it has the same variety of a galleria in a small space. At this boutique, you can shop a curated collection of artisanal jewelry, home products, and art pieces.
23. Monkeypaw Productions
Jordan Peele made a name for himself making horror movies. His production company’s name strengthens the association with the spooky and supernatural.
In a story by W.W. Jacobs, a shrunken monkey's paw grants wishes that go awry. This superstitious story mirrors the projects the company develops.
24. RC Creative
RC stands for RaeLynn Conner the head photographer/videographer. It shows ownership of the brand to potential customers.
The brand doesn’t only offer photography services and includes videographers as well. The name doesn’t pigeonhole the brand to one creative service, showing versatility.
25. Kala’s Kutz
Kala Kutz is a cool way to spell “cuts” and replace it with a “K” to create alliteration for customers to remember. This is a strategic and cool brand name. Kala is a master barber serving men, women, and children at her shop
26. Patty’s Locs
Patty which is short for Patricia. Patty is a loctician, which is someone who specializes in the maintenance and style of dreadlocks. Instead of utilizing the correct spelling of the word, this brand name went for a cooler alternative and spelled it without the letter, “K.”
27. Uniquely Mahogany
Mahogany is not in any way related to jewelry but this makes the brand name even cooler! It’s unique, catchy, and definitely memorable.
Aside from featuring music from underground artists, BlaqHour releases podcast episodes that inspire to enlighten or inspire its listeners. The brand name is a strategic reminder of the light that it provides its listeners.
29. The Ivy Vine
Ivy is a perfect plant that compliments and even highlights the beauty of flowers. This brand name is perfect for establishing the business as a florist.
Catchy Company Names
If you're in need of catchy business name inspiration, look no further. Here are some ideas from real companies. These are business names that grab the attention of potential customers and clients.
A catchy business name may include some type of alliteration or words that share the same rhyme scheme. It creates a connection in the brain to that particular company and/or product.
- La Visual
- Cloud Revel
- Silver Singles
- Better Help
- Quick Space
- Triumph Motorcycles
- Aston Martin
- Apache Spark
- Apartment Therapy
- Four Cousins
- Brookline Booksmith
Creative Company Names
It can be challenging to think of a creative and unique business name. When selecting a business name, consider real-life experiences or icons.
Here are a few examples of real, creative business names to inspire you.
- Bon Appétit
- Our Place
- Copper Cow Coffee
- Bonfire Adventures
- Semicolon Bookshop
- Verywell Mind
- Squad Help
- Rocket Lawyer
- The Penny Hoarder
- When Pigs Fly
- More Than Words
- Planet Fitness
- Girl Boss
- Spark Solutions
- Bold Ventures
- Skyward Enterprises
- WeAccomplish Co.
- Thrive Technologies
- Elevate Inc.
- Prosperity Group
- Aspire Solutions
- Xcel Energy
- Excel Enterprises
- Trailblaze Partners Inc.
- Breakthrough Technologies
- Create + Co.
- Achieve Solutions
- Elite Enterprise
- Premier Inc.
- Premier Cool
- Excellence Inc.
- Advance Enterprises
- Catalyst Solutions
- BoldMove Nation.
- 1BoldStep Inc.
- BoldThought Partners
- BoldIdea Co.
- Monster Beverage
- Pandora Media
Cool Company Names
Need some more inspiration? Here are some real businesses with cool names to spark your creativity.
Business names are meant to persuade you into getting their products and/or services. These names spark the tie between their identity and the company to the targeted audience.
- Jonah’s Fish & Grits
- Narobia's Grits & Gravy
- The Mortgage Maven
- Arrow Auto Glass
- The Omni Group
- 21st Century Fox
- Forever 21
- A1 Steak Sauce
- Five Guys
- Four Seasons
- Big 5 Sporting Goods
- Control 4
- Formula One
- Four Loko
- Bizzare Coffee
- Adobe Systems
- Alibaba Group
- Cheesecake Factory
Funny Company Names
Creating the perfect brand name is serious business. But if you've hit a creative roadblock, you can try to come up with some funny business names, just for fun.
Humor always makes things better. However if you include it in a company’s name, make sure you are appealing to the right audience.
Here are some examples you can draw inspiration from.
- Tote N Carry
- CredoFly Credit Services
- Straight Lane Transport
- Lawless Entertainment
- Herb N Eden
- Spa Maven
- Smallcakes Cupcakery
- Baked and Wired
- Planet of the Grapes
- Lord of the Fries
- Hurry Curry
- Eggcellent Eats
- Thai Tanic
- Wok This Way
- Pho Sure
- Mustard’s Last Stand
- Life of Pie
- Basic Kneads Pizza
- A Cut Above
- Cha Cha Matcha
- Jack the Clipper
- The Director’s Cut
- The Avocado Toast Budget
- Hairway to Heaven
- Live and Let Dye
- Time to Dye
- Knock Knock, Who’s Hair?
- The Trusty Wrench Handyman Services
- Pane in the Glass Window Fixers
- Screw It Handyman Services
- Ditcher Quick and Hyde Divorce Lawyers
- Amy’s Winehouse
- Root On Us Dental Office
- Back to the Fuschia Florists
- Indiana Jeans
- Thorassic Park Chiropractors
- Big Legrowlski
- Tech it Easy Electronics
- Sam & Ella’s Chicken Palace
- Frying Nemo
- Holy Cannoli
- The Holy Donut
- Pie in the Sky
- Good Enough.
- Passmore Gas & Propane
- Amigone Funeral home
- Tequila Mockingbird
- Stubbs Prosthetics
- Make Me Holey
- Bees Knees Honey Co.
Business Name Ideas
To help kickstart your company naming journey, here are some unused company name ideas. Feel free to use any that suits your business.
- Seekiny (weight loss products)
- Medicinee (pharmacy)
- Jellysmith (jelly company)
- SalesPushy (sales training and consulting)
- Formonee (fintech platform)
- Brand & Go (design agency)
- Farm With Crowdee (agriculture crowdfunding)
- Wiggle Wiggle (dance company)
- Jump & Pass (health and wellness)
- MeetCute (social media, dating)
- Wire2me (financial services)
- Buy & Sell (ecommerce marketplace)
- Smartypants (elearning platform)
- S3 (Smart, Safe and Secure): (web security services)
- Upinthesky (cloud storage)
- Your Security First (security company)
- Imani’s Insights (boutique consulting firm)
Naming your business may seem daunting if you don't know where to start. Your business name should be simple, unique, and reflect what you do and why it matters.
Sure, that sounds like a lot to put into a word or two, but remember your business name is part of the entire brand. Over time, the name will take on more meaning as you grow your business and establish your value proposition.
Creative Business Name Generators
If you're having trouble thinking outside the box, these business name generators are a good starting point to help you get the naming process started. A name generator helps with word pairing and gets the creative juices flowing to start a company name.
The generators are usually free and some may even help with searching for available web domains too.
- Namelix. Enter your keywords, and Namelix will generate related business names and logos.
- Brandroot. Search by keyword and business category. It will provide a name, logo, and tell you if the corresponding domain name is available.
- Novanym. After searching for your initial keywords, narrow the results down by name, style, and sector.
- Shopify Business Name Generator. Once you enter the key term you'd like to include in your name, the Shopify Business Name Generator will create a list of business name ideas that have an available website domain.
- BrandBucket. With BrandBucket, you can search for business names or browse by industry.
- Business Name Generator. Type in a few words that describe your business. The Business Name Generator will produce a list of potential business names for you to choose from.
- Oberlo. If you’re looking for a condensed list of 100 business names, Oberlo is the tool for you. Simply type in related keywords to get your free list.
What’s in a name? Just about everything.
Branding is an important part of a company’s personality. When the branding is strong, it creates customer loyalty and holds higher esteem in reference to the industry it represents.
A unique business name will help you stand out from competitors and build a strong brand. Once you have that, you'll want to identify your target market, define your positioning, and create a business plan to get your business off the ground.
Use a business name generator to get the brainstorming started. From there, double and triple-check that your business name isn’t already in use. Free and clear of trademarks? Register your business name and start planning your marketing strategy to have a successful business launch. Get started today with HubSpot’s free business plan template.
Editor's note: This post was originally published in September 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.