First, you need to decide what you’re going to sell, and who you’re going to sell it to. Then you need to figure out how you’re going to position yourself in the market and attract new customers. On top of that, you’ve got endless branding and promotional decisions to make.
It’s no wonder that naming is a process that often gets put on the back-burner.
Unfortunately, if you’ve had the same place-holder name for 6 months now, and your launch date is just around the corner, then you might be in trouble.
The truth is that the right name is the foundation of your entire strategy for professional growth. Fail to choose a memorable business name, and the rest of your company will crumble as a result.
Think of it this way. Would you expect the most memorable, bad-ass cowboy in the west to be called Marion Morrison? No? How about John Wayne?
That’s more like it.
Names affect the way that we think and feel about things, people and entities.
Naming a business is like choosing the ultimate introduction to your company.
Find something that represents who you are and what you stand for, and you can give your customers an instant insight into your organisation.
The best business names of all time work because they force people to sit up and pay attention. Tell someone that a smoothie company is called Apple and they won’t think twice. Say that “Apple” is the name of a computing brand, and your customer’s minds instantly start whirring away, drawing conclusions and generating ideas.
The best business names ever to be created are those that are memorable, unique, and inspiring. They have both poetic nuance, and something called processing fluency. In other words, they’re easy for people to think about, and talk about.
So, how do you identify the best business names?
Simple, just ask yourself:
- How easy is it to remember this name? Ten days from now, would you be able to recall the name, with its exact spelling? If you’ve chosen something long and complicated, the answer is probably not. However, if your name is simple and catchy, then you can rest assured that your shareholders, customers, and employees will remember it.
- How does the name make people feel? You don’t need to tell your customers exactly what you do with your title. The best business names of all time are more creative and evocative than they are descriptive. However, the title you choose should create positive feelings in your audience. The name “Quench” for a beverage company is appealing because it conveys feelings of satisfaction and refreshment.
- Is the name unique? Like the Apple example we gave above, many of the best business names of all time are compelling because they do something different. If your title sounds too much like something your competitors are already using, then it won’t make the right impact. Show off what makes you different.
- Does the name make sense? Some sounds and syllables just work better depending on the industry you’re in. Sounds like “oo” and “ee” are great for fun and friendly companies, like “Google.” However, they might not have the right impact if you’re naming a funeral home. Make sure that the linguistics in your name make sense for your niche.
- Can my company own this name? Finally, remember that the best business names list will be chock-full of titles that are brandable. That means that they’re not too close to anything else on the market, and they’re available to trademark for your company. A fresh name that’s registered with your company and includes a .com domain gives you everything you need to start a successful growth path for your brand.
The biggest problem with tracking down the best business names of all time is that naming is far from easy. Today, there are a record number of start-ups launching in the UK, and millions of companies to compete with world-wide.
To put it another way, there are 171,476 words in the dictionary and more than 5.7 million small businesses in the UK alone. There just aren’t enough words to define all the brands that are emerging in the world.
Since millions of words have already been trademarked, and generic terms aren’t available for trademarking, your options for the best business names are extremely limited. On top of that, it’s worth noting that for every excellent business name, there are dozens of terrible names out there. Not every company can come up with titles like Salesforce, Uber, and Kodak from scratch. That’s why we end up with painfully poor titles like Carnage Travel, or Fetal Attraction.
Despite this, there’s plenty of research out there that backs up the benefits of having the best business names. For instance:
- Brands on the stock market with easy-to-pronounce names perform better than those with complicated titles.
- Human beings develop behavioural bias towards companies with names that they have implicit associations with.
- In early-stage start-ups, companies with simpler names were able to stay running for longer than those with difficult monikers.
If those stats aren’t enough to convince you of the benefits that come with the best business names of all time, then how about the fact that your title is one of the first things your customer sees?
Before a client ever has a chance to check out your products or browse through your website, they see your domain address and business name. This means that your name is your ultimate chance to make a lasting first impression.
Organisations with the best business names are far more likely to attract clicks on Google than companies with spammy, unprofessional titles. Similarly, in brick and mortar stores, it’s the businesses with the most compelling names that convince customers to pick up their products, or research them online.
Your name is a succinct introduction to what your business is about. It might not tell people what you do straight away, but it lets them know what kind of company they’re dealing with, by showcasing personality and values. For instance, Innocent doesn’t necessarily tell you that you’re dealing with a Smoothie company. However, as soon as you hear about the brand, you know you’re probably dealing with a company that cares about natural ingredients, ethical processes, and high-quality products.
There are countless amazing examples of business names out there that can inspire you and your company to choose the best title for your brand.
The best business names of all time act as points of motivation for people who think that they’ll never find the right title for their organisation. Some of the best business names ever coined can also teach you important things about the branding process, and what it takes to design a memorable identity.
As specialists in the naming industry, Naimeo doesn’t just create the best business names for its clients. We also devote time to sorting through some of the most recognisable brand names in history, so that we can learn from the artists that came before us.
Here are our top 5 lessons, taken from some of the best business names of all time.
When Steve Jobs was creating his new line of computers back in the 70s, technology was still a highly complicated, and inaccessible thing. Only the biggest corporations had access to PCs back then, and Jobs wanted to create something that was more accessible to the everyday consumer – something that anyone felt comfortable using.
The name “Apple” was a simple title that came to mind for Jobs after visiting an orchard. It was an inspired choice, because not only was it short and easy to remember, but the term “Apple” also held plenty of positive connotations for the company.
Used alongside a computer company, the name Apple evokes ideas of innovation, taken from the tale of Isaac Newton and his discovery of gravity. It also links back to thoughts of creationism and natural growth. It might not have been the most obvious name for the brand at first, but it became one of the best choices Jobs ever made.
Sometimes, the best business names of all time aren’t the ones that a company initially chooses. For instance, Samsonite started as the Shwayder Trunk Manufacturing Company, named after the founder Jesse Shwayder. Years after the business began in 1910, Shwayder was inspired by the biblical figure of Samson, a man who defeats his enemies with supernatural strength.
In 1941, the company began using the title “Samsonite” to convey the durability and reliability of their cases. Today, this symbolic and intriguing name continues to be one of the best-known in the industry.
Before Richard Branson earned his billions and his title, he was just another entrepreneur searching for one of the best business names of all time. Branson was only going to launch a mail-order record company at first, but his business quickly evolved into something far broader and more dynamic.
In the initial days when the brand was looking for the right name, one of his co-workers suggested the title “Virgin” to represent how all of them were novices at entrepreneurship. Branson loved the idea of embracing who his team was. Today, Virgin is one of the best-known business names in the world.
As we mentioned above, many of the best business names are memorable because they’re unique. One of the best ways to make sure that your title isn’t like anything else on the market is to make something up. That’s exactly what Rose and Reuben Mattus did back in 1961 when they decided to found their New York ice cream store.
The name sounds inherently Nordic like it comes from some distant land with icy mountains and snow. However, the truth is that it doesn’t mean anything. The brand owners just wanted to create an exotic name. They also saw the name as a tribute to Denmark’s exemplary treatment of the Jews during the second world war.
There are many reasons why PayPal is on our best business names list. First, it’s got the memorable poetic device of alliteration to boast about. The two “P” sounds help the title to stay in your mind for longer. What’s more, it’s short, sweet and easy to remember. There’s no danger of someone accidentally misspelling the title and ending up somewhere else.
However, one of the best things about PayPal is how much it says about the company. Not only does it tell you what the business does (allows you to pay your pals), it also highlights the brand’s personality. The term “Pal” is friendly, playful and informal. This isn’t just another banking app; it’s something that anyone can use to make their financial life easier.
Usually, the best thing you can do when you’re looking for the best business names list is turn to a professional.
A specialist naming company like Naimeo eliminates many of the common concerns associated with finding the right title. For instance, we’ll make sure that you never end up with a name that translates poorly into other languages. We also ensure that all of our available titles come with a .com domain, so you know that you have the space you need to build your digital presence.
Of course, because you can choose from the dozens of names available from Naimeo, you’re going to need a strategy. Here’s how you can prepare yourself to select the best business names.
It’s always nice to choose a name that you and your team love. However, you shouldn’t be asking yourself which name is right for you or even your shareholders. You need to ask, “What are the best business names for my customers?”
Creating a selection of user personas, or a basic audience profile before you begin hunting for the right name will help you to consider your options from the proper perspective. Remember to do some competitive research too. This will help you to see what kind of titles people are drawn to elsewhere in your industry.
Don’t just copy what your competitors are doing though, take their strategies and learn from them.
One thing you’ll often notice about the best business names is that they have very positive connotations. Nike links back to the Greek Goddess of Victory. Lego comes from a word that means to “play.” Your customers are more likely to remember who you are and what you stand for if they can associate your title with something that makes them feel good.
When you’re assessing your best business names list, ask yourself how each title makes you feel. Consider testing the name out on different people in your community to get a wider range of opinions. For instance, look at MailChimp. They didn’t just use the word “Mail” to let you know what they do; they also added the “Chimp” part to convey something fun and playful.
Most of the best business names online today are made-up titles and invented words. That’s because it’s practically impossible to trademark a generic or descriptive term. However, creating a new name from scratch doesn’t just mean throwing random sounds and letters together.
At Naimeo, we use linguistic techniques to make sure that a title looks good and feels great to say. When you’re assessing your options, make sure that you prioritise names that offer:
- Easy pronunciation: A name that rolls off the tongue is great for word-of-mouth marketing.
- Rhythm: Things like rhyme or alliteration can make your title more memorable.
- Meaning: Though your name shouldn’t have any negative associations, metaphors and evocative words can help to explain what your business is all about.
There are plenty of stories in circulation online about companies that failed to do their due diligence when naming a business or product. These businesses became a laughing stock because their title meant something different when it was translated into a different language.
For instance, Chevrolet Nova thought that their name sounded elegant and astronomical. However, when they launched the car in Spain, they discovered that “No va” means “Doesn’t Go.” As the world becomes increasingly digital, the chances are that even if you’re just a local company now, you might not stay that way forever.
Make sure that you do your research before settling on a name. This will help to avoid any dangerous mistakes that could turn the best name ever, into one of the worst titles in history.
The last thing you want is to set your heart on something that you consider to be one of the best business names of all time, just to find out that the title you want isn’t available. The good news is that when you purchase a name from Naimeo, it comes with a .com domain included. That means that you’ll know for certain that you have the right domain for building your brand.
However, just because we can give you your website address, it doesn’t mean that we can trademark your title too. Whenever you’re choosing a business name, either from a brainstorming session or with a specialist like Naimeo, you’ll need to check that your title is available.
Most countries, including the UK, offer websites that you can use to check for any trademarks or registrations. Conducting this search before you commit to a name will save you money, time, and legal problems in the long-term.
Finally, remember that the best business names ever created aren’t the titles that hold companies back. The most amazing business names are the ones that compel your company to grow and give you the freedom you need to explore new ideas and audiences when the time is right. With that in mind, stay away from any titles that restrict you to a specific industry or location.
Although a highly descriptive name might seem like a good idea at first—particularly when you want to improve your chances of ranking on Google—it can present several problems later on. Rather than using your name to describe what you can do for customers now, take a lesson from the best business names of all time. Use your name to describe what you’re capable of, and the values that you represent.
Ready to invest in the best business names for your company?
You’re going to need to find them first.
Unfortunately, the average brainstorming session rarely leads to an amazing title. Even if it does, the chances are that you’d spend months coming up with ideas before you find the one that resonates with you and your customers. On top of that, you’ll need to all the due diligence required to ensure that your name is available to use.
You might think that if you can’t come up with an idea yourself, a business name generator is the next best option. However, once again, you’re left with sub-standard titles created by a machine that can’t understand poetic devices or emotional nuance.
The best way to find an award-winning name without the stress is to turn the hard work over to a company like Naimeo. We design and curate amazing names every day, so you don’t have to.
Simply browse through our lists of the best business names on the web and choose the one that suits you by category or style. Why would you settle for anything less than the best?
To get ahead. Get a great name. From Naimeo.