You’ve thought long and hard, come up with a killer business idea, selected the perfect name and now you are ready to pull the trigger. Hard part is over, right? Before you hit publish on your new business name, there are five things you should consider.

1. Is your name available?
Don’t make the mistake of designing a logo before taking the time to look at other businesses in your field. It’s important to make sure that no one else is using the name or a similar name. Most people stop there but that’s not enough. Head over to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and any other social media platform you plan to use and make sure the name is available. Check to see if the domain name you’d like to use for your website is free. Finally, check Instagram and Twitter for available hashtags related to your business.

2. Have you thought about the initials?
Many perfectly named business have been raked over the coals for forgetting this simple step. South Lake Union Trolley is a perfectly fine business name. However, residents of Seattle soon realized the initials spelled out SLUT and the rest is history. Canadian Conservative Reform Alliance Party seems fitting for a political party until people started calling it CRAP. Take a few moments to make sure you aren’t making this error.

3. Are you using unusual spellings?
In the moment, using an unusual spelling seems like a good idea. It is something different and unique that will make you stand out from your competitors. Choosing something like Krazy Kupcakes, can be a big mistake. It may look amazing on business cards but it will cause issues for you once people want to locate your business. You may find it less amusing when your customers search “crazy cupcakes” and can’t find you on Facebook or Google.

4. Have you ran it through Google translate?
If you want people all over the world to use/know about your business, a little extra care is required. There are many innocent words in our language that simply do not translate well. A prime example is Puffs, the face tissue brand. The name works well here but over in Germany, puff is a commonly used word for a brothel. It will pay off in the long run to think of these things now, when your business is just starting.

5. Have you had people say it out loud?
There are names that look good on paper but simply trip the tongue up when said out loud. Find a few people and ask them to read your business name out loud. If they struggle with any part of it or it simply sounds strange to you, it may be time to reconsider your name choice.

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