How to choose a business name

Which business name is best?

Which business name is best?

Regularly I hear people discussing business names and what they should choose, the ensuing debates can become comical as people slander each other’s choices, but I digress. It’s not easy and it affects a lot of things, from website domain names, search engine optimisation, recall ability, how to spell it, business name registration and availability – the list goes on.

Well, what I’m about to write isn’t earth shattering and I know I’ve heard it before, however I think this technique is brilliant and really shows your willingness to let the customers and the data make the decision for you.

Below is what I believe to be a sure fire way to find a business name or product/service name that resonates with your customers:

1. Create a short list of your names, more than three and less than ten.

2. Get yourself a Google Adwords account if you don’t already have one, if you want to outsource it then try a Google Certified Adwords Professional – in Australia we have www.GoogleProfessional.com.au

3. Create an add for each business name you’ve selected – you can even test the slogan of each business name as the second line of the ad.

4. Using the Google Adwords keyword tools create a list of keywords against each ad. The ad’s can either go to an existing website, or register your favourite .com or .com.au for under $25 and point visitors to a blank page – at this stage it doesn’t really matter, you’re just testing.

5. Ensure you apply the same dollar value to each ad and the same dollar value for each click (this ensures that statistically each ad had the same chance). For 5 business names I think a budget of around $100-150 would give you a good indication of which names will be successful.

6. Give it about a week of advertising across a regular week and weekend, then review the click throughs percentages for each ad, also review impressions (if one ad has significantly more impressions than the others get a feeling for why – is it misleading, does it fit better with your industry etc).

You now should have enough data to determine your next winning business name – you’re starting as a customer driven business from day one.

I think this is a great way to determine what works and what doesn’t, and for those that haven’t used Google Adwords it’s a great way to dip your toe in the online marketing phenonemon that surely you’re new business will need to use in the near future.

Best of luck, and if you give it a shot let us know how you go!

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