This is how to pick the best name for your startup

Choosing a business name is quite an important step in the life of any startup. What's in a name - the beginning of a brand, identity of a team, and a close connection to the company vision.

With the startup boom we've been experiencing, it's harder than ever to find a truly original name.

The right business name needs to be memorable and simple enough, but still not generic. It has to be associated with what you do and set the right expectations to the person hearing it for the first time.

It's important not to overthink this step of building your business. Of course you want the name to be perfect. Just make sure the entire process is not slowing down your other plans.

If you're not quite sure where to begin, start with this comprehensive guide by The Next Web.

After you've gotten the basics, we can move on to the tools of the trade. Fortunately, there's a bunch of online tools that can help you make finding a name easy and painless. This is especially important if creativity is not your forte.

A simple Google search will give you pages and pages of results for "business name generator". You don't have to waste time, we've tried them all out for you and picked out the six that seem the most useful.

1.Naminum

This simple search bar will give you a ton of variations for a specific keyword. That means you need to have an idea on the starting point before you start searching.

The suggestions are sorted by either the prefix or the suffix, depending on which option you pick.

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You can also search for names in four languages other than English.

2.Getsocio

This tool gives you suggestions based on available domains. You also need a keyword to start your search.

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Our favorite pick from this round is the "Confidential Puppy" (if you use the name, don't forget to give us some credit)

3. coolnameideas.com

The "Business Name Generator" requires a bit more information than the previous two. You need to feed it the keywords, business type, main benefits you're offering, and the style you're going for.

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This tool is also searching according to domains, so you can check the availability right away.

4. Namebird

This name generating tool named itself. And yes, that is quite cool.

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Namebird has specific quality rules for the phonetic structure of the names it generates. That's why it creates catchy and memorable stuff.

You don't necessarily need a keyword here, but a sequence of letters you want to be a part of your name. After you've given that to the tool, it's easy to play with the output and find the right fit.

5. Wordoid

When you need made up words that look good and feel good, this is the place to go. You can pick from English, Spanish, German, French and Italian.

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You can also set the length of the wordoid and feed the tool a fragment you'd like to find in there. It's definitely a fun thing to play with.

6. Trademarkia

If you want to be completely certain about the trademarking from the very beginning, this is the tool. Trademarkia has millions of trademarks filed since 1870 (quite impressive).

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If the trademark name isn't taken, the tool will let you know how to apply for it and how much it costs.

How do I make sure my business name is good?

Of course, it's not just about how good something sounds to you and your team. You're the enthusiastic founders who think their baby is awesome even when it sucks.

This "old" article on Medium will help you structure your process. If the 50 minutes is a little too rigid for you, there's a simple rule of thumb we recommend. During the brainstorming, don't think about whether your ideas are stupid or make a lot of sense. Let them out, let them all out! Look at this process as if you're filling a pit with sand. You need a lot of it to be able to make an awesome castle. So let your brain run wild.

And here's a great case study about how a good business name can affect your success. The StartupBros lead us through the entire process including the testing phase. They claim a bad business name can doom your project even before you get started. After the experiment, they've come up with a 5-step plan that will definitely lead you to the perfect name.

So, here's a quick recap:

  • don't overthink it, finding the name shouldn't slow your general plans down
  • feel free to brainstorm and come out even with the craziest ideas - remember, it's just the sand to play with later
  • free online tools can do a great job in this process
  • it's not about how it sounds to you, it's about your audience and your goals
  • don't forget to test it!

We wish you a successful journey.

P.S. If you're getting stressed out by this entire thing, here are a couple of tools that will help you let loose. The random startup name generator might not solve your problems, but it will give you a good giggle. Bignga Technologies or Fipiper Communications - you just need a bunch of bean bags in the office and you're already in the Silicon Valley.

If you're more into the entire hipster vibe, there's the hipster business name tool. It won't ask you anything, you'll just get a bunch of nicely sounding names. If you have cool mustache and a vintage bicycle, then your first company might be called Ducks & Parcel or even Rain & Victim. The hipsta' names come with a fancy hipsta' font and a cool logo. Enjoy :)