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Fundamental Business Name Categories

business name categories Naming a business on your own may seem tough as it may not be your specialty or something that you do every day.

If you are trying to name your new business all by-yourself there is a certain basic model you need to be aware of.

In this post, we’ll explain you the basic categories of business names – one of the building blocks of getting your business name right.

This article is part of the Melloname Learn process that intends to give you a good knowledge based foundation that will help you take the right decisions along your way to finding a winning name.

4 Categories of Business Names

Business names are categorized based on visual image or sense of emotion that they create when heard for the first time. A better word to use here is evocation, which means: the act of bringing something into the mind or memory, the act of evoking something.

Most business names will create some kind of evocation when heard for the first time, though there can be names that do not evoke anything.

Let’s understand each category in detail.

Descriptive and Self-Explanatory Business Names

This is the most common category and you will find such business names everywhere. Simple and descriptive words that directly describe the product or service the business provides are used as business names.

Examples:

  • Daycare: Baby Care, Tender Care and Lovely Daycare
  • Branding: Brand Design, Brand Masters and The Branding Company
  • Accounting: Accurate Accounting, Biz Accounting and Professional Accounting
  • Air Conditioning: Advanced Air Conditioners, Perfect Air Conditioning and Super Cooler AC

The good thing about such names is that it makes easier for potential consumers to understand what product or service a business sells.

Such names can be successful if you are the sole provider of a product or service in your targeted area. Like Atlanta Accounting (if you’re the only or largest provider of accounting services in Atlanta) or business names like American Airlines and British Airways.

If there is strong competition for your business in your targeted area, such names will soon fade away from consumer attention and become indistinguishable from its competitors.

Suggestive and Hinting Business Names

Such names suggest or hint towards something that is directly connected to the business. The connection could be to a product or service or an experience the business provides.

These names are less descriptive but have enough meaning in it to express what a business is about. Such names are kind-of middle ground in the world of business naming and are very popular.

Examples:

  • Photography: Photo Magic, Image Express, Photopress and PicPrint
  • Websites: InfoSeek, EzineArticles, LinkedIn and WordPress
  • Technology: Datacorp, Circuit Design and MicroTech
  • Cleaning Services business: Dirt Devils, Super Maids, TruShine and Dustbusters

Such names require little or sometimes no explanation to convey what the business offers, this provides an easier way to connect with potential consumers.

In the last couple of decades, suggestive business names have become very popular. In certain industries, they have become so common that they have lost their effectiveness.

Arbitrary and Random Business Names

Such names do not in any way describe the business product or the service. But, they may sometimes indirectly convey an experience that the business provides. Most commonly, for such names you will see words with little or no context being used as the primary word in the business name.

Examples:

  • Retail: Sunshine Juice Co., Yellow Sand Retail, Amazon and Metro
  • Technology: Apple, RedHat and Orange Technologies
  • Automobile: Jaguar, Cherry International and Great Wall Motors

Such names have a big plus in terms of versatility and flexibility to expand the business into many different products/services without re-naming/re-banding the whole business.

Like the name StarBucks, we all know what it offers today. In future, if they decide to expand beyond just coffee products, they certainly can do so without changing their company name.

The biggest problem in using such names is that people in general are unable to understand what the business is about when they hear it for first time. If you had never heard of Amazon or Metro, would you be able to tell what these companies sell?

Invented and Coined Business Names

Invented or Coined names use new words that are created using word-fusion, misspellings etc. Such words have little or no meaning of their own and are not part of the standard language dictionary.

Many successful companies have used such names to great success. Although, historically such names have been used by giant global companies many new small businesses are using such names to create catchy and powerful business names.

Examples:

  • Communications & Entertainment: Skype, Vonage, Rebtel, and TiVo
  • Banking & Finance: Comerica, Ameriprise, Symetra and Primerica
  • Real Estate: Zillow, Trulia and Nestio

Generally, invented words won’t have a pre-existing meaning, so use such names if you want to start with a clean slate and create a unique repute/brand.

Remember that it will require strong efforts and will take time and money to create awareness and acceptance of your name in the marketplace.

To summarize, understanding these 4 fundamental business name categories is the first important aspect of do-it-yourself business naming. Hope the examples in this post helped you understand each of the categories better.