You’ve decided to open a salon or spa. Now, you’ll make one of the most exciting and important choices of all—deciding on a name. Your name lays the foundation for your business, represents your services and your team, and may attract, or deter, prospective customers.
Here’s the toughest part—choosing which name best represents your business for the long haul. Read this list to help you evaluate which will be the winning option.
Step 1: Re-read your business plan
With every business decision you make, including your name, you’ll want to review your business plan to make sure it aligns. Pay special attention to your mission statement and competitive advantage (i.e., what sets you apart from the rest).
- Your why: Does this name convey what you do? Is it meaningful? Does it represent your brand? For example: If you’re an upscale spa, your name should evoke the luxurious experience you provide.
Step 2: Consider your long-term goals
As your business grows, your name will probably stay the same. When considering different options, think about how it represents your business in coming years.
- Your growth plan: Are you planning to expand your service offerings or grow into multiple locations? If you answered yes, you’ll want to steer clear of any name that’s too specific to a single service or location.
- Your future: Do you plan to franchise and/or sell your business at some point in the future? If so, avoid names that are too personal to you.
Step 3: Think about your clients
What name will attract customers? As mentioned before, your name will make an impression on new clients; make sure it’s a positive one.
- Your clients: Does your name fit your target demographic? Is it easy to spell and pronounce? If clients can’t easily say your name, it’s less likely they’ll talk about your business with friends and family.
- Your community: Does your name promote inclusivity of all clients? Does it feel welcoming, overall?
Step 4: Do your research
It’s important to take time to research the name you’re considering to ensure it’s unique. To get started, head online and search for the following:
- Your name: Is the name unique in your neighborhood, city, and the salon or spa industry, in general? What about in other industries?
- Your website: Is the .com domain available? Try searching www.yourbusinessname.com to confirm. Your business name and website domain should be the same so it’s easy for clients to remember and find more information about you.
- Your competition: Are there businesses with the same or a similar name? Google AdWords Keyword Planner makes it easy to find out if there’s another business that might distract from your website in search results.
- Your legal structure: Is your business an LLC or corporation? Check your Secretary of State’s record to ensure your name hasn’t been registered. Plan to expand to other states or jurisdictions? Double-check those, too.
- Your trademark: Are there existing trademarks on the name? Look them up on USPTO.gov. Remember: Your name can’t be too similar to a business name that’s already been registered.
Step 5: And last but not least, make sure you love it
- Your name represents your brand, your standards, your team, and you. Take your time choosing the perfect name to build your business on. After all, you’ll have it for many years to come.