changing your business name

Have you been recently considering changing your business name? If yes, know that this is not something that you should take lightly. Changing a business name is a complicated process and needs to be handled properly.

However, in certain instances, business name change becomes essential and critical to the business’s success. When you register, the name you keep for your company might not be suitable for it anymore once the company starts growing. In fact, sometimes, your brand name might hold you back from the prosperity you want your business to achieve.

Examples of Popular Business Name Changes

Here are a few examples of famous companies that have changed their name in the past.

  • BackRub changed to Google
  • Jerry’s Guide to the World Wide Web changed to Yahoo!
  • Sound of Music changed to Best Buy
  • Arthur Anderson changed to Accenture
  • Brad’s Drink changed to Pepsi

Doesn’t that sound strange? Imagine, if Pepsi was still Brad’s Drink, would you still be buying and drinking it as often as you do now? If Google was still named BackRub, you would be searching for everything you need information on at BackRub!

Do you think these vast organizations would have achieved the same level and kind of success if they had not changed their original names? Well, probably not. That is why your business and brand name matters a lot. It really pays off to get it right, even if you first name it something else, and after realizing that the original name is not the best for it, you change it.

Importance of Changing a Business Name

Changing your business name could be the one action left to take to get to the success of your company that you want. After all, your brand and domain name is definitely the first thing people will hear when anybody mentions your business to them. Therefore, it is among the most critical elements of your brand.

GDC Consulting mentioning its business name clearly on the homepage

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

Your staff will mention your business name hundreds of times every day, while your customers will say it every time they talk about your brand. It will also be plastered on all your marketing materials. It will be part of your brand logo and written on the top of your brand website.

You cannot just keep a business name and forget about it. You will come across it so many times a day that you will begin to identify yourself with it, just like your customers will start to identify your products with it.

website built on Strikingly selling online courses and promoting the business name through the site

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

Your business name will either open doors for you or slam them in your face. If it’s the latter, changing your business name might help you change the circumstances. It might cause people who initially ignored your business to now start taking notice and visiting your store or office.

Top Reasons For Changing Your Business Name

Once you realize that your business name has not sent out the right messages, it is time for a business name change. That’s why you need to know how to change your business name. But before that, let’s discuss the top reasons why changing a business name becomes the right decision to make at times.

1. You Are Facing Brand Confusion

Sometimes the same brand name belongs to more than one company at two different times. When you keep a business name, an old company has already had that name in the past. This results in brand confusion.

It can also happen that you start getting phone calls for another business with a similar name. Or, if your business name is too similar to another company, people might often mistake your company for the other company. If that other company is doing something totally different, it can get quite frustrating.

Sometimes a business has problems with people always misspelling or mispronouncing the company name. All these are examples of brand confusion. Changing your business name is the solution to brand confusion.

Brand confusion, if happens with other organizations within the same industry, is even more problematic. Suppose other companies operating in your industry have similar acronyms, and their business names start with the same letter. In that case, you could face a situation where you’d just have to go through a business name change.

2. You Recently Changed Your Industry, Products, or Strategies

Businesses often have to respond to the changing trends in the market. This could mean you might have to come with a new product line, penetrate a new market, or ultimately diversify your range of products to enter a new industry. When you do that, your original business name might not suit your new line of business.

When this happens, the quickest solution is changing your business name. This especially applies if your original business name mentions the work you were doing before and are not doing it now. An irrelevant business name can become a hindrance as you change your business direction.

In some cases, however, a business name is flexible enough to suit different kinds of products and industries. Changing a business name in such cases might not be so critical.

3. It’s an Outdated Legacy Name

Sometimes a business has a name that used to be a legacy but is no longer relevant or works. That means the company has an outdated legacy name, and there is no point in keeping it.

Many companies are named after their founder. This is common in firms offering professional services, may it be financial services, real estate services, or retirement businesses. This poses problems for the business’s success when the partners or founders leave or have been long since they deceased.

It is rare to see such companies stand the test of time. For example, in the case of McDonald’s, the business is still using its original name but is very successful. But usually, if you are in this situation, changing your business name is the best way out.

4. It’s Tied to a Single Location

Many small businesses name their company after the location they are based in. An example could be 4th Avenue Flowers. These are local businesses, and their name originally suits them and even helps customers identify their location.

 Strikingly branding on a website promoting an app that helps tourists find places within a locality

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

But once the business starts growing and opening more branches, this could become a problem. Since the names do not differentiate the company and its products or services and only point to the first location the business was based, it is difficult to expand with the same business name.

Companies that have a name that’s tied to a single location have to do a business name change when they move to new locations. If you are faced with this situation, you should also be changing your business name.

5. It’s Too Generic

Some business names are too generic or mediocre. Such names are hard to remember and usually don’t work out well for businesses. If your brand name is not memorable enough, it won’t stick to the minds of the consumers. It will be hard for you to build brand awareness.

If the name is too generic, even your existing customers won’t remember it easily and recommend your brand to others. If you realize this problem, you should immediately think about changing your business name.

A slightly generic business name of a website built on Strikingly

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

Changing a business name that’s too generic could be the solution to getting the brand off the ground. A name that customers can easily spell, pronounce and remember can make a difference in your sales and returns on your advertisements.

How to Change Your Business Name?

Changing a business name does have certain risks involved with it. That’s why you need to be careful with it. If you want to know how to change the name of your business, go through the steps described below.

1. Have a Clear Strategy

You must know why you are changing your business name and what goals you plan to achieve after the business name change. The new name must be in line with the brand image you want to create.

2. Allocate Appropriate Resources

Remember, in the process of changing your business name, you’ll have to change your brand logo, your website theme, your office or retail outlet signage, and your other brand visuals and marketing items. You need to allocate appropriate resources to make all these changes. You’ll also need to keep a budget to promote your new business name to your consumers.

3. Fix What’s Broken

If your business itself is broken, a business name change won’t cut it. But if your brand name is what’s causing trouble for you and you have realized that, then only you should go for a business name change.

Most of all, while changing your business name, don’t forget to change it on all your online resources as well.

Strikingly sign up page

Image taken from Strikingly

You can easily change your website name and brand logo from your Strikingly editor if you have a website built on Strikingly. We offer easy editing features, including our drag-and-drop feature, so you don’t have to create a new website from scratch if your business goes through any such changes.

Once your business name is changed, you can promote your website again to tell your consumers about the new name. In all this hassle, if your website maintenance is the easiest thing for you to take care of, you’ll have more time to focus on resolving other matters. That’s why we encourage individuals and organizations to choose our platform for running their professional websites.