As soon as you’ve got your ideas together you will need to get a framework from which to start your business. Later we look at what’s involved in deciding which trading identity would be suitable for your business and also look at what’s involved in VAT. My advice is for you to read Chapter 10 when you feel ready for it. For now though, let’s look at some things you’ll need to consider when christening your new business and where your new venture is going to live.
Deciding on a name for your business
Choosing the right name for your business is important and is something you need to really think about because whatever name you give to your business will need to create the right image for potential customers. Let’s say you’re planning to organize painting holidays in Cornwall. You could call your business simply ‘Painting Holidays in Cornwall’, but the obvious problem here is that it doesn’t give any more information than the obvious. Before you go any further you need to ask yourself more questions about your proposed business.
Obviously, you are never going to be able to answer all of these questions with the name of your business, but you can improve on the initial name by making it less restrictive and more imaginative. One of the problems with the original name is that it concentrates on two words painting and holiday. The difficulty here is that anyone interested in learning how to paint might get the impression that this business runs holidays for seasoned painters and not beginners, while experienced painters might find the word ‘holiday’ a turn-off.
Your Business Name Doesn’t Have To Describe Your Business
Your business name doesn’t have to describe or even suggest what your business offers. Take Amazon as an example. Here we have the world’s largest retailer of books with no mention of books anywhere in the company name. Yet everyone knows they retail books.
Although originally marketed as an online book retailer, Amazon now sells a whole range of non-book products including software and games. The advantage of choosing a name like Amazon is that not only is it easy to remember and intriguing, but the name doesn’t restrict the future growth or diversity of the business. Richard Branson’s Virgin Group is similar.
Beware Of Choosing Cliche¤ Names
It’s also a good idea to avoid choosing a cliche business name. By this, I mean something like Green Fingers Gardening Company or Joe’s Bloomers or Harriet’s Heavenly Pastries etc. While names like these might seem like a good idea at the time just wait until you discover there’s already more than one of them in the country and suddenly your business isn’t unique after all.
Is the business name you want actually available?
There is no absolute right to a business name unless of course, that name is the name of a company or another business trading in the same area as you’re intending to. So if there’s already a Flo’s Dog Walking Service or Martin’s Organic Vegetables in your area then obviously were you to start up a similar business using the same name they would have a legal argument to say that you are trading using their name. Of course, it would also be silly to knowingly use another business name as not only are you bound for legal conflict, you are also denying your business any opportunity of being unique.