“What should I name my interior design company?” is one of the first questions you’ll ask yourself, and one of the most important decisions you’ll make when you’re starting out. Your interior design company name should, first and foremost, indicate what your business does. It also needs to be easy to remember, while also remaining distinct from the competition. Many interior designers opt to name their businesses after themselves and while there are many good reasons to do so, there are also drawbacks to consider as well.
Here are the pros and cons of naming your interior business after yourself:
- Easy Recognition: There’s a good reason to name your business after yourself – it gives your business a distinction and a personal touch. We are programmed to try to remember a person’s name, and when you meet new people, the first thing you do is introduce yourself by name. By naming your business after yourself, people you meet can focus on remembering one thing.
- SEO Advantage: You want your business to appear at the top of search results. If you name your business after yourself, anyone who has heard of your business before and types that name into search will immediately find it. A search for “Daisy Smith Interiors” will produce a more targeted internet search than, say, “Fabulous Home Interiors.” Any search for “Fabulous Home Interiors” will include any businesses named that, and anyone who is looking for inspiration for that search term. A fledgling business would have a steep uphill battle to compete for visibility for such a search term.
- Highly Specific Branding: Like any artist, your interior design creations are imbued with your individual style. As a business leader, you are the embodiment of your brand. Naming your business after yourself, therefore, is good branding.
- Overly Specific Branding: One of the biggest problems with naming your interior design business after yourself is that the company may outgrow it. As your business expands, you may want to onboard additional lead designers. When you name your business after yourself, it gives clients the impression that you will be the one responsible for all design decisions. If you want (now or in the future) your team of lead designers to act independently from you, then your business name may become a problem. It really depends on how you envision the future of your business, the level of control you will ever want to give your future team, and how you will represent yourself to clients in the event that your business grows beyond the point where you can approve every design decision.
- Too Complicated: The length and degree of difficulty in spelling your name is a key factor in deciding to name your business after yourself. You want people you meet to be able to search your name with relative ease. If your name is spelled differently than it is pronounced, that can be a problem. If your name is very long, it will make it harder to search and lead to clunky email addresses and social media handles.
- Blurs Boundaries: While you will always embody your brand as an interior designer and business leader, naming your company after yourself weakens the division between who you are personally and professionally. Other factions of your life, like your hobbies, charities you are involved in, and even legal issues you may encounter, all become highly visible. If it is important to you to protect your privacy, naming your business after yourself is not for you.
- SEO Disadvantage: The flip side of the benefit above is that if people have never heard of your business and don’t know your name, they will likely never find it in searches for interior design companies unless you become one of the preeminent companies in the industry. Ultimately, SEO should be a secondary factor when considering your company name, and you should prioritize your personal brand instead.
If after considering these pros and cons you’re still undecided about naming your business after yourself, compromise. You can create a name using your initials, just your first or last name, or a nickname. It’s also not the end of the world to change the name of your business down the line.
When starting out, naming your business after yourself has more advantages, as your primary goal is getting your name out into the world. As your business grows, the disadvantages begin to weigh more heavily on the scale. If you reach the point where you are well past the days of being a solopreneur, you can rename your business and then carefully roll out the refreshed branding in a way that doesn't hurt your position in the market.
Naming your interior design business is a big decision, so don’t be afraid to take your time and do your research. You may think your prospective business name is easy to spell or remember, but try testing it out on friends and family. Also, before settling on your preferred name, be sure to check if the name is taken. If there is no other business registered with that name, then you can secure the website domain and social media handles. Once you finalize a name for your business, you’ll be ready to get the ball rolling.
Check out Design Manager’s guide to starting an interior design business to see what you should be working on next!