by Michael Dorausch, DC

Someone was asking me recently for some suggestions on naming a business they were planning on opening this fall. The business is a Day Spa and the person was undecided on what name to use.

Today, this is a question that is more important than ever, especially if you intend to market your Day Spa (or other locally based business) online. Gone are the days when you could give your business names like… Relax Day Spa, Holistic Bliss, Innate Healing Center, or ZenSpa. I just made all those names up, but doing a Google search you’ll find they are all names of businesses that already exist.

No big deal, you’re planning on opening your Day Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona, and the only other business names you see in the same industry are operating in Dallas, Burbank, Ft. Wayne, and Palmdale. It may not be a big deal on the local level, but your approach to gathering new clients online may significantly be affected depending on which name you choose.

planetc1If the domain name (the dot com) for the name of your local business has already been acquired by another party, you will likely face increased odds of competition in the area of search engine placement, which may potentially result in the name of your small business not showing up above the fold (top three positions) in search results. The same rule applies if there is another business in your industry (for example Atlas Chiropractic) using the business name on their web site.

Sure, you can hire an SEO firm to optimize your web site, and work on increasing your rankings in search engines. Why not just get creative and first seek out a name that is not currently being utilized in your industry.

When it comes to selecting a great domain name, here are some things to consider…

  1. For a Day Spa, it should sound relaxing
  2. Easy to spell
  3. Easy to say (so when you tell someone over the phone the name of your business, they can understand you)
  4. Short enough to fit on a business card ( losangelesdayspahealingcenter.com may not fit well on a business card )
  5. Unique enough that a domain name is still available ( preferably in the .com TLD )

I’m really not crazy about domain names that end in .biz, .net, .info, and a few others. Ultimately, you’ll have to make that choice, if you come across a great domain name that’s only available in one of the less popular extensions.

Don’t pass up on the opportunity to give your local business a local domain name or maybe even a name that was so obvious, people have missed out on registering it. Three examples in the chiropractic space I can think of, that were all unregistered until recently, are: chiropractichomepage.com, chiropracticwebsite.com, and chiropractordirectory.org, and there are many unregistered others.

In examples of local businesses, if your Day Spa is going to be in San Diego, perhaps you want to seek out some local city names in San Diego surrounding areas that would be a good fit for you. The same would apply if your business was in Reno, Dallas, Chicago, or any major metro area.

Take your time and do a good amount of research when selecting the name of your local small-business. When you come across a domain name that you think works, my advice is to snatch it up, and continue doing your research. Domains today can be purchased for under 10 bucks, and you can always sell them, or let them expire (typically after one year) if you’re no longer interested in ownership.

All the best in discovering the small business name and domain that works right for you!