If you’re thinking of starting a blog, one of the first decisions you’ll have to make is the simple decision of what to call your site. Your name is likely the first impression your target audience will have of your presence and content, so it needs to work well. If your blog is poorly named, you risk people not sticking around to hear what you have to say – or, even worse, not finding your site at all.
Selecting the right name and titling your blog are essential steps towards blogging success. Don’t worry; our guide is here to help.
The Importance Of A Good Blog Name
Getting your name right is one of the most useful blogging tips out there. It’s the way you introduce your content and website to others, so you want something that’s both interesting and that you won’t end up annoyed by. When starting a blog, it’s all too easy to go in full steam ahead, but taking some time first to get your title right is key to your website and content’s longevity.
If all goes well, you’ll still be saying this name ten years down the line, so you want to make sure you really like it before you decide!
Don’t Rush It
You want your blog title (and brand) to be fairly solid even before you publish your first blog post. While the beginnings of your content can be a little bit shaky, having a solid name is place can help anchor your message and keep you focused. This is why figuring out how to title your site from the beginning is crucial.
That said, if you have already chosen a name which ends up not being fully reflective of your blog, or breaks another of the cardinal rules of naming great sites, you can change it. The newer your blog is, the better the time is to change the name. As your readership grows, rebranding becomes more and more difficult, so if you’re feeling unsure then don’t wait too long on your decision.
Consider Your Niche
When coming up with some name ideas, you need to consider what will be a good fit. For example, if you’re writing a travel site, you need your site title to portray that. Going for something too vague will only confuse your target audience.
Similarly, you want your title to reflect your unique voice and the style of your content. For example, if you write a more creative blog with an artistic style, you should likely go for a more out-there title. However, if your pieces are more business-like and less conversational in tone, then the name of your site should reflect that.
List Some Ideas
Brainstorming may be the best way to begin the long website-naming process, particularly if you’re feeling stuck. Word maps are a great way to start the process. Write down a few of the key topics your blog covers on a piece of paper. Consider links between these words, or well known short phrases which encapsulate them.
Come up with a list of ideas. From this list, consider asking for some outside opinions, particularly from people who would be a part of your target audience. Try out a few of them in your mind. Consider repeating the title in front of a variety of different types of people, as you want it to have a fairly universal appeal.
Weigh Your Options
Hopefully by weighing up a few options from your shortlist, one will become clear in terms of the standout idea. If you’re worried, you haven’t had some powerful strike of inspiration yet, and are feeling stuck, relax. Remember that a lot of great websites which have led to truly successful business franchises sometimes have less than perfect names.
When in doubt, go for something simple rather than something potentially overcomplicated. As long as it adequately describes your blog and will make your site easy to find, then it’s doing the job.
Look Into Keywords
Before you choose your name, it can be a good idea to look into keyword surrounding your chosen blog topic. These are words which people tend to search for a lot, and having them in the name of your site could help draw traffic to your content. Utilizing keywords in your title can mean search engines will favor your site. What that means is that you’ll be at the top of the search results users get.
You can find out about search engine trends using tools such as Google Analytics. Remember, though, that keyword trends can change very rapidly, so don’t base your entire idea around one. Let keywords be a guide to help you on your name-choosing path, rather than the path itself.
Blog Name Generators
There are online services which are designed to help you choose the best blog name, often referred to as name generators. Typically you will input some of your topics, what you decide to write about, and keywords and the generator will come back with a list of available names which fit. While we don’t think artificial intelligence should take over the naming process entirely, these generators can be helpful if you’re feeling stuck. Crucially, they can also help check the availability of your chosen title through a domain search, plus set you on the road towards registering your domain and really getting going.
Look at the most successful sites in your chosen industry and consider their different names. Are there things they have in common? What seems to be popular amongst the site titles in your chosen sphere. While you should never, ever derive your blog name from someone else’s, they can be a good source of early inspiration in your naming process.
Types Of Blog Names
When choosing what to call your site, you need to decide what sort of name you’re going for. Generally, site titles can be split into two broad categories:
Creative Blog Names (and Funny Titles)
Funny website titles often rely on a sort of pun or joke. They are good in that they tend to stick in people’s minds, and set a humorous tone if that’s the sort of content you’ll be producing.
However, repeating the same “funny” name hundreds of times can cause its charm to wear slightly off, so these sorts run the risk of becoming a bit annoying. They also tend to be longer and a bit more of a mouthful, which can make them a touch harder to remember. Funny titles also tend to be a bit more timely, as what strikes the internet as current right now will likely seem outdated months and years down the line.
Simple titles tend to be just a couple of words describing your content. While they aren’t always the most interesting, they are less prone to going out of style, and it’s less likely you’ll end up cringing over your name in the future. They also tend to be easy to spell and easy to find online.
The downside is that they can seem boring, and may not suit your content if you tend to write in a more conversational way. It can also be relatively tricky to find simple names which have the domain or url available, as the blogosphere is absolutely saturated (even with abandoned websites).
Ideally, your blog will just be the jumping off point. Especially if you want it to become an internet site which is run like a small (or even not-so-small) business. For this reason, it tends to be a good idea to have a name which can apply to other business ventures down the road. Anything which mentions the word “blog” can end up being overly restrictive. Try to sum up what you’re doing with your content now, but also what you hope your content will transform into or mean in the future.
Think about Social Media Handles
Remember that what you decide to call your website will have to be able to translate into all the social media handles if you’re going the rout of making social accounts for your blog. Some handles have a limited character amount, so think about this while you’re choosing.
Remember Your Blogging Style
Your title should not just describe what the site is about, but what the site actually is. It should encapsulate both the content of your site and your own unique tone of voice. A title which related both to a blog’s content and style is the recipe for success. A fun, playful content site with a super serious name (or vice versa) will have much more difficulty finding and maintaining a readership.
What Makes A Good Blog Name?
While the makings of a good title aren’t formulaic, there are some things that successful names tend to have in common. Here is a selection of factors to get the creative juices flowing when trying to choose:
Catchy and Memorable
You want something easy to remember and to stick in people’s minds. Easy to say and hard to define, but it’s likely that once you come across a catchy name you’ll notice how it just sounds right.
Your title needs to connect to your content – there is really no two ways about it. Aside from misspellings or calling your site something offensive, the biggest naming mistake is to go for something which just doesn’t fit the type of content you’re creating. You want people to hear your site title and instantly be able to tell what you’re writing about, plus how you’re writing about it. If your name doesn’t do this, then it has failed.
You should never call your blog something too similar to any of the other sites in your sphere. Even if it’s a total coincidence that you’ve come up with a similar name, it’ll never reflect well on your content to have a derivative name from someone else. This can be super tricky, especially when there are so many blogs and websites already around, but it’s also absolutely necessary for you to make a name for yourself – and not be hiding behind someone else’s.
As a rule, it’s best to keep your title down to just a couple of words and to avoid extras like numbers and hyphens. There are enough obstacles to people finding and visiting your site already without you adding any extras! Going for something easy to spell and without any symbols or punctuation can also help.
There are a few more specific “rules” which can help you both find inspiration for your blog name, or choose one from a selection:
- Choosing two or more words which start with the same letter can be a quick way to come up with a site name and hopefully catchy as well (alliteration)
- Two Words. Another quick formula for a success is to jam two words relating to your content together. Ideally, one will relate to your content and another to your style.
- Create New Words. You can also decide to call your site something entirely new and make a whole new word. This can be done by forcing two already existing words together (referred to as a portmanteau) or building a fake word around a word which related to your topic.
- Use A Thesaurus. A thesaurus offers words which have the same meaning as other words. You could look up words relating to your topic, then use a synonym as a simple but effective name.
- Use Other Languages. If you’re feeling really stuck, you can name your site in another language. This gives you more scope on simplicity, plus you can just pick any word which sounds pretty. However, you must make sure it’s easy enough to say and spell; otherwise, you risk your site not being found.
- Go Random. Some companies have had huge success with a name that’s totally unrelated to what they do (look at Apple, for example). While this could be risky, as it makes your blog potentially harder to find, but it can pay off in terms of a strong branding style.
After you’ve come up with what to call your blog, you can start your website! You need to decide whether to register for your domain or to have your blog name alongside your hosting provider. The former looks more professional but does have a small cost. Choosing a domain and registering your name (these should be the same by the way) is often the first concrete step in creating your blog.
What do you think of our guide? Got any additional tips? Let us know in the comments below!