What I’ve Learned Naming Websites, Handles, Songs, Shops, and Products

It’s hard to explain just how frozen I was about starting this blog because I couldn’t think of the right name.

  • I wanted a name that could expand as I changed over time.
  • I wanted a name that could be quirky yet taken seriously.
  • I learned key words might be a good idea.
  • Then I threw in the idea that I wanted it to be short and catchy (I heard somewhere that going over four or five syllables can be rough). 

Then I sat around doing nothing creative (other than songwriting) for four years. 

Over a name? Yes. 

Inspiration Strikes!

When the name Savvy History came to me, I remember jumping up to test buying the domain and feeling the dread of how it might already be taken. When it wasn’t, I became so excited I bought it on the spot. 

The other names I brainstormed before that? Looking back, they were really bad, generic, unsearchable, or blended words that made no sense, and I’m glad I left them behind. 

But if you’re out there and reading this, please don’t wait four years! There has to be a better way.

Domain Secured? Next Steps

After buying the domain name, I went around to secure “internet real estate” that could be consistent on all social media platforms. 

I was excited once again about how I could keep Savvy History simple and straightforward with the same handle (@savvyhistory), even on sites I’m never on and don’t know if I will be (like Tik Tok, Facebook, and SnapChat).

As for Youtube, you have to make a video and secure 50 subscribers or views (or something like that) before being verified with a handle, so I don’t know if that will ever happen. 

PS. I didn't know about this tool (namecheckr.com) that would've made my life much easier.

At this point (inching closer and closer to two years in!), I’m glad to say if you search Savvy History randomly, this Savvy History dominates. This situation is much better than when I named my band after myself and was at the bottom of a strange pile of internet nonsense for 10 years

Do I Change For an Etsy Shop?

I don’t know very much about Etsy as of now, but I did hear they only let you change your shop name once. And I’m unclear about what my shop has to do with history because I plan to start with printable book accessories and journaling activities. Of course, it could evolve and any physical merch would definitely have a history/vintage bent.

I know key words can be important, but maybe they are more important for the product names themselves vs. the name of the shop? 

Mostly, I’m reflecting on this now because I don’t want this issue to freeze me up again for years. So I’m trying to go ahead and make a choice soon. 

  • Do I go with the “spell it out approach” where I make exactly what I am creating obvious? 
  • Do I go for the “personality approach” where I attempt to sound trendy or clever? 
  • Do I go for a “niche name” involving my bibliotherapy expertise? (Virtually no items exist for bibliotherapy, but that may be because no one knows what it is or no one is searching for it!)
  • Do I just keep rolling with Savvy History, hoping it all fits together someday?

Reflecting on When Titles are Fun

Considering I love giving titles to songs and albums, I find it crazy how naming things on the internet holds me back. (For some reason, my songwriting process seems to start with the title while trying to craft it into the refrain.) I enjoy this challenge. It can work out well in helping the song have a central theme or catchy cohesiveness.

In this case, however, I don’t want a title to box me in. History is a strong word evoking ewwwws or ecstatic love. I know how I associate it with journaling and books, but I don’t want it to alienate anyone. As for naming and brainstorming products, that’s a journaling opportunity for next week’s post.

An Extra Note on Naming Titles

I still don’t incorporate SEO research into my own blog titles (although I’ll do it while freelancing). Even after writing this long series comparing SEO to pop songs, I’m unsure where to go next with it. 

As you can imagine, the success of my posts is quite random. It’s usually due to social media, a feature, or a title that is original with a big idea behind it. I’m not saying this approach is right or wrong. It all depends on what your goals are. As for my Etsy shop, I want it to be found.

Any advice? What’s in a name? Do you have stories about naming things important to you? CDs, children, websites? 


4 Replies to “What I’ve Learned Naming Websites, Handles, Songs, Shops, and Products”

  1. I believe you floated the name “Savvy Essentials” as a potential name in a prior post. I like that one because a) it directly links/is associated with the Savvy History name and b) sounds great on its own. It’s also ‘generic’ enough to capture any & all products you ultimately produce (like them ponchos). All in, I think it’s a killer name for an Etsy shop.

    P.S. ‘Modes of Being’ arrived today and I’m looking forward to reading it later this week!

    1. I find naming things to be hard at times so thank you so much for the feedback! It really means a lot. I never knew I would want to build things around the word “Savvy” but that’s where a lot is leading if I want it all connected someway. Funny how that happens.

      Thank you so much again for your interest in the book! I hope you get something out of it and it helps you navigate being a creative and living an epic original life.

  2. i picked a dumb nom de plume for my blog. it was a fake name of a fake garbage truck driver one of my teachers made up long ago to get us to study history. i figured it was just a starter blog like training wheels with no real business end but entertainment for me only. i like the idea of using it across many platforms for a business and i don’t think i have to worry about anyone stealing it.

  3. You mean your name isn’t… Freddy?

    I am glad your history teacher could have such an impact on you! Ha ha ha. I like the franchise idea you have in mind. Go for it! Totally unique and I certainly haven’t heard it anywhere else…

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