5 Mistakes to Avoid When Naming Your App

Naming Your App

Finding app names can be one of the most fun when developing your app, or it can turn out to be one of your nightmares eating up a lot of your time and patience and eventually killing your app. Don’t fall into that trap and avoid these slip-ups when naming your app.

Before jumping into the list of what not to do when naming your mobile app, let us first understand the difference between iTunes Connect App Name and Bundle Display Name – the two major places with varying features where an app name is displayed. When you get a new app, one of the first fields you have to complete is the App Name field which is displayed on the App Store. The next is the app name you have to insert in the Bundle Display Name field which is displayed below the app icon on smart phones.

Mistakes to avoid when naming your app

1. Keywords not optimized
Everywhere, be it in apps, blogs, websites, online stores and others, search engine optimization (SEO) is utilized to attract traffic and boost up the number of downloads. Your app name should not be any different. You have a character limit of 255 in the App Name field, so why not utilize it to the fullest by including effective keywords? However, you need to keep in mind 3 things. First of all, do not clutter the name field with every keyword you can think of, this may confuse the customer and have them shy away from downloading your app. Secondly, use only relevant and well-thought keywords that actually make sense. And lastly, do adequate research on the keywords most commonly used by your targeted potential app users. Also remember that unlike the App Name field, the Bundle Display Name allows excessively shorter words, reminding you that the most you can include here is just one effective keyword. With that said you should also read tip 5 below as going too long may hinder your success.

2. Use of confusing, overused or trademarked names
You must avoid these 3 common mistakes made by a majority of app creators when naming their apps.

  1. Do not try to piggyback on the success and popularity of other apps by copying their names or part of their names. This is an absolute NO! People tend to forget knock-offs within the blink of an eye. This is why it is crucial to come up with a unique app name that will set your app apart from the rest of the crowd.
  2. Most people come up with great app names but make the mistake of not checking if the app names are actually available or not. Make sure you check the trademarks prior to deciding on a particular app name. This quite obvious but often forgotten step is a vital one to remember if you do not want to end up being sued or tangled in infringement laws.
  3. Many people go for long, complex or hard to pronounce app names, trying to be distinctive than the other app names in the market. But what is the use of having an extremely unique app name if it is too confusing, difficult to remember or hard to search for by your target users?

3. Words which are not descriptive
It is always better to go for app names which communicate about the apps to the users. Most users usually give a few seconds of thought to the app they want to download, many do not even read the full description, and hence this makes it tremendously important for the app name itself to be descriptive. Take CandyCrush as an example, what more can we say!

4. Dodging of domain names and social media
In today’s intensely competitive world, you just cannot risk being left out by making the mistake of not taking domain and social media account names into consideration. When naming your app, you must make sure if the  domain name is available as well as social media accounts. Just like your app name will be an indispensable part of your app, the same goes for your website and social media accounts. It is important that you use the same names throughout for the convenience of your app users and so that they may remember your app. Make sure you register all of these as quickly as you can before someone else does.

5. Name length not considered
The length of your app name is imperative as well. Do not go for extremely long names as these are easily forgotten by people. People prefer short and concise app names. Remember that only the beginning 25 characters of the 255 characters in your App Name field are displayed in search, so make sure the first 25 characters of the name includes the most descriptive and relevant words. Also remember to keep your Bundle Display Name within 11 characters as longer than that may end up hampering the likelihood of your app’s acceptance, remembrance and success.

What other tips do you have for others to consider? Have you faced any naming dilemmas you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below.

Image by: Quinn Dombrowski