Auto body shops are a $44 billion-dollar business with more than 112,000 shops across the United States.
With that many businesses, it probably feels like all the good ones are already taken, right? Furthermore, how do you find an excellent name that represents your brand and speaks to your target audience?
How do you make the final decision?
If you’re struggling to name your auto body shop, don’t worry. You’re in the right place. In this article, I cover some of the top tips for naming your new business as well as how to make sure the name is legally available for you to use.
Let’s get started!
Related: How to start an auto body shop
Also, see: How to start an auto repair shop and naming an auto repair business.
Also see: How to start an auto detailing business and naming a detailing business.
Also see: How to start a car dealership and naming a car dealership.
Naming a business is hard, especially if you don’t have any ideas or a place to start. So, before you dive in, grab a piece of paper and a pen or open up a blank spreadsheet.
Then, use it as a place to brainstorm ideas and write down words or phrases that come to mind as you go through the tips below.
From there, we’ll talk about how to narrow things down and land on the perfect name.
1. Keep It as Short as Possible
Short business names are usually snappier, catchier, and easier to remember. Ideally, you want to stick to two to five syllables and hopefully no more than 25 characters total.
However, the shorter the name, the better.
With that said, there are exceptions to this, and it’s not a hard rule. But, when you think about huge, notable brands, which ones come to mind?
Nike. Apple. Ikea. Febreeze. Target. Honeywell.
They’re easy to remember because they’re short, simple, and brandable.
Obviously, there are exceptions to these rules. But typically, the shorter and simpler your name, the easier it is for everyone to remember.
2. Avoid Words That Are Hard to Hear and Pronounce
Voice to text and voice search is more popular now than ever before. So, it’s important to consider making your name easy to pronounce and hear.
To do this, avoid using:
- Commonly misspelled words
- Complex terms that are hard to spell
- Words that have several pronunciations
- Homophones like to, too, and two
Try to keep things as concise and simple as possible.
3. Consider Auto-Related Terms
Since you’re opening an auto body shop, it might make sense to use car or accident-related terms in the name, especially if you’re feeling stuck. It may help to just start brainstorming terms, phrases, and words to get all your ideas down on paper.
A few examples of this could include; Collision Guys, Dent Busters, or Finish Line Collision.
For a boost of creativity, expand use the thesaurus to find synonyms around the words of what your business does. You can either use the thesaurus function from your word processor or thesaurus.com to come up with additional synonyms.
From there, you can cross off bad ideas or any terms you don’t like.
4. Phrases Your Audience and Competition Uses
Your business exists for your target audience, so it’s important to consider phrases and terms they use when talking about hiring an auto body shop.
There are quite a few places you can look to see what your customers (and competitors) are saying, including:
- Facebook groups, posts, and stories
- Forums related to the auto body shop industry
- Competitor websites, brochures, and flyers
- Trade journals
- Magazines or blogs
Alternatively, you can ask friends or relatives in your target audience. Hearing it directly from them may help you brainstorm and narrow down your choices.
Remember to avoid anything limiting your business’s future growth if you decide to go in another direction down the road.
5. What’s Your Specialty?
Do you specialize in a particular genre or niche? Maybe instead of general collisions, you focus on only semi-trucks or only paint, or maybe it’s paintless dent repair.
Regardless of your specialty, consider alluding to it in the name of your business.
6. Neighborhoods, Cities, and Nicknames
Including the name of your city, street, or neighborhood is an excellent way to encourage local shopping and create a strong sense of community in your area.
You can also think about nicknames for your city or neighborhood, as well. Here are some examples to use as inspiration:
- 209 Express Auto Body
- 9th Street Collision
- Body Shop of El Cajon
- Eastside Collision & Repair
- Saline County Collision
With that said, make sure the name you choose isn’t limiting if you decide to move or expand your auto body shop down the road.
7. Incorporate Your Name
If you’re still struggling to find the perfect name, consider using your name, a nickname, or something personal and unique to you.
This is a fantastic way to build a personal brand if that’s something you want to do. Some great examples of this in action include:
- Bro’s Auto Collision Center
- Gary the Metal Massager
- Hawthorne’s Body Shop
If you go this route, keep in mind it may make it harder to sell your auto body shop later on.
Still Needing Inspiration?
Here is a list of existing auto body shop names that may help give you some creative ideas. While many of these names may be available for you to use, be sure to check first to be sure they can be used.
Tips on how to check business name availability are after the list of names!
- 1 2 3 Auto Body & Repair
- 1 Stop Truck & Collision Center
- 1st Certified Collision Center
- 1st Class Autobody
- 209 Express Auto Body
- 5 Star Collision
- 777 Auto Collision
- 9th Street Collision
- A & A Auto Body Shop
- A Plus Autobody
- A1 Auto Body
- A1 Auto Collision Center
- AAA Auto Body Repair
- Above All Collision
- Absolute Quality Autobody
- Accident Pros
- Accurate Collision Repair
- Ace Collision Center
- Acme Auto Body
- Advanced Auto Body & Collision
- Advanced Dent
- Affordable Auto Body & Paint
- All Auto Collision Repair
- Alvarez Body & Paint
- American Collison Repair
- Ant’s Auto Collision Shop
- Apex Collision Repair
- Armour Auto Body
- Arnold’s Auto Body & Frame
- Auto Body WORX
- Auto City Collision
- Auto Collision Pros
- Auto Craft Collision
- Auto Hail Experts
- Balboa Collision Center
- Bang Body Shop
- Bay One Auto Body
- Beach Cities Collision
- Best Discount Auto Body
- Better Body Works
- Better Choice Collision Center
- Big Boy Auto Body
- Big Rig Collision Center
- Bobby’s Autobody & Paint
- Body Shop Express
- Body Shop Of El Cajon
- Bodyworks Collision
- Bodyworkz Auto Collision
- Bravo Brothers Auto Body Shop
- Brilliant Body Contouring
- Bro’s Auto Collison Center
- Bumper Plus Auto Body
- Burbank Auto Body & Paint
- Car Body Lab
- Car Body Repair
- Car Tek Collision
- Carl’s Body Shop
- Castillo Body Shop & Paint
- Classic Collision
- Collision Center
- Collision Craft Auto Body
- Collision Guys
- Collision Hero
- Collision Kings
- Collision Pros
- Collision Works
- Cooks Collision On Auburn
- Deluxe Motorsport Body Repair
- Dent Busters
- Dent & Detailing
- Dent Removal Of San Jose
- Desert Collision Center
- Diamond Touch Auto Collision
- Diego’s Auto Shop
- Done Right Auto Body
- Dreamworks Collision Center
- Eagle Auto Collision
- Eastside Collision & Repair
- Elite Auto Body
- Elite Collision Repair
- Elite Paint & Body
- Evolution Collision
- Excellence Auto Body
- Exclusive Image Paint & Body
- Family Auto Body
- Finish Line Collision
- First Choice Auto Body Shop
- Flawless Auto & Body Repair
- Fleet Auto Body & Paint
- Frame & Collision
- Fred’s Custom Auto Body
- Garage Auto Body
- Gary The Metal Massager
- Genesis Auto Body & Towing
- Glean Oaks Collision Center
- Goodfellas Collision Center
- Grounded Bodyworks
- Hank’s Hot Rods
- Harbor Auto Body & Repair
- Hard Tech Auto Body
- Hawthorne’s Body Shop
- Hays Paint & Body
- High Tech Collision
- Horizon Collision Center
- Huntington Coast Collision
- In-N-Out Collision Service
- Manic Mechanic
- Nashville Collision Center
- Platinum Paint & Body
- Professional Auto Body
- Saline County Mechanic & Collision
- Superior Auto Body
- Tint N Dents
- Top Notch Automotive Collision
- United Auto Collision
- Wrench Bender
Finding the Perfect Name: Putting It All Together
By now, you should have a lengthy list of words, phrases, and terms you can use in your business name. At this point, I highly recommend going through and removing any that are hard to spell or pronounce.
Now, you can start combining pieces together until something stands out. It may help to create a list of potential names you can use. From there, you can narrow things down to your favorites.
But before you make your final decision, it’s important that your new name passes a few tests.
Say It Out Loud
Make sure you say your new name out loud. It may look great as a logo, domain name, and on a business card. But it also needs to sound good when you say it out loud.
You can also sit down with someone and talk about your business. Does saying the name in casual conversation sound natural? If not, you may want to consider something simpler or easier to say.
Lastly, think about how to incorporate your new name into a logo. Logos should be simple, memorable, and indicative of your brand.
Take Apple, for example. Their business name easily incorporates into a logo. And today, it’s a household symbol that everyone immediately recognizes.
A logo is an important part of your brand identity, so don’t forget to consider turning your name into a memorable logo as you make your final decision.
Related: How to create a logo for your business.
Is the name legal to use?
At this point, you should have several top considerations to choose from. And the best way to narrow it down further is to check each one for availability.
This step is vital because using a name that someone else uses could be very costly, time-consuming to rebrand your business, and possibly embarrassing. There are several places to look to check whether a name is available to use, so let’s walk through each one.
Trademarks are the most critical, so we’ll start here.
If a name or phrase is trademarked, you’re not allowed to use it in a similar capacity. So, run a trademark search for each business name you’re considering and cross off those that aren’t available.
Learn more about how to do a trademark search before choosing a business name
Just because there isn’t a federal trademark on a name doesn’t mean the name you want is available. That’s because there is a trademark known as a common law trademark. A common law trademark isn’t filed anywhere but provides someone who is using that name in commerce some limited rights in their geographical area to use the name. It can be hard to define how far geographically these rights extend as each industry is different, but at a basic level, someone can’t open a business and name it the same or similar name as a competing business in town. If you think the name could potentially create confusion with customers, it is usually best to just find another one to use to avoid potential legal issues down the road.
To do a local search, open up the phone book (if you still have one), and do a Google search to see if there are any local competitors with a similar business name to the one you want to use.
Cross off any similar names from your list and take the rest and let’s keep checking.
State Entity Search (If Applicable)
If you plan to register your auto body shop as a corporation or LLC, you have to register with a unique business name. Each state requires every corporation or LLC to register a unique name for their entity. This doesn’t necessarily protect your name from anyone else using it, but nobody can register a corporation or LLC under the same name in your state.
Related: Is your business name available?
If you find the name is in use, cross it off your list and move on.
Domain Name Availability
Website addresses aren’t as critical as the first three searches, but it’s still worth doing. Typically, you want your domain name to be “yourbusinessname.com” without any numbers, dashes, etc.
It’s easiest for customers to remember, but these are hard to come by.
However, you can explore other configurations and extensions if your preferred domain name isn’t available. Just remember your customers may have a more difficult time finding you online.
You can start with NameCheap’s domain search tool. Type in the domain name you want to use to see if it’s available. The tool also returns other possibilities you may want to consider.
Social Media Profiles
Next, especially if you are stuck between a couple of names, check and see if anyone is already using your potential auto body shop names on social media. Consider which platforms you plan to use and start with those.
Keep in mind you may have to shorten your company name for some platforms. Twitter only allows 15 characters, for example.
Start with your preferred platforms and do a quick search for your name. If nothing pops up, that likely means no one is using it, and you’re good to go.
Example: Someone is using startingyourbusiness on Instagram, so I would have to choose a different handle, making it more difficult for customers to find me.
Hopefully, you now have some ideas to name your auto body shop. Once you have this list narrowed down to just a few and researched that they are all available, start asking friends, family, and potential customers their thoughts to get feedback, and then pick your perfect auto body shop name!