We’re not here to tell you what you should call your restaurant. Instead, here’s a list of things you should keep in mind when choosing the name of your restaurant.
Each of these tips are about adding value to your restaurant from the beginning. That involves looking to your exit strategy and looking at how you can diversify and grow.
Not using someone else’s restaurant’s name: that should be stating the obvious.
Choosing a name that someone else is already using risks that other restaurant suing you. They may claim that people may confuse your restaurant as being somehow related to theirs.
It also makes it harder to register the name as a trade mark.
Check thoroughly. Make a written note of what searches your did, and what came up. Google, social media, WHOIS, trade marks, registered business names and business name availability and anything else you can think of.
Look at this from a future buyer’s point of view:
- Who wants to buy a business that’s named after the previous owner?
- If the previous owner is so crucial to the business, will customers come back once it’s been sold?
Using your own name as the name of your restaurant can be a turn off for a potential buyer.
It may lead guests to think that you’re in the kitchen or front of house most of the time, if not all of the time. If you can’t clone yourself, how can you work in all of your venues at once?
It’s particularly difficult (and for a new restaurant, almost impossible) to register a trade mark that’s a common surname.
Trade mark examiners consider common means 750 or more people in Australia with that name.
You can do the search yourself on SFAS.
It’s really difficult, if not impossible, to register a trade mark that’s descriptive. The trade marks laws don’t allow one trader to block competitors from using common words in the industry.
In other words, use your imagination! Choose a name which your restaurant can grow into .
If someone has a trade mark in class 43 over the name you’re considering using (or a similar name), even if they’re in a different state, think long and hard about keeping that name. You’re at risk of being sued for infringing their trade mark and for confusing customers.
If someone has a trade mark in a different class over your preferred name, check that it’s not related to extra things you (or the future buyer) might want to do with your business. You want to have growth options available, not shut off from the beginning.