Warning: Do not start a business online without first checking username, email, and domain availability online. If you need to check the username or brand online brand or protect your online brand, you need to follow these steps:
- Make sure you trademark your brand.
- Register your domain asap.
- Register alternative domains to prevent hijacking.
- Keep an eye out for hackers.
- Include your brand on all your website pages, pictures and products.
- Rank high in search engines to show reputation.
- Actively check your online presence.
- Register accounts on all major social media platforms.
- Assertive actions against fraudsters.
- Warn customers of potential fakes / impersonators.
- Read the rest of this article to help in achieving these points.
Importance of checking your name
Firstly, apologies for starting our article with bold, we know readers don’t appreciate the tone of the signal. If you’ve reached this paragraph, you’re well on your way to saving your future or current business money, hassle, and stress.
We have lost count of the number of online companies that lost money due to not conducting rather simple online username checks prior to starting a new business venture. Already established and not had an issue? you’re in the minority.
Have you run a username check for your brand or username, to only discover someone counter fitting your product?
You may initially think being copied is a compliment, however, the situation can move to concerns very quickly. You may find yourself having customers contact you without releasing they have fake goods. They may be blaming you for poor quality goods or slow delivery costs, leaving bad reviews on your company.
To add salt to a wound, customers are buying from the fake goods provider rather than your own company, reducing your revenue. If you want to find out exactly what someone could do with a poorly thought-out email address, we have an article on it. That article is an example of just issues that can arise from an email address, not all the business-related issues.
Is my username taken?
Ensuring your username and brand are available prior to starting a business is important. We would argue more so than having a memorable logo. Having a strong online presence increases the value of your company substantially. It provides your employees with a sense of direction and respect, motivating them to higher levels of efficiency. Obtaining new customers is far easier with a strong and respectable brand.
If you first start up a company and consider what your brand should be, it’s important to check your username online.
Your value is your brand, plus your product.
A brand represents the sum of a people’s perception of a company and its customers, reputation, and logo. It is essential you check your username online prior to committing to setting up a company online. This includes a check of usernames on social media accounts, including checking what usernames are available on social media sites such as Instagram. Having a large media campaign run only to find out mid-way, someone on Instagram is advertising a conflicting product is not good for business. It would be sensible to test your username on social media before committing to one.
How to check your brand is available?
Trademark is a word that differentiates a product from other products of a similar kind. Its considered part of intellectual property rights. If you design a great product and website without first checking how available the brand name is on social media, you’ve made a mistake.
Not only will having a wholly unique username and brand be more recognizable, but it also avoids the headache of dealing with re-naming your brand or paying legal fees to resolve. Simply run a free username check to test if the social media accounts for the usernames are available beforehand.
Checking your username on major search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing is a good start. It will inform you on whether any other website may be similar to your brand. Although this method can be quick, it is quite often inconclusive and will not check social media profiles, especially ones that are hidden.
Our years of experience show that scammers are selling fake goods and pretending to be an organization through deception (taking your available social media accounts). They do not get indexed on search engines, nor do they want to. These scammers avoid search engines because you as the actual real business will find them!
Scammers will conduct business from fake Facebook or Instagram accounts, where they will look wholly legitimate and not need the technical skills of building a website. They can also disappear within seconds by closing their account!
With this knowledge, you may now conclude that simply running checks on search engines for your brand are not really that effective. This is why it’s so important to check usernames and brands using a professional reverse user checking tool.
You can also check your brand username on an anti-scam website. Sites such as Scam Search allow you to run searches for usernames, emails, and phone numbers. You can check this website to see if any customers have reported your company (or a cybersquatter!) as scamming them. You can also register an account with them and set up automatic 24/7 monitoring of your brand, to get emailed the second someone reports your company as a scam.
Its the aspiration of most start-ups to create a brand so highly desired and unique that it defies global growth. With brands reaching global audiences, achieving a truly unique brand has is hard, which makes brand value highly important.
Performing a check is similar to doing an investigation. You know your target, you have a username you need to find online. You have the choice of doing manual checks and searching via large search engines (which as we explained, don’t really work!), or you can run using a specialized reverse username search tool.
If you are interested in conducting an online investigation into your own brand, we have two interesting articles for you. The first article is how to search online using free tools to see how much information you can gather. The second is how to conduct online checks without using tools, showing the real deep information that’s available online.
Why check your username & brand?
Online usernames, emails, and online brands are pretty much interchangeable. In saying this, we mean a company will have its web space on a social network, such as LinkedIn Social Network. Their profile URL will be “https://www.linkedin.com/in/companyxyz’. If another competitor uses your brand’s URL, your entire online reputation could be at risk. If you want to follow our LinkedIn page, where we and other community members share good online practices to check your online brand, you can follow us.
Accepted, it may not destroy your business. However, an occupied social network such as LinkedIn’s Social Network is pretty critical to your reputation. Whether that network is part of the business identity or your personal identity, it’s still bad news. It shows your business does not have the tenacity to police your online brand. It also shows your ability of forethought and planning.
People will think, why would this company I am about to conduct business with, choose a name that is confusingly similar to another? Are they just trying to scam people? which one do I trust? You move into dangerous territory. The only thought on your customer’s mind should be, please take my money.
Having control and ownership of your username, email address, social networks sends a signal. It says, this business understands the importance of customer trust and owns liability. It shows you are a professional organization, one that has taken the time to choose a company name.
What would you do?
You must ask yourself, would you conduct business with someone online who has a strange second website that looks oddly similar. Chances are, one of the businesses is scamming the customers from the genuine one. But, which one? do customers take the chance? Is that small amount of doubt enough to push you to a competitor site?
Our research states yes, this small risk will push customers to your competitor. Our research also shows the higher the value your goods are, the more a customer considers these points prior to purchase.
Why use a username checker tool?
You may not be an online expert or an internet investigator, so you may not understand what a reverse username check is. You may have also heard mention of a reverse email check, again not quite understanding what this is.
Don’t worry, people outside of the online investigation space don’t come across the terms that often. There is nothing to be ashamed of. If you have an established business and are here due to a cyberpunk scamming your customers, doh. You may have run a reverse user check and realized half of the major social networks are available and are ripe for taking. No matter, you are here now and you have the knowledge to stop it.
You can protect yourself and your business, whether at the formation of your company or anytime during. If you’ve not suffered the consequences of a cyberstalker, then it’s not too late. What is this term you may ask yourself? Wikipedia has a pretty good explanation of it. Basically, a bad guy who checked your social networks found availability, took them, and used your logos to pretend to be you. They are now selling fake goods under your name.
Simple to fix with a user check tool
You can completely avoid these issues by simply running a username check or brand check on our website (free!). In 60 seconds you will know whether the brand name you plan to use is available across hundreds of social networks. A question you need to ask yourself is, why would you not? Its good business sense to perform a user check before,
during and after starting a business. It would be wise to conduct monthly checks to keep an eye on it.
If you are really serious about protecting your business, we offer a premium service that can help protect your brand even more. It scans even more social networks, plus download the reports to compare make over time. You can find out more about our premium service on our front page.
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