You think you have the most interesting name for your new brand or company, it’s so original, and nobody else could possibly have come up with it. Then, one of the most soul-crushing moments happens – your advertising team gives you the terrible news that the name has been taken, and you are stuck back at square one. Come to your advertising team with the knowledge that they have: how to choose a brand name that is legal.

Step 1: Visit the United States Patent and Trademark Office at uspto.gov

Step 2: Click on Search “Trademark Database”


Step 3: Go to the Electronic Search System (TESS)


Step 4: Go to the Basic Word Mark Search


Step 5: Type in your Search Term According to your Specifications 


Step 6: Analyze (either get a “no results found” or you get results of existing names)


ocreations-pittsburgh-blog-uspto-legal-brand-names-step6Step 7: Check out GoDaddy.com

Make a quick search for a potential URL that would correlate with your newly trademarked brand name. If the URL is already in use, you may want to think of an alternative URL, or if that is not possible, start from scratch on a new brand name.


Remember, choosing a legal brand name is just the start of the branding process. The next step is to register the name with the state and federal government. At ocreations, we highly suggest working with a trademark attorney or legalzoom.com.


Understanding how to search through to see what trademark names are usable and unusable is more simple than you’d think, and can impress the designers and marketing team that is helping you. At ocreations, we always make an effort to educate our clients on the trademark process so they can gain an understanding of existing companies, competitors, and make a brand that is legal and unique.