Thursday, September 4, 2008


***Another posting in the series about starting my online business.

The first thing involved in setting up a website is coming up with a name. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? For some, it may be. For me, it was quite frustrating.

It helps if the name you’ve been using all along has the right internet ring to it. Mine didn’t. Bear in mind my products are designed for “babies” and are “cute”, “soft”, “cuddly” and made with “loving hands“. The business name I had been using in the real world reflected that. It was cute on a tag attached to a cute little outfit featuring cartoon-like ducks. For the record, none of these words work well when used in various search engines. Images of children’s clothing does not tend to be the first thing coming up on the list. Use your imagination! It wasn’t quite what I was after.

Your site name should be catchy, fairly simple and, when Googled, should not produce a thousand other businesses flaunting the same title. So, I needed to come up with a new name. I tried using my first name in the name of my business. My name is Sue (“How do you do?”) Every town in the USA (and beyond) must have some gentleman’s club, bar, masseuse, or some other adult-oriented business run by someone named “Sue, Suzy, or Suzanne”!! Who’d-a-thought!

I moved on to attempt to work with a handle or two I’ve come to be known by elsewhere on the net. Some of you have known me by “Sassy.” Not a good choice for a child’s product!!! Some of you have associated me with a beagle-oriented handle. (NO! I don’t look like one!) For the record - those that recognize that handle might find it interesting to know it was a combination of a favorite pet and my former profession.

When hearing the tales of searching these various words, a friend suggested working with the word “doodle” as my work consists of children’s items decorated with my own artwork and children tend to doodle. I played with it a bit and tried some combinations coming up with one that I thought was wonderful using the ”Sn” from Snoopy, one of the world’s most famous beagles and “doodle” to form “Snoodles.” My creative juices flowed quickly. I’d already thought through my icon, etc., when I ran it through Google. Somebody else was already using the name and the product was child-oriented (coloring books) and used images quite similar to my own artwork. Definitely not available for my use. Back to the drawing board!!!

Okay, what else is associated with me? I have an extensive collection of reindeer items - figurines, toys, decorations, etc., and I do make quite a few reindeer related items at Christmas. Not a good base for my company name as it might limit sales to the holidays.

Moving on… this phase of my business launched when I started painting tropical fish on items for some babies and toddlers in the family. My signature item is a whimsical fish. (The Big Guy is very tropical fish oriented and our home is decorated “in early tropical fish.”) Some of the first clothing I painted, going back a number of years, featured fish on adult clothing. Those were more realistic images and reflected some of our favorite species with magnificent flowing fins. After playing with the fish theme for a little while, I finally came up with Splashin.’ It had the right cartoony, whimsical sound I was looking for and was easy to remember and use. It wasn’t in use and wasn’t suggestively inappropriate. It doesn’t limit my product options. I took it and ran. was born!!! Please come by and see my shop.

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