Should I change my new blog name if it's similar to a bigger website with a bad reputation?

13 replies
Dearest Warriors!

I've recently launched a new blog/website providing travel tips to people visiting India called the India Travel Guru.

Several friends have recently pointed out to me however, that this name 'India Travel Guru' is very similar to another, more established travel website in my niche called 'Travel Guru'.

A quick google search of 'Travel Guru' also reveals that this other company doesn't have a very good reputation, with many negative reviews!

I launched the site last week so it's still early days, but I must confess it would be a bother for me to have to rebrand myself now and I also really like the name I've chosen.

On the other hand I'm now reluctant to progress with a name that could potentially get my brand tangled up with a similar company that has a bad reputation!

So you can see my dilemma!

I would greatly appreciate any feedback from other experienced bloggers or SEO experts as to whether it's best for me to change my name considering the points outlined above.

I'm also concerned about using this name now from an SEO perspective as it might be difficult to rank high against an already established company with a similar name.

Thanks to all replies in advance.
#bad #bigger #blog #change #reputation #similar #website
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  • Profile picture of the author appcoamit
    Your blog name is going to appear in many places. At the top of your post
    so it is always suggested to select your blog name wisely i,e if existing blog having bad
    reputation and you don't want it to affect your audience, I recommend is to change your blog name
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  • Profile picture of the author JasonTheFreeman
    If possible just change a letter, add or remove one, so there is a slight deviation from the famous site you are going to be compared to.
    You don't have to completely rebrand. Just a suggestion.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve B
      Originally Posted by JasonTheFreeman View Post

      If possible just change a letter, add or remove one, so there is a slight deviation from the famous site you are going to be compared to.
      Jason,

      There is already a slight deviation with the established domain. Misspelling a word or adding a letter, IMO, does nothing to really help the new site distinguish itself.

      This dilemma really points out the importance of doing niche research before you register any domain name. Most people don't do it and they find out after spending money and time that they really should have paid more attention up front.

      Personal opinion here: I would change the business name (after doing market research) to one that is not linked to the established domain. If it's only been a week since you launched, it will be easier now than after you put more work into your site. You could (don't have to) keep the current domain and just forward any traffic to your new domain name. Then, if the other site goes out of business (which is likely if they get complaints and bad reviews), you will still have your prized India Travel Guide.

      The best to you going forward,

      Steve
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      • Profile picture of the author Ryan Amar
        This dilemma really points out the importance of doing niche research before you register any domain name. Most people don't do it and they find out after spending money and time that they really should have paid more attention up front.
        I agree to this Steve and this is the lesson I'm taking away... thanks for your advice.. some good points to consider there
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  • Profile picture of the author SiteNameSales
    I'd keep your site for now,with qualifications. Established websites are often bombarded with negative reviews. The travel sector in particular is susceptible to this. You've chosen a very competitive industry, regardless of reputation. Most people are looking for the best price with the best amenities. If these folks get a lot of traffic and they are not doing anything illegal, I'd consider any association a mild positive. In fact, you may need to worry about trademark violations rather than bad review.

    Additionally, you didn't mention whether travel guru is part of your domain name or just the business. This could make all the difference as to whether searchers, indepentend paid advertising, will find you.

    You've also got to figure that experience travelers will have their favorite agencies regardless of any notoriety. For those who are just getting involved, a bad association is unlikely to arise. They'll find your site or the other or perhaps both, but I can only assume that the distinctions between your site and the other will be quite obvious.

    Lastly, you also have the option of replicating your site with a different domain name or business name. Same information and packages, but with different keywords reflecting the other name. If you are going to have problems, it's more likely to be trademark violations than bad reputation associations. If your heart is set on the name of your new blog, I'd create a backup site with a different domain name and a different business name just to be safe.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ryan Amar
      you may need to worry about trademark violations rather than bad review.
      I had this same thought regarding trademarks...

      This project is really only a personal blog at present that I'm developing in my free time. If things pick up then I might develop it into a fully fledged business so let's see how it goes! thanks for your advice.
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  • Profile picture of the author discrat
    Wouldn't worry about it. A non- issue , imho
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  • Profile picture of the author ChrisBa
    I would likely change the name, but first do research to ensure this doesn't happen again. At the same time, you might be ok if you don't change, it's really hard to say. Do what you feel is right.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ryan Amar
    Thanks to all who took the effort to respond....

    I must admit having considered your points and my own instincts I'm currently leaning towards leaving things as they are and just running with the name I've chosen!

    This project is currently a personal blog and my vision is to offer something quite different to the afore mentioned company, so hopefully I won't run into any trademark violations!

    Best wishes to you all.
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnVianny
    If you still are in your early days, it's better to change.

    BUT if you grow up your audience steadly, and create engagement with them, it should be no issue.

    What is the matter?

    It's HOW MUCH is a bad reputation: i mean, if it's a scam reputation change, if it's weel established reputation change, and if you think you will also have problems with copyrighting trademark.

    Are you pointing to the same target? is that compay alive or fallen?
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  • Profile picture of the author vishwa
    since you have started your blog few weeks ago.So, you may change the blog name. Now do some research before proceeding with domain name registration.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mario Cristopher
    Hi,

    For starters I would suggest to have it changed to avoid confusion. But if your blog already has a decent amount of followers, they would be able to tell the difference anyway.
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  • Profile picture of the author AmandeepKaur
    I would also recommend you to change your domain name.
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