That’s “AAA Self-Storage Names,” now put me in the Yellow Pages.

Once upon a time there was good reason to name your company something like, “1 AAAA Storage.”

This dawned on me when I was flipping though the Yellow Pages and saw names like, “A-1 Self-Storage,” “A A Olympic Centinela Storage,” “A AA Dootson Mini Storage,” “A AAA Mini Storage,” “A All Storage,” “A Mobile Mini,” “AA Discount Storage,” “AAA Personal Storage Garages,” and “A-American Self-Storage.”

Beating your competition used to be as easy as outdoing them with A’s, but that time, the age of the Yellow Pages, is coming to an end. Google, unlike the your old friend, isn’t going to put you at the top of their list just because your name is at the top of the alphabet.

But, to be at the top of Google, you don’t have to spend a fortune on marketing, advertising and branding to compete with the big guys. Let’s face it, with 2,200 facilities, Public Storage definitely has a leg up on that one. How many of their facilities have you driven by in your lifetime? Well, enough to create a pretty clear imprint on the average person.

So, why not adapt the strategic naming process to the times. What about calling your company “Cheapest Self-Storage in [fill in city],” a popular Google search for storage. With a domain name like that, you have some real SEO value.

There are already a few companies who appear to have taken into account the “new” Internet savvy generation when naming their companies, such as, “Affordable Storage.” They have an A and, if they do things right, they are bound to rank high for “affordable storage” searches, a pretty relevant keyword to monopolize in the storage world.

“A Low Cost Self-Storage” is on the right track as well. Although from an SEO standpoint they might have been better served by a name like, “Cheap Self-Storage,” “cheap” doesn’t really send a message of quality and security. Especially given the number of self-storage robberies getting media attention, it could be a risky move.

Then there is, “A Safe Place.” They are definitely sending the right message in terms of a very safe storage facility, but on the other hand, when people search for self-storage, they usually aren’t searching for “a safe place.” So, weigh the pros and cons.

Now that I have had fun with everyone else’s name, I’ll admit that wasn’t really thinking about SEO when we picked our name. However, another thing to consider when picking a name is the value of memorability. SpareFoot, a play on square foot, may have that going for them over a generic non-descript name like, “The Place for Self-Storage.”

But, even more important, if I can leave you with one take-away point: Don’t make the same mistake these companies made because this is probably not a “Top 10 list” on which you want to find yourself.