Facebook Group names: Why they matter and how to pick the right one

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Your Facebook Group name is perhaps the most important and first element a potential member will see about your group, followed by your group’s description and cover image.

That means, it is critical to choose carefully, even though you can change it every 28 days if the one you picked is no longer relevant or aligned with your group’s focus.

In this article, we will go over the main decisions factors when choosing a Facebook Group name and ways to optimize it so that you unlock Facebook’s algorithm potential and gets your group to the top of the search results.

Why your Facebook Group name matters

As we mentioned, choosing a name for your Facebook Group is critical to ensuring that:

  1. Your group gets found.
  2. Your group gets recommended by Facebook.
  3. Your group is appealing to prospective members.
  4. Your group attracts the right kind of members.

Pro tip: In this section we are talking about the group’s name and not its vanity URL which is a separate attribute. The name is what appears at the top of your group’s page. The two don’t have to be the same.

Facebook group name vs URL
Facebook group name vs URL

Let’s unpack this.

Your group name helps your group get found

The most obvious reason why a good name is important is because it will help users find it.

Users look for groups to join all the time by using Facebook’s search bar and typing keywords related to the topic they are interested in. Facebook will then show relevant results. If your name has nothing to do with the topic of your group, it will not show in their search results, which limits your growth opportunity. 

Let’s take a moment to understand what users will see when they search for groups to join. In the example below we searched for groups on Solo Female Travel and we scrolled down past all groups we were already a member of.

Facebook group name search
Facebook group name search

A Facebook search for groups to join shows:

  • Group icon, which is a part of the cover image – read all about cover images
  • Group name
  • Number of members in the group
  • Group description
  • How active the group is, measured by the number of posts daily

Sadly, Facebook search is not as optimized and dynamic as Google, and when returning results for a specific search, it does not look at anything else other than your location, what you have typed in the search bar, the name and vanity URL of a group. It probably also looks at the group’s full description or the first 65 characters, but we can’t be sure of that.

Take away: Think about the keywords that a potential member would use to look for your group and make sure you include them in your Facebook Group name, URL, description, etc.

Your group gets recommended by Facebook

Facebook recommends its users groups to join all the time. It does so in the groups feed with a more complex algorithm, in the main feed by inserting a slider with Group suggestions and even in between posts when you are scrolling through your group’s feed on mobile.

The most obvious place for members to look for suggestions to join a group is the Discover section of your group’s feed.

Recommended Facebook groups to join
Recommended Facebook groups to join

In Discover, Facebook will recommend users groups to join based on:

  • Suggestions for you – which picks groups friends are in, similar to groups you are active in, groups that are about topics you have recently posted about, etc. this is the intelligent part of the recommends where Facebook tries to guess what groups you are most likely to be interested in.
  • Friend’s groups – assuming that what your friends like is what you like.
  • Popular near you – because Facebook assumes location-specific groups that are popular where you live are communities you may want to be a part of.
  • More suggestions – which seem to feature groups that are similar to the ones a user is already in, or where your friends are, etc. it’s a sort of catch all for any other group that might be relevant to you.

In between the above recommendations, Facebook also features Film groups and groups by category.

As you may have guessed, being part of those recommendations means getting your group in front of thousands of potential new members for free and it is what we call unlocking the organic power of Facebook Group recommendations. From that point on, your group will grow exponentially without you having to do anything.

In order to decide which group to include in the possible sections mentioned above, Facebook looks at several variables including a group’s name, how meaningful your group is, how active and engaged it is, how large it is, the group’s location (for location specific groups) and each user’s specific connections to each group (eg. number of friends in the group, similar groups the user is part of, group topic, etc.)

Take away: Your Facebook Group name, along with its level of activity and user’s personal connections, is highly relevant when trying to unlock Facebook’s organic algorithm.

Your group is appealing to prospective new members

Your group name is the first thing people use to form an impression of both your group and your business, and a poorly chosen name which doesn’t catch people’s attention can undermine the work you’re putting into growth. 

A boring, bland name will give the impression of a boring, bland group, and ask yourself: would you want to join a boring group? Neither do your ideal members.

It’s also what people will mention when talking about your group, or referring it to friends, and it’ll likely be plastered over your other online assets (as we recommend in the following chapters for growth hacks). 

Take away: When picking a name, look for an appealing one.

Your group attracts the right kind of members

Your name should be highly relevant to what your group is about, this is not just about honesty and attracting the right members but also because if your name and group content do not match, people will become inactive or leave, and that is a negative signal you send to Facebook and which surely affects how much your group is recommended to others.

Take away: Make sure that your group name reflects what the group is about.

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Choosing the right Facebook Group name

Because of all of the above, your group name REALLY matters, so let’s get down to choosing th right one. Below are the 3 objectives your name should cover:

  1. Tell users who the group is for;
  2. Tell users what the group is about; and 
  3. Tell users why they should join your group, and why it is different from your competition.

You have 75 characters to express the above three points as clearly and memorably as possible and in a way that is both easy to spell and pronounce. Anything that is confusing or too hard means people won’t find you – and they won’t tell their friends if they can’t pronounce it!

Pro tip: While you can change your group name (not its vanity URL) every 28 days, for consistency in your marketing and branding it’s best to get it right from the start. Constantly changing your name risks confusing your members, and keep in mind that you’ll also need to update any external mentions, like if you’ve linked your group from your website.

Tell users who the group is for

Your group name should make it clear straight away who the group is meant for and that should include the person and the geographical location if applicable. And with this in mind, it’s important to ensure your ideal members can identify with the language you use (i.e. words, phrases, and abbreviations). 

For instance, you wouldn’t use millennial language for a Baby Boomer group. You know your audience, speak like them without alienating potential members who could also join your group. That is, don’t use insider words in your group name, rather use them in the description so that you don’t close yourself to members who are new to the topic.

When someone hears about your group, or sees it suggested on Facebook, you want them to feel as though they’ve found their tribe. Think about a name that would instantly make your intended audience feel like they belong. 

Ultimately, quality over quantity is the best way to reduce group churn, and maintain a consistent and steady growth and value to your members.

For instance, if I was starting a group for Solo Female Travelers, but named it I love travel, that’s far too generic and vague for my intended audience to be able to tell that it is a group specifically aimed at Solo Females. 

Solo Female Travelers looking for a niche group would choose other more aptly named groups over mine, and I would probably also see a high amount of irrelevant member requests from males or from women who don’t travel solo. 

Things to avoid:

  • Being too generic. It’s far better to have a more defined group name which only attracts the people you want in the group, as opposed to a broad name which invites a mixed bag of people you don’t.
  • Being too narrow. If you are too specific you may be limiting your group’s growth. Although we love niche groups and we feel they tend to perform better and have higher conversion rates from lead generation, if your group is too small it will struggle to attract critical mass and unlock organic growth.

These are examples of good Facebook Group names which tell prospective members who the other members are:

Group nameWho it’s for
Women who travel solo.
People in Long Distance Relationships
People who have a Facebook Group and want to monetize it.

Tell users what the group is about

Your group name should tell people what your group is about as clearly as possible, and it should give clues as to the personality of the space, i.e. is your group fun, is it quirky, is it formal, is it supportive, is it angry?

You should also aim to give insight as to why it is a meaningful group, and what benefit there is for people joining, especially if you are not the only one in your niche. And each word should be chosen carefully so that your group is as searchable as possible. 

Many users find groups by using the Facebook search bar, so it’s important to optimize your name to include words you believe your ideal members would search for

You want to make sure your group shows up in as many search results as possible (as well as in Facebook’s suggested groups feature, where it recommends groups based on others a user is part of), and that means putting a bit of time into targeting what people are searching for. 

For example, if you’re running a group for Digital Nomads, it may make sense to include the words make money in your group name. If you’re running a group for bloggers, consider whether people would be searching for the words “blogger”, “content creator” or “influencer” instead.

Things to avoid when choosing a Facebook Group name:

  • Special characters (e.g. $$ !! & #)  which people may not naturally search for.
  • Acronyms, as tempting as it may be to use them to get more out of the character limit, consider whether an abbreviation is something those who aren’t familiar with your brand will understand or search for. For instance, is it better to name a group Long Distance Relationships Advice and Support, or LDR Advice and Support? Clarity is more important than length, and the first is far more likely to be found in search as new members are less likely to type LDR into the search bar than they are the complete words. 
  • Abbreviations that are not commonly searched for or that people would be spelling out instead. Facebook’s search algorithm is not as advanced as Google’s so it cannot guess what you meant, only what you wrote. For example, will someone look for “Kick-ass femalepreneurs” or will they instead search for “female entrepreneurs”? More likely the later, so use that instead. 

Using the guidelines above let’s assess how each Facebook Group name tells you exactly what it is about, and what new members get out of it (also pay attention as to how each has been optimized for showing up in search results).

Group nameWhat is the group about? What do people get out of it?
Topics related to Solo Female Travel. Members get to be part of the most established group on Facebook, which has been around for the longest.
Advice and support for getting through a Long Distance Relationship.
Topics related to owning a Facebook Group. Members get tips and advice on growth hacking, marketing and monetization. Your mindset should be in the monetization space and not just in just managing a Facebook Group.

Tell users why they should join your group and why it is different from your competition

Your group name should make it clear to potential users why they should join, what benefit they will get, differentiate you from the competition, and strategically position you when compared to other groups (we use the word competition to describe other similar groups within the same industry/niche/vertical).

Your group benefits can be further elaborated in your group’s description and About page, but the name should already hint at its uniqueness and reason for being and give users a reason why they should join.

Choosing a name which is similar or almost identical to an existing group (and yes, it is possible to name a group the exact same way as another as long as the group vanity URL is different) risks brand confusion, which may mean that all the efforts you put into growing your group could benefit another group owner. 

It also means your group could get caught up in any reputational damage of another, i.e. if there is a scandal within another Facebook Group, or poor moderation, and the reputational blow also affects your group.

Of course, if you are the new comer and you were to name your group after a well established one, you could positively benefit from that but we highly recommend you don’t get caught up in these hacks.

If you genuinely think your group should be named the exact way as another group on Facebook, you should make sure the cover image, the first 65 characters and the description are unique and help you differentiate. You could also use icons and emojis in the name to help you stand out.

Look at your competitors and make sure your group name is unique or better than the rest. Ask yourself the below questions and make sure your answers are reflected in the group name. 

  • How does a potential member know the difference between my group and everyone else’s?
  • What is my unique value proposition?
  • Is my name searchable?

Below are some additional examples to illustrate.

Group nameWhy is the group beneficial and how it is different from the rest
The group is the first of its kind, so it was a pioneer and it is clearly for women (not men) who travel solo (not in groups)
Group is for advice and support and not for other topics and it is different from others that may appear in search results because of that aspect.
The group is about FB groups and how to grow them fast, how to market them and how to monetize them, as opposed to other groups in the niche that are about admin support, we focus on the business aspect of groups.

Other considerations when choosing a name

Besides making sure your Facebook Group name tells what your group is about, who it is for and why members should join, there are some additional considerations to take into account.

Naming your group after you

Be careful when choosing a legacy name for your group, i.e. naming it after a founder. 

Firstly, you should consider the long term implications of doing that. If you plan to step back from the group in the future, sell your business (and the group with it) or want it to be a topic focused community rather than being about yourself, having your name attached could become an obstacle to growth. 

Secondly, using part of the precious 75 characters in a group’s name to add your own could be limiting your searchability potential. Unless you are incredibly well-known in your industry and potential members search for your name, calling a group after yourself goes against the three attributes we suggest a group name should have.

Name your group after your brand

Many people simply name their Facebook Groups after their brand, products or services, and while this may seem like a branding opportunity and may follow the logic of Facebook pages, it has its downsides.

People join groups to feel as though they belong to a community not a brand. As such, a group should be about them and not about you. Unlike Business Pages which are the place to talk about yourself, groups are the place for your members to interact. 

That’s not to say that you can’t incorporate your brand name into the name of your Facebook Group, but you should blend it to be about your members so it fosters a sense of community and gives yourself the best potential for growth.

For instance, choosing a name that reflects a specific topic is much more likely to pull in members who care about that topic, than using your business name would (especially for those who may not have heard of your business). Topics transcend brands and businesses and attract a much larger audience.

If your brand name carries certain fame or weight within your industry or you are using a topic for which there are other groups and want to differentiate and build your brand, you could blend the two by adding your brand name at the end of the group nam or adding your brand logo to the cover image and say “Powered by [brand name]”.

But beware that by doing that you may alienate potential members who don’t want to be a part of a community that is linked to a brand or who may think that the group is all about the brand and not the specific topic.

The only exception to this recommendation would be a group that is created around a product or brand and for which these are the key. in that case, the brand/product name should be in the group’s name.

Naming your group after a trademarked word

You can literally call your group however you like, including trademarked or brand names. Facebook has strict Intellectual property terms of service and community guidelines that state that:

A trademark is a word, slogan, symbol or design (ex: brand name, logo) that distinguishes the products or services offered by one person from another. Generally, trademark law seeks to prevent confusion among consumers about the source of a product or service. But using a trademark for the purpose of discussing the goods offered, such as to criticize them, does not typically constitute infringement.

If your group is about a specific brand or product, you are probably ok to use it in your group’s name but the only way to know is to reach out to the company and get their permission to use the name.

How to keep your name unique

While you may come up with the best group name at launch, this uniqueness may be diluted over time as other groups are launched. 

As we mentioned at the beginning, Facebook only prevents a new group from having the same vanity URL as an existing one but it does not prevent you from having an identical name as another group, which could lead to brand confusion. 

Brand confusion should be taken very seriously and may be a reason you choose to change your name after your group has become quite well established. 

For example, the admins of our Solo Female Travelers group would commonly receive (sometimes angry) messages from members of other groups with questions about their rejected posts or deleted thread in other groups. 

To differentiate, we decided to add a sentence after the group’s name to allude to the fact that it was the first global group on Facebook on the niche. Since we did that, the number of mistaken messages dropped down to 0 and we also managed to reposition the group as the first, to differentiate it from other groups in the space who are much larger. 

How to change your Facebook Group name

If you decide that changing your group name after launch is what you need to differentiate it from other copycats or to refocus it on your business’ goals, you can do so every 28 days.

Do note that every time you change your name your members will receive a notification and the change will be reflected in the group’s name history.

Pro tip: You can change your name regardless of how large your group gets; we have tested this. It is untrue that you cannot change your group name after hitting 5,000 members, despite what many articles online claim, you cannot change its vanity URL when it has more than 5,000 members, but you can change your group’s name every 28 days.

To change the name of your Facebook Group, click on the Settings tab in the Manage group panel on the left. You can then update your Name and Description. Members will receive a notification that you have changed the group name.

How to change a Facebook Group name
How to change a Facebook Group name

Checklist of considerations when choosing a group name

Below is a summary of the questions you should make sure you group name answers. If you are creating a group from scratch, the below points should guide your decision. If you already have a group, use them to assess if your existing Facebook Group name needs any fine tuning and tweaking: 

RecommendationQuestion you should answerDetails
KeywordsHave you used keywords which your ideal members are likely to use in Facebook search? Make sure that the keywords your potential members would use to find relevant groups are incorporated in the group name
PermissionDo you have permission to use any trademarked names?Make sure that you have obtained permission from the brand owner to use any names that might be trademarked or protected under Intellectual or Trademark laws.
LengthIs your group name 75 characters or less?Make sure your name does not exceed 75 characters
Group URLIs the URL for the group name available?To make your group easier to find and help it rank higher, the URL should also contain the keyword and ideally be the same as the group name, to avoid confusion and make sure prospective members can find it. Make sure the URL and name are both available.
Strategic alignmentDoes your name align to your business or the niche you are targeting?Your name should strategically position you within your niche and align to your business. If it is a direct match to your business, consider using your business name.
MemorableIs your name compelling? Does it stick in the minds of others?Make sure your name is appealing and easy to remember, spell and tell others about. Avoid using abbreviations or acronyms that are not widely used in your niche.
DifferentiationDoes your name set you apart from competitors?Ensure there is no risk of confusion with other available groups and what makes your group unique is apparent from the name.
WhoIs it clear who the group is for (including geo references)?Make sure the right member would identify themselves with your group name.
WhatIs it clear what the group is about?Is the group name aligned with the purpose of the group and the discussions that are had inside?
WhyAre the benefits of joining your group clear?This should be hinted at in the group’s name and more clearly explained in its description

Frequently asked questions about Facebook Group names

Have questions? We have answers! Check our frequently asked questions below.

How long can a Facebook Group name be?

You are allowed 75 characters for your Facebook Group name.

Can I use special characters in my Facebook Group name?

You can, and you can also use emoji which might help your differentiate from other groups.

Can Facebook Group names be repeated?

Yes, two (or more) Facebook Groups can have the same name, what must be unique is the group’s vanity URL. We do not recommend naming your group after another existing one unless you are intentionally trying to create confusion.

Does my Facebook Group name matter in search results?

It does, your Facebook Group name is very important to make your group searchable and found on Facebook. We know that Facebook looks at a group’s name to decide what results to show a user who searches for groups to join so you should make sure that relevant and high volume keywords are included in it.

Can I name my Facebook Group after myself?

You can, but we do not recommend it for two reasons: Firstly, in the long run, you may want to sell or decouple a group from you, and secondly, unless you are celebrity, it is unlikely potential members would be searching for a group using your name, making it about the topic instead helps with discoverability.

How often can I change a Facebook Group’s name?

You can change your group’s name every 28 days even if the group size is larger than 5,000 members. We have tested this is it is not true that you cannot change larger group names – other websites that state that are incorrect.

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