Optimiser or Optimizer? Will we all spell the American way soon?

October 20, 2010 4:20 am | POSTED BY Admin

So, here is something a few colleagues and friends have pointed out to me. We spell Site Optimizer with a “z” and not the English way with an “s.”

A fair amount of thought went into choosing the name before we started, and we concluded that Site Optimizer is a great company name and potentially a very good brand. One big factor in this was the fact that Google spells the name of its A/B Multivariate testing tool “Google Website Optimizer.”

Now a while ago I commented on an article by Patrick Altoft that says Google is trying to change the English language, and mentioned our company name. Someone called “Starstruck” replied thus:

“This is only my opinion, but I think you’ve made an extremely poor decision. If I say to someone on the phone “I was thinking of using site optimiser dot co dot uk” whoever on the other end is going to type in the UK spelling and you’ve just spent brand building money sending traffic to a domain you don’t even own…

I also own a UK spelling site (searchengineoptimisation.org) without owning the Z, but given I own the correct spelling I am more than willing to give up the dyslexics and stupid, to ensure I rank well for “search engine optimisation” :)

I don’t think a wrongly spelled word in your business name gives off a good impression at all. There is only a downside, with very little to gain from doing it. Not like there is going to be much search traffic for “site optimizer” in UK I’m guessing…”

Now our friend Starstruck obviously has a very strong view on the issue.  I would be naturally inclined to disagree, as we do get UK traffic from search terms spelled in the US fashion, and the people we have come into contact with as a result have not been stupid at all. However, two questions remain:

1. Is the eminent Patrick right? Does Google have so much influence that we will all end up spelling like our cousins over the pond?

2. Should we have gone with a different spelling for the company name?

What do you think?

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