Should I or Should I Not ?

Photography | Kankana Saxena

A thought has been bothering me for more than a week now and I am asking myself the same question over and over again – Should I or should I not? When I started the blog in Jan 2011, it was not really thought through. I didn’t know any blogger, didn’t know how huge the food community could be.  I didn’t know if I would even enjoy blogging. It was a decision made one afternoon after a long chat with my friend who thought it would be a good idea to share recipes with friends. Eventually, it reached to the world and the blog became a very important part of my life. I love every bit of it!

 

So, what am I confused about? The name – ‘Sunshine and Smile’. I decided it over a cup of coffee. It was that quick! I liked the name and I still like it but now I feel my blog needs a different name, a more specific meaningful name, something not so generic that can at times be confused with dentist or florist.

 

Changing blog name would mean changing domain. There are certain amounts of risk involved in it. I know! I spoke to my friends about it. Some feel very positive about it and few others said they would miss this name cause they liked it so much. They could relate it to me. I am so confused right now and even though I strongly feel the blog needs a new name, I am not sure.

 

Please help me with your thoughts. Should I or should I not? This blog would be absolutely nothing without you guys. Your input matters to me, a lot! If you have gone through any such change with your blog or website, please share your experience with me. It would be very helpful. You can also contact me here!

 

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  • marla
    April 17, 2013 at 8:45 PM

    I am about to do the same thing ~ I say go for it if you think best.

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:42 PM

      I didn’t know you planned to change it too 🙂 I just now saw your other FB page!

  • chinmayie
    April 17, 2013 at 9:07 PM

    I would say don’t change the name! While I understand what you mean about it not being relevant, I think it’s still a great name! It makes me think about bright sunshiny happy things and I see that in your photos and writing all the time. Just my thoughts 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:45 PM

      That means so much Chinmayie! It’s just that I always feel that it says nothing about food and am worried what if the same thought comes to me after many many years. Now. it’s only 2 years old. You know what I mean! But I will give it another thought. Let’s see 🙂 Thanks a lot babe!

  • Sanjeeta kk
    April 17, 2013 at 9:08 PM

    I always relate the name with cheery Kankana, her smile and the beautiful pictures! Generic name would bring in good search results though.

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:47 PM

      Thanks Sanjeeta! yeah the search result and all that ultimately matters when you want to eventually make blogging your career. That’s why the thought. Let’s see if I go for it or not and I hope even if I do go for it, i will be able to find some cheerful name, something that can relate to me. Wish I had thought thought when I started the blog two years back 🙂

  • Grishma
    April 17, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    Aahh what a coincidence – I am thinking of the same. Especially because it’s pretty hard for non- Indians to pronounce it. But hey I love the name Sunshine and smile. It’s so you. I would say keep it!

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:48 PM

      Thanks Babe so much! Looks like I have to give it more thought. Hope I can come to a conclusion 🙂

  • Sayantani
    April 17, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    I had the same thought a couple of years back but decided to keep it, and would give yu the same suggestion. dont change the name. you are already known under this blog name and many of us always relate the name with your happy smiling face and gorgeous clicks.

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:51 PM

      So sweet of you Sayantani and I too love this name and it is really me. I like a sunny day, I am a happy kinda person but when I search for sunshine and smile all i see is zillion sunshine illustrations. I can never beat them. And I am worried what if the same thought comes to my mind after many many years! Ki je mushkil 😀 Let me give it another thought before I decide anything at all! 🙂

  • Joyti
    April 17, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    I often wonder the same thing (seeing as my blog has a name that’s not familiar to Western readers, long, hard to spell)…
    …but in the end, I stick to it. It’s how others, your readers, identify with your blog. You’ve gotten recognition with it. And it seems very cheery and happy and I agree with the above commenters – that makes me think of the cheery, happy, sunshiny YOU! When I visualize your site, I imagine a bright sunny kitchen full of yummy smells 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:54 PM

      Your blog name is beautiful and unique Joyti! I like mine too, not denying that at all. And even though there is no sunshine in my kitchen, I can at least have that in my virtual kitchen 🙂 I will give it another thought and if at all I change it, I hope to come up with something cheerful enough. Hope, I can. 🙂 This is tough!

    • Soma
      April 18, 2013 at 8:36 AM

      Hi Jyoti,
      I know if it’s hard you will get a fewer readers just because they couldn’t go thorugh the trouble of pronouncing the blog’s name. BUT…I would not consider that as an abstacle. If someone is truly interested in my/your blog, they will stick to eat. They will try to understand the name and the reason behind it. I love your blog’s name. Please don’t change it.
      Soma

  • OHW
    April 17, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    I would say that at first even I did not relate it to be a food blog, but if you have a large audience and if you can improve your search results by putting in key words on the site/ listing your site on all the food communities/directories then it should be okay. Identity change is a big decision in online world. I would say think over through and through.

    But like one blogger says your happy and cheery personality comes thorough it and after all food is one of the most important thing that brings sunshine and smile in most of our world. And if you people relate to it, what’s more you need. In Shakespeare word’s ‘What’s in a name?’

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 10:01 PM

      Thank you for dropping by! yes, looks like I have to really think and think more 🙂

  • Vishakha
    April 17, 2013 at 9:33 PM

    For people who have never met you (like me) follow your posts and love your work, the name ‘Sunshine and Smile’ is an identity that they associate you with. It is such a happy name, like your pictures, and from the photos that I have seen of you, it’s like you – smiling and happy 🙂 I vote for keeping this name!:) I love it!

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:55 PM

      Thanks babe 🙂 Looks like I have to think through this. So appreciate you dropping here and sharing your thought. I hope I can come to a conclusion 🙂

  • Nami | JOC
    April 17, 2013 at 9:33 PM

    My husband and I went through the same thing. We have another domain which is more Japanese recipe specific and he thought we should have switched back then… but I named my blog, really just one cookbook for my family recipes, and we have good amount of readers that we are hesitant to change right now.

    You know Kankana, I talked to you before I met you, and I finally met you once face to face, and Sunshine and Smile is SO YOU. One blogger friend asked me how was meeting you, and I told her, your just like your blog. You are cheerful, and I still remember your big happy smile, and it’s funny you and blog are so alike!!!! I understand why you are thinking to change, and if you change, we still follow you (so don’t worry too much). But to be honest, I’ll be a bit sad to see your blog title go away. 🙂 Good luck! (sorry I wrote too much)

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:56 PM

      Nami, you are so sweet my friend 🙂 I have the same confusion, readers and traffic and all that. Now after reading everybody’s comment, I realized how much they relate the name to my blog. It feels so nice! I have to do some serious thinking I guess. This will not be easy 😀

  • Sudeshna
    April 17, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    i changed it when I shifted from wordpress.com to wordpress.org. it is a real pain, and then you have to redirect your old posts to the new domain. but, that’s one me. so go for it, baby.

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 9:58 PM

      I don’t plan to change the host so Arvind said it will not be too much work. We just have to take precautions of few things. But after reading everybody’s comment and realizing how much they connect the blog name to me in person is a beautiful feeling 🙂 Jani nah ki korbo, khub tough decision, arek tu chinta korte hobe 🙂

  • Liren
    April 17, 2013 at 9:47 PM

    This is a tough one! I had to go through a blog rename at the beginning, when I was three months in to my original blog. When it came down to deciding between two names, I opted for the more generic one. To be honest, if I could do it all over again, I would have opted for the one that included my name. You and I both have unique names that it would work just as well as our current blog names. That said, I agree with Nami that I have grown to associate Sunshine and Smile with you, I don’t even have to think twice. So to keep it would be my vote.

    But if you do change it, I’ll be right there! Do what your heart tells you is right!!!

    (ok, I’ve rambled on and on and doubt I’ve given any solid advice, but hope that helps, for what it’s worth!)

    • Kankana
      April 17, 2013 at 10:03 PM

      Thanks so much Liren for being there 🙂 This is not going to be easy right? If only I would have thought through this earlier, when I started the blog 😀 Hope I can make the right decision.

  • Laura (Tutti Dolci)
    April 17, 2013 at 10:02 PM

    I love your blog name (it always makes me smile). But whatever you decide, I’ll keep reading! 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:49 PM

      Thanks Laura, you saying that means a LOT!

  • Rekha
    April 17, 2013 at 10:21 PM

    While sunshine and smile is great name and reminds about happy thing and most important it has become your identity of sorts, so letting go seems hard. But if you look at practical side of it, generic name that brings in more search results and people who love sunshine and smile anyways are going to be there with you. When I started food blogging in late 2011 I had faced same dilemma but went for name change and with time last one was forgotten and my tasty curry has become identity of sorts.

    My two cents, in the end all that matters is what you are comfortable with. Go for what makes you happy.

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:48 PM

      Thanks Rekha for teh confidence. Didn’t know you blog was called by a diff name. This feels good. May be I can do it too 🙂

  • Siri
    April 17, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    Trust me, I have gone through the same dilemma two years ago when my blog was called – Siri’s Corner :P, a name I decided on a whim. Like a dumb idiot, I changed the domain name and totally forgot to port the feedburner list before the change due to which I lost all the subscriber base I built over time :(. But, the change was the BEST thing ever happened as the “Cooking With Siri” is more apt than a very generic – Siri’s Corner which doesn’t convey my love for food.

    I would say – Just go for it. It does help in the long run. 🙂

    Hugs,
    Siri

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:50 PM

      Thanks for letting me know about the port feedburner. I will keep that in mind. I am glad you had a good experience. I needed to hear that. Hope I can come up with a decision soon 🙂

  • Rosa
    April 17, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    I love this name and it doesn’t remind me of dentists or florists. It has such a positive vibe…

    Anyeway, whatever you decide, you can rest assured that I will follow you as I’m a big fan of your work. 😀

    Cheers,

    Rosa

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:50 PM

      Rosa, you are always so kind! Thanks girl 🙂

  • Revati
    April 17, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    I’d say dont change it! Its such a unique name for a food blog. SOmetimes not being “specific and direct” is a good thing. Your url doesnt have the typical words one associates with food blogs, which frankly after a while are a big muddle of the same old cliche words (mine included!) — hungry, love, simmer, eat, food, curry, tadka.

    I always remember your blog name because it sticks harder in my head. And it is good that it doesnt directly connote just food because to my mind your blog is so much more. It is gorgeous pictures, wonderful stories, lots of travel. And Sunshine and Smile definitely fits all those things.

    Please dont change!

    (Wondering if these conflicting suggestions are going to confuse you!)

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:53 PM

      Thank you Revati so much. You have no idea how amazing it feels to know how much people enjoy my work. One of the main reason why I wanted to go for a change is because when I bought this domain, I really didn’t see if the name was available for other social media. Later I realize it was there like twitter or gmail. I had already bought the domain and had to stick to it. Now I just feel that if I really want to take this blogging further, I have to think seriously about marketing and making sure people can relate to my blog by the name. You know what I mean 🙂 Hope you will still come back irrespective of what I call it!

  • Arch
    April 17, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    Hey Kankana, ever since I came across your blog through the ‘top 9 posts’, I have been in awe of your photography – sunny, happy, bright. I identify you with your blogname, a happy, bright name. True it may not sound like a very food blog name, but I think its very ‘You’, so stick on with it. You are pretty popular already and people identify this name with your blog, so honestly, I feel its not worth the pain of changing it…

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:55 PM

      Oh Arch, I am no popular trust me! I have grown yes, but not even close to popular. I have long way to go 🙂 I don’t worry about the pain of changing. I have a geek husband 🙂 Anyways, hope I can come up with a decision and THANK YOU SO much for saying those words.

  • dassana
    April 17, 2013 at 11:14 PM

    your blog has a unique name and i always associate it with all the bright and positive things in life. your pics also very much reflect the same. when i first came to your blog, i did not know you blogged about food only. since the name was so unique, i thought food was one part of your blog. honestly i was surprised when i saw that you are a food blogger.

    better to change and take a domain name which is more specific to your niche. but let me tell you that its not easy. also tricky. you will loose traffic from search engines for some time.if the traffic does not matter then go for the change. you will have to use 301 redirect. also update in google webmaster tools.

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:56 PM

      Thansk Dasana 🙂 yeah it will not be easy and it will need a lot of work to bring up the traffic and all. Let’s see how it goes!

  • Aniko
    April 17, 2013 at 11:34 PM

    I had the same thought a couple of month ago…me like you decided about the actual name in few minutes.
    for the moment i keep it, i only try to improve posts quality and change my style…
    change the name for me means new adventure! you have to chooise with yr “heart”! in any case iwill follow you!

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:57 PM

      Thank you for saying that, it means a lot! I really hope I can make the right decision 🙂

  • Nishita
    April 17, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    All your recipes always have a touch of sunshine (warmth, you make them with love and creativity)and the brilliant photography brings smiles to the faces seeing them.. I feel the name is very apt !

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:59 PM

      Thanks Nishita! I am not yet sure what I will do but have to decide in couple of days as I really cannot keep things hanging 🙂 I do hope even if I change the name, the photo, writing and the recipe will continue making you smile!

  • [email protected]
    April 18, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    Sunshine and smile…a perfect name for your blog and photography. I would stay with it if I were you.

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:59 PM

      yeah, it’s a tough call! 🙂

  • Nisha
    April 18, 2013 at 12:14 AM

    the {food, photography, travel} in your header relates well to your ‘sunshine and smile’ … if you choose a name more focused on food/recipes, all your travel pics, photography tips, and life-in-general kind of posts (like the bengali wedding) will seem out of place.

    i like the name as it is. but i agree with rekha above – if you choose to change, over the time people will forget the old name. and i also agree with revati – food blogs having cliched names are overdone.

    that said, i think your readers will be able to help you more if you brainstorm and list all your possible options of new names and ask their vote. who knows, everyone might like some name that can still be associated well with you and your blog.

    phew, this must have been my longest comment ever. i have not been commenting much on blogs lately, but i do follow your blog regularly and admire your photos. just wanted to let you know 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 6:01 PM

      Thanks Nisha and I get your point! let me see what I do and hope whatever I call my blog, my work will still continue to make you smile 🙂

  • nisha
    April 18, 2013 at 1:55 AM

    Kankana…in all honesty when i first landed on your blog, i did wonder why the generic name for a food blog and it had no connection with food. But of course you had mentioned somewhere on you about me page and i thought it was cute and now i associate it with you. Cuteness aside and practically thinking…i would perhaps change the name to something associated with food, which may help you in the longer run. That said, every blogger has a reason for selecting their blog name and you owe no sort of explanation as to why you selected it. So go with your heart girl..and whatever name you choose you will in no time be on top of the list. 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 6:02 PM

      Thanks babe, thanks a lot! Exactly my point, in the long run the blog needs to have a more specific meaning. I don’t want to continue telling people what sunshine and smile is every time I give my card. You know 🙂

  • Sia | Monsoon Spice
    April 18, 2013 at 2:22 AM

    Oh, this is going be one of the most difficult decisions!
    Coming to your blog name Sunshine & Smile, I really like the sound of it. It sure represents the sunny, bright and beautiful girl behind this blog. There are hundreds (or thousands!) of food blogs out there including mine which have very generic names related to food which is kind of boring 🙂 Yours stands out from the rest of other food blogs as it is quite unique. So my advice to you based on emotions and what my heart says, stick with the same name.
    The practical person in my mind says change the name to something that your blog is about, food! Agreed that you post travelogues and photography etc, but in the end it is a food blog. It will help in a longer run to have a blog name that kind of suggests something to do with food in general. The sooner you do is better as it is just going to be much more difficult after a year or two. You will loose some traffic initially but you will get it back after a while. My advice if you ever decide to change the domain is to keep the existing domain for a year or two so that you can redirect your readers to new domain over a period. I changed my blog’s name after a year when I moved on to new domain name. I lost all the subscribers initially but then there were just a handful of food blogs at that time and it was not difficult to build my blog audience over the period. I think it was one of my best decisions to change my initial blog name although after a while I started wondering if I should have thought little more before jumping into naming my blog to current one! Yes, I get bored of things very easily and it is wonder how I am still married to the same guy all these years 😉
    Jokes apart, you don’t have to worry about your existing readers as we will be happy to follow you. I will stop it here before my comments starts to look like one of my lengthy blog posts! What ever you decide, we will still continue to visit our ‘sunshine’ girls’ blog who never fails to bring ‘smile’ on our face with her posts 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 6:04 PM

      Sia, you write beautiful words girl, so all your post long or not always gets me lost in your world and I love it! Thanks so much for the confidence. I hope that name won’t matter as long as my work makes them smile 🙂

  • indugetscooking
    April 18, 2013 at 3:40 AM

    Love the name, Kankana. It is so cheerful and positive. And your blog is not just about food, it also lets your personality shine through with your little stories. I love it.

    Though, I must say, you seem to be leaning heavily in favor of changing the name. 🙂

    I’ll be back, whatever the name!

  • Shruti
    April 18, 2013 at 4:41 AM

    Kankana, Im no experienced blogger…as a newbie who has just stepped into the blogosphere…here are my 2 cents..
    I discovered your blog late last year and follow your work. Your photography and dedication is very inspiring. For me Kankana is Sunshine and Smile. Please don’t change it. Its a wonderful name.
    In any case, even if you do..I will continue to follow you for sure 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 6:05 PM

      For a newbie you take lovely photos Shruti 🙂 Thanks for saying that you will come back. It means a lot girl. Now hope I can make a decision soon!

  • Karine Keldany
    April 18, 2013 at 4:53 AM

    From a marketing point of view it is not a good thing to change a name if it got known already. I studied and worked in Marketing for many years and would advise you against it. You got known under a certain name and people referr to you by it. So why change. You can change the look of the blog a bit if you wish, but the identity and name should stay. If you are keen on changing then start a second blog and refer to it from here. Then gradually let people know you are going to keep just one blog. This would be a smooth move and you will keep your readers. Wishing you best of luck. 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 6:06 PM

      Thanks Karine 🙂 Hope I can make the right choice!

  • Theresa
    April 18, 2013 at 5:25 AM

    I too love the name and agree that you shouldn’t change it.
    Although, in the end it’s definitely your choice!
    We will follow you, no worries there!
    What if you add to it, a line below?
    I have seen a lot of sites do that now.
    Does that still mean moving?
    Anyway, no problems! We will keep up with you!

  • Sukanya
    April 18, 2013 at 5:30 AM

    Hi Kankana
    Even I was thinking on the same line sometimes ago. My blog’s name too does not relate to food and travel, but it is the name that stands apart and initially I loved it, I started believing in it. It gives me a high when people search for my blog by its name.
    if you are going to change the permalink of your posts, it will be too messy. Like starting your blog from the beginning. after achieving so much,this seems just unnecessary to me.
    and also a more generic name (like something with food, recipes, cooking etc) will be more competitive from SEO point of view, not necessary the best one.
    Finally you have to do what you think best, readers will come.

  • Sowmya
    April 18, 2013 at 6:57 AM

    Hey kankana, I love your blog and especially the name “Sunshine and smile” . A Happy and bright name. I would say ,Keep it. I love your photography, I saw your photography tips and bought a camera and started blogging.This website was gr8 inspiration to me. Its up to you to decide, I will keep visiting this blog even the name changes 🙂

  • Chitrangada
    April 18, 2013 at 7:55 AM

    My answer is No. Why do you need to change such a lovely name? People know you by this name now. About relevance, your photography is bright and clear as sunshine and your recipes, write up and posts bring smiles to many, so a perfect combo. Keep rocking. Love your blog.

  • mjskit
    April 18, 2013 at 8:05 AM

    I’d have to go with a lot of the comments you have already received and say NO. Don’t change your name. It’s a great name, it’s out there, people know you, and it’s perfect for what I have seen of your blog! If you feel you need change, then change the look and maybe the feel but not the name. It’s taken a lot of work to get to this point as you well know and a name change, for me would feel like starting over. Ugh! Good luck with any decision you make!

  • Soma
    April 18, 2013 at 8:41 AM

    Please don’t change it. To me good food is like a bright sunny day and brings a smile on my face. It doesn’t have to be direct. I wanted to name my blog something very different, but I didn’t, just because it was too difficult. I think my blog’s name is still a bit difficult for many people and many of them don’t even understand the meaning. I really don’t care. I treat the blog as my own space…write to relax and share my thoughts to everybody. You blog has such a beautiful name….keep it that way. I know it’s a pretty tough call though.

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:47 PM

      Thank you Soma 🙂 It is indeed a tough call and everybody comment made it a tad bit more difficult. Had no idea people liked the name so much! I am giving it some days to decide if I should listen to my heart or head!

      • Soma
        April 19, 2013 at 11:51 AM

        It’s your blog and you should go for your instincts…I am sure the new name will be as beautiful as the current one and the faithful followers will still stick to you. 🙂

  • Manju
    April 18, 2013 at 8:48 AM

    Hey Kankana,
    Even I’ve been pondering on the same thought for a while now. My confusion is whether I should keep my personal name on my blog’s title, which was just named after a facebook album I had created one fine day when I started sharing pics of my kitchen experiments and din’t give it much thought. Also I share recipe posts n non-recipe posts..

    But I love your blog’s name and it’s become like a brand now. A post from Sunshine and Smile means you are bound to get a lovely recipe or post with loads of amazing pics…thats how I see it. I would say Keep it! but then it’s your decision and whether you change it or not I’ll still be following you. You’ve done a great job in 2 yrs!

    All the Best,
    Manju

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:46 PM

      Thank you Mnaju! The thing is, I wish I had this thought long back at the initial stage of my blogging. But I really didn’t know my blog would be all about food mainly. And somehow I feel thankful that I am giving a thought now and not 10 years down the line when it would probably be impossible you know 🙂 Giving a couple of days to make a final decision on this!

  • Ananda Rajashekar
    April 18, 2013 at 9:02 AM

    Oh Kankana please don’t change the name, it’s beautiful and unique. I love it! It tells so much about you (cheerful), your food (blissful) and photography(sunny). I think your blog has gained so much of recognition and everyone know what sunshine and smile is all about, so why would they need a generic name? If you still want to change, your new blog name should be more fancy and attractive than the first, your first name in the higher level of the scale bar! Good luck girl, have a glass of wine and cheese it will help you take right decision 😉

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:44 PM

      Honestly speaking sweetie, my blog has along way to go and I thought it’s not too late to give it a new name. I know why you say not to change and thanks a bunch for loving my work so much. It means so much! I am not sure if I can pick a name that would bring the same amount of smile on your face or not but I do hope, really hope, my work continues to 🙂

  • Kiran
    April 18, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    Omg, I was thinking to do the same. I’d say, go for it! 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:42 PM

      Thanks Kiran! I didn’t know you too 🙂

  • Soma
    April 18, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    Have told your before & again my personal opinion. I love the name. It defines you and it is your blog, and your life here. It is about food, but the food is to sustain yourself and the way you live and what you are. If I can live with my blog name … 🙂 Yours is beautiful! It makes everyone happy just hearing it. Keep it.

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:41 PM

      I know Soma and thanks so much. You had always liked the name. Jani nah ki korbo, ekhono confuse aachi but I really feel it needs a new name. Giving a coulpe of days to think through this 🙂

  • [email protected]
    April 18, 2013 at 9:47 AM

    Kana,

    Wonder why you have doubts about it. Sunshine and smile is SO much “You”!
    And I’ll say that two hundred times..
    You may be right there in thinking that a blog name would be better with food related words. In my opinion, branding is not just about finding related words, it is about how people will connect or relate to you through your brand. And most of the comments say exactly that – the name just depicts so much of you. Isn’t that how you want? Uniquely you?
    Besides, your blog is an extension of you enveloped around food, photography, travelogues, etc and whatever else you might venture into in future..
    To give you a skewed analogy, does Adidas have anything shoe related in its name? Yet, people know instantly what it is about.
    Your blog name is your brand and do not change it “just because” it is not sounding food related.

    Yet, if you are simply not at peace, go with your gut feeling. It always knows what is right for you.

    For your staunch supporters, name won’t matter much anyways.. 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:40 PM

      Thanks dear! yeah I do love a sunny day and it always makes me smile. I really didn’t know you guys liked the name so much. Well, it is not going to an easy decision but I have to make one soon. Let’s talk sometime soon, may be I can explain you better than 🙂

  • Jana Shannon
    April 18, 2013 at 10:17 AM

    If you are heaving those feelings, they are telling you something so listen. Follow your heart.

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:37 PM

      Yep, I have to definitely decide between heart and head out here 🙂

  • wok with ray
    April 18, 2013 at 1:01 PM

    The name fits your blog perfectly and I think it fits your “always big smile” personality. Your dishes, and your photography reflects your passion of the art. I would keep the name “Sunshine and Smile” if I were you. That is just my opinion and whatever you decide, I. . . would still be your same loyal fan, Kankana. 🙂

    • Kankana
      April 18, 2013 at 5:37 PM

      Thank you Ray so much! It seriously means a lot. It is not going to be an easy decision and I hope I can take one soon.

  • Archana
    April 18, 2013 at 7:14 PM

    I love your blog name ‘sunshine and smile’…it is unique; the first thought that comes to mind is ‘fresh’, ‘bright’ and ‘happy’. At times, ‘obvious’ blog names are boring! I have always pondered over changing my blog’s name since the first thing that comes up in search is the popular food tv show. It’s a tough decision. Although, you need not worry about the traffic/visitors….we’ll follow your gorgeous blog…whatever name who choose to keep! 🙂

  • Eha
    April 18, 2013 at 8:02 PM

    If it ain’t broke don’t fix it!!!! I oft open your new blog first BECAUSE of the happy name!!!

  • Lizzy (Good Things)
    April 18, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    Your blog name is quite lovely….

  • Ritu
    April 18, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    I think the name ‘sunshine & smile’ does resonate with a dental clinic or a kids spa, but it also reflects the imagery on your blog. If you’re worried about it not pointing to ‘food’, maybe you can start another blog with a new name which suggests food. You could post only about Food in your new blog & let this one be for your photography & travels. Just follow your heart…the rest WILL follow! 🙂
    Hope that helps!
    Cheers!

  • nipponnin
    April 18, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    Your blog name is sooo you! I like it very much. So full of energy and positive feeling whenever I hear or see the title. But the decision is up to you and I wish you the best! I think you’re awesome blogger!

    I’m so jealous that Nami already met you in person, LOL.

  • Pia
    April 19, 2013 at 6:51 AM

    Decisions, decisions, Kankana 🙂 But you know, if you finally decide on a change, I’m sure your new name will be as much a reflection of your personality as this is, because it’ll come from you. And then suddenly, it’ll resonate with everyone here who know you and know your blog. Can’t wait to see what you do 🙂

  • Mallika
    April 19, 2013 at 7:48 PM

    I went through the same emotions as you are right now a couple of years ago. My blog was relatively new and called Go Veg (my old photos have that copywrite watermark too!), which was deceptive, since my blog did not intend to persuade or influence people to live a vegetarian lifestyle. I took a wise decision to change it and really think Veg Bowl is far better than the former name. Although, there’s never an element of satisfaction and a feeling that there could have been a better one! 🙂

    Anyways, I know Kankana changing name is really a tough decision to take, especially since most of the us associate with you by that name. Sunshine and Smile is you and just you! But really, one of the things you should ponder is if you like the current name yourself or not, or if you can put up with the same name for the years to come? At later stage it would get really tough to change the name, in case you intend to do then. And if you plan to change now, then do it right away and cautiously with a name you’ll love to be with forever. Considering the popularity you’ll gain in the years to come and the number of readers you’ll add to your blog, don’t worry about the lingering issues associated with the change. Decide for the best. Opinions on one side are great, but then decisions taken personally, with wit and intuition will go a long long way. So if your heart says change, and you feel so strongly convicted about it, then I say go ahead. Worry not about your current readers, since we’ll still follow you no matter whatever name you decide upon.

  • sanghamitra
    April 20, 2013 at 3:41 AM

    They say (what’s in a name).’Apple’ was named out of nothing…does it tell u it deals with electronics? if you like the present name stick with it..I bet the name will not stop its growth…You are the creator of this and have full rights to decide on its name:)..keep smiling!

  • [email protected]
    April 21, 2013 at 10:23 AM

    It’s crossed my mind to perhaps change the name of my blog. I love the name of your blog as it is but beyond the SEO issues and other complexities, if it really makes you happy you should change it. This is your creative space and you should do what you want to do! Either way, I know I will always visit it 🙂

  • IshitaUnblogged
    April 21, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    You should not. Once a baby is christened, the baby’s character and personality transfuses itself into the name. I never confused your blogname to a dentist or a florist. Everytime I saw a picture of your food, it brought a lot of sunshine and smile into my life. This has shaped your blog. People who don’t succeed change their names (don’t get me wrong). Your blog has reached wherever it has reached with this name and it’s beautiful – the logo, your fonts – just everything. Changing the name is not going to achieve more milestones. Saveur recognised your blog with this name. Your readers recognise your blog and appreciates the content with this name. Probably the tagline could be changed, not because of what it says but because it could incorporate what you want it to say.

    My reply is probably too late… I didn’t realise what your post was hinting at. I’m sad that you’ve decided to change it’s name. This however is my personal opinion.

  • jehanne
    April 23, 2013 at 6:13 AM

    I just came across your FB page on this, and thought since I am relatively new to your site ( where have I been all this time!!), just to add in my thoughts- I love Sunshine and Smile! It brings out such positive note whenever I type your blog name and I can tell you how positivity is needed especially on bad days! I relate S&S to your beautiful pictures, bright, colourful and full of flavour.
    Having said that, have u thought of trademarking your blog name? bcoz in long run it might be helpful if you think it is too generic now, tho I am sure a lot of ppl have already associated the name with Kankana:-)

  • Ingrid
    April 25, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    Hi Kankana! I just started following your blog and made one your recipes: chana chola! I must say you did bring Sunshine & Smiles to me with this recipe b/c I live in Naples, FL and there aren’t any Indian restaurants here! For this reason alone I love your current name, but I can understand your need to change it to something that reflects you better, I think your readers will follow you anywhere! I do have a question: I’m a novice cook and this was my first Indian dish. I felt the recipe needed a bit of sugar (I prefer mild over spicy) and ended up adding a tbs of brown sugar and a tbs of tomato paste and that hit the spot (maybe my raw tomato was not very sweet?). In any case, is there anything else I should have done to create that ying/yang and add a sweeter mellow flavor? BTW, I had my chana with an onion/herb foccacia that I got at Whole Foods…talk about delicious!!! Thank you in advance for any tips you can give me!

  • dixya
    May 16, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    no wonder why I was getting little confused when I stopped by at your blog today. I will come to your space regardless of the name 🙂 you are too inspirational