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  1. #1
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    Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Hi! I have a client, an accounting firm, whose legal name is something like: " Jones, Smith and Bales, PC, PA".

    They prefer to have their name listed in the various citation sources as:

    " Jones, Smith and Bales, CPAs".

    Their google+ page listing is already claimed with that new name.

    Since we are getting ready to do a citation cleanup for other sources, i wanted to see if this renaming to a 'non legal' name would cause any issues.

    I had thought the key issue was to have a clean "NAP" and didnt know if their legal name was attached to their phone number listing provider and if that could cause issues.

    anyone have any advice?

    thanks in advance!!!

    regards, Jay Wilner
    Last edited by Colan Nielsen; 03-20-2015 at 12:14 PM. Reason: Moved to Citations section of Forum to get more action.

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  3. #2
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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    IMO, a business name is a business name. If this were my client, I would recommend going with the legal name of the business as it reflected with government/legal documents. If they want to stress that they are CPAs, they are other options to do that rather than changing the business name out of preference.

    Just my 2 cents. I'm sure others will weigh in. It can be fairly slow on Fridays and the weekend, so it may be Monday before you get a lot of feedback.
    Scott Rawlins - Find Local Company in Atlanta GA
    Follow Me on G+

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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Hi Jay,

    Google is smart enough to match up variations of the business name when the address and phone match. If some listings have "PC, PA", and others have "CPA", it's not a problem. If the business prefers "CPA", then I'd go with that.

    We're going to publish something soon with a complete list of acceptable abbreviations that won't mess with your NAP consistency. PC, PA, and CPA are all included.
    Darren Shaw | Whitespark Founder
    http://www.whitespark.ca | @DarrenShaw_ | Google+

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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Quote Originally Posted by jaywilner View Post
    I have a client, an accounting firm, whose legal name is something like: "Jones, Smith and Bales, PC, PA".

    They prefer to have their name listed in the various citation sources as:

    "Jones, Smith and Bales, CPAs".

    Their google+ page listing is already claimed with that new name.
    Quote Originally Posted by whitespark View Post
    Hi Jay,

    Google is smart enough to match up variations of the business name when the address and phone match. If some listings have "PC, PA", and others have "CPA", it's not a problem.

    If the business prefers "CPA", then I'd go with that.
    Actually, to be clear, I think Darren's comment I bolded above is re citations NOT Google.

    On Google you can't add CPA to the name, if that's not part of the name.

    On Google if the name is "Jones, Smith and Bales, PC, PA" you could use that name.
    OR shorten to "Jones, Smith and Bales" if you like.
    But you can't add a keyword to it.

    That's a violation. So if you've already done it that way it's a problem.

    AND changing names on G+Local creates additional problems, so correcting now can create new problems. But really should be fixed.

    Whatever name you use on G+L should be the real business name and then ideally use that version consistently when building NEW citations. But like Darren said if some existing citations have a slightly different version with different abbreviations lie PC or PA or whatever added, I would not worry too much.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

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    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

  6. #5
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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    You can't put in Terminix, Exterminating Services.

    But I have a difficult time seeing how Prefix like Dr or Suffix like Esq and CPA can be a problem. Once you get the degree or pass the exam it is part of your name. If there are multiple partners the titles get added to the end.

    Prefixes and Suffixes seem to match the bill in how people refer to you.

    And one clarification, Google does not require you to use your legal name. They want you to use your DBA. What is on your store sign.

    ---------- Post Merged at 01:29 PM ---------- Previous Post was at 01:21 PM ----------

    Here is the official guidelines Under business info.

    "Your name should reflect your business’ real-world name, as used consistently on your storefront, website, stationery, and as known to customers."

    CPAs and lawyers add the professional designation to the end of their name/names (Dewey, Cheetham & Howe, CPA or ESQ) and all stationery, signage, web sites or correspondence.

    https://support.google.com/business/answer/3038177?

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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Quote Originally Posted by JacobMaslow View Post
    But I have a difficult time seeing how Prefix like Dr or Suffix like Esq and CPA can be a problem. Once you get the degree or pass the exam it is part of your name. If there are multiple partners the titles get added to the end.

    Prefixes and Suffixes seem to match the bill in how people refer to you.
    Hmmm you may have a point but I think it may be different since it's a practice name?

    For a single practitioner you can def add Dr. DDS. or CPA at the end as a professional designation.

    Since it's a practice name not a practitioner, I was thinking CPA looked more like an add-on descriptor.

    I was picturing it like Jones, Smith and Bales Chiropractors or
    Jones, Smith and Bales Lawyers - as in a practie name with a KW added.

    But looking at it your way I guess it may be OK as a professional designation added on, even though it is not a practitioner listing but a 3 name practice listing.

    Not sure, now that you have me look at it from another direction.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

  8. #7
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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Yeah, I wouldn't think of CPA as a keyword descriptor. I don't think they're adding it to rank, because I doubt anyone searches with CPA in the query. It's just a designation they like to go by, and if that's their DBA, then it's all good.

    If they want to make it official, they could register it as an assumed name with the secretary of state.
    Darren Shaw | Whitespark Founder
    http://www.whitespark.ca | @DarrenShaw_ | Google+

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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Quote Originally Posted by whitespark View Post
    Yeah, I wouldn't think of CPA as a keyword descriptor. I don't think they're adding it to rank, because I doubt anyone searches with CPA in the query.
    I guess it's your frame of reference. If I was searching for an accountant I would def search for CPA.
    So that's why I was thinking it was like adding a KW.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

  10. #9
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    Re: Using legal name of business for updating citations versus client preferred name?

    Checked Google trends to be sure I was not going crazy.

    Maybe it's more of a US thing Darren, but people do GEO searches for CPA.
    More so than the KW accountant in most cities I spot checked.



    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

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