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  1. #1
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    LLC in name, or leave it off?

    Hi folks,

    I saw on the Google+ feed for Local Search Pros a link to a "Google Guideline Checker by Synup" - and it performs well (Google Guideline Checker - Synup)

    However, when checking our name as listed on Google+, it gives me a red flag warning for the Business Name. Our official name is "Big Red SEO, LLC" and it's listed as such everywhere. Every directory listing should include the LLC as well as all our signatures, invoices, audits, letterhead, outdoor signage, office entrance and vehicle wraps.

    It's the first time that I've seen that "LLC, Inc, etc" should not be used in the Business Name. The guidelines from Google state: "Represent your business as itís consistently represented and recognized in the real world across signage, stationery, and other branding." - https://support.google.com/business/.../3038177?hl=en

    Any thoughts? Should we have killed the "LLC" portion and update our directory & business listings etc?
    Conor Treacy
    Big Red SEO - Omaha, NE

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  3. #2
    Member Since
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    Re: LLC in name, or leave it off?

    Hi Conor,

    I'm with you. This is my understanding as well.

    "It's the first time that I've seen that "LLC, Inc, etc" should not be used in the Business Name. The guidelines from Google state: "Represent your business as it’s consistently represented and recognized in the real world across signage, stationery, and other branding."
    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".

  4. #3
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    Re: LLC in name, or leave it off?

    Hi Conor:

    We too are an LLC and when we first started out on the SEO journey, we used "LLC" in our name. Then a funny thing happened... Over time the LLC was being dropped by aggregators. We found ourselves being truncated to "Equitable Mediation Services" and in some cases "Equitable Mediation."

    Over the years, we're dropped the LLC (just following along with what InfoExpress did) and to date, it has worked well. We run across the occasional listing where "Services" has been dropped and we politely correct it, but the LLC has been long disappeared even though it is our official name.

    In short - be consistent across the web and you should be fine. Even if your contract or the sign on your truck (not sure what business you're in) says "LLC."

    Good luck!
    Joe

  5. #4
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    Re: LLC in name, or leave it off?

    Sounds to me like the tool is getting a little overzealous. You're right, there's definitely no explicit recommendation by Google to use or not to use LLC, aside from what was mentioned (use what your business is known as in the real world). That said, many businesses with an LLC in their official name don't actually use it in the real world, so that might be why the creator thought to include that in the tool. That's my guess at least. I'm with Linda, stay consistent and you'll be fine.

  6. #5
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    Re: LLC in name, or leave it off?

    I doubt Google would ever care enough to enforce that so you are totally fine. With or without the LLC, they would be able to figure out that Big Red SEO LLC is the same as Big Red SEO.

    Worse case scenario is that they don't like it and remove it off your name. It's not a serious violation or anything that would get your listing removed.

    The actual rule says: "Your name must not include: Special characters (e.g. %&$@/") or irrelevant legal terms unless they are part of your businessís real world representation

    So you're fine.
    Joy Hawkins
    Owner of Sterling Sky
    Author of The Expert's Guide to Local SEO [, a 260+ page training manual that is updated monthly and contains advanced tips and tactics for Local SEO that actually work and drive results.

  7. #6
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    Re: LLC in name, or leave it off?

    I doubt this is even a factor Google takes into account. As long as you maintain consistency, you should be fine.

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