Over the years, payroll processing has become easier with the advances in software. While we traditionally don’t advocate payroll processing, many of our accounting clients actively want more payroll clients (within reason).
To help them acquire more payroll clients, many have asked BYF to develop a website dedicated to payroll services. If this rings a bell, check out our payroll niche websites to accelerate the payroll side of your accounting practice.
If you want to develop a concentration within your practice, whether
it’s payroll or some other areal, call us at 888-999-9800 x1.
Would you like to acquire more small business clients that are using QuickBooks to maintain their accounting transactions?
Given the growth of QuickBooks in the general marketplace, our most common niche website is for QuickBooks accounting. Most of our clients that want to become more aggressive acquiring QuickBooks users will do the following:
- Secure 3-5 QuickBook certifications. QuickBooks Advanced is the most important.
- Secure placement within Intuit’s Find-a-ProAdvisor website.
- Obtain online reviews to be placed into Intuit’s Find-a-ProAdvisor website using Build Your Firm’s reputation management tool.
- Order a QuickBooks niche website to generate more leads from the internet.
Here are some examples of accountants who have pursued
If you’d like to acquire more QB clients, call BYF at 888-999-9800 x1. If you need
a more comprehensive marketing system, attend our Accounting Marketing Program.
Generally, 98% of visitors to your website never take that next step. In other words, they read a couple pages on your website, may like what they see, but don’t call or register on your website and become a lead. If you think about your own behavior, this probably makes sense to you as a prospective buyer. In other words, you like to browse online for tons of information and prefer to shop online incognito.
As a business owner, what proactive steps should you take to increase the number of inquiries and target your advertising to people who are actively shopping for accounting and tax services? Have you considered behavioral retargeting?
Behavioral retargeting (aka – remarketing or retargeting) is a form of online advertising targeted to consumers based on their previous internet shopping behavior. In other words, suppose you were shopping online for a diamond and noticed that you were all of a sudden seeing lots on ads for diamonds. In fact, the ads were from the websites that you visited (e.g., Tiffany’s, Blue Nile, etc). Is this a coincidence? No, this would be an example of behavioral retargeting where these brands have placed a cookie onto your browser after you visited their website, and they are now targeting ads based on your potential interest. This is behavioral retargeting, at its best.
Basically, retargeting is serving ads to people after they left an advertiser’s website. Retargeting pinpoints advertising to prospects soon after they visit a website and is very effective. Retargeting helps companies advertise to visitors who leave without making a purchase – which is approximately 98% of all website traffic.
How Do I Sign Up?
To help accountants generate more leads from the internet, Build Your Firm has packaged together pay per click (PPC) advertising in conjunction with remarketing to increase lead generation. If you’d like an estimate on the advertising costs, simply call Nita Sabo at 888-999-9800 x1.
In today’s accounting world, accountants can benefit greatly from both wire transfers and ACH payment processing. Each form of payment offers unique benefits for specific situations worth considering. In order to decide which electronic payment method to recommend, it’s necessary to look at the roles of each.
Processing payments through an automated clearing house (ACH) means that you’re using an electronic network that works with several financial institutions in order to process transactions in groups or batches. The result is similar to a wire-transfer in that the money is shifted from one financial institution to another.
However, it’s not a real-time transaction the way a wire transfer is. The good news is that batch transactions usually show up within three to five business days. In some cases, they show up the next day.
This is far better than the traditional method of invoicing and waiting 30 to 60 days for the paper checks to arrive (and then waiting the additional time required for the check to clear after depositing it into your bank account). In this way, the ACH payment processing provides accounting firms with a secure way to capture payments faster than the old fashioned way.
There’s also the versatility factor with ACH payments. ACH payments work well for online bill payments, payroll direct deposits, person to person (P2P) payments, and more. Some individuals even receive social security benefits and federal income tax refunds through ACH.
While some banks or financial institutions may charge a small fee for ACH payment processing, the speed more than offsets the processing costs. While ACH payment processing may be inexpensive, it is not immediate.
The home run on ACH processing is for recurring payments that are predictable. If you have a set of clients who pay you a predictable monthly or quarterly fee, getting them onto ACH is a slam dunk.
Wire transfers still play an important role in today’s electronic banking world. Wire transfers are instantaneous transfers — within seconds in some cases — of money from one bank account to the next.
Accounting firms, in particular, benefit greatly from wire transfers as they are ideally suited to facilitate the instant transfer of funds from the business bank account, for instance, to a payroll processing center, if needed. Also, many international based clients prefer to use wire transfers to conduct business as well.
Further, wire transfers that occur between bank accounts are authenticated. This means the identity of the person on the receiving end is verified so that you’re certain the money is going to the person you intend to receive it. This reduces the chance of fraud in the transfer process and makes the transfer more secure.
On the downside, there is typically a fee involved in wire transfers. In some cases, the fees are substantial. This is often the deal breaker for those sitting on the fence between wire transfers and ACH payment processing (same day versus 3-5 days).
The Bottom Line
When it comes to transferring money from one account to another, there is no clear winner. Different business needs at different points in the business cycle make one or the other more appealing. The key is to make sure you’re matching the right needs at the right time to maximize ACH payment processing and wire transfers to their fullest benefit.
Most importantly, you want to put your accounting firm into the position to accept both ACH and bank wires conveniently with one integrated payment solution.
Note: Build Your Firm’s ePay payment processing tool accepts payments from ACH, bank wires and credit cards. Three electronic forms of payment to accelerate your cash flow.
ePay enables you to get paid over 30 days faster. Below are the highlights:
- Accepts electronic payments from ACH, credit cards and bank wires.
- Recover your credit card processing charges with our Upcharge Technology.
- Embed links from ePay into your billing program and email communication.
- Accepts recurring and one time payments.
Get more control now and eliminate the excuses.
Just wanted to congratulate a few accountants who have gotten on the reputation management band wagon and integrated the BYF Leave Us a Review tool into their practice. In the months ahead, these accountants will receive many more phone calls than their peers.
Below are the few that I’ve noticed. Yes, I’m sure a few of you will let me know who I am missing.
Number of Online Reviews
Google Intuit Find-a-ProAdvisor
Tom Palm 22 20
Luke Gheen 21 18
Bryan Sorenson 22 18
Also, hats off to Navjeet Chahal for obtaining 14 reviews in Yelp.
Job well done!
Now for the joke….
The days of waiting for a check to arrive in the mailbox are over. With BYF’s new ePay Payment Processing, you can get paid by ACH (eCheck), Credit Cards and Bank Wires from one payment screen. Recurring and single payments. Essentially, you get paid thirty days faster than traditional billing.
And with the Upcharge Technology, you can recover your credit card processing costs.
And ePay can be integrated into your billing software program and statements.
If you’d like to lower your write-offs and accelerate cash flow, then order BYF Platinum Website service.
Over the past two years, we have noticed a resurgence in the hospitality sector. That’s right, more and more accountants have started to embrace the restaurant and hospitality sector as the economy continues to improve. While these engagements are more work than a simple service client, the fees tend to be more attractive than average.
Below are some examples of accounting firms that have asked us to help them attract more restaurants, night clubs and lodging businesses.
If you’d like to attract more restaurants and hospitality clients, BYF would like to bring this to life for you.
To meet the needs and expectations for your clients in today’s day and age, these are the things that you should expect from your website.
- Secure document exchange – In today’s electronic world, accountants need to ensure that sensitive personal information is encrypted to safely protect inbound and outbound documents and the technology is integrated into the website for ease of use. With the plethora of hackers out there, your website should be use bank grade security (256 bit encryption) at all times. Some website providers drop their encryption levels when documents are resting to 128, which is not what you want.
- Electronic payment processing – Your website must help you get paid faster so you no longer have to wait for checks in the mail. Like direct deposit for payroll, accountants should be using ACH (eCheck) and credit card processing to get paid faster and avoid waiting 35-45 days for checks to arrive in the mail.
- Easy to locate your website on Google, Bing and Yahoo – To generate a steady flow of leads, your website must be search engine optimized so it’s easy for prospects to learn more about what services your firm provides.
- Reputation management – Your website should help improve your reputation locally. That’s right, your website should integrate with a reputation management tool which makes it easier for clients to place reviews online.
- Branding – Your website should create a favorable impression upon your prospects that helps put your best foot forward. The photography, colors and content should create an impression which is stronger than if they walked into the front door of your office. In today’s world, websites educate prospects and replace the need for printed promotional pieces that were used in year’s past. With the right website, a small accounting firm can compete more effectively with larger, more established firms.
- Client Communication system – Your website should distribute email newsletters, provide best practice articles, automate birthday greetings, provide blogging, encompass social media into the website and other types of communication that help you stay connected with your clients throughout the year.
- Integrate third party applications – Your website should integrate third party Saas applications so it’s easy for clients and employees to quickly access information from the home page of your website. These third party applications can be for online payroll, accounting software, bill payment and cloud computing software programs.
- Mobile friendly – Your website should use responsive design to deliver the right layout to the right device. In other words, a cell phone visitor should be directed to a website designed for cell phones and a tablet visitor will receive a different version.
Build Your Firm’s websites for accountants provide all of the above technologies and recognize the differences between the types of accounting firms out there. In other words, we understand that a website for a multi-partner CPA firm looks different from a sole practitioner, which also looks different from a small bookkeeping practice. Check out our gallery to see examples of websites that are just like your accounting firm.
Link building is still a vital component of search engine marketing, and content marketing. Below are two articles which explain the role of link building as part of a content marketing approach. The second article looks at link building as a longer term equity building investment into your website domain (URL address), thus creating higher visibility within the major search engines.
Here are some tips to obtain more inbound links to your accounting firm website(s).
1. WordPress Blog – Having a WordPress blog integrated into your website (placed on the same URL) and posting 2-3 articles per month will attract people searching online for information and generate inbound links. Your blog posts need to be insightful, educational and thought provoking to generate lots of natural inbound links from readers you don’t even know (organic links).
2. Local Listings – Get your accounting firm listed for free in Google+, Yelp, Bing Local, Yahoo Local, YP.com and other local listings. These profile listings provide a link back to your website. Many accounting firms are too lazy to complete this task even though it is essentially a free yellow pages ad.
3. Guest Blogging – Becoming a guest blogger on someone else’s website becomes a source of links back to your website, especially from your byline.
4. Write a Column – Local newspapers and local websites are starving for content from subject matter experts like yourself. Volunteering to write a monthly article (or quarterly) for a local publication can become a source of inbound links, and generate awareness for your accounting firm. Many local newspapers have print and online editions. The online editions can become a source of inbound links from your byline back to your website.
A small investment in content marketing will generate long term benefits for your lead generation and client acquisition programs.