Avoiding Things that Cost Accountants Revenue
When a client makes an appointment with you, it’s because they need your help. And it would be easy to call them in and get right down to business. But that’s not always what’s best for you or the client. Here are a few tips that are sometimes easy to forget, but worth considering because they can help you avoid common mistakes that cost you revenue.
Don’t jump in too quickly. Clients who need to hire accountants may not have formal knowledge of the accounting process itself. As an accountant, it is necessary to keep in mind that clients do not always have the ability, or awareness, to critically evaluate performance and accuracy. So, it’s crucial to help the client feel like they can trust you. Before you start talking to a client about things he or she may not fully understand, take a little time to answer questions and make your client feel at ease. Then, when it’s time to talk about the stuff that’s not always easy to understand, they won’t feel apprehensive about choosing you. If your client feels comfortable talking to you, they will feel they can trust you and depend on you, which is key in client retention.
Don’t make assumptions. A client may not understand the difference between a CPA, an EA, and a bookkeeper. And it could be you wear more than one hat. If so, make them aware of the services you provide. It could help them not to overpay for services they seek elsewhere, and may drum up a little extra business for you. Plus, it will make the client feel like you care about them and what’s best for their business. It’s possible a client needs help with something he/she doesn’t feel they can afford, or maybe something even you assume they can’t afford, but once you explain the benefits of the service, they may realize it’s worth the investment. And since they already trust you, it could mean more revenue for you.
Don’t hold back. Millions of people need accountants, but they don’t always know just how helpful one can be. Sometimes a client may need their accountant’s help in more ways than they know, and it’s up to you to educate them so they can use the services you provide to help maintain their business. For example, if you help them with their payroll, it could save them a lot of time later because you will already have the information you need when it comes time to file their taxes. And you will probably have it in a format that’s easy to transfer into your tax software, so it will save you a lot of time, too. By providing an additional service to them, you will improve efficiency for both you and your client, saving you both a lot of headache and expense.
Don’t take risks. The more people who have their hands on your client’s accounts, the more likely they may face the unpleasant realization of fraud, theft, and even stolen identities. Make sure they understand the risks associated with having several people handling their finances. This will help stimulate and broaden the relationship you already have with your client and deepen the trust they already have in you. It will also help them trust you will make the right decisions for them, which will increase revenue for you and your client.
When you first meet a new client, don’t overwhelm them, don’t take them or their needs for granted, and don’t be vague about how you can help them. Instead, take the necessary steps to earn their trust and make them feel comfortable with you. The time you spend with your client is not only an investment in their future, but it your future, too.