Is GoodAccountants.com fundamentally changing the way accountants obtain their clients?
Six years ago on New Year’s Day, January 1, 2005 GoodAccountants.com officially launched its website. The main purpose of the site was to attract record numbers of business owners and individual taxpayers who were seeking to engage the services of an accountant. Fueled by a multi-million dollar television and radio advertising campaign, millions of business owners and individual taxpayers were successfully driven to the GoodAccountants.com website within months after its launch. However, it would not be until the company unveiled its internet advertising prowess, according to Johanna Laurent, President of GoodAccountants.com, that the accountants in her network would begin converting clients in significant numbers. “It wasn’t easy six years ago trying to convince accountants that our website could attract clients for them,” says Laurent. “‘I get all of my clients by word of mouth,’ is what most of the accountants would say to us in the early days when we first began speaking to them about joining our network,” explains Laurent.
Today, GoodAccountants.com has thousands of accountants in almost every city across America that are members of its network largely because the ‘age of the Internet’ has made the company’s services extremely relevant to millions of business owners, not-for-profit organizations and individual taxpayers, as well as accountants alike. “Finding the right accountant for your business or personal needs is not as easy as it may sound, at least it wasn’t until we came along,” says Laurent. So how are accountants finding and retaining the new breed of clients that are shopping the internet for just about everything including their accountants? Judging from a review of the GoodAccountants.com internal messaging system which connects its customer service reps directly to its network of accountants in the field, it seems that the company may be impacting the accounting industry in a very significant way. When accountants in its network wish to submit feedback about clients that have been referred to them or share their experience about a recent appointment, they simply log into the company’s proprietary messaging system and submit their comments. Below are four such comments recently submitted by four different accountants who are members of GoodAccountants.com.
Upon examining the comments that have been submitted by these accountants we are able to gain an appreciation for the kind of meaningful referral activity that is ongoing at GoodAccountants.com. One accountant places his potential billings at between $3,000 and $4,000 dollars to a single prospect referred to him by GoodAccountants.com while another places his initial billings to the client referred to him at around $1,400 dollars which he indicates could potentially double. The conclusion of this writer is if four accountants in succession submitted this series of feedback comments within the span of a half-hour then GoodAccountants.com is definitely making a significant impact on the way in which accountants are obtaining their clients and increasingly will continue obtaining their clients given the ongoing proliferation of internet access through smart phones and computer tablets. “More and more business owners and individual taxpayers are turning to the internet in record numbers to search for and retain accountants who are technologically predisposed to service this burgeoning market share,” says Laurent. “We can within a matter of minutes give an accountant the technological capability to capture new clients from the internet through our turn-key system once they become members of our network,” explains Laurent.
As new technologies such as cloud computing continue to move the industry forward accountants are increasingly turning to the internet to retain clients as well as to deliver their accounting services. Widespread internet connectivity has made it possible for GoodAccountants.com to deliver paying customers to thousand of accountants across the country through a sophisticated, high-tech referral system that provides every type of accounting service imaginable. From tax preparation, investment advisory, IRS representation, compilations, reviews and audits, business owners and individual taxpayers across America are now able to connect within a matter of minutes with competent and friendly accountants in their locale, through GoodAccountants.com.
“Our name, GoodAccountants.com, is a misnomer,” says Laurent. “People assume that we are an association of accountants looking for business which is not the case at all but on the contrary we are an association of business owners looking for good accountants,” says Laurent. “It is the many thousands of business owners and individual taxpayers that use our website as a resource tool to find accountants that have truly become our most valuable commodity,” explains Laurent.
This article was written by Omar Reed, a freelance business writer and financial analyst