Grow Your Accounting Business Online With WordPress
Challenges Certified Public Accountants Face Online
Accounting businesses must work harder than ever before to remain competitive. Not only do they have to be fully involved in the communities and industries they serve, they must also maintain a strong digital presence. This includes having a dynamic web presence and learning smarter ways to promote your business services online.
In addition to spending money marketing offline, businesses in the accounting industry are now also finding that they need to invest a more significant part of their marketing budget to develop and manage a website that can attract new clients, engage users, outperform the competition in search engines and help to give their business a wider degree of marketing reach online.
This means that your website not only has to look great, your pages have to load fast, and your website has to be easy to navigate, but it’s also important to keep in mind that your site’s needs may change in time and sections will need to be updated often. This requires having a well-developed web and content management strategy in place.
Another difficult challenge that accountancy firms (and all other businesses) face, is that they have only about 30 seconds or less to give users the information they are looking for or they will look elsewhere.
“Websites have evolved into central information hubs where service information is still present but enhanced with web portals, hyperlinks to state and federal sites, and a variety of free tools.”
Opportunities For Accounting Businesses In The Digital Economy
As well as facing many new business and technology changes, there are also many online opportunities available for businesses in the accounting sector that are willing to evolve to meet digital demands and who can think progressively when it comes to improving their online marketing skills.
This guide will help you uncover a number of ways to increase web traffic and improve your business results online.
As well as providing practical tips and information on cost-effective ways to improve your business online, we also focus on the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress platform to power your accounting or financial services website.
For more information about the benefits and advantages of using the WordPress CMS platform, see these articles:
- Discover Why A Poorly Constructed Web Site Can Lose You Business
- WordPress In Business – An Online Guide To Building A Successful Business With WordPress
Ways To Improve Your Website
This section explains how to improve your website and get better results online. We show you what pages an accounting site needs, what content you need, navigation structure, etc.
If you need website planning assistance, go here: How To Plan A Website: A Practical Blueprint For Business Owners
Your Web Pages
Professional business websites need some basic web pages. Let’s take a look at the pages your need to have and how to set up your website for best results.
Products And Services
You need to include a page that lists your services and any products that you offer.
It should include services such as:
- Business – planning, company structures, accounting, payroll, preparing financial statements, bookkeeping, financing, budgeting, forecasting, strategic planning, consulting services, etc.
- Taxation – preparation, planning, reviewing, auditing, advising, problem resolution
- Investment strategies
- Corporate finance
- Wealth creation
- Superannuation/retirement plan (401k) advice
- Audit risk assessment and assurance
- Quickbooks – setup, training, tune up, and support
- Specialist services – mergers, acquisitions, information technology, secretarial, rentals, trusts, fiduciary accounting, succession planning, selling businesses, transfers, etc.
- Lending and leasing
List all of the services you provide. Educate your visitors about what your services do and direct them to your contact or appointment booking page.
The ‘About Us’ page should give a description of your business and what your business stands for, its unique approach, philanthropical programs, etc.
This page should also include any awards, accreditations, certifications, recognitions, associations, publications, etc., that can be used to promote the company and set it above the competition.
(List all of your awards recognitions, certifications, accreditations, associations, publications, etc. in your About page. Image sourced from: deloitte.com)
Your Staff Page
Are you looking for inexpensive ways to grow your business online and increase user interaction on your site? Then something you can do, is make it easier for visitors to get to know, like and trust you and your business better.
Prospective clients need to relate to your business. A great way to do that is to have a page that introduces your staff. This page should include a photo and a brief bio. Since most visitors will not tend to be well-versed in accounting terms it should tell who they are and what their specialties are. You may also want to explain what those specialties mean. It should also include social buttons that will allow your prospective clients to follow individual staff members on their social pages.
On this page, make sure to outline each person’s qualifications, how their skills add value to your team, and more importantly, how they will help add value to your clients’ business.
(Make sure to add a page that introduces your staff or team members to prospective new clients. Screenshot image source: deepsky.com)
If you need help how to add an easy-to-maintain simple staff directory to your WordPress site using free plugins, see this tutorial: How To Easily Add A Simple Staff List On Your WordPress Site Without Editing Code
This is a listing of career opportunities within the organization. It can include type of training provided, employee benefits, advancement opportunities, etc. It should include information such as the job outlook and upcoming career opportunities in the accounting and financial services industry.
Include also a positions available section in this page. If there are no positions currently available, consider inviting people to return periodically to this page, subscribe to your newsletter, follow your social pages, etc.
Case studies and client reviews are a great way to show prospective clients what kind of solutions you can implement to help them solve problems. Adding a web page with case studies and client reviews also provides social proof online.
(Add a page with client reviews and case studies. Screenshot source: pcg-services.com)
We have written a detailed article on using testimonials and client reviews to grow your business online. For more info, see this article: How To Improve Your Visitor-To-Lead Conversions With Engaging Testimonials
Having a contact page is essential.
It should provide:
- Name Of Your Organization
- Contact email address
- Map and directions
- Website URL
- Contact form
- Name of person to contact
- Links to social media pages
- Online chat feature (optional)
If your business services different locations you will want to make that clear when showing your address and contact information.
You can also include links to an FAQ section, main pages, special offers, support area, newsletter opt-in form, blog, etc.
A blog can be a very powerful business marketing tool. Most blogging platforms typically include a content management system that is simple to use and allows you to promote your business by publishing timely content such as industry announcements, product updates, educational information, informative posts, videos, webinars, etc.
If you already have an existing website, then consider adding a WordPress-powered blog to promote your company.
If you don’t have a website yet, or your existing website is very hard to manage or not giving you the results you want, then WordPress can be used both as your business website and blog.
Very few people know that WordPress can become an automated traffic machine that will help drive new targeted traffic to your site, simply by adding regular content to your site.
(An expertly configured WordPress site can automate your traffic generation)
For more info, see this article: WordPress Website Traffic Blueprint – A Complete Guide To Getting More Traffic For Your Business Automatically With WordPress
Legal Information Pages
It’s extremely important to have a compliant website, not just for establishing credibility with prospective clients, but also to ensure that no local, regional and federal laws and regulations are being broken wherever your business is located.
Adding the legal pages below to your site will help you stay out of trouble with most regulatory authorities, third-party service providers (e.g. Facebook), and other potential sources of legal threats and inconveniences:
- Contact Us
- Website Disclaimer
- Affiliate Agreement
- Anti-Spam Policy
- Compensation Disclosure
- DMCA Notice
- Earnings Disclaimer
- External Links Policy
- Financial/Health Disclaimers
- Refund Policy
- Video/Audio Terms
- and others
To learn more about adding legal pages to your website, see this article: Adding Legal Pages To Your Site
How To Improve The Content On Your Site
In today’s ultra competitive digital economy, being generous with content has become one of the key success differentiators for businesses.
You want to provide great content with information and tips that will get your readers to share your web pages online with others and come back for more information. This is a great way to inform and educate site visitors and prospective clients about your business and about doing business with your firm.
For example, topics for an accounting business can include:
- Explanations of balance sheets
- Profit & loss statements
- Directors’ duties and legal responsibilities
- How to present accounts for fundraising activities
- Business cashflow planning tips
- Business insurance
- Protecting revenues
- Tips on structuring a self-managed retirement fund
- Do’s and don’ts of … (e.g. purchasing vs leasing, setting up payroll systems, etc.)
You can also create a series of educational articles that will help your your readers gain a better understanding of your accounting services, such as software accounting, tax accounting, tax planning for small business, reducing business debt, financial concepts made simple, etc.
Remember to use keywords and terms in your content that your prospective clients will be searching for online.
We recommend subscribing to our Content Marketing Email Training Series. You will receive regular training emails with easy-to-digest information and practical tips that will teach you how to drive more traffic to your website, save money creating useful content for your site visitors and grow your business online using content marketing strategies. It’s not only a great course with loads of useful information, it’s also completely FREE!
Improve User Experience
Improving user experience (often referred to as UX) will help to keep visitors coming back and using your site. This section will show you different ways to improve visitor engagement and user experience.
RSS Feeds – Content Syndication
Using RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds can help to improve visitor engagement and UX in many ways.
If you provide valuable content, other sites may want to syndicate your content to their visitors.
Some of the benefits of syndicating your content to other businesses using RSS feeds, include:
- All of your updates are kept in one place
- your content distribution doesn’t rely on email
- RSS feeds can be shared
- Feeds allow for subscribing
- It provides a way for links to point back to your content
- Your feeds can be submitted to RSS directories and aggregator services
- RSS provides multiple ways for readers to receive your content (e.g. users can read your content on their mobile device using a feed reader)
- It’s built into WordPress
There are also benefits to adding syndicated content to your site from other websites, such as the fact that you don’t have to write, manage or update the content.
You can find many useful RSS feeds for your website by visiting sites of relevant government departments and respected industry bodies.
Here are some feeds you may want to consider adding to your accounting website:
- Taxation Policy Center: http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/press/rss.cfm
- Australian Taxation Office: https://www.ato.gov.au/RSS-news-feeds.aspx
- Canada Revenue Agency: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/rssfeeds/
- UK HM Revenue and Customs: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/rss/rss.htm
- South Africa Revenue Service: http://www.sars.gov.za/Pages/RSS-Feeds.aspx
(Use RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds to provide your visitors with a better user experience.)
Adding Checklists & Forms
Adding checklists and forms to your site is a fantastic way to help increase user engagement, add value to your visitors and set yourself apart from the competition. They can provide useful step-by-step instructions and resources to get necessary tasks performed. Forms and checklists can also be great business planning tools.
Checklists and forms can include subjects such as:
- How To Set Up A Company
- Negative Gearing Checklist
- Fundraising Governance Checklist
- Disclosure Requirements
- Company Tax Checklist
- Self Managed Super Fund Tax Checklist
- Income Tax Variation Forms
Provide Other Tools
Providing useful online tools, gadgets and applications for businesses (or links to these tools) is a great way to increase visitor engagement and add value to your potential clients. Calculators, such as loan and tax calculators, are some of the most popular tools for accounting websites. Others can include time cards, and retirement and interest calculators.
In part two, we take a look at a several online tools you can add to your site using WordPress plugins that can improve search engine optimization, increase user engagement and generate more web traffic to your business.
This is the end of part one.
To view Part 2, click this link:
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