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What Business Owners Want

Cloud Accounting Weekly is now Own Your Close, a newsletter for management accountants, controllers,
Own Your Close
What Business Owners Want
By Blake Oliver • Issue #65 • View online
Cloud Accounting Weekly is now Own Your Close, a newsletter for management accountants, controllers, and providers of outsourced accounting services. For more accounting technology updates, tune in to the Cloud Accounting Podcast.

Bill.com was kind enough to fly me out to Austin for a panel discussion at the Small Business Banking Conference this past week. 
At first, I figured it would be a nice vacation with a little work tossed in, but I ended up also taking home a valuable nugget of insight that I’d like to share with you now.
It has to do with what business owners are looking for when choosing who to bank with. According to research provided by Bill.com, the top two criteria are:
  1. Ease of use
  2. Cost
This isn’t surprising in itself. Who doesn’t want to buy a product that’s both easy to use and affordable? 
These two criteria probably apply to just about every business-to-business service or product in existence.
And yet accountants spend very little time optimizing their firms for customer experience or lower fees. 
(In fact, most of the time we’re doing our best to figure out ways to charge even more for our existing services).
We accountants like to think that our expertise means we don’t have to be the easiest to work with. We’re busy people in high demand — that’s why we don’t return your calls or emails right away. And our expertise justifies our obscene hourly rates.
But if you ask me, knowing what you’re doing is just table stakes. You need to be an expert to play the game. And most clients don’t know how to spot the difference between one expert and another, anyway.
So how do you differentiate yourself once you’ve got a seat at the table? 
Make your firm ridiculously easy to work with, and do it for a great price.
The right tech stack will let you do that. Use apps like Bill.com to drive down the cost of low value transactional work while providing a superior customer experience. 
The best part is that you don’t even have to add new services. Just do what you’ve been doing, but do it better and cheaper.
Everybody wins.
Except for those firms that don’t make the switch — they’ll be hemorrhaging clients!
As always, here’s my curated collection of the best links I clicked on this past week.
Xerocon
Heading to Xerocon 2017? Here's Your Go-To Twitter Guide
Sales & Marketing
The Normal Accounting Sales Model No Longer Works
Automation
Industry News
Podcasts
3 Ultimate Tips to Build An Accounting Firm Brand That Stands Out
FinTech
Pricing Methodology
Fixed Pricing: Everything You Need to Know
Travel
The Best Carry-On Luggage
What's Next for QuickBooks
Intuit’s Plans for QuickBooks Online Span ERP, Practice Suites and Loans
The War on Excel
App Ecosystem Updates
Xero — GAAP-compliant Statement of Cash Flows
Did you enjoy this issue?
Blake Oliver

"Cloud Accounting Weekly" is now "Own Your Close," a newsletter for industry accountants, controllers, and providers of outsourced accounting services! Subscribe and stay up-to-date with the latest in technology, new regulations, and management tips.

For additional resources for management accountants, visit https://floqast.com/resources/. FloQast (where I work) is close management software built by accountants for accountants to help them close faster and more accurately.

For accounting technology news and podcast episodes, check out my personal website at http://www.blakeoliver.com.

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