Accounting is one of the most important businesses to have around. For every other person who is terrible with numbers, there’s another person who understands financial terminology and laws easily. We need these people around. Yet something we can’t help but notice is that financial websites such as for accounting firms end up appearing to be the most poorly designed, least attractive websites to visit. To many, the word important equals boring.
It doesn’t have to be that way though, especially when it comes to accounting firm websites! Whether you help people file their income tax every season or you’re skilled at working in accounts payable or receivable, everyone in the financial industry should own and share a website that they are proud of. Here is what that type of website will need.
1: Personalized, High-Quality Content
By this we mean ditching the purely jargon articles for more human-based, personalized content that is both of high-quality and flavoured with personality. Knowing a lot about your subject is great, but not everyone is fluent with the terminology used by the accountants, tax pros, and bookkeepers in your industry—why else would people seek your help? Using simple English in your written content will be beneficial to your website in the long run.
Not all content needs to be written down, either (although it helps!). With video being a major factor in social media and online marketing overall, it can tip the odds in your favour. One thing video is great at is building transparency and trust between you and your current and potential clients. You can learn more about video marketing in our previous post.
2: A Blog
Like we said before, personalized and high-quality content are going to help your website stand out over others because of the type of content you have to offer. It’s good to share your opinions on subjects such as new taxation laws, or answer their most frequently asked questions about finance. These examples would be the type of content people may want to read, which is also referred to as ‘evergreen content’.
Having a blog also means you can share your thoughts on social media or in an e-mail newsletter. Speaking of…
3: Distribution Channels (Social Media & E-mail Newsletters)
The best way to really make your website stand out is by creating content and sharing it with others. You can do this by posting to your website’s blog and then sharing those posts on your social media accounts (LinkedIn is a great channel for accounting firms!) as well as in an e-mail newsletter. These are also good ways to engage with your audience further by talking with them rather than at them.
A newsletter sign-up option and any social media channels you frequently use should all be visible and easy to use on your accounting website. Don’t just mention that you have them on your business card and then forget to add them to the site—that’s a terrible way to build trust! Likewise, don’t bother promoting distribution channels that you don’t use often enough. Stick with the channels you feel will engage with your audience the best.
4: Visible Contact Information
With Google Maps, it’s now easier than ever for people to find you online…except when you don’t add your business information to it. It’s very easy to add a Google Map to your website now, and it will give your clients a really good idea of your firm’s physical location. Remember though that your NAP (name, business, and phone number) must be consistent and correct wherever you add it online. You can read our post for more tips about your business’s online directories.
You need to make it easy for your clients to call or e-mail you if they have any questions. You can do this by adding a clickable phone number (which should work across multiple devices!), an e-mail address, and a contact form that is easy to fill out and send out.
5: A Compelling About Page
There is obviously more than one field of expertise in the financial industry; an accountant’s role is different from that of a bookkeeper’s. You need to make this distinction clear to those visiting your website, and the best way to do that, aside from ironing out your firm’s brand, is with a great about page.
Take this opportunity to make your about page really clarify what about you and your firm is so unique compared to the next one down the road. This is where video can help, especially when it comes to demonstrating your expertise and showing your real-life personality. Both of these two things are very good to feature as it will encourage trust between you and your clients and make your firm stand out!
6: Proper Web Design
No one is going to want to visit a website where they can’t find what they’re looking for. If your contact information is too hard to find, the menus are all cluttered, the content is too dry and technical, and your brand and logo look like the same firm down the street, your website is in serious need of help.
A properly designed website should be easy to use for everyone across multiple devices. The menus should be simple to use and indicate clearly which page can be found where. Text should be visible at all times and images should be professionally shot and used in a non-intrusive manner. The site should also load fast and be responsive to everyone who uses it.
If your website does not have any of these design features, get a professional’s help ASAP.
7: Easy-to-use Tools and Extras
Some people tend to visit a financial website if they want to make calculations themselves, or if they want to figure out a financial term in their own time. Depending on your firm, you can offer these tools through your website. If a price is required to use these tools, make sure this is all easy to understand and don’t overcomplicate using the tool on your website.
Does your accounting firm sell books? If so, you need to indicate this very clearly on your site and if they want to buy the book, you need to let your clients know how (online is certainly something to consider). One way to attract further interest in your firm is by offering an ebook to your audience. This is not only a good content strategy, but also it’s a way to show your expertise and experience in your financial field to interested clients. You can create one based off of the blog posts you’ve written so far for your firm, or start one from scratch as a basic tool for clients and would-be clients.
Your accounting firm’s website doesn’t have to be boring. It should be an effective way to promote your company and grow its business, and you should be proud to display it on your firm’s business cards. If your firm’s website is looking out of date though, or it has one to none of the features we’ve listed in our article and you want them put in, give us a call at V3 Media. We are always available for one-on-one consultation as well if you’re still not sure what your website needs (but you know that it needs improvement!).