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Accounting Website Design Mistakes to Avoid

Accounting Website Design Mistakes to Avoid


by Hugh Duffy

Website Design for CPA Accountants

As a potential buyer on the hunt to purchase something, we all stumble upon websites that absolutely suck. Whether it's a local restaurant or B&B or professional service firm, we all know it when we see it. Train wreck...

While most accounting firm websites are improving, there are still some gems out there. Here are some of the common mistakes that I frequently see on poorly designed websites.

Mistakes to Avoid

1. Phone number is only on the Contact Us or Home Page - The goal of your website is to create the right branded impression, answer questions quickly, and motivate a prospect to call you. Given that, why isn't the phone number on every single page? Often, the phone number is only on the Contact Us page or Home Page.

Research shows that 60% of website visitors enter your website from an interior page, not the home page. That's because they come to your website from a search engine rather than typing in your URL. Like any residential home, the traffic pattern into the house is often a side door or back door, not the front door. Net, you want your phone number prominently placed on every single page of the website. It's website design 101.

2. Too much text on a page - While the internet is an information driven medium, prospects respond to images and colors before getting motivated to read text. Many accounting firms jam too much text on the page or use accounting jargon to describe the service they provide, which pushes prospects away.

3. About Us page - Prospects are looking for some connection with the firm owners. The About Us (Who We Are, Partners, etc.) page is an opportunity to stand out and should provide pictures of the key players along with well written bio's. The number of accounting firms that are too lazy to provide a picture of themselves along with a well organized bio shocks me. The second common mistake is pushing Our Values mass produced text into the About Us page rather than genuinely describing the firm owners and key staff members. These are cop outs and your prospective clients see right through it.

4. Non-relevant tools - Some of the canned accounting website designers use tools that are irrelevant to accounting. For example, one website designer often inserts a weather forecast onto the home page. If someone is seeking to hire an accountant, what do they care about the weather. That's a total non sequitur. Another is a stock price tool, which there are hundreds of other websites that provide more powerful stock portfolio tools. The content on your website should focus on the core accounting/tax services you provide and not delve into meaningless or watered down tools.

5. No SEO - To us, your website should be easy to locate on the internet and should be search engine optimized. Most of the canned providers offer cheap templates that are lost in space and difficult to locate in Google, Bing and Yahoo. All of our websites are optimized for search engines and we do not charge extra for it.

6. No Social - Your website should include social media so prospects can elect how to interact with you. And, it should provide an option for an integrated blog.

7. Lacks Mobile - Your website should adjust to fit the size of the visitors screen size. If they use a smart phone, it should be a mobile version. If tablet, then another size. If a desktop, then another screen size.

8. Reputation Management - Your website should help you obtain online reviews with less effort and gradually improve your local reputation.

With the advances in technology, you should expect more from your website and put your best foot forward. For more detail on what your website should accomplish, join us on August 7th to learn more. The webinar is free and we will demo several powerful tools which should become part of your practice.

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Hugh Duffy, BYF CEO and Co-Founder

Hugh is the consummate marketing coach for accountants and takes pride in the impact that it has on their practice, and lives. Hugh has more than thirty years of marketing experience. Since 2003, he has been teaching accountants on how to improve their marketing and make more money from their accounting practice.