One system that you don’t want to overlook in your freelance accounting business is the pickup and delivery of the client’s information. Whether you process their information weekly or monthly, you need a reliable way of getting their information on time. Do you provide pickup and delivery to your clients? If you do, do you charge a fee?
When many first start their freelance accounting business, they do the delivery and pickup themselves without charging a fee. However, this not only takes an incredible amount of time you’re also leaving a lot of money on the table.
To streamline your freelance accounting business, offer your clients one of these three options:
- The client can deliver his information to your office himself, hire someone to do it or pay you to take care of it. If they want you to handle it, a great option is to find an active, personable senior who would love to do it for a little extra income and then pay them a flat rate.
- Use a paid service like UPS, FedEx or Priority Mail.You can suggest that your clients use one of these paid services. Make sure that there’s tracking included when they’re sending you original documentation.
- Use a scanner. Suggest to your clients that they get a scanner. (More than likely they already have one.) They’ll just need to scan their information and then email or fax it to you.
What if you haven’t been charging for the pickup fee? How do you approach your client in a way that they’ll be happy to pay for it?
You’re going to have a little bit of a bump here because you’re going to have let them know that you will begin charging for this service. When you present it, you want to present it like this: “For 2011 there will be a surcharge if I am required to pick up your information.” Then review the three options that they can choose for pickup and delivery of their information.
After you’ve established this system, all your new clients will accept it as part of the service your freelance accounting business provides without question.
Are you afraid you’re going to lose that interactive, personal touch?
Rather than thinking of it like you’re losing the personal touch, look at it from a point-of-view of, “What value can I add?” What value can you add to their service?
Here are some suggestions:
- Create a package that, along with your other services, you include some meetings as part of the benefits. You maintain the personal touch by have a meeting with them to go over their results as opposed to picking up their information.
- You could include the delivery service as part of your package. You can design this however you want. You could have a package with delivery pickup and charge for it, and you could have an option without delivery.
- Make informal telephone calls. Again, you have to base it on level of service. Your weekly processor should hear from you more often than someone you’re doing on a quarterly basis.
By adding more value, your clients will perceive that they are receiving a lot more from your freelance accounting business than they’re paying for – it’s a win-win situation.
Linda Hunt is the founder of SUMSOLUTIONS, a company devoted to teaching freelance bookkeeping professionals how to build and sustain a profitable practice that supports their body, mind and spirit. Are you ready to learn marketing strategies that work? Click here
http://www.sumsolutions.com/free-webinar-lead-generating-strategies/”>http://www.sumsolutions.com/free-webinar-lead-generating-strategies/ to join Linda on a FREE webinar for bookkeepers – “Lead Generating Strategies that KEEP Your Pipeline Full.”