Never Buy Software Until You've Answered This Question...

effective pricing strategies for accountants Jul 07, 2020

Software is becoming increasingly prevalent in the accounting profession.

There are tons of apps out there that can help make the lives of accountants and bookkeepers so much easier.

It can be overwhelming just how many different tools there are, and many accounting professionals worry about the ongoing costs of subscriptions. This is the excuse they use for not investing in any of these helpful tools.

As a profession we tend to be very focused on costs – but what we need to do is think more like entrepreneurs and consider the return on investment.


You can watch the video here.


The big question you need to ask when looking into software is: what are the benefits?

Ask yourself this question when researching your software tools and come up with a list. It may be that it:

  • Saves you time
  • Makes you more money
  • Helps you win clients
  • Makes your business run more smoothly

I had an email from someone recently questioning the subscription costs of my software Effective Pricing.

It’s a great tool that enables you to sit down with your clients, have a pricing conversation, and come up with a value-based price that is much higher than what you would have charged before. It also automates the process of proposals and engagement letters afterwards, saving you so much time.

One of the pricing plans for the software is around $35 a month and you can use it with up to 10 clients.


The question I got was this…


“If the price is $35 for 10 clients, that’s $3.50 per client, per month. Once I’ve priced those clients, what is the benefit of that? I don’t understand it.”

It was a great question, but the underlying issue is that this is how accountants and bookkeepers always think - they are constantly focusing on the costs.

That’s the wrong way of thinking. We need to focus more on the benefits. When you start to do that, you are thinking more like an entrepreneur and your business will explode with growth.


Let’s look at some examples…


Let’s imagine the pricing software is $100 a month and you can price 10 clients. The software also saves you time by streamlining the process of creating proposals and engagement letters.

So, what is your time worth to you?

It’s probably worth a lot more than you currently think. If you are currently using an hourly rate you are definitely undercharging.

Let’s say you value your own time at $100 an hour. Then let’s say you use the software just once a month to price a client, and it saves you one hour by creating the proposals for you.

Saving you one hour every month is saving you $100 worth of your time.

Therefore, the software is breaking even.

But it doesn’t stop there because we haven’t looked at the other benefits.


What if that software helps you to get better prices?


Our research and evidence shows that this software on average helps users to get 20% higher prices.

If you had 10 clients, that were each worth $2000 to you every year, by increasing your prices by 20%, you would gain an extra $4000 every year.

So, if you are paying $1200 a year for your subscription to the software, and you are adding $4000 to your sales, as well as the $1200 worth of time you are saving – is that software really expensive?

Someone focussed on costs might say yes, but the entrepreneurial-minded people will see that the return on investment makes the decision to use the software a no brainer.


I made the same mistake…


Years ago when I started my own accounting practice, I was so focused on costs. I made so many mistakes, and not investing in software was one of them.

But, now I invest in so much software. It’s what allows me to run a business that makes over £1,000,000 every single year with just 3 team members.

All you need to do is change your mindset. Don’t think of the costs, think of the return on investment.



If you found this valuable and would like to learn more about value pricing, I run a free live online training session every month with a topic chosen by you. Attend live and you can ask me any questions you have. Click here to register and I will send you an invitation to the next session.

Wishing you every success on your pricing journey

Mark Wickersham

Chartered Accountant, Public Speaker and Author of Amazon No.1 Best Seller “Effective Pricing for Accountants”