Robert. You do not need to continue justifying your company's purpose
to a Complete Public Asshole such as Paul Thomas. I think most of the
more mature and respectable subscribers to this list understand what
you are trying to ask. Your best bet would be to ignore Paul. He
obviously needs to grow up before contributing to the conversation.
Thanks I appreciate that. I did not realize at first, that he is just trying
to be a reverse troll. That is someone who responds to a post with the
express purpose of fighting and not for constructive dialogue.
I am still interested in talking to accountants about some of these matters
but perhaps I will focus on buying lunch for individuals and talking rather
than Usenet posts.
I am surprised by all of the negative comments you are receiving from people
in the accounting field. For some reason, most of them seem to be thinking
of your website design and web hosting services as being some kind of
advertising or direct marketing plan to generate new business.
I don't see it that way. I went to your website and I was impressed. Your
website loads quickly, is clear and direct, and it explains what you do, how
it is done, and what the various price ranges are for your services. And,
it always amazes me how people who claim to do website design either have a
hokey website of their own, or have some elaborate, slow-loading,
complicated website that doesn't tell me anything that I would want to
know -- what you do, how it is done, and what it will cost. That's not the
case with your website.
You make it clear that, if an accountant or other professional wants to have
a website and a web presence, he/she can do so for very little in the way of
upfront costs, and a very low monthly website hosting fee -- some of the
lowest available. You even make it simple for them to make their own
ongoing website changes for free -- without having to pay you or anyone else
for that service.
As far as what will or will not go into the website, that will be completely
up to them. So, there's no need for them to be whining that you don't know
what all the advertising and other rules for accountants are. Why would you
need to know that? They would be telling YOU what they want in their
website -- you wouldn't be making it up out of thin air, and you certainly
wouldn't be telling them what was going to be in their website. After all,
it would be their website, not yours. How silly can they be? Next they'll
be telling you that only a physician can create a website for a physician,
and only an attorney can create a website for an attorney.
Now here's what I think is the most important point:
Obviously, no website is going to reach out and find new client's for
accountants or any other professional.
But, when a client is shopping for an accountant, and doesn't already know
one through a referral or otherwise, he/she will probably look in the Yellow
Pages, and similar advertising formats. Then the decision becomes -- which
one to choose from the tens or hundreds of professionals they see
advertised -- the ones that have a 2 or 3 line ad in the Yellow Pages, or
the ones whose websites they can find on the internet?
When I go to an accountant's or other professional's website, I can see what
they do, how they do it, what their area of specialization is, etc. I can
get a ton of additional information just by viewing the person's website.
And, what does it cost that professional to provide me with all of that
additional information via a website? -- about 15 bucks a month. Compare
that to what they have to pay for Yellow Pages ads or ads in other forums.
To me, step one is to get a potential client to know you exist, and step two
is to provide more information about your services to potential clients who
are searching for an accountant or other professional. I can't think of any
other medium, other than an internet website, that can provide so much
additional information for such a low cost.
And, what does it cost for them to get a website and ongoing presence on the
internet -- less than a $1,000 one-time cost, and less than $15/month. And,
how does your cost structure compare to most other website design and web
hosting services? -- your cost structure is far lower than almost all others
in the field.
One would think that accountants, of all people, would find that
No, it's not incredible -- especially since that's not what I was
suggesting. I wasn't suggesting that anyone needs to use regular
advertising mediums to advertise their website.
My point was that, even if all you have is a Yellow Pages listing, and even
if that listing doesn't mention a website, someone who might be interested
in your services could easily do a google search and find your website.
This would even be true if all the person knows is your name, and you don't
even have a Yellow Pages listing.
Or, if I were to go online and try to find accountants in my area, I assume
the AICPA or some state CPA associations would have listings of accountants
by location, area of practice, etc. If, in those listings, an accountant
had a link to his/her website, I could easily click on that link and get
more detailed information.
As another example, someone I know was referred to a CPA by a friend to help
him with his tax returns and with some business-related issues. He told me
who the accountant was, and that he seemed to be very helpful. Meanwhile, I
was interested in finding a CPA with knowledge and experience in nonprofit
accounting and the A-133 independent audit process. So the first thing I
did was do a google search to see if he had a website, and then went to his
website to see if it said anything about these specialized areas of
Thanks for your thoughtful comments. Frankly, I was a bit surprised too.
When I talk to accountants I know about things like this in person it always
works out very well -- and they are always interested in learning more. I
can tell that by the questions I get. I have good friends who are
accountants, and thought that a discussion on this group would be similar to
my personal experiences.
I think the confusion is that we also sell a permission-based email
marketing service called StreamSend that we bundle with our hosting. It is
for the small business person or their marketing person to use for
e-newsletters and so on. We have strict rules against using the service to
spam people. It is permission-based only.
Thank you. I appreciate that. We worked hard on the website, and are proud
of its functional yet aesthetically pleasing site.
That's right. We think that we have a good service but I am specifically
interested in making it more useful to accountants in particular. This is a
genuine interest of mine, given my personal connections to people in the
field. I guess it is hard to convey sincerity through Usenet.
Very well put. I should have made it very clear early on as you have done.
In fact, for $9.95/month.
Thanks again for your thoughtful comments.
My interest in this area has to do with a belief I have had that there is a
real need for small or very small businesses to be able to easily get a
website presence for a small up front cost and a low monthly hosting fee.
By very small businesses, I mean even one-person businesses like painters,
handymen/women, etc. Most of these people can't afford much in the way of
advertising, and the few ads they do run barely give anything more than a
name and a phone number. Since they are paying for advertising by the line,
they can't afford to really explain what they do.
Many of them have no idea how to get any kind of internet presence, how to
get a domain name (or what a domain name is), or how to create a website.
Yet, if they had a website that gave more information about what they do,
they could just add that website address to their business cards,
letterhead, classified ads, vehicle signs, or signs they place in front of a
home while they are doing a job.
And, what would it cost them to do that? -- through you, a one-time $249.95
fee and $9.95/month -- far less than they now spend on advertising.
My fantasy for a long time has been to start a small business that could do
that for these types of business persons. And perhaps hire high school
senior computer geeks to do most of the work, and at the same time show
those seniors how they could create a small part-time business of their own
where they would help people get a website and web presence. I certainly
wouldn't make much money doing that, especially since by teaching the high
school seniors how to go out on their own I would creating my own
So, when I happened to see your post in alt.accounting, and then clicked on
your website link, I was pleased to see that you offer a very similar type
of service for very low costs.
I think a problem in usenet posts of this type is that even <if> the
request is well-intentioned (as I think it probably was/is in this
instance), it immediately engenders thoughts of usenet abuse. Also,
usenet is widely recognized as not the most representative sampling
mechanism possible... :)
As am I. This being your first (and my guess only) trip to this newsgroup.
In fact, any newsgroup.
I am surprised that you appeared in time to salvage Robert's sales pitch.
If you're not a plant, why hide who you are?
Not true. I read this newsgroup and about 10 others on a regular basis.
About 4 or 5 of them, I read every day. I read groups like alt.accounting
and alt.comp.software.financial.quickbooks less often than the rest, but I
do follow them.
I have posted here before and I frequently post in other newsgroups. But I
change my name often, so my posts appear with different identities. Call me
paranoid, but I don't like the idea that all of my usenet posts can easily
be collected and viewed by anyone for all time simply by doing a
I am not a plant and I don't know who Robert Anderson is other than what he
posted here and from looking at his website after seeing his post. My late
arrival in this thread is just due to the fact that I don't read
BeanSmart.com is a site by and for consumers of financial services and advice. We are not affiliated with any of the banks, financial services or software manufacturers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.
Tax and financial advice you come across on this site is freely given by your peers and professionals on their own time and out of the kindness of their hearts. We can guarantee
neither accuracy of such advice nor its applicability for your situation. Simply put, you are fully responsible for the results of using information from this site in real life situations.