5 Ideas to Reduce Client Price-Sensitivity Just in Time for Busy Season

No matter how small or large your practice is or how experienced you are, you’re probably going to meet some prospect or clients this busy season who are price-sensitive.  Many of you tell me you try to run from them as far away as possible, and others of you tell me you have to take these clients or you wouldn’t have a full practice.  So you might already have a solution to dealing with price-sensitive clients that you’re happy with.  If you don’t, or are ready for more ideas, this article is for you.

1. Deliver apples and oranges

The area where the most price-resistance lies is in compliance work such as tax return preparation, auditing, bookkeeping and payroll, and sales tax compliance, to name a few areas.

One way to reduce price-resistance while still offering these services is to mix apples and oranges.   Bundle your higher margin advisory services with your compliance services so that the client can see a better overall return on investment for their accounting spend with you.

2.  Create a choice of yesses

Put the pricing decision back on the client by offering them a choice of packages.  Your small, medium, and large packages might be perfect for the penny-pincher, regular client, and “has to have the best” client, respectively.  Hopefully, you will get a nice mix of all three types of clients in your practice over time and not just the penny-pincher who take the lowest package.

3. Uplevel your skills to deal with price-sensitivity more effectively

When I ask a group of accounting professionals in public practice what percentage of small business prospects they think are price-sensitive, their answer averages around 70%.   Studies I have seen have quoted around 40%, so there is a disconnect somewhere.  It’s also not a secret that our accounting industry is not the best when it comes to marketing themselves.

Is there a connection?  I think so.  One solution is to take your selling, marketing, and negotiation skills up a notch so that you have the tools to respond confidently and effectively.  [Shameless plug:  programs like the Accountant’s Accelerator can help you with that.]

4. Spell it out

Clients don’t know what you do or how you do it.  (Otherwise they would probably try to do it themselves.)  They also don’t know all of the things you do to bring value to the relationship and their business, unless you tell them.  It will seem like over-communicating to most accountants, but if you can spell out and educate them on all of the extra things you do, clients will understand your value much better and be willing to pay for it.

5. Uplevel your brand image. 

If your website looks like it was done 10 years ago by a tech nerd, your brochure has typos, or your office carpet has stains, it could be that your corporate image is out of alignment with your price.  It’s always a good idea to have your marketing materials look much more expensive than what you charge.  That way, your marketing materials will be working in your favor and not against you.

Try these five ideas in this upcoming tax season – or with your next prospect —  to help you better deal with price-sensitive prospect and clients.