Tag Archives: online

Selling Your Practice Online: Finding the Best CPA Website Design

Numerous companies provide CPA websites. This guide helps you determine what’s most important in a web designer – and what to watch out for.

 

Look for These 7 Attributes in a CPA Website Designer

 

1. A wide variety of modern designs

 

Make sure your website designer provides a number of design choices – at least 100, and not just the same 5 or 6 styles with different colors. You should be able to customize your site or build it from the ground up, or, if you’d rather, choose from stock styles. Make sure your website designer allows you to see all their designs before you sign up.

 

2. Loads of content

 

The designer you choose should be able to load your website with tons of content, at least 1,000 pages. Also, be sure a good portion of these are customizable, and that you can add your own pages if desired.

 

3. Web tools

 

A high-quality website design firm will offer web tools at no extra cost. You find lots of tools out there, but these are the most important:

 

Emailed CPA newsletter for your clients (make sure the designer emails the newsletter and doesn’t just put it online)
Email accounts and shared calendars for your firm
Client portal, which allows you to store and transfer files that you need to share with your clients
Financial calculators – a wide variety of them
Tax organizers – and they should be customizable
Integrated blog

 

4. Flexibility in who can make changes

 

Look for a company that will be happy to make changes for you, or will allow you to make changes to the content of the site yourself. You also want to make sure there’s no extra charge for making changes – so that if a member of your firm makes partner, for example, you can up this information without a penalty.

 

5. SEO, SEM, and other marketing efforts that go beyond just the website

 

Although professional CPA websites are important for marketing accounting firms, in today’s high-tech world, just having a website doesn’t cut it. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is a process that gets your website listed near the top of the search engine results. SEM, or Search Engine Marketing, is the pay-per-click ads on the search engines.

 

Be sure your web designer offers SEO and SEM, and that they are knowledgeable about marketing in general.

 

6. Free trials and guarantees

 

Several companies offer free trial periods of 30 or 60 days. Some also offer guarantees: if your website is not profitable, you get your money back. (Just be sure to read the fine print on the guarantee. For some, you need to supply so much documentation that it’s not worth the trouble.)

 

7. Testimonials

 

Any website designer worth their salt will have testimonials from satisfied clients – preferably clearly displayed on their site. If you don’t see any, that’s a warning sign.

 

Avoid These 3 Pitfalls

 

1. Hidden fees

 

Some website design companies look like a great value – until you look closely and see they’re charging for features you assumed were included in the package. Watch out for these hidden fees:

 

Setup or design fees
Extra charges for web tools, like calculators and newsletters
Extra charges to make changes to the site
Extra charges for more than one email account for your firm
A fee for enough space in the client portal to make it usable (the client portal should have at least 250 MB of storage space as part of the base package)

 

2. Need to sign up before you can see designs

 

Several website providers only allow you to see their styles once you sign up for their service. If you end up not liking the designs, you’re out of luck. You should go with a company that clearly displays all their site styles before asking for a commitment from you.

 

3. Contracts that lock you in / annual commitments

 

Choose a website designer that doesn’t require you to sign a contract. It’s also preferable to go with a company that bills monthly, rather than yearly. Look for a firm that allows you to cancel your account at any time and with no penalties.

 

With a little research, you can find a website designer for your accounting firm that’s affordable and transparent, and that provides you with a dynamic website that will attract new clients and retain existing ones.

Brian O’Connell is the founder of CPA Site Solutions and Websites4Accountants. Follow here for more about finding the best provider of CPA websites.

Online Education Tips – Getting Your Forensic Accounting Degree Online

Forensic accounting is the fastest growing area of accounting today. It is a special type of career that involves the use of accounting, auditing and investigative skills to assist in legal matters. If you are looking for a career that is both exciting and financially rewarding, consider becoming a forensic accountant, but you need to own a required degree and license to start with. With the available of online education and the increasing market demands for forensic accounting careers, more and more universities are offering forensic accounting degree online.

The standard education requirement to start a career as forensic accountant is a bachelor business degree in accounting or finance, and you need to have a CPA (Certified Public Account) license. In additional to the requirements, you will also need to own a forensic accounting certification such as the Forensic Examiner Diplomat or the Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) designation. Hence, if you are interested to enter this career field, then be prepared to equip yourself with the required degree, certification & license.

Many online forensic accounting degree programs offered by accredited universities have integrated CPA and CPE credits. The degree program can prepares you with the education requirement to become a forensic accountant. The key advantages of taking the forensic accounting degree online are Flexibility and Convenient. You do not need to commute to and from the school, save your money in term of transportation cost and your valuable time. In additional, you can enroll into the forensic accounting degree program offered by your preference university without the need to consider geography factor; this means you even can pursue a degree offered by university abroad as long as they open their courses to international students.

Although there are many similar online forensic accounting degrees offered by various online universities, a few things you must confirm before you sign up with your selected degree program are:

* Your selected online degree program must be offered by a properly accredited university which the accrediting agency must be recognized by the Department of Education.

* If you intend to use the degree to enter into forensic accounting career, you must ensure that the forensic accounting degree program contains the courses that meet your goal.

* If the degree program requires you to attend certain hours of face-to-face classes or practical works, you need to find out the closest facility within your convenient distance that provides by the university.

* If you need a financial aid, then you may want to review the financial aid packages offered by the university.

In additional to the above, you must request the details information about the forensic accounting program from your short listed universities for carefully review, and talk to the admission officer to get all your questions answered before you finalized the degree program to enroll with. Most information requests and enquiries are all free of charge; you should utilize this benefit to get as detail information as possible about the degree program before you make your ultimate decision to enroll into the selected one.

Summary

Forensic accounting is a career that requires the knowledge of accounting, auditing and investigative skills. Forensic accounting degree program can prepares you to meet the requirements. The degree is offered as online degree program by many accredited universities which you can enroll and earn the degree from your comfort home.

Amelia Turner, an educational article writer for http://www.your-online-degree.info You can find more details information and free resources about online forensic accounting degree and learn from guides to success in online study, financial aids and other accredited online education programs that can help you to make decision to earn your degree online.

Flexibility in Online Accounting and Finance Degrees

With solid job prospects projected through 2016 and with colleges and business schools offering flexible degree programs, what’s holding you back from pursuing career training in accounting and finance? Indeed, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates accountants and auditors should see 18 percent job growth rate during the 2006-2016 decade.

Courses for All Levels of Expertise
Whether you’re just beginning an accounting or finance career or looking to move into management roles from your present job, online schools offer programs leading to an associate’s, bachelor’s, or master’s degree. Depending on your career goals, you can enter several career tracts, from accountant to banking, financial advisor to auditor.

Those pursuing accounting degrees can take online courses in preparation for Certified Public Accountant (CPA) designations. In 2007, some 48 states required accountants to pursue 30 hours beyond undergraduate accounting training to gain their CPA designations. The certification typically leads to greater on-the-job responsibilities–and greater earnings potential.

Career Prospects in Accounting and Finance
Upon graduation, you may be qualified for a broad range of career opportunities within the world of finance. Bankers, for example, can advance in rank at their financial institution by completing post-secondary career training.

Personal financial advisors, according to the BLS, are professionals in one of the fastest growing career fields, with a sizzling 37 percent increase in jobs predicted between 2006 and 2016. You can get a foot in the door by completing a finance degree. However, graduates holding a bachelor’s or MBA degree may have the best opportunities in financial advising roles.

Jobs for accountants are expected to rise, especially for those who hold CPA certifications. Most jobs typically require at least a bachelor’s degree, the BLS reports. Many new positions should be in the corporate world where government regulations for strict financial reporting may fuel new hires in accounting roles. Public accountants can also work as tax specialists, preparing forecasts and returns for businesses and private individuals.

Doing the Books
Auditors with two and four-year degrees can find jobs in the public or private sector, as well. Companies and government agencies rely on trained professionals to handle budgets, payroll, and accounts. Taking courses in business, finance, or accounting can give you a great start on mastering key job skills, especially if you enroll in courses covering the latest iterations of accounting, taxation, payroll, and spreadsheet software.

Bookkeepers, auditors, and accounting assistants may also handle invoices, billing, and inventory procedures. Online training programs can bring you up to speed in common, in-demand business skills in quick order. Approximately 21 percent of all working accountants and auditors work in wage jobs for bookkeeping, accounting, tax preparation or payroll processing companies, with another 10 percent working as self-employed professionals.

In the end, completing an education is central to finding success in the financial world. Taking online accounting classes at an accredited school or university or completing a finance degree has never been easier. Online education affords you the chance to mesh school requirements with existing work or family commitments.

Kelli Smith is the senior editor for Edu411.org. Find an online accounting school or an online finance degree at Edu411.org.

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