Discounts must be compensated

accounting fees

Accounting firms must request adequate compensation for any discount to their service fees requested by a client.

A practice development specialist has advised accounting practice partners against discounting their client fees without securing something of commensurate value in return so as to avoid providing services at too low a price.

“[You need to communicate] if you’re asking me to move on price, then I have to move on price in order to win this work … [but] I can’t give anything away on price unless I see something of equal or greater value in return,” Upward Spiral Professionals founder Martin Bissett said during the latest Accurium technical webinar.

Bissett pointed out securing compensation for a fee discount could manifest in a variety of ways and accountants should not be afraid of asking for it.

“[For example, you could ask:] ‘How would you feel about being a referral source for me after I’ve proven I can do this work. So six months from now we agree that I come back to you and you’re going to give me three names,’” he said.

“[‘Further] they’re going to be three people that I can talk to who are of a similar size and quality to yourself [with whom] I can [explore] new opportunities.’

“Or you might say: ‘Alright, well I need video collateral on my website so if I climb down here [on price] you’re making me a video.’

“Or you might say: ‘Okay, well look, you’re very well [connected] with the golf club here. I don’t have anything with the golf club. You’re going to [introduce] me [to] the golf club if I move on this price.’

“And it really doesn’t matter what you come up with guys; it matters that what you’re trading is of greater or equal value to what you’re giving away.”

According to Bissett, adopting this approach will take away the position of strength clients feel they have that motivates them to ask an accounting firm to lower its fees in the first place.

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