Accounting is extremely critical to any business. It is a comprehensive and systematic recording of all financial data provided by the company. This data can also be used to provide summary reports to oversight agencies, tax collection agencies, and government authorities.
Given the fast-paced economy and most businesses turning to the Internet as a platform to expand their reach, accounting support businesses are no slouch in comparison. Online accounting and bookkeeping services are ubiquitous nowadays and have been over saturating the market with their extremely efficient services. Online accounting and bookkeeping extend into a variety of other company secretary and legal services including filing compliance reports, responding to questions from authorities, and consulting companies on the matters of trademark, investor agreements. Online accounting is a system of managing the businesses finances using accountants and cloud accounting software to get speed, and quality assured service. 90% of accountants feel that there is a cultural shift in accountancy that leans toward technological adoption.
The online service charges the customers as per a package subscription that suits their needs. These packages may be varied depending on the type of services needed by the clients. Generally, the online accounting services companies target SMBs, and they target specifically for one function such as Online CA, Online CS, or Online Company Registration. For a new firm that registers using an online accounting services company is likely to see up-sell and cross-sell promotions of other services.
Some of the instances of customer churn in online accounting services business are,
- Trust and Accessibility: Founders use online service to register their company but choose to go with a local consultant for their accounting and legal work for more accessibility
- Beyond Scope: Firms that used an online accounting services firm for some time and did not come back to use it again, because they couldn’t consult someone credible online and in time for their queries beyond the scope of agreed work
On interviewing some of the clients of online accounting services who turned to another consultant, following reasons became apparent,
- No Trusted advisor: Online services seldom tend to become a trusted advisor for a business leader
- Lack of Dedicated point of contact: With online services, the subscriber is asked to call on the customer care line or email to a distribution list, and they need at least one day to respond.
- Lack of business understanding: The online accounting services lacked a deeper level of the client’s business understanding for intimate value creation
It’s essential for such businesses to be able to retain their customers while being able to bring in more so that their profit margin can increase and they have predictable revenue month on month. With online businesses, the good news is that they have data points about all customer interactions. With these data-points and AI/ machine learning these businesses are now capable of identifying and reducing the customer churn. The key to reducing churn for online accounting services companies is in addressing the reasons why clients move-on as listed above.
You know your customer journey better than anyone. Based on past interactions across clients, and with the help of advanced machine learning techniques, you can come up with preemptive questions for the clients and help them address those. For example, if a client is delaying on tax payments, then the question is whether they have a cash-flow challenge. Subsequently, you could be helping them prioritize and manage the expenses and cash-flow better, also advise them on payment terms for clients. When the AI enables you to come up with preemptive probing questions for the client, you start better engaging with the clients. The result is that you have an equal chance to become a trusted advisor for the client.
Natural Language Powered Chatbot
AI can help online accounting services business avail a dedicated and personal single point of contact for clients without having to lose the scalability of service delivery. While the interface is that of a chatbot it’s personification is a real representative and until such point that the chatbot can’t answer the question the representative doesn’t come into the picture. AI can help drive contextual question answering with natural language so that clients don’t feel the lack of dedicated single point of contact.
AI can help online accounting services business avail a dedicated and personal single point of contact for clients without having to lose the scalability of service delivery. While the interface is that of a chatbot it’s personification is a real representative and until such point that the chatbot can’t answer the question, the representative doesn’t come into the picture. AI can help drive contextual question answering with natural language so that clients don’t feel the lack of a dedicated point of contact.
Identify Unhappy Clients
Customer churn analysis can help online accounting services identify in advance, the customers who are likely to discontinue their services. Knowing churning customers in advance will help the online accounting services company to focus on personalized engagement with such clients so that they can attempt to retain most of those before they go off.
While AI and machine learning might sound all overwhelming, it is not. With machine learning and AI, it is vital to begin experimenting with your data so that you unearth the insights faster and use them in business and see the value.
The ethos of Datoin is in helping online SMBs start experimenting their data with ease and without data-scientists. Try Datoin for one month free and judge it for yourself.