Freelance bookkeepers tend to leave a lot of money on the table by giving away services that can bring in revenue. We tend to bend over backwards picking up information, scanning in information, doing all kinds of administrative things and not getting paid for doing it. And the client, who doesn’t want to waste his valuable time doing these things, thinks it’s perfectly okay to waste your time and energy.
It’s time to reeducate clients so they treat you as a professional businessperson that you are. And the first step is retraining yourself to firmly set boundaries of what services you’re comfortable with providing and how much you want to be paid for those services.
Freelance bookkeepers have to look for ways to work smarter, conserve our dollars and see where there’s more value. Get creative and come up with a solution that will make you money. Keep the drudgery of the task down to a minimum.
So take a look at your client base. What are the client’s needs? Try not to make the decision that no one would pay for the services you come up with. If you make that decision, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. All you have to do is float the idea out there and see who bites.
Let’s look at an example and say you’re going to offer an administrative package or service to handle collecting your client’s information.
Let’s say you have clients that are reluctant to scan or fax bills. You need that information to do your work, but it’s not cost effective for you or one of your people to be scanning it for them. If they want to continue sending the original documentation in the mail, explain how risky it is. Insist they send it using Priority Mail that allows you to trace it. Then charge them a fee above and beyond the bookkeeping fee for scanning it. Get paid enough that you don’t resent doing it. Don’t give them a preferential rate. It costs you to do it.
Now’s the time to encourage them to choose your preferred method of handling the administrative tasks by telling them, “It’s more cost effective for you to take advantage of our administrative service package.”
You offer to give them Shoebox, which is a great service for scanning everything. It’s easy to use. They give your clients the envelopes. All they have to do is put their stuff in an envelope. Then they can either have it shredded afterwards or returned. Shoebox is also easily linked to Bill.com. This technology is affordable and makes your job easier. You just have to figure the cost of using it into your new administrative service package.
Do you see in this example how your productivity increases, your profitability increases and the value to your client increases?
Look at what your market needs creatively. Find a solution that incorporates technology that supports it, put it in a package, add the fee and you’ll have a product that makes you more money and takes away the burden of providing the administrative tasks.
Discover more proven techniques that successful freelance bookkeepers need to know at the Bookkeepers Club. Every month you’ll learn new tips from myself, industry experts and other bookkeepers that increase your productivity and your bottom line.