2011 Review of AccountantsWorld — Website Relief

AccountantsWorld - Website Relief
www.accountantsworld.com/wr

 From the Oct. 2011 Review of Website Tools & Services for tax & Accounting Firms.


Best Fit:
Tax and accounting firms who want tight integration with the vendor’s web-based product suite.

 

Strengths

  • Expanded and improved library of customizable templates provides unlimited combinations.
  • Users have direct access with tight integration to all AccountantsWorld cloud applications
  • Syndicated news content, including stock and custom RSS feeds, and AW-supplied newsletters are also available.
  • Search engine submissions and automatic stats are available, along with optional Google Analytics tracking and optional premium placement on the AccountantsWorld “Find an Accountant” directory. 
  • Tax organizer collects client data online, and can be uploaded directly into many tax software applications.
  • Appointment scheduler integrates with Practice Relief and includes an email reminder feature.
  • Client portals and online solutions can be added with the CyberCabinet document management system and portal.

Potential Limitations

  • Social media integration is limited to Facebook widgets and Twitter buttons.
  • There is an additional charge for more than five e-mail accounts.

 

Website Relief from AccountantsWorld (AW) was introduced in 2002. Since then, the program has continually improved in its ease of use, design, content choices and practice management tools. Today, AW reports it has 2,800 firm website clients.

Although AW recently added ready-to-use templates that can be personalized by the accountant, the system remains pretty simple, with only two operations-related pages — home and login. However, users can create a site with up to 40 pages. The current average number of pages across all firms is 20.

Company information page templates are available for common needs, including Home, About Us, Partners’ Profile, Services, Useful Resources & Links, FAQs, Testimonials, and Contact Us. Also available are special feature pages that offer interactive tools, including Daily News, Newsletter, Calendar, Check Tax Refund, Financial Calculators, Paycheck Calculators, Payroll Service, Tax Center, Tax Due Dates and Guestbook, as well as a dozen pages for custom use. Syndicated news content, including stock and custom RSS feeds, and AW-supplied newsletters are also available.

Hosting. The application is hosted on Amazon Web Services’ public, redundant data centers with data mirrored between data centers. Data is backed up continuously, and Amazon data centers are SAS 70-certified. Administration is done only over SSL. Data is also encrypted at rest and uses HIPAA/GLB/IRC 7216-compliant encrypted data transfer.

Pricing. Website Relief setup is free with an annual cost of $595 per year or $59 per month. A standard directory listing in the AccountantsWorld Directory of Accounting Professionals is included in the price. Users may also purchase the Gold Directory listing ($395) with enhanced top-of-page listing or opt for Premier Web Services, with site design and updating services offered at $99 per hour.

Search Engines. Search engine submissions and automatic stats are available, along with links to register with Google, Yahoo! and Bing, as well as links to create small business ads in those portals. The system offers detailed search engine optimization and search engine marketing tutorials and documents, and supports Google Analytics for detailed traffic information by entering the Google Analytics tracking code. Mobile browsers with tablets and smartphones are supported.

Domains & Email. One free, unique domain is provided, and is owned and maintained by AccountantsWorld. If a user cancels, he or she can take the domain for a nominal fee. All non-proprietary content can be exported and taken by the firm. Client information can be exported to Excel.

If users already own a domain, they do their own maintenance and point the DNS record to AccountantsWorld. Custom DNS records are available. Email is available, but not required, and users can maintain their own exchange servers. Five email accounts are included, and each email account supports up to 10GB of storage and attachments up to 50MB. An unlimited number of email aliases and forwards can be created, and other tools include full anti-spam configurable controls, a calendar and group email broadcasting. Email delivery is done through a GUI-friendly webmail interface, Outlook and other POP3 email clients, as well as with smartphones that support POP3, SMTP or IMAP interfaces. Users can export client information and use it with other email marketing tools, including Constant Contact and Sage eMarketing. Users can also incorporate (iframe) any blog engine to a webpage. Facebook widgets and Twitter buttons are allowed, as well.

Other Features

  • Expanded and improved library of templates provides unlimited combinations. Animated banners support user-designed custom text.
  • Headers, footers, background color, fonts of the menus, texts and URLs can be customized.
  • Includes graphics library and custom images.
  • Tax organizer collects client data online and stores it for reference and updating. Data can be uploaded directly into tax software.
  • Appointment scheduler integrates with the Practice Relief and includes an email reminder feature.
  • Client portals and online solutions can be added.
  • Free multipoint checkup and site review for completeness and aesthetics.
  • Users have direct access to all AccountantsWorld cloud applications. Cloud drive/shared file storage that maps to a drive letter is available with an add-on program called CyberCabinet.
  • All merchant services that support HTML are included in eCommerce. PayPal and iTransact are compatible.

With its many user-rich features, Website Relief is a capable competitor to other website building providers. AccountantsWorld has a strong company history with the profession, and offers a simple yet powerful interface and good integration with other applications.

Summary & Pricing

With its many user-rich features, Website Relief is a capable competitor to other website building providers. AccountantsWorld has a strong company history with the profession, and offers a simple yet powerful interface and good integration with other applications. Website Relief setup is free with an annual cost of $595 per year or $59 per month. A standard directory listing in the AccountantsWorld Directory of Accounting Professionals is included in the price. Users may also purchase the Gold Directory listing ($395) with enhanced top-of-page listing or opt for Premier Web Services, with site design and updating services offered at $99 per hour.

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