50%+ decline on internet searches for "accountants". According to Google: | AccountingWEB

50%+ decline on internet searches for "accountants". According to Google:


Has anyone else seen this? Just curious to hear what people think might be causing the steady decline over the last 8 years. 


ChrisBurr's picture

check others out

ChrisBurr | | Permalink

search for accountant not the same trend?

bookmarklee's picture

Multiple word searches

bookmarklee | | Permalink

I wonder if the trend is re people searching for the one word: accoutants 

Whereas most people, these days, do a multiple word search for: accountant, locality

It makes more sense as searching for accountants won't get you someone nearby and most people would prefer to search in their locality than further afield. This is also why optimising accountants' websites for the search engines involves the inclusion of all key search terms including locality.


MarkAOrr's picture

I think it is due to people becoming more canny when searching

MarkAOrr | | Permalink

A few years ago searching for a broad term like accountant would yield a few results and the best would be at the top.  Now that would be a very silly search and yield loads of irrelavent results.  I suspect now more people search for the services they want like 'buisness plan' or 'VAT return'  or 'IR35 advice'.  Also as Mark Lee said they will also localise it.  I suspect most good accountancy firms are optimising their sites for their services rather than their nameor their profession.

Quality Impact Marketing's picture

Mark, you have hit the nail on the head...........

Quality Impact ... | | Permalink

....to really make the most out of web marketing you must position yourself in the market; create a niche/niches. It is all smoke and mirrors in all honesty!!! Obviously, as a general rule most Accountants are equipped to deal with most businesses, but being a "general" Accountancy firm on the web does not distinguish you from the thousands of others out there.

Businesses need Accountants. Therefore businesses are looking for Accountants whether it be because they are a new business or looking to change. But, how does a firm get that business to come to them rather than going to another firm?

Using positioning enables the prospect to find your practice and then you need to create the best possible opportunity for that interest to convert to business (a good website with lots of helpful free advice and hooks to keep them interested... for example).  The key is making your practice as accessible to a prospect as is humanly possible. Nowadays, client acquisition is about clever marketing that means spending as little as possible to achieve the best results. This can be achieved by concentrating on 3 search criteria for your practice: -


*    Location

*    Specialist sectors

*    Specialist Skills  

These are the core search criteria that a prospect will use to find an Accountancy firm. If you can optimise yourself in these areas, you can make massive gains. But this is not a short-term solution to client acquisition. This is about building your brand (yes, even Accountants need branding!) and ethos, creating niches and watching the longer term benefits. Depending on your location, the sectors you decide to specialise in and which specialist skills you decide to market yourself as having, will depend on how quickly you start picking up clients. And by the way, by optimise I don’t mean throw a whole load of money at SEO to try and compete with “the big boys”; there are far better ways to create traffic to your website.

“Oh here goes another so called marketing expert, about to tell us we should be using social media marketing!” I hear you groan. And yup! That’s exactly what I’m saying, and I’m not saying it for the hell of it, or to jump on the band wagon! We have provided SMM to our clients for years and have seen excellent results. If you are a small firm, get out there and do it yourself! There are plenty of free tutorials about using social media to promote your business, and you are all smart cookies anyway (bar a few exceptions!), so you’ll pick it up no problem!! Our new website will be up and running soon and I intend to provide lots of freebies for Accountants who are enthusiastic about growing their practice and willing to embrace new ideas. DM me your email address if interested (and no, I’m not going to SPAM you with a load of rubbish) and I will email you to let you know when the site is up.                


David Ellis Managing Director

T: 01604 211221

E: [email protected]

W: www.qualityimpactmarketing.com

Mark and David are right.

gerrycreedon | | Permalink

Internet searchers have moved away from searching for generic terms such as accountants and use more targeted terms e.g. accountants and location or alternatively they search for a specific service: management accountants or corporation tax.

Attracting new clients is about the creative use of low cost marketing opportunities, getting an ROI on your marketing investment.  Imagine your target client and 'reach out' to them, understand their needs and priorities, if you can do that successfully you have an advantage. 




maxxy's picture

Google trends

maxxy | | Permalink

Just to add that I think this is reflective of different searching behaviours and the most popular (from talking with clients and prospects and using keyword tools) are accountant and location combination searches. These have too small a volume to show up in the google trends. 

As far as social media goes my gut feeling (sorry no science here) is that whatever search traffic has moved to people finding accountants through SM there are just as many SM industry people searching for accountants to connect with via SM (so should compensate for some reduction) :)



-- www.maxxy.co.uk www.find-me-an-accountant.com Twitter:@maxinemaxxy

Deep_Teaspiller's picture

Great Discussion!

Deep_Teaspiller | | Permalink

 We have had some quality postings in this discussion!

Jon Wilcox, a Tech writer for AccountingWEB even covered it on the main page.


We were getting great responses and arguements against the data so we decided to do a follow up in a blog post. Its easier to respond to every one here, and the article Jon posted.

Our Counter-Arguments:


Yes I agree that this trend

Azolla | | Permalink

Yes I agree that this trend will be due to people being more "sophisticated" and focused with their searches these days. Multiple word phrases are now more popular.

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