Seven top accounting firms launch new sitesBy Greenfield Belser, a Finn Partners Company
May 3, 2017
Just under 15% of the largest 50 CPA firms launched new websites last quarter. Here is a list and snapshot of the seven new sites launched, with our take on each update. In the past two weeks, we shared changes to the AmLaw 100 firm websites and the top 50 consulting firms.
Our sitevisitsSM research microsite catalogs 200 professional service firm websites and provides the latest dish on professional service firm web design, content and development trends.
The convention for large professional service firm sites is to use a rotating carousel of topics, publications and firm news. Deloitte smartly breaks from the norm on its homepage, offering a different and impressive information-delivery design strategy reminiscent of Wired Magazine or other well curated business news sites. There’s an editorial mindset to the presentation offered in a scanning form that’s friendly to the busy digital multi-tasker. The newest version of the Deloitte site leverages the emphatic punctuation in the firm’s logo as a branding device. Everywhere you look, you encounter images in the shape of the Deloitte “green period.” Full stop.
The new pwc.com answers the need for full responsiveness on every device, yet goes much further to become a clean, modern and pleasing digital experience. As you’d expect, PWC delivers plenty of substance. The new site balances the volume of information shared without feeling like too much. Speaking of substance, we particularly like PWC’s 365 app. In an age where thought leadership is everywhere and, arguably, commoditized, how and where it is delivered can help ubiquitous leading thoughts get consumed. The always on 365 app (aptly named) aims to become a valuable daily habit.
KPMG.com is another robust, Big Four thought leadership-centric website that smaller firms are emulating—we hope in their own distinct way. The design uses the retangles from the firm’s logo as a grid to deliver content and help make the site relatively unique to KPMG. Speaking of unique, we like the “social” link in the navigation at the top of the site. We’ve not seen that done in professional service or B2B service websites frequently. In a world where “social” is becoming part of the daily business routine, KPMG has made the networking tools easier to access.
Our favorite part of the newest version of claconnect.com is the “What do you want to see?” customization feature on the home page (note, the feature also travels with the visitor into the site). The promise of customized web experiences has been talked about for many moons. Some, like CLA, are further along the curve. Choose what you are interested in—by industry, topic or type—with a couple of clicks and the grid of content populates with related articles, presentations, videos, tools, studies and other forms of resources. Nice.
The new website brings EisnerAmper into the responsive design fold and also adds enhanced video capabilities, new partner biography photos and an integrated firm blog. We like how dedicated Eisner is to blogging as a knowledge sharing and promotional tool. By pooling all its content in the blog, we see how active Eisner is in helping clients stay current on the issues of the day (note: we do something similar in our brand thinking blog). We also like the service area and industry pages that lead with videos featuring Eisner experts on the issues of the moment and more. We expect the firm will add more of these over time.
As a niche specialist, this firm has deep experience and a major emphasis in the affordable housing, community development and renewable energy sectors, where tax credits and related issues predominate. We like how the tax credit and other deep subject matter resource centers are front and center on the new website. We’ll never be consummate sales people, yet we know it is better to teach and share than it is to sell. Subjective opinions about design quality aside, novoco.com leads with what it knows about the issues, and that’s a very good thing.
Like many of the largest 200 professional service firm websites that have been upgraded over the past twelve months, the redo of markspaneth.com is driven by the prevailing reliance on mobile phones and our other mobile devices. The new site is uncluttered, easy to navigate and read, and, now, friendly on all devices. Marks is another firm with a robust and up-to-the minute blog. The overall approach is no-nonsense and all business. Good qualities in a CPA and an advisor.