Nine Keys to Success and Growth

Put them to work for you.

By Ed Mendlowitz
Tax Season Opportunity Guide

What is needed for growth and success?

MORE: What Kind of Accountant Are You? | COVID Tests Accountants’ Entrepreneurial Talents | Help Your Clients and Yourself | 9 Overlooked Tax Season Resources | What’s NOT to Like about Tax Season? | Do Your Clients Feel Important?
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All these elements are essential:
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Tax Pros Hold Slimmest of Margins in E-filings

data chart
Data for the week ending May 22

But those filings remain down 17 percent.

By Beth Bellor

Bright spots keep popping up in the Internal Revenue Service’s weekly data on filings. Yay!

MORE: Tax Pro E-Filings Down 20 Percent | IRS Web Traffic Doubles over Year-Ago | COVID Drowns IRS in New Filings | 2020 Tax Season Comes to a Screeching Halt | The Tax Season 2020 Dumpster Fire | Tax Pros Fall Behind 6.2% in Returns Filed | Tax Pros Trail by 908,000 Returns | Tax Pro IRS Filings Lag by 532,000
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Unfortunately, they’re in the same old spots: refunds (which don’t help overworked CPAs), IRS.gov traffic (maybe there’s where all the budget goes) and self-preparers (who even let them in?). Boo!
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Pro Tax Prep Stalls to a Crawl amid Covid-Extended Season

data chartPros hold the margin, but barely.

By Beth Bellor

New tax filing statistics show only a couple of upticks over last year: DIY e-filings and IRS website traffic, suggesting tax practitioners have hit the big “pause” button on Tax Season 2020.

MORE: Tax Pro E-Filings Down 20 Percent | IRS Web Traffic Doubles over Year-Ago | COVID Drowns IRS in New Filings | 2020 Tax Season Comes to a Screeching Halt | The Tax Season 2020 Dumpster Fire | Tax Pros Fall Behind 6.2% in Returns Filed | Tax Pros Trail by 908,000 Returns | Tax Pro IRS Filings Lag by 532,000
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Then again, if you’re in I.T. at the IRS, that might not be such happy news.
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3 Questions for Determining Your Value

HandshakeHow necessary are you under Covid?

By Ed Mendlowitz
Tax Season Opportunity Guide

Know your value to your clients. Better, understand your business and what you really do and what you add to the client’s life.

MORE: Help Your Clients and Yourself | Ask This Before Clients Do | More Services for Your Tax Clients | Can Your Reviewers Answer These 10 Questions? | 5 Small Leaks That Can Sink a Tax Season | One Can’t-Skip Touch for Tax Season | 3 Steps to Tax Season Happiness
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I had a group of gastroenterologists as clients who were going to get into a business of inserting a gastric bubble into people’s stomachs. There were a number of issues to this.
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Tax Pro E-Filings Down 20 Percent

IRS.gov visits top 1 billion.

By Beth Bellor

With two long months to go in this pandemic-stretched tax season, all the key figures are down, down, down … except visits to the IRS website, of course, and a flat spot for DIYers.

Will business pick up as states reopen? Or are the clients waiting in the wings the ones no one wants?

MORE: IRS Web Traffic Doubles over Year-Ago | COVID Drowns IRS in New Filings | 2020 Tax Season Comes to a Screeching Halt | The Tax Season 2020 Dumpster Fire | Tax Pros Fall Behind 6.2% in Returns Filed | Tax Pros Trail by 908,000 Returns
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The IRS had received 125.5 million individual income tax returns as of the week ending May 1, the latest data available, down 11 percent from the same period one year ago. It had processed 113.1 million returns, down 16.1 percent.
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IRS Web Traffic Doubles over Year-Ago

data chart
^ Data for the week ending April 24, 2020

As filers seek stimulus checks.

BUSY SEASON BAROMETER
How’s COVID-19 impacting your firm?

Join the survey. Sound off. Get answers.

By Beth Bellor

Want a bright spot in the IRS’ weekly updates on tax filings? It’s website traffic, more than double what it was a year ago.

MORE: COVID Drowns IRS in New Filings | 2020 Tax Season Comes to a Screeching Halt | The Tax Season 2020 Dumpster Fire | Tax Pros Fall Behind 6.2% in Returns Filed | Tax Pros Trail by 908,000 Returns | Tax Pro IRS Filings Lag by 532,000 | Tax Pro E-Filings Lag by 512,000 Returns | Tax Pros Kick into High Gear
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Everything else? A sea of red.
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Ask This Before Clients Do

Stack of cards labeled with question marksPlus some suggested answers.

By Ed Mendlowitz
Tax Season Opportunity Guide

Here are two questions to ask yourself:

  1. Why should clients use you?
  1. Why should staff want to work for you?

MORE: 41 Items to Check on Business Tax Returns | 9 Overlooked Tax Season Resources | What’s NOT to Like about Tax Season? | Can Your Reviewers Answer These 10 Questions?
GoProCPA.comExclusively for PRO Members. Log in here or upgrade to PRO today.

You should be clear on the responses to the above two questions. If you can’t clearly articulate the reasons clients should use you and why staff would want to work for you, then why should they?
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COVID Drowns IRS in New Filings

data chart
Data for the week ending April 17, 2020.
* Total includes returns filed to obtain Economic Impact Payments by those who would not usually file income tax returns.

Why not? Submissions are way down.

BUSY SEASON BAROMETER
How’s COVID-19 impacting your firm?

Join the survey. Sound off. Get answers.

By Beth Bellor

Coronavirus hit IRS data in a couple of ways this week.

People who don’t ordinarily file income tax returns, but did so to obtain economic impact payments, boosted filings higher than they might have been for the week ending April 17, the latest data. In addition, visits to IRS.gov shot up 77 percent over 2019 – the Get My Payment link surely was part of that picture.

MORE: 2020 Tax Season Comes to a Screeching Halt | The Tax Season 2020 Dumpster Fire | Tax Pros Fall Behind 6.2% in Returns Filed | Tax Pros Trail by 908,000 Returns | Tax Pro IRS Filings Lag by 532,000 | Tax Pro E-Filings Lag by 512,000 Returns | Tax Pros Kick into High Gear | Slow Start for Tax Pro E-filing | Data Points Down as Tax Season Opens | The Fight for New Tax Clients
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The Internal Revenue Service reported receiving 116 million individual income tax returns, down 15.5 percent. It had processed 106.6 million returns, up 18.5 percent.
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The Tax Season 2020 Dumpster Fire


Coronavirus crushes tax prep.

How’s COVID-19 impacting your Busy Season?
Join the survey. Sound off. Get answers.

By Beth Bellor

Slammed by the COVID-19 crisis, Tax Season 2020 has gone off the rails.

Tax return filing activity is trending down, and who can blame filers? With an automatic three-month extension, those who owe taxes have no incentive to file anytime soon. And practitioners are consumed with protecting their firms and rescuing their clients.

MORE: Tax Pros Fall Behind 6.2% in Returns Filed | Tax Pros Trail by 908,000 Returns | Tax Pro IRS Filings Lag by 532,000 | Tax Pro E-Filings Lag by 512,000 Returns | Tax Pros Kick into High Gear | Slow Start for Tax Pro E-filing | Data Points Down as Tax Season Opens | The Fight for New Tax Clients
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That may be impacting numbers for e-filings by tax professionals, which are down in double digits. Perhaps those whose dealings are complex enough to need assistance are seeking appointments in June now.
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