A question I get asked a lot by accountancy firms is… “How do I find a niche for my accountancy firm?” It’s always a difficult decision to make and you can feel like you’re missing out on all the other businesses you COULD be working with if you DO specialize.

When Paul Barnes first set up our firm – My Accountancy Place – he didn’t niche.

It was only through discovering which clients he worked best with, that he could give the most value to and that were potentially most profitable, did he choose to focus 100% on one niche.

This benefits us in many ways in that it allows us to…

  • Become experts in one area
  • Share that depth of expertise and knowledge across our client base
  • Better predict the challenges our clients will face as they grow
  • Serve our clients better
  • Benchmark our clients against each other
  • Make our marketing more focused
  • Hone our marketing message so that it better resonates with our audience
  • Attract more of our dream clients because niches talk
  • Be more profitable
  • Enjoy ourselves more because we love who we work with

How Do I Find MY Niche?

So if you’re looking for your niche or niches, here are my 10 focussing questions you could ask yourself to help you to find the right niche/s for you.

Look To Your Current Clients

I would start by looking at your current client base and ask yourself…

  1. Who do you currently love working with?
  2. Who pays you the most?
  3. Who does your team love answering the phone too?
  4. Who always pays you on time?

Look To Other Niches

Then once you’ve exhausted that list, you need to look to other niches you could work with and ask yourself…

5. Are there enough businesses within that niche?

6. Do they have the ability to pay what you want them to?

7. Are you able to provide incredible value to them?

Look To Yourself

Another question I like to ask that can help to focus you is…

8. What clues does your past give you?

9. If you couldn’t get paid for the next 10 years, who would you work with?

10. What types of clients strengthen and energize you?

A Niche Doesn’t Have To Be An Industry

In choosing your niche, remember, you don’t just have to choose one and they don’t have to be defined by an industry.

You could look towards person type, revenue range, staff, location, specific goals, age groups, sporting preferences… anything you want. You could focus on…

  • Hair salons with 10 or more staff
  • Michelin starred restaurants in the North of England
  • Female entrepreneurs who want to travel
  • £million+ businesses where the owner wants to play golf more days than they work
  • Australian firms who export to Europe

What About Competition?

Another concern firms have is whether or not the niche is very competitive and how many other firms are going after them.

My view with that is simple…

…don’t compete… excel!

Just aim to be the very best you possibly can and provide outstanding value.

Communicate that value better than anyone else and continue to sharpen your message.

It’s Not Easy

Finding your niche will make your life so much easier because while ever you’re going after ‘anyone’, you’re really going after ‘no-one’ and you’ll always lose out to the firm who is going after ‘someone.’

But it’s not easy to decide.

“The hardest thing in life to learn, is which bridge to cross and which bridge to burn” – David Russell

James Ashford

James Ashford

James is the Founder of GoProposal, Director of MAP., Keynote Speaker & Bestselling Author of "Selling to Serve". He helps accountants and bookkeepers around the world to price more profitably, sell more confidently and to give significantly more value to their clients.