We wanted our recommendation to be robust enough to fit the needs of any taxpayer, even if they ran their own business, collected rental income, or worked as freelancers. In fact, TurboTax told us that every one in five files become self-employed each year, as the gig economy rises. We only included software that offers a business or self-employed option, ensuring that each of our finalists can accommodate all income types. Even Liberty Tax Service, previously cut here, has updated its service to accommodate these filers.
Another excellent example of a value-add integration with CRM would be your product support or helpdesk platform. Next to your sales staff, your product support professionals probably have the most direct contact with your customers and the information they gather in the course of even a short conversation can be gold to a salesperson. Problems with one product line can mean upsell opportunities to another. Reconfiguration requests can indicate new business needs that can also generate upsell. Integration requests can let sales staff know with whom they're competing for key business processes. There's more but you get the idea. Establishing a two-way data exchange between the helpdesk and CRM systems can populate both platforms with valuable data.
Take the time to also properly evaluate the mobile app; this should be considered a separate app, not just as a mobile "capability," and you also shouldn't be asked to pay anything extra for it. Mobile devices are an entirely different breed from desktops or notebooks. Employees use them differently and software renders them differently, which means that business processes that involve them will behave differently. Make sure your CRM software of choice can support the mobile device platform your team uses and carefully evaluate what the app can do. Some apps offer a read-only view of your sales pipeline or contacts so that you can look up the relevant information while out and about. Those apps won't let you make updates until you get back to a computer. Others offer a seamless and responsive experience, letting you do everything you would do on a mobile device that you would on a computer (but usually presenting tools and features differently, which can be difficult for some users to get used to). Don't commit to CRM software until you've actually used the mobile app in a way you and your team would on a day-to-day basis.
While TurboTax provided the best online tax filing experience we saw, it does come at a price. Like all of our picks, it offers free filing for federal and state taxes, but anything above that will cost you. Its Deluxe plan starts at $60, while the package for self-employed filers climbs to $120. In comparison, TaxAct’s paid plans start at $15, with the self-employed option costing $60. That said, it’s very possible that TurboTax’s excellent deduction tools could help you save money and file easier, even with the higher upfront price.
To start, whether you’re single or married, it’s likely that you’ll be paying a lower federal tax rate next year. The bill nearly doubles the standard deduction as well (increasing to $12,000 for individuals, $18,000 for heads of household, and $24,000 for married couples filing jointly). To make up for these cuts, personal exemptions (currently $4,050 per dependent) will be completely eliminated, and you’ll be unable to fully deduct state and local taxes, so some households in high-tax states could end up paying more.

brainer is an-easy-to-use app that empowers companies to increase the number of online customer reviews as well as enhance the quality of their online reviews. Our user-friendly tool sends a simple text message requesting a business review when customers are at the peak of their satisfaction-- directly after receiving service. We use this to your advantage, as brainer sends a simple text message such as, ‘Were you satisfied with the service provided by [insert your business name]?’ If the customer selected 'yes,' brainer delivers them to a one of the review platforms of their choice. If the answer is ‘no,' the review is sent to you as a feedback, giving you a chance to provide additional customer service and leave each customer completely satisfied. Simply put, brainer delivers positive reviews to your business which helps solidify your online reputation. With brainer, get business discovery with the power of online reviews.
If you don’t need help from a CPA or EA, you can also get extra help with any paid plan through SmartLook™, which connects you via one-way video to a TurboTax specialist. With this service, a specialist can help guide you through the steps of filing a return, though they won’t be able to answer tax-specific questions to maximize your return like a CPA or EA would. No matter which service you use, you’ll be able to schedule appointments anywhere from the same day to dates more than two weeks in advance, which means that even the busiest of customers can get the help they need.
This also extends to lead management, which is a core capability of all CRM platforms. Lead management tracks and manages prospective customers (often called leads or "opportunities") across lead generation and acquisition and throughout the sales pipeline. Lead management can be executed in more of a hands-on manner through tracking progression in a sales pipeline dashboard or reports. Some CRM software providers use a greater degree of marketing automation to trigger actions and sales stages based on lead progression. Lead management is a part of all CRM platforms but how the provider handles it can make a big difference.
Invest in security. There's no simple way to put it. When you're working with the sales pipeline and customer data, make sure security is top of mind—especially if you're using a SaaS-deployed CRM solution (which means not only the app but likely also a big chunk, if not all, of your customer data resides in the cloud). You should feel comfortable with the company's security requirements. It is a warning sign if your CRM software lets you select a password but doesn't generate an audit trail whenever someone makes a change, or if it doesn't let you define the access controls for each user. Customer data is an extremely valuable commodity especially now that customers are more reluctant to part with it. Securing it isn't just about maintaining privacy; it's about protecting profitable relationships that directly impact your bottom line.
In its second year, the TurboTax Live service, which connects you via one-way video to a certified public accountant (CPA) or enrolled agent (EA), is still a seamless resource. Your filing process starts with a one-on-one talk with a CPA, and you receive their continued support and advice as you go through the process. After connecting with a tax expert, you can get professional advice on maximizing your returns, and your assigned CPA or EA will even review your entire return to get as many dollars back as possible. The one downside is cost, which ranges from $50 to $170 depending on your filing status. TurboTax Live is the most expensive software packages we found, but is still cheaper than going to a tax professional.
This was an easy decision for us. If the IRS lets you file a federal return on its website for free, then the best tax prep software should, too. The IRS announced that this year it will consolidate the three previous versions (1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ) into one easy form. About 150 million taxpayers can now use the same form. So we made sure free federal filing was for the simplest form was a staple of our favorite software.

Software patents, like other types of patents, are theoretically supposed to give an inventor an exclusive, time-limited license for a detailed idea (e.g. an algorithm) on how to implement a piece of software, or a component of a piece of software. Ideas for useful things that software could do, and user requirements, are not supposed to be patentable, and concrete implementations (i.e. the actual software packages implementing the patent) are not supposed to be patentable either—the latter are already covered by copyright, generally automatically. So software patents are supposed to cover the middle area, between requirements and concrete implementation. In some countries, a requirement for the claimed invention to have an effect on the physical world may also be part of the requirements for a software patent to be held valid—although since all useful software has effects on the physical world, this requirement may be open to debate. Meanwhile, American copyright law was applied to various aspects of the writing of the software code.[8]

Bravo enables marketers to instantly capture video from customers, users and fans - right over the web. Companies such as Indeed, Act-On Software and Pearson are using Bravo to launch user generated video campaigns, including video testimonials, video contests, customer stories, product reviews and more. Loved for its beautifully simple interface, Bravo can capture video from any browser, smartphone or tablet.
This also extends to lead management, which is a core capability of all CRM platforms. Lead management tracks and manages prospective customers (often called leads or "opportunities") across lead generation and acquisition and throughout the sales pipeline. Lead management can be executed in more of a hands-on manner through tracking progression in a sales pipeline dashboard or reports. Some CRM software providers use a greater degree of marketing automation to trigger actions and sales stages based on lead progression. Lead management is a part of all CRM platforms but how the provider handles it can make a big difference.
CRM software isn't just about tracking and maintaining contact information. While most look to CRM software as primarily a sales tool, it's moved beyond that space. Marketing and customer service departments can dramatically improve their offerings and operations with CRM as well by using its data to more effectively segment demographics and record and reuse customer incident information. CRM software also helps coordinate interdepartmental actions. For example, the sales team can take advantage of something a customer service representative discovered in a separate transaction. Depending upon the software you choose, you can set and measure sales goals, deliver and track email marketing campaigns, or keep an eye on what people are saying on social media.
We use client's reviews to get them stars in Google search results. We can aggregate reviews from anywhere and use them so that client's webpages get stars in Google search results. Google search results with stars get more clicks. We have integrations with Google My Business, Google+, Twitter and Facebook so that when a good review is received it can be posted about on social media.
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