Is Xero All That Different?

While the software company may have its differences compared to other accounting and finance platforms, this headline is not.

I posted this two years ago after attending the last Xerocon U.S. event, and in that time the question still remains: how do they really stand out? Moreover, as accountants gear up for “conference season,” attending this live confab, which now comes around only every couple of years in the U.S., one has to wonder what it is accountants are looking for in a different GL and finance product and company.

I’ve often referred to Xero as the “Apple” of accounting platforms. Like the aforementioned computer company, certain things clearly stand out not only in their marketing, but also in how the product functions compared to its nearest competitors.

To be clear, Xero is not for everybody, but given how some long-time ProAdvisors have been feeling about Intuit and QuickBooks, Xero and others are getting another look. In fact, I did observe a number of first-time attendees at the last Xerocon event, who were typically only seen at QuickBooks Connect or Scaling New Heights back when it was a predominantly Intuit/QuickBooks-centric conference.

But Xero is not without its issues as well, recently going through yet another marketing shakeup as another CMO gets settled in to help oversee a more global, unified marketing approach. Xero is also still seen as a challenger brand here in the U.S., given the historic (and present) foothold its closest competitor, Intuit, still has.

Sage and Zoho, at least from a core accounting perspective, also remain nipping at Xero’s proverbial heals, with clients preferring those platforms.

Xerocon US is again in August of this year and, as such, may well be a part of accountants’ summer conference plans. Have a look at what I wrote and see if any of it still rings true. I am personally looking forward to attending and finding out for myself.

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