After Tax Day, Intuit Does Its Own Accounting

Intuit (INTU) this tax season distributed 10 percent more units of its popular TurboTax software than last year, the company said Monday. Key to that success: giving it away for free.

The Mountain View, Calif., software maker said it delivered more than 20 million copies of its software for preparing federal tax returns, a figure which includes a version that consumers can use for free on Intuit’s Web site and another free version that it makes available through the IRS for lower-income people.

Surprisingly, Intuit has managed to increase revenue despite adopting a sales strategy that attracts people to TurboTax by offering its use for free. The number of people who use the free version grows every year, says Dan Maurer, senior vice president of Intuit’s consumer group. Intuit’s revenue per return and profits margins for TurboTax have either climbed or remained flat each year.

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