Invoicing might not be the most fun thing to do when running a business, but it’s a fundamental process that you should never take for granted. In fact, without a good and efficient invoicing process, your company may face major problems.
Moreover, payment delays may lead to serious cash flow issues. So, it’s crucial to improve your invoice processing, especially during this pandemic. Below are some of the ways to boost your invoice process this 2022:
1. Set Your Terms
Make sure to establish your company’s billing terms, so you can avoid surprises, increase your chances of getting paid, and maintain good customer relations. Depending on your preferences, decide whether to bill by the project/product or by the hour.
Think of when and how your clients pay you and the consequences they face once they miss a billing deadline. Be sure to outline such expectations with clients before you enter into contractual agreements and stick to them. Your business needs cash flow and being paid for your hard work is the best way to achieve it.
2. Automate Your Invoicing Process
If your company requires invoices all the time, a good way to improve your invoicing process is by considering automation software for accounts payable. Generating recurring invoices for countless clients is time-consuming. Manually checking client payment statuses and maintaining invoice details is also inefficient.
By automating your invoicing process, you’ll be able to focus on essential tasks. Invoicing software can benefit you in many ways, from maintaining client data and tracking invoice status to generating customized invoices and sending reminders. Just make sure to select the best invoicing software suitable for your unique needs.
3. Get To Know Your Clients
To get paid on time effectively, it’s critical to know your clients. You always want to ensure you’re working for a company or real person, not someone that won’t be around to pay the bills. Once you get to know your clients, establish how your customers will be billed for your services or goods, whether by check or electronically.
In addition, determine the time it’ll take to get a payment. It’s also crucial to know if they’ll pay in one lump sum or if they’ll need a multi-payment cycle. By knowing such details regarding your clients, you’ll avoid setbacks for yourself in the long run and enjoy the business benefits of automating this process.
4. Give Preferences To Customers
Aside from knowing your customers, you should also pay importance to giving preferences to them. While others prefer faxed invoices, some may prefer emails.
You should also ask your customers about what information they require on invoices, particularly if some require a purchase order. Spending more time on this process can ensure that all invoices will move swiftly in the payment system of your customers.
6. Make Your Invoices Impressive
Another way to improve your invoice processing is to focus on your invoice designs. Your clients may judge professionalism by looking at your invoice template. So, do your best to impress your clients with well-designed invoices. To achieve this, try personalizing or customizing your invoices for various clients.
Other than your invoice design, you should also pay attention to the details to include for simple invoice upgrades. The best invoice typically includes relevant information, such as the following:
- Shipping costs
- Order number
- Service or product description
- Payment options
- Invoice number
- Late payment charges
- Personalized thank you note
- Contact details
6. Have A Paper Trail
Although your clients prefer a printed invoice, consider sending another electronic copy. It creates a paper trail, which can be valuable in case of legal disputes. Record price changes, project change details, and communications in the same manner, so you have a record of everything passed between you and your client.
When you’re invoicing via email, you can include invoices as an attachment instead of the message’s body. It helps ensure your invoices are easy to read and your customers are less likely to overlook a certain part of your bill.
7. Invoice Your Clients Quickly
A good time to send invoices is right after your service or product is delivered or as soon as your project is done. Prompt invoicing results in faster payment. It’ll show your professionalism to your customers. When dealing with recurring invoices, send them on the same date or day every month to show your consistency.
8. Remind Your Clients Of The Deadline
Sending reminders to clients regarding upcoming bill deadlines is another way to boost your invoice processing this 2022. You may send reminders a week before the payment is due or the day before. Know what works best for your clients and business. This is helpful if you charge late fees, since a reminder may help your clients save money.
Getting your invoicing process right is synonymous with maximizing your billing process. Otherwise, when your invoice is inaccurate or your layout doesn’t meet the specifications, it results in conversations with clients to fix such issues. To avoid that, make sure to implement the above strategies to keep up your cash flow and ease the burden of invoicing your clients.