Are you a capitalist at heart? If so, then invoicing is likely the favorite part of your job. When you send an invoice, it means the job is final and it’s a great feeling when you finally see the money show up in your bank account. It’s even better when the payment is received from a satisfied client.
However, that can only happen when your clients bother to pay you. One of the most frustrating parts of working online is having to chase individuals who have unpaid invoices.
If you are a small business owner and have to deal with unpaid invoices (and let’s face it – everyone does), there are some things you need to include on your small business invoice to help ensure you are paid as fast as possible.
However, before you get started, you need to make sure you are using a quality, secure tool for sending invoices and collecting money. For example, you can find a number of tools with free invoice templates and some that let you customize these based on your own needs.
Now, it’s time to dive into the features that you need to include on your invoice.
1. Your Contact Information
By the time an invoice makes it to the proper department in a business, it has likely become completely detached from the job’s details. There are often several details that have to be checked before any invoice can be paid. Trying to find a contact number is just another step that stands in the way of you getting your payment.
This means you need to put your contact details somewhere obvious on your invoice. Make sure it’s included in bold letters so that it’s easy to locate. Also, be sure you include the right name as a contact person for your company.
2. The Payment Information
While this sounds simple, there are many business owners who completely forget this small detail. It’s extremely challenging for someone to pay you if you don’t tell them how to do this.
Be sure that you include your bank’s name in the payment details. There are many online banking inputs that actually require this. Another option is to include a “Pay Now” button if you use an online service for your invoices. With this feature, your customers will be able to pay the invoice as soon as they get it. Believe it or not, adding the Pay Now feature will actually reduce how much time it takes you to get paid.
3. The Terms and Conditions
Be honest – do you always pay an invoice as soon as you receive it? Chances are, the answer is no – and you aren’t alone. There are few people who pay right away. In fact, putting things off is a talent that many people have.
A great way to reduce this procrastination is to provide some type of incentive to get your clients to part with their money faster. If not an incentive, a punishment for paying late.
If you want to receive your payment in a timely manner, then you need to outline a punishment or incentive. This is where the terms and conditions come into play. Make sure you clearly outline when payment is expected. You can then apply a discount for paying early (the incentive) or an additional penalty for paying late (punishment). The key to avoid issues is to ensure that everything is paid out clearly.
If you want to receive payments in a timely manner, be sure to include the items listed here on the invoices you send to your clients. They will help you get the payments quickly.
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