Invoices are a necessity if you are a freelancer or own your own business. If you are not familiar with them, then an invoice is a document sent to a person detailing how much they are required to pay (or how much they have paid). It is very similar to a receipt.
If you are required to send invoices for work, then you need to make sure that your invoices are properly and professionally designed. A poorly designed invoice could make you and your business look unprofessional, which isn’t a good thing.
This post will tell you some important things that you need to know about creating an invoice:
Different industries require different invoices. A freelance writer’s template won’t be the same as an architectural invoice would be. The best way to create invoices is to use a template service because they can help you to customize your template according to your industry. When you are using template services, make sure that you take the time to research them. Always read template services’ reviews so that you can be sure they are worth your time and money.
Clear and Concise
When you are creating invoices, it’s important to make sure that they are clear and concise. A lot of people make the mistake of writing an essay instead of an invoice. Invoices should include as few words as possible. You only need to include the recipient’s address, payment terms, and other information like late payment fees. There is no need for you to include anything else. If you put too much information in your invoice for the recipient to consume, then you will confuse them, which can complicate payment.
You always need to include the recipient’s full name and address in your invoice, regardless of if you are sending it by email. A lot of people fail to include their recipient’s address because they aren’t sending the invoice by post, but that’s a big mistake. Including the recipient’s address makes it very clear who the invoice is being sent to, which means that if they try to avoid payment or don’t send it on time, you can then take steps to claim payment from them, which could involve legal action depending on how hard they are trying to avoid paying you and how much money they owe.
When you are sending invoices to people, you should try to be as flexible as you can when it comes to the payment methods that you will accept. A lot of people are very rigid which can seriously complicate people making payments. You should accept wire transfers, payment processors like PayPal, and direct bank transfers. You should always include information about the different forms of payment that you will accept in the invoice itself. A lot of people who do accept multiple payment methods make the mistake of not explaining that they will accept different payment methods in their invoices. You can include a little paragraph at the bottom of your invoice explaining all of the payment methods that you will accept, in addition to your bank details or the details that the recipient should pay the money into.
Late Payment Fee
If you are going to send invoices to people after you have completed work, then you need to specify that you will be charging a late payment fee. If you are expecting payment before the work is completed, then you don’t need to do this. A late payment fee should only be charged if a person is taking too long to make payment, despite having received the invoice already. You shouldn’t charge too much when you are charging late fees. You should only ever charge around 1-5% of the amount that was due. If you charge any more than that, then clients might refuse to pay.
Once you have sent a person an invoice, you should send them periodic reminders. It’s especially important to do this if you have already completed the work. If the work has not yet been completed, then you can send reminders, but you should send fewer reminders than you would when the work’s already been done, as you risk annoying your clients. If you annoy your clients too much with prepayment, they may just choose to work with somebody else. You never want to annoy your clients, because this can be very bad for your business’s profits and for your reputation.
Running a business can be very complicated. An area of business that’s especially complicated is invoicing. If you follow this post’s guidance, then you won’t have to stress out over sending them. Make sure that your invoices are always professionally designed, also.