Looking to setup invoicing for your business? Unfortunately, invoicing isn’t as simple as sending a document and getting paid anymore. There are important details that factor into the process which determines how and when you are paid. These factors can also determine whether or not the customer receives satisfaction from their transaction.
How To Setup Invoicing For Your Business
Here are some tips on how to setup invoicing for your business that can ensure swift payments and customer satisfaction.
1) Figure Out Which System Works For You
There are many options for invoicing systems from software to online invoice makers and traditionally printed invoices. It’s important to keep in mind what works for your company. An internet or cloud-based system may work better for you than spreadsheets.
The biggest advantage to online invoicing systems is the customization.
You can usually receive your payments completely online and customize your invoice with company logos and designs. They’re also able to be accessed from any device with an internet connection. Portability combined with a notification system for when invoices become due or are paid in full shows efficiency. It makes electronic invoicing simple and not to mention can save you money by eliminating paper waste.
2) Create A Professional Looking Invoice
Once you decide to switch to electronic invoicing, you’ll want to create a professional looking invoice to match your upgrade. Your invoice should contain your logo and company information. You can use a professional invoice maker to create the perfect document. Choose from templates and designs to find that perfect fit for your business. Just remember not to have them so laden with graphics that it’s difficult to read.
3) Data Entry
After you’ve chosen your company’s invoicing system, you’ll need to enter pertinent information and customer profiles to create a database. This database should contain customer contact information, sales history, and buying trends. In addition to customer information, you’ll need to include pricing for your products or services. Include standard pricing and pricing for add-ons or extra options. You should only need to do this process once, or until you obtain new inventory or customers.
4) Notify Your Customers And Employees Of The New System
When you setup invoicing for your business, make sure to notify your customers. If your customers aren’t familiar with your new system or were expecting a traditional paper invoice, they may be taken aback when you bill them via electronic invoicing.
Prior to sending any invoices, send emails to your customers and employees regarding the switch.
Advise them that the company has switched to online invoices and all further invoices will be communicated in this way. Surprises in business do not always come across well. It shows courtesy and respect when you let customers know about changes within your company.
5) Make Customers Aware Of Payment And Return Policies
You should list your payment and return policies on your invoice. You can also send them separately in a professional email or message to your customers. This can be important when you setup invoicing for your business.
Be sure the customer is aware of their time constraints when making payments. When you establish expectations using good communication early on, customers will be more apt to make payments on time. Being familiar with your customer’s preferred payment method also helps set expectations. Traditional paper check businesses may need a few extra days to send a check and ensure that it clears.
6) Save All Of The Invoices You Send
Keeping good records is essential for when tax time comes. It’s also a good idea to have a reference point for any disputes that may arise regarding a particular sale. If a customer has an issue with pricing or quantity and/or claims ignorance of payment policies, you can refer to your copy of the invoice.
Always maintain and organize your tax records. It’s safe to assume your accountant has no interest in sifting through piles of invoices during tax times. If you’re using digital or cloud storage, organize your invoices in folders in chronological order for the year. If you’re using a traditional filing cabinet or physical storage method, make sure each transaction is in order. Either label them by customer and date or by invoice numbers.
7) Keep Payment Options Open
There are dozens of ways to pay an invoice online. Keeping payment options open allows for flexibility that your customers are sure to be appreciative of. This is why it is advantageous to setup invoicing for your business.
Not everyone pays in the same way or with the same currency (should you have a global customer base). This is what makes payment options so important when invoicing. The payment options you make available to the customer should include options that work with any currency, from anywhere in the world.
8) Know Your Limits
Invoicing and money management, in general, can be complex areas of a business. While electronic invoicing certainly helps simplify the process, there may be areas you’re still not comfortable or familiar with. If you find that you’re struggling to balance the books, you may want to consider hiring an accountant or bookkeeper. No one can manage everything in a business all at once, which is why these areas of expertise exist. Hiring a bookkeeper can help to reduce some of the stress associated with billing.
Good Invoicing Is A Sign Of Good Management
How your company handles its money is a reflection of management. This is why it is so important to setup invoicing for your business. When the billing process is simple for customers, they are more likely to return and recommend your business to others.
By choosing an effective invoicing system, you’re letting your customers know that their business is important to you. They’ll understand that you’re thinking of them when making changes to the company, and will respect you for valuing them. This is how you can create loyal customers.
AUTHOR LaTia Longuemire
My name is LaTia Longuemire. I enjoy writing, singing, and cooking in my spare time. My passion is helping others. At this stage in my lifetime, I'm primarily focused on my children. They are everything that keeps my world spinning.