Creating invoices might be one of the most essential duties you do as a small business owner. When small business invoicing is done correctly and professionally, sent promptly and followed up on regularly, your cash flow will be better. After all, business invoices are the first step in earning the revenue your business needs to run smoothly, not to mention help you pay your own bills like mortgage and insurance. Small business invoicing is one of the ways you can impress clients with your professionalism and efficiency. Every interaction is a reflection of how you do business, so make the most of this.
Do’s for Small Business Invoicing:
Do avoid surprises
You have to ensure your clients know when an invoice will be sent ahead of time. Make sure the charges and itemizations are clearly laid out to avoid confusion. Your business invoice should match your original estimate and contract, which expresses confidence that clients will have in your dependability.
Do get dates straight
The date should be the first thing visible on your invoice after your business logo and contact information. The date should stand out, letting clients know when the payment is due. Also, ensure completion of work or delivery due dates are part of invoice itemization or description.
Do follow up on overdue invoices and payments
If there’s a large amount of radio silence from your clients after sending an invoice, follow up with payment reminders. Sometimes invoices sent by regular mail can get lost, and email invoices can accidentally end up in a client’s spam folder. However, if you don’t clearly state the expected payment date, it’s easy for invoices to end up at the bottom of the clients’ bill pile.
Don’t be timid about sending business invoices
When starting out a small business, it can feel awkward asking for payment. But, when you confidently seek payment for your services, you are showing clients that you value your own work and truly believe in the products and services you’ve delivered. The invoice shows that the work has a real-world value.
Timing is important. For example, don’t send an invoice before the delivery due date has been completed. Worse yet, sending an invoice too late – weeks or months after you’ve wrapped up work, can show inconsistency. Clients should receive invoices while the product or service is still on their minds, so that the invoice isn’t a surprise.