Eight things your invoice needs in order to get paid faster
So you’ve set up your business and sold some products and services. Now, you have to send an invoice to collect your payment. But what should you include on your invoices in order to get paid faster?
Even if you've been running your business for a while, you might be missing other information that you should include. So here is a step-by-step guide on what to include on your invoices.
1. Make your invoice look professional.
Add your logo and use professional fonts, styling, and colours that complement your brand. Modern accounting software platforms allow you to set up invoice templates which saves you reinventing the wheel each time. Chat to us if you need help setting this up.
2. Label your invoice clearly.
Make sure that you display the word 'invoice' clearly at the top of the document. If relevant, it may also need the words ‘tax invoice’. It should also have a unique identification number for your own records. You need to have a reference for all your invoices and make sure that there are no duplicates.
For the identification number, you can use a sequence that gradually increases and add letters before the number to indicate a specific client. Again, most modern accounting software platforms will do this automatically, but it pays to check you’ve got it set up correctly.
3. Add company information.
Add the details of your company and the company or client you're invoicing. This includes:
your company's name, address, and contact information
your customer's company name and address, including a contact's name to ensure that it reaches the right person (if you're invoicing another company)
your customer's name, address, and contact number (if you're invoicing an individual)
your registered office address and company registration number (if you're a limited company)
4. Write a clear description of the products or services.
The description of the products or services that you're charging for doesn't have to be long. However, you need to make sure that it is detailed enough for your client to know what they're paying for. Aside from the description, you should also indicate the quantity and the price.
5. Add important dates.
You should add the date you provided the product or service (supply date) and the date you created the invoice. Add the invoice date at the top of the document together with your name/ company name, address, and contact details. Meanwhile, the supply date could be added together with the description of what you sold.
6. Add up the costs.
Aside from indicating the cost of the individual product or service together with the description, you also have to put the total amount that must be paid. If you've agreed to give a discount or there's a special promo, you must also clearly indicate it on the invoice and subtract it from the total. If applicable, you must also include the VAT amount on your invoice too.
7. Indicate payment terms.
Although you likely have agreed on certain payment terms with the customer beforehand, it is still recommended to note the terms of the payment on the invoice.
For instance, if you expect to get paid within a certain number of days, you can remind the customer by adding this information on the invoice. Furthermore, you should note how exactly the customer should make the payment. Add your bank details or other payment information.
8. Add payment options.
Online invoices on modern platforms allow you to include payment options to help you get paid faster. Adding a “Pay Now” button that allows your customers to pay immediately via credit card, debit card, or automated clearing houses like PayPal and Stripe is proven to speed up the payment process. Want money in your bank quicker? It’s a no brainer!
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There are a lot of accounting and invoicing software platforms and invoice templates out there that you can use. If you have any questions, please get in touch with us.