Believe it or not, your invoices say a lot about you and your work. Imagine for a moment that you need to get your lawn mowed, and as always, you googled for a lawn mowing company, scrolled through the numerous reviews, then convinced yourself that they look like they’ve got it.
The professional pulled up, and indeed, it was a 5-star delivery had you not been slapped with an invoice double the original quote. Then, as if that wasn't enough, there was a convenience fee, a call-out fee... and to cap it all, the invoice looks to have been slathered with white-out, coupled with crudely handwritten values.
You undoubtedly wouldn't be hiring this person again, and neither will you speak of the company ever, except maybe to your enemy.
In other words, the invoices you sent, the way they look, when and how you send them, including the payment options speak of the quality of your work and working style. No matter how impeccable your work is, if you conduct your invoicing in a hasty and unprofessional manner, you will lose clients pretty quickly.
While invoicing can be daunting, especially if you're new to the game, it can be done easily. This guide will walk you through understanding what makes a professional-looking invoice and the best invoicing system to use.
Let’s get started!
The Most Critical Elements Of A Sole Trader Invoice
There are certain key elements that must be included in every invoice you send. They can make or break your invoice. Remember, a well-made invoice can help you get faster payments and maintain a positive cash flow.
However, Experts at “Amalto” estimate that 61% of late invoice payments occur because of incorrect invoices. In that case, here are essential elements to include in your invoice that helps you get paid faster.
- Invoice number
- Invoice date
- Client as well as your business name
- Communicating addresses of both parties
- Phone number, fax number, email address, or other relevant contact information
- Business registration number
- A list and description of services or products offered by your business
- The total amount of money the client owes you, including tax and other fees if applicable
- Enter your payment details and other notes at the bottom of the invoice
What To Do After The Invoice Has Been Sent
This process is perhaps the most notoriously difficult and is where many business owners make a mistake. After sending a professional-looking invoice, what now? What happens if the client doesn't pay by that due date?
Most importantly, how do you follow up on late payments without appearing bothersome and damaging your work relationship? A recent study shows that 60% of invoices are overdue when they get paid.
While that's a staggering statistic, the manner you follow up on your invoices could make all the difference, helping ensure your invoices don't slip through the cracks.
So, how do you get paid on time with minimal follow-ups? Effective communication! It's easy, and you must also maintain contact before and after the invoice is sent. That way, you get paid on time without burning bridges.
A Better Way To Invoice!
Manual invoicing, as outlined above, can be time-exhausting and prone to error. Also, it's unprofessional to manually invoice when it can be automated so you can focus on creating without getting overwhelmed.
This is where Gigapay comes in. We help contractors, freelancers, influencers, sole traders, and other self-employed individuals get invoicing right every time, irrespective of where they are anywhere in the world - saving them time, money, hassles, and headaches.
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