how to get paid on time when you invoice your customers

New Year’s Resolution: Get paid faster

Elorus Team
Elorus Team

Every New Year is the mark of new beginnings. We all make promises to ourselves to become more organizedincrease our productivity and overall change our attitude towards facing obstacles. In the heat of a thousand daily crises, running a business adds one more challenge to the pile; receiving payments on time. It would only make sense if you wished things to be different in that area.

In a perfect world invoice payments would never come late and entrepreneurs would have the time and energy to conform all those who are inconsistent and actually get paid faster.

Unfortunately, we all have firsthand experience on overdue payments, confusions and a lot of excuses. Fortunately, you do have power over the matter to eventually minimize the occurrence of delays and rule out extreme cases.

All you need to do is pay attention to the way your invoices appear and whether terms and conditions convey the correct message to your customer. The following tips can fill probable “gaps” that leave room to your clients not to pay your invoices in a timely manner. Either this means customizing your invoices “Terms and Conditions” template or providing them with more options.

We have been there and are able to provide you with solid advice:

Set a timeframe

One of the most effective ways towards accelerating the invoice payment process is setting a deadline to your client. By explicitly stating the actual due date of an invoice, you are making it very clear to the receiver that you have a specific collection policy. Most people don’t include this field in their invoice template which is utterly wrong and results in unnecessary delays on behalf of the customer. It is best though, to let your client know about the invoice payment terms and conditions your company follows beforehand. Also, you don’t want to just put a vague number of credit days (e.g. 30 days) on the “notes” field either. This way there will be no “convenient confusion” incidents.

Finally, you have to monitor due dates as well! By using Elorus invoicing platform you get notified for expired invoices via e-mail so you can pursue payment immediately.

Details make the difference

Most of the times, the receiver of an invoice belongs to a different department from the person that will carry out its payment. This is especially true for bigger companies with several employees in multiple departments. So your invoice gets caught in between departments for days, if not months, because of poor communication.

You need to give clear description of products/services rendered and provide your client with correct contact details. Your company’s address is not enough; you should include your phone number and your e-mail. Also, you should specify the agreed payment method upon the invoice and give the relevant account information, if applicable. Elorus’s professional document themes make it easier for you to issue accurate and informative invoices and ultimately achieve receivables’ timely collection.

Provide multiple payment options

Giving alternative payment options to your clients can speed things up also. Apart from credit and direct cash payments you can adjust the payment method per case. This will also include updating your terms and conditions template accordingly.

In some cases downpayments serve some companies better. So by the end of a project, should it all go well, there is a great chance they will happily pay off the rest on time. Installments can be very convenient in other cases, especially in freelancing, where projects take time to complete. So why not enable your customer to pay you off gradually? You need the cash, they need the time. It’s a win-win situation and they do not benefit from delaying installments as the project’s completion delays also.

Finally, the fastest way to get paid is online payments. Issue your invoice, send it via e-mail and your client will visit the permalink on it. They can choose their preferred payments provider and proceed to the pay-off right away. Elorus is a cloud invoicing and billing application that automates your billing procedures to your advantage by providing payment gateways to receive online payments.

Politeness goes a long way

While drafting your “Terms & Conditions” text you want to be careful with its wording. Statistical data show that invoices that included the words “please” and “thank you” on them got paid faster by 5% than those strictly mentioning the number of days and method of payment. Thanking your client for doing business with you and kindly urging them to pay off the invoice at hand on time not only is mandatory social etiquette, but increases receivables collection results. Here are some examples:

  1. “Please process this invoice until the 30th of December. Thank you for choosing {company name}”
  2. “Thank you for doing business with us! Please proceed with the payment by the 30th of December”

Bottom line

Accounts receivable is a “hot potato” on the hands of every business owner. You can, however, make this process easier by customizing your invoices accordingly. Specifying in your “Terms & Conditions” template the invoice’s due date, can speed up the payment process. Furthermore, giving a detailed description of the products/services rendered eliminates the possibility of misunderstandings regarding separate charges, thus making processing your invoice faster.

To get paid on time, sometimes you have to “run the extra mile” and adjust your payment policy to your clients’ needs. Providing alternatives that serve both parties can be significantly effective to that end.

Finally, politeness is a choice that can bring amazing results in life; so why not apply it to your professional life, as well? Thank your customers for their collaboration and kindly point out that payment conditions have to be met before the credit days’ elapse.

The struggle of collecting cash is real, but you own the means to get on the winning side. Elorus invoicing and billing platform offers you the tools to make the most out of your daily tasks including getting paid faster by your clients. Explore the new possibilities cloud invoicing introduces by joining our online community now! Register to our forever-free plan and fulfill your New Year’s Resolution!