Some of your greatest stresses as a business owner can oftentimes boil down to money.
Whether you operate a sizable company or run a one-person show, you know that invoicing customers can be one of your top challenges.
For starters, preparing the invoices takes time and thinking. On the flip side, you know deep down not all customers are always good about getting your funds to you in the proper amount of time.
So, is there a way to better prepare your invoices, along with making sure you get the money when you need it?
Take Control of Your Invoices
For your business to stay on top of matters financially, your invoicing is right up there as far as priorities.
With that being the case, see if you are practicing the following:
- Dispersing invoices in a timely manner – Given all you have to do as a business owner (especially if you are the one and only person running the show), invoicing can sometimes seem like the last task you want to tackle. You know the money is due you, yet it can feel like hours at a time to get all the bills properly up to date, not to mention mailed or emailed out. If you haven’t already, set aside a certain time or times if business is truly booming, to do your invoicing. Yes, it can seem a tad monotonous at times, but you do want your money, yes? By sticking to a schedule, you are better able to compile and send off the necessary paperwork;
- Using an invoicing service – If your business responsibilities are getting a little too overwhelming, it might be time to find an invoice factoring service. Doing so does a number of things for you and your business, notably allowing you to access funds being held in your invoices. This permits you to get your hands right away on advanced cash tied to the amount customers owe you. Even though your customer pays later, you receive the funds when you truly need them;
- Properly communicating with customers – While the majority of your customers may do a good job of paying you on time, you know there are always going to be those stragglers out there. For whatever the reason may be the fact that they are delaying getting the money to you does you absolutely no good. In fact, it can put you in a financial pickle to say the least. In some cases, you may be forced to turn to a collection agency if necessary (especially when customers are repeat offenders). Even though going the collection agency route costs you time and resources, you may find it the only way to go for some customers;
- Give your customers various payment options – Even though many businesses in today’s world of technology offer customers a number of ways to pay their bills, there are still some stragglers who have not gotten onboard the Internet train. As a result, it makes it hard for them to offer customers one of the quickest ways to pay bills, the worldwide web. Billing customers online (and accepting online payments) are both great ways for your business to get paid sooner rather than later in most instances. For those customers who still prefer the old-fashioned means of paying, either in-person or sending a payment via the regular mail, you should still keep those options available. Just make sure once again that your invoicing needs are done in a timely manner. If you accept payments through the regular mail, also note that they sometimes can be delayed for a number of reasons.
Running your business (or any business for that matter) takes much time and dedication.
Yes, invoicing can be a pain in the back at times, especially if you are doing things the old-fashioned way in not compiling the numbers in a fast and easy manner.
Always remember that without receiving your payments on time, you set your business and you for that matter up for potential trouble.
When it comes to your finances, be sure to not drop the ball.
About the Author: Dave Thomas covers business topics on the web.