Best Invoicing Practices for Prompt Payments

It begins with properly formatting your invoices, but there are more strategies beyond that to speed up customer payments

Best Invoicing Practices for Prompt Payments

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As the owner of a portable restroom business, you need your customers to pay you — the sooner the better. Your cash flow depends on invoices getting paid at a fairly prompt pace, and there are a number of ways in which you can make those speedy payments more likely.

One of the most important ways is to make sure your invoices are formatted properly. By ensuring that each invoice contains the right information — from an itemized breakdown of your services, to an explanation of payment terms, to a simple thank-you at the end — you can maximize your odds of getting that invoice taken care of in a reasonable time frame. 

And that’s not all. A number of other basic invoicing practices can help you keep your cash flow healthy.

Tips for effective invoicing

  • Ask for some money on the front end. First and foremost: For a really big job — one that takes multiple days or even weeks — you may not want to risk an invoice that goes unpaid. In these scenarios, you might consider asking for a small upfront deposit.
  • Allow for different payment methods. The more ways your clients have to pay, the more likely it is that you’ll get those payments promptly. So if possible, offering options for PayPal, Apple Pay, and other digital formats is ideal.
  • Send your invoices quickly. A simple yet important point: If you want your invoices to be paid quickly, you need to make sure they are sent quickly. Make sure service technicians have the equipment they need to send an invoice before they even leave the job site.
  • Emphasize your payment terms. Simply stating your payment terms out loud — “your invoice will be due within 10 days” — in a gentle, casual way can help to underscore its urgency. Train your technicians to offer these little nudges to each client.
  • Incentivize early payments. Another approach is to offer some kind of discount or bonus for those who pay quickly. For example, give a $20-off coupon or a 2 percent discount for anyone who pays their invoice within the first 48 hours.
  • Penalize late payments. If the carrot doesn’t work, try the stick. Indicate on your invoice that late payments will incur small penalties or additional fees.
  • Send payment reminders. If you allow your clients 30 days to pay their invoice and you still haven’t received anything by day 20, that may be a good time to send them a friendly reminder, letting them know the full sum is almost overdue.

Get paid on time

You can’t force your customers to pay their invoices, but nor can you run your business without some positive cash flow. As such, it’s worth the time and effort to review your invoicing strategy and to consider ways in which you can make it easier for your customers to pay you. 

Your invoice formatting is a big part of it, but so are the actions you take before and after that invoice is created.


About the Author - Amanda E. Clark is the president and editor-in-chief of Grammar Chic, a full-service professional writing company. She is a published ghostwriter and editor, and she's currently under contract with literary agencies in Malibu, California and Dublin. Since founding Grammar Chic in 2008, Clark, along with her team of skilled professional writers, has offered expertise to clients in the creative, business and academic fields. The company accepts a wide range of projects; often engages in content and social media marketing; and drafts resumes, press releases, web content, marketing materials and ghostwritten creative pieces. Contact Clark at www.grammarchic.net.



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