As the owner of a business, sending out business invoices can seem like a repetitive task that doesn’t require your full attention. However, it’s absolutely essential to make sure that you do give the customer billing process your complete attention if you want to make sure that your business keeps a positive cash flow.
Even if you understand that invoices need your attention, sending invoices to your dry cleaning customers simply informing them of the amount that’s owed to you can make you come across unprofessional. Not to mention, it’s not the most effective way to communicate to your clients that their bill is due.
To make sure that you’re getting properly compensated for your dry cleaning services, it’s important that you send a flawless invoice. What other bad practices should you avoid when creating business invoices?
Keep reading to learn more about the not-so-best invoicing practices!
Bad Invoicing Habits to Break
Improving your billing and invoicing process will ultimately help your cash flow. In the rush to get your invoices out, sometimes you may forget to add a thing or two. The bad invoicing habits that your company has needs to be put to a stop so that you can get paid for everything that your company is owed.
1. Sending Late Invoices
If your customers don’t receive their invoices, how will you be paid?
In addition, if you send out invoices months after your clients have used their services, it’s likely to cause confusion. Typically when customers are unable to remember a transaction, they’re going to dispute the invoice.
What is the most important step to getting paid quickly? Ensuring invoices go out on time.
2. Not Sending Clear Information
The invoice you’re sending out needs to state what service the charge is for. What services did the client purchase from you? Did your client purchase any physical goods?
In your invoice, you should provide a practical amount of detail so the customer knows exactly what they’re paying for. You should also take the time to make sure that the invoice is easy to read and presents professionalism.
Handwritten invoices or invoices that use a font that’s hard to read don’t represent professionalism. Using invoicing software will help to make sure that your invoice looks professional and is an effective way to communicate with your customers.
You should make sure that you send out the following information on each and every invoice that you send out:
- Due date
- Invoice date
- Invoice number
- The name and address of your client
- The address of your office
- The legal name of your company
- The phone number for your company
- Payment terms
- Tax numbers that your local law requires
- Itemized list of products or services that you provided to your customer
3. Not Offering Different Payment Options
You want to get paid on time, but it’s difficult for clients to pay you when you only accept one payment option.
You should consider using a selection of payment options, such as direct bank deposits, credit card payments, or even checks. There are always different payment options opening up on the market, so it’s really up to you to decide what’s the most efficiency for your customers and your business.
4. Not Practicing Good Customer Service
If you’re not adding phrases into your invoice such as ‘please pay your invoice within ten days’ or ‘thank you for your business’, you could be hurting your business.
Customers want to feel appreciated. By adding simple, polite phrases into your invoices to thank your customers for their business can not only help to improve the image of your brand, but it could also increase your revenue!
Customers talk about companies that make them feel appreciated. Not only will they want to use your services again, but they’re likely to tell their friends and family about your company too!
5. Not Keeping a Record of Your Invoices
As you send out new invoices, it’s important that you:
- Review previous invoices that you’ve sent out
- Make sure that you’re maintaining a consistent setup
- Review to see if there are any changes that have been made
If you’ve noticed any changes in comparison to the previous invoices you’ve sent out, make sure that you communicate those changes with your client. Adding extra pieces that have been dry cleaned or if there are any items that your client has purchased from you, make sure that’s communicated with your client.
Communicating these changes will avoid any additional questions from your client or disputes, which would delay your payments. Making sure to avoid poor record-keeping, as this will not only help to streamline your invoice process, but it’ll help to improve the relationships you have with your clients and how quickly you’re paid for your services.
6. Not using a billing system for your cleaner
Many of the bad habits mentioned above can be fixed when using a software billing system . Incorporating software into your cleaner’s billing process will help you:
- Monitoring customers invoices paid
- Quickly invoice clients in a timely manner
- Manage billing cycles
- Segment customers and payment types
- Manage different forms of payment: check, cash, credit card, ACH, etc.
Most importantly, billing software will help you save time and money.
Learn how billing software for cleaners can help your business!
Your invoice isn’t just a method that you use for receiving money for the dry cleaning and laundry services that you’ve offered your customers. It’s also the opportunity to show your customers your courteousness, professionalism and transparency.
In other words, it’s the chance for you to show your customers why they should keep coming back to you. Take the time to create invoices that help to sell your business.
As you’re building your invoices, make sure that you’re aware of the most common mistakes that businesses make when creating business invoices. Take the proper steps to ensure you avoid these mistakes!