Proper invoicing is the key to ensuring uncontested bills and prompt payments. You want to make it clear the value that’s provided while leaving no question as to how and when to make a payment. Consistency is key, sticking with a standard layout used each time you send an invoice.
Invoices should be viewed as a form of communication with your client through the following:
The only way a client will feel fully comfortable paying an invoice is if they’re clear on what services you’ve provided. This information needs to be written in a language that’s easily understood and communicates the value of the work provided, without being complicated by legal terms that may not be clear to the client.
Rather than simply including general contact information, provide contact details specifically for the accounting department or the person responsible for handling any questions related to billing.
How to pay
If your firm only accepts checks, make it clear who the check should be made out to. If your firm accepts online payments, show the link where a payment can be made.
When the payment is due
These terms should have been communicated to the client prior to their receipt of the invoice, including whether the payments are due in 30 days or whether the amount will be deducted from their retainer.
Any discounts applied
If you’ve gone ahead and applied a discount as a courtesy to your client, or charged them a lower fee than what is typically charged, show that on your invoice through a clear line item. You don’t need to mention it directly, but you do want to make sure your client sees and can appreciate the gesture. Otherwise, it may go unnoticed.