As a small business owner, your invoicing experience can be quite an emotional rollercoaster. From invoice creation through every subsequent stage (both good and bad), we believe we can condense this journey into 7 totally relatable GIFs.
Stage 1: Create an Estimate
The first step to many invoices is the estimate stage. Here, you get a list of the work or products your clients want and you calculate how much it will cost them. You get to flex those math skills and negotiate payment terms. When everyone is in agreement, work begins.
Stage 2: Build Your Invoice
After finishing your side of the business transaction, it’s time to work on the invoice—but creating professional invoices can itself be an adventure. You need to establish the general layout, lock down design elements, determine how you want to deliver them, and much more. Rather than experience creation paralysis, you can use the handy, digital invoice template in our free bookkeeping software to make your invoice creation process easy and enjoyable.
Stage 3: Send the Invoice
Sending an invoice can be a little nerve-wracking. You second guess your numbers, wonder if you got their information right, hope they pay on time, and so on. At least with digital invoicing, you can preview the invoice before sending it and get status updates. That makes the entire process a little less stressful.
Stage 4: Time for Reminders
With payment deadlines fast approaching, it’s time to send out some friendly reminders. Whether that’s a quick call, email, or text, you’ll want to make sure your customers haven’t forgotten you. Be sure to use friendly and encouraging language to ensure payments happen on time.
Stage 5: Missed Deadlines
Well, alright then. For one reason or another, your customer or client missed their payment deadline. Not only does that affect your cash flow, but it’s also not very nice. Rather than being personally offended or immediately sending the delinquent account to collections, take a breather. Reach out a few more times and see if you can get them to pay up.
Stage 6: Invoice is Paid
The wait is over. Whether it was of their own accord or after your gentle proddings, your invoice has been paid. All is right in the world and your small business can keep on keeping on. You can take a short break and look forward to the moment when the money finds its way into your account.
Stage 7: Money Hits the Bank
Boom. Money is in the bank. Doesn’t that feel incredible? No more sweating about payroll or looking for ways to stretch your dollar. You’ve got the funds and peace of mind needed to rest a little easier. It’s time to kick back, pour yourself a glass of bubbly, and enjoy the moment.
Just try not to spend it all in one place.