What details should you include on your sales invoices?
We have seen hundreds of variations of sales invoices over the years. Some good…some not so good! Have you ever wondered if what you are putting on your sales invoices is correct? Well wonder no more! Read on for our top tips on what to include on your invoices.
Firstly, let’s think about the number one purpose of a sales invoice…to get paid for services or products you have provided. So please, please, please tell your customer how to physically pay you. Make sure you have bank details on your invoice and in the e-mail sending out the invoice (if you are posting invoices just stop right now).
If you are using software, is there a payment facility you can imbed within the invoice to make it even easier for customers to pay? Things like GoCardless or Stripe. If you use Xero you can get a lovely green ‘PAY NOW’ button on your invoice. It could not be clearer how you want that cash!
This seems obvious but we see invoices all the time with no dates on them!
Payment terms are how long you want to give a customer to pay you. (hint – make this as short as possible). If you don’t put these on the invoice how do people know when they are expected to pay? This makes it so much more likely for people to hang onto your hard earned cash.
You can also state terms like late payment charges in the event of late payment. Sometimes the threat of this is enough to ensure prompt payment.
Your business details
Include your business name, address and contact details. If you are a limited company make sure you include your company number and registered office address. Contact details are so important if customers have questions about the invoice. If you have a dedicated accounts department provide their details too;
If you are VAT registered you must include your VAT number. Also – if you are not VAT registered do not make reference to VAT on your invoice. It just causes confusion!
Have some sort of invoice numbering system (this is easy if you use software) so every invoice has a unique number. This makes it easy to identify invoices in case of queries.
If you want customers paying by bank transfer to use a reference number with their payment then tell them this. This makes it easier to identify money coming in. Usually the invoice number is a handy reference to use;
Provide specific details of what the product and service you provided was. The more detail you can provide the better, so customers know exactly what they are paying for and there is no doubt. Include dates if you provided a service e.g VAT return for period ended 30 September 2021;
If your customer needs a PO number then include this on the invoice. If you miss it out then it will delay payment as they will push the invoice back;
Last but not least…see your invoices as a marketing opportunity!
Do not be shy to ask for reviews on your invoices. Include links to your review pages like Google or your social media pages. If you don’t ask, you don’t get! Or ask clients to refer you to a friend if they are happy with your service.
Hopefully these points have helped you clarify what you need to include on your invoices and will help you get paid faster.
If you need any help with your invoicing or want me to take a look at an invoice template then e-mail me on firstname.lastname@example.org and I will help!