Make sure your invoices bring the money in, and fast

Tired of clients ignoring your invoices? Here's what to do.
Unless their company has financial difficulties, traditional employees rarely have to worry about their payments not reaching their bank account. For freelancers though, making sure you get compensated for the work you do is never guaranteed. There will always be people who don't respect your time and effort and refuse to pay, but there are certain things you can do to give them a nudge. Our friends at XOLO have provided a list of steps and suggestions to help you get invoices cleared.

1. Make sure your invoices contain all the necessary information, as not adding VAT or your IBAN can delay the process. This is especially important when working with larger corporations, who are more likely to flag issues. If you'd like a cheat sheet of all the elements your invoice needs, you can find it here.

2. Make sure you set reasonable due dates. Be patient: don't rush your clients to pay in 3 days. Allow at least 7 or 14, based on your customer's processes. Always consult with them in the first place - if the payment terms are 75 days, for example, you cannot expect to be paid in 15. Impractical due dates don't help the process in any way. Consider the payment terms so that you can issue your invoice beforehand.

3. Set an overdue interest rate. It will show the customer there are penalties for not paying on time and give them a nudge to prioritize your invoice and avoid penalties. See how this looks in practice here.

4. Send the invoice in a separate email. Use the subject line "INVOICE" so your clients have no excuse for missing it. If the invoice information is buried in a cluttered email, there's a higher chance it may not be noticed.

5. Create a formal process for your customer. When using Xolo, your clients will be emailed a formal notification about the invoice which they have to accept. They are more likely to make the payment after they've accepted the invoice. About 90% of invoices sent through Xolo get paid.

6. Monitor overdue invoices. One easy way to do it is with Xolo's invoices dashboard, where you can see the status of your invoices and remind clients who are late paying.
Invoicing sounds like a simple process, but many things can go wrong. If you want to make the process as easy and straightforward as possible, trusting a leading invoicing tool such as Xolo GO will make your freelance life a little bit easier. It is a solution for running a business without registering a company – if you'd like to start making professional invoices in 10 mins, click here.
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