If you use a paper invoicing system, you probably know that you’re in the minority. Although switching to an online option might sound like too much work, changing to an online system offers numerous advantages that can make your company more competitive. After you’ve learned about these six reasons to consider online invoicing, you’ll want to make the switch as soon as possible.
Automate Invoice Deliveries
Paper invoices require a lot of attention from you and your accountant. You have to create the invoice, send it to the accounting department, and wait for it to reach your client through the mail. With so many steps involved, invoices may take several days to reach clients.
Online services let you automate the process so that invoices are sent immediately at whatever time you wish. For instance, you can have the software send invoices at the end of each week or month. By automating the process, you can spend more time managing your clients and focusing on other important tasks.
Paper invoices can be expensive because you have to pay for the following:
Individually, these expenses don’t cost much. Even if you just send a couple dozen invoices per week, though, the costs will add up quickly. Considering that a stamp costs 47 cents, even a small business can save a good deal of money by switching to an online option. You’ll save still more if you have clients in other countries.
You also should think about the hidden costs of paper invoices. After all, someone has to print them, stuff the envelopes, and take them to the post office.
Get Paid Faster
Small and medium-sized businesses often face difficulty getting clients to pay invoices on time, which can make it difficult to pay employees, suppliers, and partners. This is one of the biggest problems faced by today’s small businesses.
Online invoicing helps you avoid payment delays by doing the following:
- Simplifying the process
- Letting you send reminders
- Eliminating paper checks
Even if an online invoicing service only helps you get paid a few days sooner, when you multiply those few days by the number of outstanding invoices, you’ll find that your business will run more smoothly.
Track Finances More Easily
You have to track finances to run a business well. Online invoices can make this easier by doing the following:
- Sending you payment confirmations
- Keeping an accurate history of payments
- Generating financial reports
Having software on your side helps throughout the year, but it’s especially useful during the tax season. According to SCORE, 40 percent of small business owners say that bookkeeping and taxes are the worst things about owning a business. Most of them dislike the cost and time it takes to track their finances for the IRS.
If you use paper invoices, you’ll have a difficult time tracking your finances and filling out tax documents correctly. An online service can do much of the work for you.
Access Invoices From Anywhere
Image via Flickr by lucyrfisher
Online invoices from software like Sage One let you create and access invoices from practically any location. As long as you have internet access, you can log in to your account to manage documents, check payments, and gain immediate insights into your business’s finances.
Cloud software fits the needs of business professionals who spend a lot of time meeting potential clients outside of the office. If you rely on paper invoices, you don’t have the flexibility needed to compete in today’s business environment.
Give Your Business a Professional Look
Electronic invoices have become so common that many of today’s businesses and consumers expect to receive them. Paper invoices look outdated, which could give customers a negative view of your company. You don’t want clients to wonder why you’re using anachronistic practices. Rather, show them that you’re on the cutting edge.
Online services also let you create unique invoices for certain clients. Instead of using the same format for everyone, you can choose logos, typefaces, and other design elements based on each client’s preferences.
Your company has to send invoices to its clients. Choosing software that lets you manage invoices online will help you focus on improving your business so that you can compete with others in your industry.