send an electronic invoice

To handle invoicing may be the most important part of your business. After all, without invoicing you don’t get paid! As a freelancer who hires other freelancers,

I have come across more than a few business owners who don’t understand the importance of easy, on-time, professional invoices to clients. Whether you work as a solo entrepreneur or in a large company, you have several options to handle invoicing.

Here are the major categories and information you need to make the best decision.

Paper Invoices

A long time ago in an office not so far away, paper invoices were the norm. Before we had computers to handle the hard work for us, businesses around the world would make up invoices by hand and send them in the mail. Creating invoice templates required duplicators, then copy machines – anyone out there remember what a duplicator is?

Once the invoice templates were copied, someone from the accounts receivable department would physically write out the invoice lines, calculate the invoice total, and drop it in the mail. While this process worked, it left a lot of opportunity for human error. Bad handwriting, miscalculations, and invoices “getting lost in the mail” were the norm. While you can still operate and bill with handwritten, paper invoices today, you probably shouldn’t.

Excel Invoices

The advent of spreadsheets made customizing invoices easier and better compared to handwritten invoices. Now, companies could lay out a nice looking invoice in Excel or another spreadsheet software to create templates that can be shared across the organization. Now entering an invoice simply requires typing everything in and hitting print, but that still required using old fashioned mail to send the invoice.

Modern businesses can export from Excel as a PDF and put controls and locks on the spreadsheet to ensure it is completed with a higher level of accuracy. Still, however, Excel invoicing is a very manual process. Now Excel files and PDFs can be sent via email, a big improvement in speed and security over snail mail. However, we can still automated, add better controls, and find methods to improve over spreadsheets.

One-Time Digital Invoices

Another invoicing method emerged online that is somewhat useful, but not efficient. There are a handful of online tools and websites that allow you to type in your business information to generate a nice looking invoice to email or print. This seems like a step forward at first, but after giving one a try, I can confirm that they are not the most efficient option.

The majority of single use invoice services do not allow you to save company information or product codes. Every time you create a new invoice, you’ll have to re-enter everything from scratch. What a waste of time! If you think there should be something better, just wait for what’s next.

A Real System to Handle Invoicing

It’s 2017. We have come a long way from the days of a pool of women hammering away at typewriters all day as we saw in Mad Men.

Modern invoicing systems are an amazing upgrade over anything we have seen before. Whether it integrates with your company’s ERP system or standalone, like the Due.com online invoicing system, you can now do it all efficiently with one login.

Now your company information, products, and customer details are all saved in the cloud. Just login, choose a customer, select the products, and hit send. The invoice is instantly shot across the internet to your customer’s inbox. Then they can pay online ensuring you get paid in a faster, more secure method than ever before. Tracking invoices and payments is a built in feature, nothing that requires additional headcount as it did in the past. This is modern invoicing, and it isn’t going anywhere any time soon.

Integrations and Automation are Key to Invoicing Success

What makes system like Due’s online invoicing so powerful? In addition to convenient and accurate invoice creation and sending, Due Invoicing integrates with Due Payments and Due’s digital wallet. Accept payments via credit card, ACH transfer, or digital wallet. Take payments from customers down the block or across the world in a safe, reliable manner that shares data securely between systems.

Your quality invoice system makes all aspects of your financial operations easier to handle. Whether you are worried about collections or accounting, automated, integrated invoicing makes it all simpler and leads to a better, more efficient, more effective result.

Get on Track with Quality Invoicing Today

Are you sick of antiquated invoicing? Me too! That’s why I upgraded to something better a few years ago and have not looked back. If you are stuck in the 1960s, or even the 2000s, for your invoicing method, it is time to upgrade. There are so many improvements and benefits waiting for you.

This isn’t technology from some movie that is decades away. It is here right now.

So what are you waiting for? Upgrade to the best invoicing system for your business today!

Eric Rosenberg

Eric Rosenberg is a finance, travel, and technology writer originally from Denver, Colorado living in Ventura, California. When away from the keyboard, Eric he enjoys exploring the world, flying small airplanes, discovering new craft beers, and spending time with his wife and baby girl. You can connect with him at his own finance blog Personal Profitability.

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