On average, how long does it take your business to collect payments from your customers? Are you currently waiting to obtain payments for services rendered over one or two months ago? If so, then consider implementing an electronic invoicing solution that allows you to invoice your clients via email and accept payments through credit card, EFT (electronic funds transfer) or ACH (Automated Clearing House) direct deposit.
This method of invoicing your clients via an electronic means, such as email, will save your business time, money and provide a return on your investment. My company integrates electronic invoicing systems for our clients and I can say with experience, it allows you to collect payments in weeks rather than months. It’s also much easier for your clients to click a link in an email, fill out some basic credit card information and submit their payment online then it is to print an invoice, write a check and mail it back to you. Your clients will be more inclined to process payments sooner if you provide them with a method that takes one minute to complete.
By doing this, you’re also gaining another significant advantage – the next time you invoice your client, you will have their payment information stored on file so you can easily process their credit card or request payment through their bank account (ACH), without having to wait for them to submit the payment. This will tremendously minimize the amount of outstanding invoices, while giving you more cash flow to run and operate your business today.
Some businesses use PayPal to invoice their clients. As this is a very similar means, it’s not as professional. If you are using PayPal to invoice your clients, you may be showing that you cannot afford to implement an online invoicing solution; however, if you employ a customized e-invoicing solution, you will prove to your customers that you are successful and are continually working to improve your business – a notion that is very important for customer retention.
If you’re currently using PayPal and I just offended you – I apologize. I did not mean you’re not on the right track because you most definitely are. People, who use PayPal, are farther ahead of the game than the business that does not accept any form of electronic payment. I’m just trying to open your eyes and let you know that you can implement a customized e-invoicing solution for your business for a minimal cost and with fewer seller fees than PayPal’s standard transaction costs.
When it’s time to search for a solution that’s right for you, be sure to find an e-invoicing solution that is flexible and provides you with the ability to submit and request payment for both one-time product/service invoices as well at recurring. Also, try to find a solution that accepts both credit cards, as well as processes ACH direct deposits because as your company grows, so will the need to use ACH. Also, ACH transaction fees are much cheaper than credit card transaction fees, so this will give you the capability to process ACH transactions whenever possible. Other than that, the additional features and functionality will depend on your specific business needs – so find a solution that is customized for yours.
I hope you find this article to benefit your business. I’m confident that if you implement an electronic invoicing system for your business, you will reap the benefits instantly and will be able to streamline and run your business more efficiently… as I have for mine and my client’s.
At Hudson Horizons, we provide website design, development, content management, e-commerce integration, RSS content distribution, search engine optimization, e-marketing services and the development of custom applications such as blogs, newsletter systems, online payment solutions and any other Web application that may be needed to help simplify your business.
Hudson Horizons is an e-business product, solution and marketing company specializing in creating highly sophisticated customized websites, web-based software applications and providing e-marketing and SEO services for small and mid-sized businesses.