When being a freelancer main focus is on finding projects but it should be to get paid as well.
We talked several times about how people think that finishing the project and sending simple invoice but it`s more than that.
Let`s see the mistakes people do when sending invoices.
1.You think you save money
Yes, people think that if they use word or excel to manage their invoices they are saving money. Actually, you are losing your time and by that your money.
How much time you need to figure out did you sent that invoice to a client and did you receive payment? If you have several clients with different payment schedule I imagine the stress you have.
The stress you are dealing with this way is not worth of saving a few dollars, start using online invoicing tools and have all in one place.
2. Setting Payment terms at Net 30
You have ability to set your own payment terms. So, why would you set it for net 30? Don`t you want to get paid earlier than that?
Most freelancers and small business owners when they are at the start of their work and business set payments for net 30 and that is a big mistake. If you want to receive your money quicker and maintain steady cash flow you need to set payment terms within 7 or 15 business days.
That way your invoice will be paid within 7 or 15 business days, and you have to agreed that in that case you will maintain steady funds.
3.Not Following Up
I was in a situation when I thought that if I follow up, my client will get mad and not work with me anymore. Then it occurred me that if he wants to work with me again he needs to send the payment.
I sent an email and my client emailed me back that he had a family issue. I wouldn`t know if I didn`t follow up, I would just be mad and possible never worked with that client anymore, but as you can see I was wrong.
4.The Right Person
Yes, we all usually think that we are sending our invoice to the right person. But are we 100% sure?
When I started to freelance I was sending all my invoices to my client, the main contact. He was so busy that he never emailed me that invoices should go to another person.
I was 2 invoices unpaid until I realized that they have bookkeeper that is handling their finances.
Again, this is my fault because when I started the project I should have ask where to send invoices.
Even though we think that invoicing process is simple and easy it`s not. You need to set up your terms and be clear when and how do you expect to be paid.
Make sure you know who your main contact is and who is handling the invoices and my recommendation is to always use online invoicing system to keep your stress level at minimum.