By Kyle Christensen:
There’s no easy way to ask your clients to pay their bills. It can get stressful and intense, but we believe the right music can make it easier. In this new playlist, our team handpicked the perfect selection of music to listen to while invoicing. Scroll to the bottom of this article, take a listen and enjoy some laughs. On Spotify? Follow the playlist on our Spotify channel! Don’t forget to check back next month because we roll out playlists monthly.
Is today #invoicing day? Don’t sweat it. This #new @RedBranch #playlist was designed to help make it less intense and more enjoyable. Listen to it, here! Click To Tweet
“Money is a great motivator, so why not make a playlist about bringing in the moolah?”
– Nick Fountain, SEO & Content Associate at Red Branch Media (@NickRBM)
Ensure They Pay, Tip #1: Avoid Ghosting with Contracts
It’s as simple as a legal, written document. Contracts will save you in the long run and be your safety net. According to “How to Handle Non-Paying Clients” by Sammi Caramela on Business.com, she mentions that, “…if you fail to set up a contract, nothing is guaranteed.” Sammi also provides the essential items to be included on your contract.
- “Payment schedule.” For example, “…40 percent deposit, 40 percent milestone payment and 20 percent on completion.”
- “Terms.” For example, “…payment either 30, 60 or 90 days after the invoice is sent.”
- “Preferred payment method.” For example, “…checks, credit card or PayPal.”
- “Scope.” Meaning, “…the exact work you are expected to complete.”
- “Deadline.” Meaning, “…expected completion date.”
- “Late payment policy.” Meaning, “…amount charged if invoice is not paid on time.”
Ensure They Pay, Tip #2: Enforce Late Fees
Nobody likes to pay more for something than the original price. Since you should have set up a late fee policy in your contract as mentioned above, enforcing late fees will help push your client to pay the full invoice.
According to the article, “8 Options When Your Clients Refuse to Pay You” by Derek Miller on Score.org, “You can send a message beforehand that because the invoice has gone unpaid for so long, you’re going to have to add a late fee if it isn’t paid within 48 hours, or something similar.” Derek recommends to send the message, “…perhaps 10 or 15 days after an invoice goes unpaid…” and that “…a late fee at this point is completely fair.” After all, you’ve got bills to pay too!Struggling to get your clients to pay while #invoicing? Shed off some #stress with our new @RedBranch #playlist, designed to be specifically listened to during this financial task. Click To Tweet
Ensure They Pay, Tip #3: Follow Up
While you should still write contracts and enforce late fees, it’s also equally as important to follow up. I’d recommend keeping a constant line of communication daily or weekly. This builds a good client relationship. If they’re a rather nice and frequently communicating client, being silent can seem like a big red flag.
Don’t let the silence surpass the invoice deadline, though. Reach out with a quick follow up to see what’s going on to gain some understanding from their perspective. According to the article, “6 Reasons Clients Don’t Pay On Time – And What to Do About It” by Bruce Coombs on the CPA Practice Advisor blog, “…determining the ‘why’ when your clients don’t pay on time can reveal where and how you need to improve your internal processes in order to improve cash flow.” Here are all 6 of his reasons.
- “The client has a genuine dispute.” Bruce mentions that “…if you start your follow-up process early, you have a better chance of resolving the dispute and getting paid.”
- “They are just busy or overwhelmed.” Bruce mentions that “…often, the reason for non-payment is that the client is just flat out busy or under-resourced. A timely reminder email or letter is usually all you need to get the account paid.”
- “They are disorganized.” Bruce mentions that “…vendor invoices, including ours, can simply be put to the side and forgotten about when received in the mail. Email your invoices to the accounts manager as often as you can.”
- “The client doesn’t have enough money to pay the account.” Bruce mentions that “…if you find this out early, you are in a better position to offer a payment arrangement.”
- “The client is unconcerned.” Bruce mentions that “…job completion and job turn-around is your responsibility – paying on time is then the client’s obligation.”
- “The client is dishonest.” Bruce mentions that “…when you feel you’ve exhausted your options, call in the experts.”
How to Find Us on Spotify
There are a few ways to find us on Spotify. First, you’ll need a Spotify account. You can do that by going to www.spotify.com and creating a free account. Unless ads drive you nuts, a free account is all you’ll need. After you’ve got your account, go to our page and click follow.
By following us, you’ll get email notifications each time we put out a new playlist. We’ll be creating fresh lists for you each month, so you can listen to them as soon as we publish them! Now go download the desktop application for your computer, the app for your phone or stream music online by taking a listen to our playlist here.
Invoicing doesn’t have to be a daunting task! Remember you can avoid getting ghosted with contracts, enforce late fees to help push clients to pay and follow up often to understand what’s going on from their perspective. Now chill out, get to invoicing and crank up this playlist! We’re certain you’ll enjoy this playlist as much as we do.