Continuous late or delayed payments can very easily bring a start up or small business to its knees. A healthy cashflow allows you make the investments you need to keep your business running so it is very important to have a firm hand on what you are spending on and just as importantly, what is coming in. Customers are key to this as most of your return will come from invoices you have sent out in return for goods and services they have procured from your business.
It isn’t uncommon to find customers that wouldn’t bust a gut to pay their dues on time. Why not try these seven hacks to ensure you are getting your money’s worth on time.
Bill on time
Have a set time of the month to verify all invoices have been sent. A lack of organisation could result in your customers receiving the invoice too late to meet your payment target or you might even overlook certain areas resulting in lost payment.
Reduce the stress on customers and make it quick an easy to make payment using a mobile and online system. Google Pay, Amazon Pay, Paypal, Apple Pay are some more popular choices particularly with retail and e-commerce businesses.
Hire a watchdog
In other words, hire a book keeper or book keeping service to keep track of where the money is being held up and do the follow up. A book keeper can also help prevent errors with invoicing as well as manage your company cash inflow and outflow.
Maintain a professional client relationship
Business is Business and fees are due after you have delivered a good or service. Gratitude isn’t an acceptable form or payment if you are in business to make profit unless you see this as a means of increasing customer loyalty and expect more business in the longer term.
Have an agreement
The terms of your agreement covers what you are billing for, make this clear and obtain agreement before proceeding with the work. Ensure this is mapped out clearly on invoices to avoid delays with clarification. Itemise all necessary areas, such as quantity, hours worked, discount if any or VAT.
Offer a payment plan
Give customers a flexible option for payment such as spreading the costs and offer incentives for quick payment. If you pursue a flexible option for payment ensure you have a water tight agreement in place.
Have a late payment policy
Ensure this is set out clearly from the onset in the terms of your service as it shouldn’t come as surprise to your client. Send a courtesy reminder about late penalties to the client before your deadline and ensure whatever you charge, it is in line with the laws in your area.
Are there are other strategies you use to ensure prompt payment from customers? Let’s continue the discussion, Join our community for more business tips.