Waiting to get paid? Too many overdue invoices? That can be very dangerous for any business. According to Zurich …
67% of SMEs agree that late payments are forcing some SMEs to close their business
The following four invoice collections tips and techniques are all designed to help you get paid on time AND without upsetting or losing your customer.
The Key: it’s actually people that pay people. So, if people like you, they’re much more likely to pay you before they pay another supplier. Makes sense really, doesn’t it!
Getting a customer to like you is one of the easiest ways to get paid for any business. Over-service your customers all through the sales process, so you get paid sooner.
You can get into your customers ‘good books’ by making it easier for them to pay on time. For example, check out your invoices:
1. Which Invoices Have A 50% Better Chance of Being Paid on Time?
Answer: Perfect invoices. Sending perfect invoices to customers sounds like a simple thing to get right, but statistics tell us that almost half of all invoices sent to customers are incorrect.
A query on an invoice is one of the reasons why customers delay payment, so it’s worth learning how to prepare one that’s perfect. No-one will pay an invoice when there’s a query outstanding. An incorrect invoice is a valid reason for non-payment unfortunately.
Get paid sooner by sending your customer a perfect invoice.
2. Resolve Queries super-fast to Get Paid Sooner
Even when you check your invoices for errors before you send them, the odd mistake can still occur.
If your customer does raise a query on one of your invoices, remember they will only pay when it’s resolved.
Make it a priority to rectify the problem super-fast.
As soon as the problem is rectified, you can easily and comfortably ask for payment.
3. Hate Making Collection Calls? Here’s an Insider Secret…
Make a customer service call to your customers BEFORE the invoice is due for payment. Making a call before the invoices are due is an ‘insider secret’. It’s one of the most effective techniques to avoid late payments.
In my business, we called it a’ courtesy call’. You can make a ‘courtesy call’ to your customer to confirm that your customer is satisfied, that their order is complete, and all details of the delivery or service are correct.
Making a call like this BEFORE the invoice is overdue is one of the secrets to getting paid sooner.
4. Knowledge Is Power
Whenever you contact your customer, have all the information about them and their order to hand.
If you have the information readily available, you can answer any questions your customer has while you are talking with them. That way, you’ll look like a customer service super-hero, and you can avoid having to call back causing a delay which might mean your invoice becomes overdue.
Being knowledgeable about your customer’s account also shows that you care and that they are important to you. Showing you care is a great way to get customers to like you and will encourage them to make sure you get paid sooner.
To your business success!