By Rita Derrick - March 19 2018 12:19:39
A bill is a request for payment. A bill is usually considered from the customers standpoint. It is common to receive a bill without an invoice, as in a restaurant or retail store. A bill is usually given with the expectation of immediate payment.
The difference between an invoice and a bill is the focus and standpoint. The invoice is created by a supplier, and it is a statement of services or products produced and delivered to a customer, including the amount owed. An invoice may be created before or after the product or service is received. It is common for an invoice to be included with products being delivered, so the recipient can check off the items to make sure they are all there.
Invoices are important not only for keeping track of sales and payments, from balances to stock levels, but they can also be used in the case that a payment is overdue or missing and is followed up with more formal actions.
Invoices may be mailed or emailed or faxed to a customer. When a customer pays, the invoice number should be noted on the sales receipt and matched to the sales receipt in your accounting software, so it is clear that the invoice has been paid. The payment takes the outstanding amount out of your accounts receivable account.
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