By Sondra Martin - April 05 2018 18:37:27
An invoice serves several purposes. It is not just the catalyst that gets you paid, although I would venture to say that is the no 1 role, huh?
An invoice indicates what must be paid by the buyer according to the payment terms of the seller. Payment terms usually specify the period of time that a buyer has to send payment to the seller for the goods and/or services that they have purchased.
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.
In the original article that I wrote about invoices, I stated that I just stick with a Word document. If I have time, I will change it to PDF, but that does not always happen. Another common practice that I have seen is using an Excel spreadsheet to generate the invoice. But one important consideration that I did not mention back then is the plethora of accounting software out there. Due to affordable small business-targeted options such as Freshbooks or Quickbooks, you may never have to generate an invoice yourself anyway. I have heard wonderful things about these applications, but have yet to check them out.
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