Unfortunately, for many small businesses getting paid in a timely manner can be a painful and expensive process.
Complicated processes can translate into invoicing that becomes a stumbling block rather than a gateway to receiving money. Once the invoice has finally made it to the buyer chasing down payments can become a stressful and tedious process, eating up valuable time that could be used to grow your business and serve your customers.
When you sell online and/or through social media channels you need to be able to quickly process credit and debit card transactions. It’s critically important to select the right payment processor for your business. You need the processor that can create a seamless bridge between you, the business owner, and your customer at the lowest costs and in the shortest timelines.
If you’ve been struggling with online payments or if you’re looking for ways to improve on your existing processes the following 6 tips are designed to help you get paid with less friction, in shorter timelines, and for lower fees.
1. Send Invoices Quickly and Get Paid Faster
Most small business owners operate under extremely thin profit margins. To maintain a healthy system and grow their business, owners need to utilize a system where customers can quickly pay their invoices which can then cover expenses, maintaining a steady cash flow. To get paid quickly businesses must send invoices out immediately after the sale, including easily accessible and convenient payment methods, and have a process for following up in a timely manner for any invoices that have become past due.
ZenSales Powered by Ship.com’s Invoicing feature makes it easy for users to promptly email invoices to buyers with just a few clicks. Your customer can then purchase and pay for their order, by entering their preferred credit or debit card information. The payment is processed and deposited in your bank account the next business day.
2. Automatically Import Order and Billing Information
Some small business owners burn away countless hours every month entering online sales data to generate invoices and purchase shipping labels. Manually inputting information can lead to transcription errors that result in billing discrepancies and missed shipments.
A system that can automatically import your orders to create invoices and labels can shave hours off every week, helping you gain speed and improve efficiency. When your sales orders are imported automatically it can free up your time for more productive tasks and accelerated business growth.
With ZenSales Powered by Ship.com’s invoicing feature, creating an invoice for an existing customer is as simple as typing the customer’s name. To send an invoice to a new customer, all you need is their email address. Additional customer information (including name and shipping address) can be completed by your customer when they pay their invoice, shaving time off your day and reducing the chance for errors.
3. Shop for the Best Deal on Service and Payment Processing Fees
Not all invoicing and payment processing software and services are created alike. There are a variety of services that offer additional features with associated fees. Depending on the service you may incur fees for setup, monthly usage, transaction fees, and even account cancellation fees. Sometimes the fees are all bundled under one cost, so you must look carefully and evaluate your needs to make sure your money goes where it can benefit your business the most.
To avoid paying unnecessary fees it’s important that you select the best fit for your requirements. ZenSales Powered by Ship.com’s invoicing feature is available on all three subscription plans. Low processing fees include a small percentage of the total transaction amount plus $0.30 cents per invoice. Users on the Executive plan will pay 2.89% per invoice, Growth users will pay 2.9% per invoice, and those on Starter will only pay 2.95% per invoice.
4. Go Digital
The old school processes of generating paper invoices and waiting for paper payments in the form of a check or cash can slow necessary the flow of cash into your business.
Today’s buyers enjoy the convenience of using credit or debit cards, and digital wallets to digitally transfer funds. Customers also tend to spend more on the average purchase when they use an electronic payment method.
The Invoicing feature on ZenSales Powered by Ship.com can help you quickly and easily create and send paperless invoices in seconds. it also allows you to apply automatically generated tax and discount information. When your customer clicks on the invoice payment button in their email they will arrive on a payment platform that accepts their preferred credit or debit card information. Once the invoice is paid the system automatically applies the payments received.
5. Follow Up and Stay on Top of Unpaid Invoices
Tracking and following up on unpaid invoices can practically become a full-time job, in fact for some businesses it is. The good news is most unpaid digital invoices can be successfully collected through the right combination of email follow-ups. The key is to find a system that makes it easy for you to include a due date and then track the status of every invoice and follow up quickly with reminders and requests for payment.
Ship.com conveniently places all of your new invoices on your Orders Dashboard and marks them as “Waiting for Payment”. Once the order has been paid then the order status will update to “Ready to Ship”. It only takes a few seconds to resend an invoice reminder for outstanding or past due payments.
The Invoicing feature on ZenSales Powered by Ship.com also makes it easy for you to monitor your unpaid invoices. When an invoice falls past due you can use the system to resend the invoice and include helpful reminder messages to facilitate prompt payments.
6. Monitor Everything Through a Comprehensive Dashboard
When sales increase it often becomes more difficult for small business owners to stay on top of every outbound invoice and connect them to inbound payments. The best way to stay on top of all the outgoing and incoming is to see everything on one comprehensive dashboard. It’s also helpful to be able to sort the information to create insightful reports, such as monthly and yearly statements that detail income summaries and accounts receivable and payable.
With ZenSales Powered by Ship.com you can quickly view the status of every invoice when you visit your Reports page. The report provides ongoing details of your Pending Payouts, Pending Invoices, and also includes a history of your most recent Payouts to give you a comprehensive view of your income.
Get started today on a free trial of the ZenSales Executive plan and simplify your complicated billing processes while taking advantage of the lowest available invoice transaction fees.