Why Use Electronic Invoices?
It is very important to business for documents to be delivered on time. If you use the postal service, you will find it to be slow, expensive, and very unreliable at time. When it is finally delivered, you need to open, distribute, and file and this also cost money. In this highly digital world we are in, we are surprised to see many businesses still using postal services to deliver invoices.
Electronic invoicing should be considered by all businesses instead of relying on postal services which is slow and expensive. Businesses that continue with postal services think that their customers will not accept an electronic invoice. The thing is, everyone uses the internet these days and so this fear is unfounded. You should no longer receive paper invoices today. You will be surprised how many customers will agree to receive an electronic invoice. And, you will save on expenses when you do so. Don’t be moved by a very few die hard customers who refuse to accept this. Convert the proactive ones first, then the traditionalists later.
The format of your electronic invoice will depend on whether you want a true ecommerce type billing or simply a cost-effective billing to your customer. By using output management software, your documents can be delivered seamlessly to your customers in virtually any format. One of the formats best suited for electronic invoicing is PDF which is an image representation of your invoice.
Whatever your system is, you can easily implement the technology side of electronic invoicing. To start, collect the email addresses of you customers who agree to receive an electronic invoice regularly. If you have a system that can hold email addresses, then you can add these emails to the system. Or you can hold it in a separate look-up table or database.
Emailing PDF invoices is a good starting point. You only spend on a little start up cost and then save greatly on electronic invoices. Some customers don’t view their invoices and this is a great problem. By sending it to a document delivery portal then this can help solve your problem. This sends the customer an email prompting them to view the invoice from a web link. What the customer needs to do is to click the link, sign in securely, and then view the invoice with other invoices or an archive. The sender will know if the customer has viewed the invoice or not or if they have downloaded a copy or not through certain analytics. Invoices that have not been viewed can be chased by a credit controller for overdue invoices. Links can be resent to the customer.