Hard-earned money doesn’t come easy.
Making a sale is great, but getting the payment is even better.
But what happens when you don’t get paid?
Let’s face it. It’s nice to offer value to a customer or client, but there’s nothing worse than wondering whether the dollars will ever make it into your account.
Fortunately, there are several action steps you can implement today to make sure you get paid.
1. Set Up a Solid Process
It can be quite a thrill for business owners to see the fruits of their labor pay off. But don’t get swept away by the excitement! Take the time to set up your accounts receivable process before you send your first invoice. That way, you’ll have a well-oiled machine for tracking as you scale.
Make sure you’ve got a system in place for not only generating invoices but for tracking payments as well.
2. Invoice on Time
The first step to making sure you get paid is to be diligent about timely invoices. Sure, it sounds basic enough. But too many business owners are so focused on doing the work they allow invoicing to fall by the wayside.
We get it – sometimes time just doesn’t allow for consistent invoice generation. Try to set aside one day a week for it so it becomes a habit… Or hire an expert to manage your invoices for you.
3. Provide Multiple Payment Methods
The less of a stickler you are about how you’ll accept payment, the more likely you are to collect. While some of these methods can cost more than others, it’s better to get paid less than not get paid at all.
4. Consider Incentives
This won’t work for every business model. However, if you can, it might be a good idea to consider offering discounts for faster payment. And it doesn’t have to be much. If you’re willing to shave off 1-3% of the cost for invoices paid within one to two weeks, it could go a long way in generating consistent income.
5. Take a Deposit
Collecting a small sum of money at the onset of a project can set a positive and productive tone for a longterm relationship. When you take a deposit, you’re setting appropriate boundaries and expressing your implicit worth from the very beginning. This can also be extremely beneficial for small startups that need cash flow, or businesses that need to lay out an initial sum of cash to complete their client’s job.
6. Be Assertive and Proactive
Finally, don’t be afraid to demand what is yours! If an invoice is due on the 10th of the month and you haven’t received your money, then reach out to the client with a friendly reminder. Take a communication versus confrontation approach. While there could be plenty of reasons why the client hasn’t yet paid, you have every right to follow up and make sure you get your money.
There’s no doubt that consistent cash flow can be make-or-break for any business. But too often, companies get slammed with other pressing issues and just don’t have the time to make sure they’re receiving what they’ve earned. That’s when you want to outsource an expert to manage your receivables.
Hire an AR professional today to take care of your invoicing, conduct regular follow-ups, and make sure you get paid!