An invoice may seem like a simple piece of document used as a receipt or to get paid. But it is much more than that; it is the face of the business. It represents your business and must be distinguished and convey all the terms of the transaction.
There are hundreds of software available that generate invoice. Since it is one of the primary tasks of any business, Invoicing is available in most software. A business software will be considered incomplete without a feature to generate invoices.
Businesses spend money creating a brand image and neglect something as essential and fundamental as an invoice. Invoices are a great tool to create a unique identity for your brand and, at the same time, be clear on the monetary conditions of the transaction. This will help your customer recognize your invoice at a glance and make payments quickly due to the precise information provided in the invoice.
Every business is unique. There is never a single format of invoices that all companies can use. A standard invoice generated by Tally or any other invoicing software consists of some standard columns, rows and sections such as buyer and seller details, transaction details like mode of payment, invoice number, date, description of goods, HSN number, quantity, rate, amount, tax details, seller declaration and signature. All these details are essential and cannot be missed, but some business needs to provide some more information in addition to these. These details, if not mentioned, may lead to a delay in payment.
Additional details can be color and size details in case of a clothing or textile industry invoice, part number, model, insurance details, new or used, engine specs, and many details required on a vehicle invoice. Similarly, every industry or business will need additional columns or sections in its invoice. It is recommended every business use an invoice format that conveys all details of the transaction. Thus customization is a must.
Benefits of a customised invoice -
Create a brand image
An attractive invoice that communicates your company name, logo, brand colours, business message, etc., helps strengthen the brand image. Customers may have many invoices, but if your invoice stands out amongst the many invoices and the customers recognize your invoice, that will leave a lasting impact on the customer's brand perspective.
An invoice must contain the complete details of the transaction. The terms and conditions of the trade should be mentioned in the invoice. Business owners often miss a few details and include them in the mail or attach another document along with the invoice. This may impact your brand image negatively. It may also lead to delayed payments or the customer asking you to send a new invoice with complete details. To avoid delay in payment and customer disappointment, you must make sure your invoice is customised, and provision for including the additional information is made in the invoice itself.
Personalise invoices as per your industry
Every industry has a particular invoice format with specific unique details for that specific industry. Billing software may have a standard format that may need to be customised. This customization is possible in Tally. Many growing businesses customise their invoices to get the layout as per their industry type.
Building trust is an essential step in maintaining a recurring customer. When trust builds, customers may return for more services. Invoices play a small but significant role in this process. If an invoice shows only a few details, the customer may have difficulty trusting your brand. Customers are more comfortable and confident in brands that appear transparent in their dealings.
Businesses will receive faster payments if the invoice contains all the agreement details as discussed in the deal. Even if a minute detail of the agreement is missed, the customer may ask for a new invoice causing a delay in payments. This is especially true for business to business transactions.
Convenient record keeping
Software like Tally that is not just used for billing but other record-keeping like accounting, inventory, etc., also tracks inventory through invoices. All invoices must have proper product identification. Otherwise, you will lose track of the inventory. This is important in the case of manufacturing and job work type businesses.
A well-designed invoice makes your company look professional. This is essential while transacting with multinational companies. You may miss out on the recurring deals if you fail to make your company look professional. A professional customised invoice plays a significant role in making your business look professional.
Digital Signature and QR Code
QR code and Digital signature are slowly becoming an essential part of invoicing. Companies like TATA and Nestle expect their suppliers to send invoices with digital signature and QR code. This is mainly because digital signature provides a high level security from unauthorised alteration and QR code makes the invoices quicker to read by their software. To know how you can get digital signature and QR code click here.
You will miss out on all these benefits if you do not personalise or customise your invoice. A customised invoice as per your industry, in the long term, will improve your profits and help you retain your customers. Know more about how you can customise your invoice here.