General Receipt Create written proof of transaction
Invoice Written formal request for payment
30-Day Past Due Letter Send a reminder that payment is overdue
Collection Letter Collect payment for an outstanding debt
Bad Check Notice Notify your payer of a bounced check
Statement of Account Keep track of goods or services provided
90-Day Past Due Letter Send a final demand for payment
60-Day Past Due Letter Send a second demand for money owed
Revolving Credit Agreement Establish credit and loan terms in writing
Payment Plan Provide for repayment of debt in installments
Forbearance Agreement Set terms for temporary suspension of payments
ACH Authorization Form Get permission to deposit or withdraw funds
Loan Default Letter Advise a borrower that their loan is in default
Collect payments FAQs
How can I accept online payments? How is my rate determined?
Many companies offer online payment processing. Payment processing fees can add up quickly, so it's important to carefully research processing companies before you make a choice. Certain companies offer the same flat-rate to everyone whereas others may offer you lower rates depending on your situation.
Your rate may be affected by:
How long you've been in business
Your credit rating
Volume of sales
Average transaction size
Type of business
To find the best rate:
Take your time and carefully research your options
Plan to spend time on the phone with sales reps
Compose the questions you will ask the rep
Call numerous processing companies
Don't allow yourself to feel pressured from the sales representative. Try to stay on track by asking them specific questions about how much they would charge you for processing, including all types of fees. Do not sign anything or give out your Social Security number or EIN until you are ready to make a decision.
How can I get paid sooner?
Getting paid quickly is often influenced by the payment options you offer. You'll be paid more quickly if it is convenient for your client or vendor. Some ways to speed up payments include:
Avoiding Net 15 or Net 30 option if you can
Offering ways that your customer can pay at the time of service (online or via smartphone)
Considering adding a way that they can pay directly from the emailed invoice
Consider offering an ACH payment option for quicker payments with lower fees
Enforce automatic, recurring payments if possible
Implement a process for ensuring invoices are correct
Consider offering a discount for early payments
I'm a freelancer, how should I bill my customers?
Luckily it is rather easy these days to create professional-looking invoices and accept payments from clients. If you use an online accounting service, they likely provide a way for you to create invoices with a way for your customers to pay directly from the invoice.
Here are a few freelancer billing tips:
Charge late fees
Avoid Net 15 or Net 30 terms if possible
Consider adding mobile phone payments
Ask for a deposit or retainer agreement
Research your clients before accepting their work
Clearly outline your payment terms in writing
Consider billing at agreed upon milestones
How can I process payments on-the-go?
Nowadays, you can process payments nearly anywhere. You can process payments using a mobile or Wi-Fi connection using your mobile phone or tablet. Usually, the card reader is provided for free as part of a payment processing agreement. Using this technology, you can accept payments anywhere and clients can sign on your screen to approve credit card payments. Some mobile processing services offer flat rates whereas others may offer negotiable terms.
Should I offer an early payment discount?
If you can, why not? Many offer a few percentages off the total for early payment. A common situation would be you'd offer two percent off the total if they pay you within ten days rather than 30. You write this into your invoice as 2/10 Net 30. You should explain the discount to your customer when you make the sale to help entice them to pay early. If your profit margin is slim, offering a discount may not be worth it.
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This post is to be used for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, business, or tax advice. Each person should consult his or her own attorney, business advisor, or tax advisor with respect to matters referenced in this post. Made and partners, sponsors and affiliates assumes no liability for actions taken in reliance upon the information contained herein.