Anatomy of an invoice

Send your clients invoices that reflect the professional image of your business, while giving them enough detail to understand what they’re paying you for. We’ve broken down the anatomy of an invoice to help you understand all the components and why they are important.

Invoice features
  1. Clearly state your identity. Your logo, font, colour and theme are important in projecting that professional image.
  2. The name and address of the recipient should be clear. Position the name and address so when the invoice is folded, it will be clearly displayed in "window" envelopes.
  3. The amount owing and payment terms.
  4. The invoice number, date of issue and project name or code.
  5. Make sure line items are clearly laid out so clients can easily follow each line item from left to right.
  6. Use page numbers if your invoice is more than a page. Then repeat your identity on each page.
Invoice features
  1. On a multi-page invoice, always include the line items header on each page.
  2. The total (including taxes) should appear at the bottom of the last page. Each tax registration number should be clearly listed. Some jurisdictions require you show the tax registration number next to the tax amount.
  3. Balance carried over from previous invoices sent to your customer.
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Advanced invoice templates on the Mac

Some clients require very specific breakdowns of the work done on a project. For these instances, we suggest using the Professional Services template or the Summary Details and Retainer History template. These invoices organize advanced details in 3 separate pages.

Professional Services

This invoice is separated in the following three sections:

This template is only available for Billings Pro on the Mac.
Professional Services - Timed and fixed slips are grouped together and subtotalled
Additional Charges - Quantity and expense slips are grouped and subtotalled
A summary of each staff member who tracked billable time on that invoice is included with their hours and total amount billed

Summary Details and Retainer History

This invoice is separated in the following three sections:

This template is only available for Billings Pro on the Mac.
Summary of the invoice: Totals of timed and fixed slips, quantity and expense slips, taxes, retainer applied, previous balance and total owing.
Invoice details:
An expanded list which details the billable slips, taxes, retainer applied and owing.
Summary of the retainer account:
Retainer payments and disbursements as well as a current retainer balance.
Professional services features

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

This invoice is separated in the following three sections:

Professional Services - Timed and fixed slips are grouped together and subtotalled

Additional Charges - Quantity and expense slips are grouped and subtotalled

A summary of each staff member who tracked billable time on that invoice is included with their hours and total amount billed

Invoice summary and retainer features

SUMMARY DETAILS AND RETAINER HISTORY

This invoice is separated in the following three sections:

Summary of the invoice: - Totals of timed and fixed slips, quantity and expense slips, taxes, retainer applied, previous balance and total owing.

Invoice details - An expanded list which details the billable slips, taxes, retainer applied and owing.

Summary of the retainer account - Retainer payments and disbursements as well as a current retainer balance.

Invoice summary and retainer features

The art of invoicing

Invoicing is an inevitable part of running a business well, because you need to get paid for the services you provide or the products that you sell. Invoicing can also be a delicate situation with your clients. When building a relationship with a client it’s important to instill trust and educate them about the work you do for them.

Invoice summary and retainer features
Invoice summary and retainer features

The impact of a professional invoices

Having a professional invoice reflects your brand and the image of your company. This is especially important when sending estimates/quotes to a potential client as well as sending Pro Forma (draft) invoices to a new client. A poorly designed invoice with nothing connecting your brand or the detail involved in the project or work can leave a client with a negative impression about your business. By the same token, a professionally designed estimate or invoice with all the proper information and details makes it easier for a client to trust you. It also helps them understand what they are being billed for.

Learn how to customize an invoice track time anywhere

Invoice summary and retainer features

Breaking down the barrier

When a client receives a bill with not much else other than their name and a price at the bottom, they can be a bit hesitant about paying it at first, even if the amount showing was exactly the agreed amount. They may have forgotten the original agreed amount and start to question why they need to pay this much. Or perhaps they trust you, but still want to call you and go over each step of the project so they understand exactly what they’re paying for. To avoid this, make it easy for the customer by adding the details they need.

Invoice summary and retainer features
Invoice summary and retainer features

Invoices your clients “get”

With the invoice templates in Billings Pro, it’s easy to add details and comments to break up the project in digestible pieces for your client. Each slip you create in Billings Pro appears as a line item on the invoice. This can be a time slip, a fixed slip, an expense slip, or a quantity slip (for the instance of a product). You can also add comments on each slip and choose whether or not you want these to show up on the invoice or just use them for your own reference. This way they have a clear understanding of what they’re paying you for.

Learn the anatomy of a slip track time anywhere

Testimonial from Patrcik

“We need to be able to separate invoices per project because we partner with other service companies complimentary to what we do, so we end up working on a number of projects for a single client. With Billings Pro, I’m able to customize a template to do exactly that.”

- Patrick, Krekeltronics

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