5 smart tips for collecting overdue Business invoices
If you are in business, then in all probability, you will have experienced late-paying customers. Maybe even customers that point blank refuse to pay anything at all. A recent study conducted by the National Federation of Independent business revealed that over 60% of small businesses have outstanding invoices that are at least 60 days old.
With this in mind, we thought we would put together these basic 5 top tips for ensuring your deserved funds make it all the way to your bank account. The tips for collecting overdue invoices will help optimise your Business cash flow.
Smart Tip 1 – Send A Reminder
Following up invoices and sending reminders are a natural part of business, so do not feel embarrassed by doing so. Modern accounting software can be set up to automatically send a reminder to clients or to remind you to follow up them up yourself. There will be a large proportion of late payers that have genuinely forgotten to pay, due to being so busy.
This simple step will show your clients that you are on top of things, so establish a system for following up late invoices, and stick to it!
Smart Tip 2 – Prepare To be Paid
Staying positive and believing that you are going to be paid by your customers allows you to stay calm when a customer becomes difficult, firing all sorts of excuses at you about why it is they can’t settle your invoice. If you don’t believe that you are going to be successful, then this will transmit to the client during the conversations you have with late payers. If you are not great at negotiating, perhaps delegate the job to someone in your company who is.
Smart Tip 3 – Make a Phone Call
If you have agreed terms that have passed, and despite postal or email reminders, you haven’t had a response, then get on the phone and talk to your client. Phone calls are a lot harder to dismiss and talking directly them might give you a better insight into the reason behind the non payment. Once you have this disclosure, you may have room for negotiation.
Smart Tip 4 – Do not Lose Your Cool
If you are at the point where you feel like losing your temper with a customer…don’t! Arrival at this stage means that your customer may have a financial reason for non payment.
Being reasonable and offering an olive branch in the form of monthly instalments keeps everything civil and you with a chance of actually recouping the money you are owed.
Smart Tip 5 – Consider Employing a Business Debt Collection Specialist
Costly legal proceedings can be long and drawn out and in no way guarantee that you will get paid. This is because even if you get a judgment in your favour, there is then the question of enforcement should the defendant fail to pay.
Employing a Business Debt Collection specialist is an alternative to litigation that is both more time and cost efficient. Taking a small fixed percentage of monies recovered, a Business Debt collection specialist can represent you in a professional and friendly manner.
Follow these simple steps and you can take the stress out of unpaid invoices. These Tips for collecting overdue invoices will keep things in order. It will hopefully help you get back to being productive with your time. Allowing you to focus on the ‘do pay’ customers and not the minority ‘don’t pay’ ones.