How To Write An Effective Late Invoice Email Reminder
How To Write An Effective Late Invoice Email Reminder
Many businesses in the UK must deal with unpaid invoices on a daily basis.
If left unchecked, it is almost a certainty that companies will not receive payment.
As a result, their cash flow will be affected and the business could be put at risk.
This is obviously not an option, and all overdue invoices need to be paid as soon as possible.
Most large and small businesses have an in-house credit control team that handle outstanding invoice issues.
It is this teams responsibility to ensure that invoices are processed on time.
If a debtor misses a payment, the credit-control team must contact them and make sure that the issue is resolved.
One common way in which a debtor can be chased for payment is to send a late invoice email.
This email will serve to remind the debtor of their payment obligation and hopefully prompt them to pay.
How effective a late invoice email very much depends on how it is written.
We asked our debt collection experts for their thoughts on the most effective late invoice email writing methods
5 Tips for Writing a Late Invoice Payment Email
In a perfect world business owners would not have to worry about overdue invoices, and clients would pay their bills on time.
Unfortunately, late invoices or a common issue for companies of every size, affecting large and small business owners alike.
Sending payment reminders and a late invoice email can help to reduce their impact.
Many companies use email templates to do this process, and modern invoicing software can help to automate chasing.
Follow these steps to make sure that you are not leaving anything to chance.
1 – Upcoming Due Date Reminder
The best way to prevent an overdue invoice is to ensure it doesn’t happen in the first place.
It is perfectly appropriate to send a small reminder a few days before an invoice due date reminded the client that a payment is due to be made soon.
In some cases, this is actually very much appreciated by the client, as they may have forgotten that they need to pay you.
Many companies offer small incentives for paying invoices early, and these can be communicated in an email.
This has the effect of minimising the risk of an overdue invoice, which will in turn prevent debt from occurring.
2 – Send a Polite Reminder
Once an invoice has been declared overdue, you should try to send a reminder after an appropriate amount of time has passed.
We would suggest sending this message within 14 days after the invoice is overdue.
After all, there may be a simple explanation as to why the invoice has not been paid.
For example, the client may have invoicing software that was offline due to technical difficulties, and so they have been unable to pay.
Sending a polite and friendly payment reminder email that is professional and concise is a good way to begin the chasing process.
In this email, you should make sure that you have clearly stated the amount owed by the debtor.
This email should also make reference to the fact that the due date has passed.
You should politely remind them that payment needs to be made as soon as possible.
Sending a polite reminder can help to prompt a debtor to pay and resolve the issue amicably.
3 – Send a Second and Firm Reminder
Have more than 14 days passed since the due date and your first email has fallen on deaf ears?
If so, you should send a second late invoice email that is more firm in tone.
In this email, you should include details on what was agreed in your payment terms and the number of days overdue that the invoice is.
You should include a clear overview of the details of the payment on the invoice as well as any documents relating to this.
It is a good step to email unpaid invoice details to the client, as they may have lost the original.
You should remain professional in tone, as it is still very possible that the debtor may have missed the original message, or even deleted it by mistake.
4 – Send a Final Notice (Letter Before Action)
Have 30 days have gone by since the invoice was meant to have been paid and your overdue invoice emails have not been responded to?
If this is the case, you should send one more late invoice email to the debtor that can act as a final warning.
Once again you need to make the client aware that payment is due, and that 30 days or more have passed since the invoice due date.
Again, you should remain professional and you must clearly state that you intend to take action should the invoice remain unpaid.
Doing this may finally prompt the client to pay their invoice.
5 – What To Do Next – Contact A Debt Collection Agency
If you have written every late payment invoice detailed above and the debtor has not settled the matter, you should escalate the case.
Contacting a professional debt collection agency is the best way to do this.
They provide a service the comes with the most benefits, whilst incurring a low cost.
As well as this, you will be able to recover the money that the debtor owes you in a prompt manner.
This will ensure that there is a minimal impact on your business and your vital cash flow.
For businesses, it is important to not jeopardise relationships with clients.
A debt collection agency will end all matters amicably, ensuring that you can benefit from the income from preserved business relationships.
Since 2004, Federal Management has recovered millions of pounds worth of debt from unpaid business invoices.
Speak to a friendly debt collection expert at Federal Management today for a free pre-action appraisal of your debt.