Ten Advantages of Online Invoicing

April 29, 2015

Online billing is a superior method for accounting for small business, and for organizing and carrying out a critical company function. Revenue and cash flow are major concerns for most businesses, as success and growth depend on them. Cloud-based storage adds an element of security to the process and the records that support tax records and business status reports and documents. With cloud-based software systems, the service can permit an unlimited number of invoices. Ten advantages of online, cloud-based billings are summarized as follows.
Audit Trail

Online invoicing provides an exacting basis for audits. It provides precise date and records of the disposition of every request. Whether for internal use or external requirement, the records of invoices and payments will be strong and readily retrieved. Audit procedures are difficult; an accounting for small business provides a firm factual basis and well-organized records. The audit process can go as easily as possible.

Security

Many may resist online payment because of custom and practice. Some may prefer the familiarity of cutting a paper check and are not bothered by the time and effort involved in processing paper documents. However, online payments are as secure as other methods of payment. Financial institutions involved in payments processing devote substantial resources and effort to security and the results are convincing across the volume of transactions done each day. The accounting systems keep records and base tracking on cloud systems. Service providers maintain them with advanced security safeguards against loss and interference.

Data Organization

Online invoices improve payment organization by using easily retrieved data and automatically compiled billings. Companies can build data inputs into the overall record keeping system to account for billable hours, expenses and costs. Companies frequently need reports for internal uses such as monitoring cash flow and accounts receivable. Companies must prepare persuasive Reports and presentations when seeking financing from banks or alternative sources of operating capital and investment funds.

Professionalism and Appearance

Online invoices enhance a professional appearance and strengthen brand identification and positive associations. The advanced systems permit addition of logos, customized arrangement of information and messaging. Some ideal packages such as those from Sage.com provide one-step payment through the customer’s choice of payment methods. These on-page E-mail instant response features can dramatically improve prompt payment rates.

Online Invoicing Provides more Control

Businesses pay fees for many services and while many seem small on a per transaction basis, over the course of time they can add up to a considerable sum. Transfer fees and deposit processing fees can amount to a significant sum when repeated many times during the course of an annual business cycle. Online invoicing provides a convenient method for assessing the impact of handling fees connected to receiving payments. With greater insight comes the possibility of exerting controls. Managing the process more closely may reveal alternative and fewer costly options. Advanced accounting for small business provide insights into the process and improved management control.

Fewer Errors

Paper processing requires many steps each of which may be prone to errors. A simple feature like mail delivery can result in loss of a document and the delays and follow-up to re-send after a period of non-response. When errors occur in the process such as wrong numbers or incorrect billing amounts, a lot of time is lost in correcting the situation. Electronic billings are as simple to correct as typing on a document and sending it.

Instant Delivery

Companies do not lose time in completing an invoice and delivery. It takes a matter of seconds. Correcting an invoice has the same advantage, the delivery is instantaneous. Delays can result with the passage of time as busy business owners and managers can have too little time to do too many things.

Saves Costs and Administrative Time

Postal costs are low, but over time they add up; more important, the time needed to prepare and process paper records consume administrative time. When compared to the work of preparing an electronic invoice, paper invoices require many more steps and far more administrative time and effort.

Access to Records

Once prepared and delivered, the E-mail invoice is complete. The system can place the records into an orderly sequence. The system provides online access to records from any reliable connection and from anyplace on the Web. Many small business owners and managers work while traveling and from remote locations. Online invoicing permits easy management of this critical function without loss of control when away from the primary location. The system can provide automatic invoice tracking and promote faster payments. E-invoicing speeds up payments particularly when the software builds in on-page response options for the customer. One can set the system to issue invoices and send reminders for payments not received as expected. Companies should no longer lose invoices when the system provides online tracking and payment records.

Customer Relations
The benefits of well-prepared invoices include accurate billings, a transparent process, a professional appearance, and positive reinforcement of the company brand among customers. Customer relations are important, and they require an investment of time and effort. Invoicing is an important part of the relationship, and the appearance of these documents reflects on the management capacity of the company.

Companies can manage invoicing in-house, or, if more convenient, prepare records in-house for invoicing by outside partners. The basis for an efficient invoicing process is accurate record-keeping. Accounting software can make the process routine and automatic. The in-house method saves money and reduces overhead costs. With the advanced systems available on the market, businesses can improve payment rates and maximize control over the process.