Whether you are a small business owner or an individual who is working on an independent contractor basis, invoicing is something that you're going to have to do on a regular basis. If you don't use a software program that generates invoices for you, the billing process can seem a bit overwhelming and complicated. Instead, use a customizable invoice template that you can download and edit to create comprehensive invoices for the goods and/or services that you provide to your customers.
To use the customizable invoice, simply click on the image to open the form. The document will open in PDF format, either in a new tab or separate browser, depending on the web browser version you are using. Once the document opens, you'll be able to save it to the hard drive and enter information about your company or services, so that it becomes a custom template that you can use over and over.
If you need help downloading the printable, check out these helpful tips.
Setting Up Your Invoice Template
Use the following instructions to create an invoice template:
- Make sure there is a copy of your company logo on your hard drive or an external storage device.
- Click the template where it says "Click to Insert Logo".
- Navigate to where the logo file is stored.
- Click "open" to insert the logo into the invoice document.
- Click in the highlighted section below where the company logo is inserted to activate the section where company information can be entered.
- Replace the placeholder text with details about your company (company name, mailing address, phone number and the contact person's email address) where indicated.
- Go to the "Terms" section and replace the placeholder text with specifics about your company's billing terms.
- Go to the next to the last section on the bottom of the page and specify how the checks should be made out.
- Go to the very last section and specify what percentage late fee is added to invoices not paid by the due date.
- Save the document, either by clicking the diskette icon in the menu bar at the top of the page or by going to the File menu in your browser and selecting "Save Page As".
You now have a billing template for your company saved on your hard drive or the external storage device of your choice.
Using the Template for Billing
When you need to prepare an invoice to send to a customer:
- Open the invoice template that you saved.
- Save the template with a unique filename by going to the File menu in your browser and selecting "Save Page As". (Consider using the customer name and month of the invoice as the file name so that it'll be easy for you to find invoices that you have prepared any time you need to do so).
- Fill in the customer information section, just below the return address for your company.
- Assign a number to the invoice, being sure that it is unique from numbers used on previous invoices. It is ideal to use a sequential numbering system for your invoices.
- If your customer provided you with a purchase order number, add that to the form. If not, leave the purchase order number line blank or include your contact's name and the date you spoke to him or her.
- Enter details about each item that you are billing for in the body of the invoice, keeping in mind that each row is a separate item. Put a clear explanation in the description section and fill in the quantity and per item price. The total price for each row will be figured automatically.
- If you need to add rows, click the "+" sign at the end of the row above where you want the new one to be placed in the form.
- If you want to delete a row from the form, click the "-" sign and the end of the row that you want to delete.
- The grand total will appear in the last cell beneath the total column.
- Save the invoice.
Once you have finished creating your invoice, proofread it carefully to verify there are no errors and that you have included all billing items. When you are sure it is correct, you can send it to the customer. Depending on customer preference, you can email the invoice as a PDF file attachment using the envelope icon in the menu bar or print it for mailing using the envelope icon.
Other Invoice Formats
The customizable template provided here is certainly not the only invoice format that you can use. It is fine for companies and individuals that don't do a lot of billing or that are just getting started, but you may want to look for an option that is more automated as you move forward.
- Services like Bill.com allow you to control customer invoicing through a web-based system and include a variety of cash flow management features.
- Quickbooks and other bookkeeping applications have built-in invoices and the capability of integrating with banking,credit card processing and financial reporting.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) applications like Zoho have invoicing modules that integrate with time tracking, project management, customer contact and more.
Necessary Information for Invoicing
No matter what invoice format you decide to use, it's critical that each invoice you send be easy to read, accurate and complete. It should provide detail about the goods and services that were provided in itemized format, in a manner that makes it clear exactly what the customer is being charged for and how much. If the products or services you are invoicing are subject to sales tax, be sure to include a specific line item for tax near the bottom of the invoice, with the appropriate amount calculated and factored into the total.