An invoice (or “bill”) is a legally-binding financial document issued by a seller for a buyer in order to request payment for goods sold or services rendered. Invoices include a detailed list of the purchased products or services along with their quantities, costs, and any related taxes and fees.
Invoices serve as legal proof of sale and can be used in court. The document identifies both parties to the transaction: it includes the full names and legal addresses of both parties involved, along with their billing information, bank account numbers, and the overall terms of payment.
There are several main benefits to using detailed invoices:
- Recordkeeping. Invoices are crucial to maintaining a legal record of all of your sales. Tracking recurring customers, shipping addresses, and quantities of goods sold is made easy with detailed and professionally-written invoices.
- Accounting. An invaluable tool for payment tracking, invoices help both parties monitor income and expenses and to keep up with taxes.
- Analysis. Invoices can help your business gather vital information about your clientele. When compiled in one place, the information reflected on the invoices can help you analyze trends and develop winning sales strategies.
How to Request an Invoice From a Supplier?
Is your supplier getting behind on the payment schedule? One way to facilitate timely invoicing is to request an invoice via a letter. A good invoice request letter should be clear, concise, and professional. The format should follow that of an industry-standard business letter. It should set a friendly tone while still managing to get the point across.
A good idea is to come up with a premade invoice request template that you can use for multiple different clients. Your template should follow these basic rules:
- The request should, ideally, be no longer than a single page.
- The letter should be generic enough to allow it to be tailored to each individual client.
- Leave space to address specific identifiable project details and dates.
- Avoid industry jargon and make sure to use a clear and active tone.
- Proofread your letter to make sure that you’re not replicating any mistakes.
How to Request an Invoice on eBay?
After you initiate a purchase, eBay will automatically generate an invoice for you. It can then be accessed through your account. If this hasn’t happened within a few hours of a transaction, an eBay invoice request can be made manually.
If you need an invoice for a recent transaction or are interested in reviewing an invoice for an older purchase, you can request your bill by taking the following steps:
- Make sure that you are logged in to your eBay account.
- Click on “My eBay” in the top right corner of the screen.
- Click on “Purchase History” and scroll down until you find the transaction you’re interested in.
- Clicking on “View Order Details” to the right of the item will generate the receipt for the transaction.
- Select “View Printer Friendly” to review the invoice. After it loads, you can print it out or send it directly to your email address.
How to Get an Invoice From PayPal?
PayPal provides freelancers and small businesses with a handy service for sending and receiving payments and credible auditable invoices. PayPal’s invoicing feature allows users to create and store customizable templates, track invoices, and record a history of all transactions with clients for easy recordkeeping.
A PayPal invoice request is done off-platform. Send an email to your supplier or freelance employee and have them take the following steps to generate an invoice for you:
- Sign up for an account with PayPal. In most countries, the profile cannot be anonymous for tax purposes. A completed profile will, in most cases, require providing some sort of identification and waiting for it to be checked by the system.
- Log in to your non-anonymous account.
- Locate the “Invoicing” feature and choose “Create” to make a new invoice or fill out a pre-made invoice template. Any invoices created can also be saved as templates for future use.
- Provide the mailing address and personal details of the party receiving the invoice. List the services rendered or goods sold, enter the prices for each line, and check the totals. Add a logo if necessary.
- Click the “Preview” button to check the finished invoice and click on “Send” to forward it to the previously-provided email.