Sending an invoice to clients when you’ve completed your work is the best way to get paid for your freelance writing work.
Putting one together is really quite simple. The one to the left is the invoice I use – it’s a Word document. I developed the logo awhile ago and you don’t really need one. Your name, company name and contact info at the top is enough.
I file all my invoices in a folder called invoices. I keep one called template and when it’s time to generate a new one I open that, save it under client’s name and make the necessary changes… it’s truly easy.
When it’s easy it makes billing clients easy too – which means I get my invoices out promptly.
What to include
When you invoice for your freelance writing and/or editing you want to include:
- Your name, contact info including address and email
- The word INVOICE centered so it’s clear exactly what this document is
- The complete contact information for the person/company you’re billing
- The date of the invoice
- The work you did, the date you did it if it isn’t in the last week or so, and the amount charged.
- The total due
- A statement about when payment is due – on presentation or some other term like 30 days.
- Instructions on how you should receive the money – PayPal, check, etc.
Send it off, by email or snail mail – more and more invoicing is done by email these days.
If you’re sending lots of invoices develop a system so you know when one is late and you can send a reminder.
- Make up a blank invoice and save it. When it’s time to invoice open that file and use save as with your client’s name, then just fill it in and you’re all set. I include the date sent in the file name.
- Make a note in your calendar about when you expect to receive payment… that way, if it doesn’t come, you can take action to collect.
- If you’re writing assigned magazine articles it’s totally acceptable to attach an invoice along with the completed article. Or you can ask the editor in advance if she wants one.
- Invoice promptly. I invoice when the work is complete – if I put it off for even a day it tends to get lost and I find myself embarrassed when I finally remember to send it several weeks later.
Free for you – download an invoice form in an editable Word file – make your own template, add what you need to, easily.