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The simplest way to request payment, with examples

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Last editedMar 20232 min read

Whether you’re a business owner or freelance contractor, asking for payment is probably one of your least favorite parts of the job. Sending a request for payment – particularly when it’s past due – can be awkward at best. By using a polite yet professional payment request template, you can help encourage clients to pay on time. Here’s how to request payment, the easy way.

What should you include in a payment request email?

When crafting payment requests, the first thing to think about is your tone of voice. You want to provide all the necessary information while maintaining a polite, friendly tone with your client. If you’re writing an email, this starts with the subject line. Make it informative so that the recipient knows what to expect. Here are a few examples:

  • Invoice #123 now due for payment

  • Update on invoice #123

  • Invoice #123 past due

Keep the subject line and body short and sweet. No client wants to read a rambling letter; they want to see what’s owed and the best way to pay you. It’s highly recommended to add a payment link at the bottom of your email which takes the reader directly to your payment provider for fast settlement.

Another important element to include is a copy of your invoice, which should be attached to the payment request letter or email. This should not only include your contact details and amount due for payment, but also your bank account number or payment provider. Don’t forget a note about your payment terms and upcoming due date.

What is a payment request example?

Now that we’ve covered a few of the elements of successful payment requests, what does this look like in practice? Here’s a short payment request example you could use to send along with your first invoice.

 Subject line: Invoice #123 due (MM/DD/YYYY)

Hi (Client Name),

I hope you’re doing well. It’s been great working with you on (brief project name or description). I’m sending you Invoice #123 for (specific service or product). Payment is due on (MM/DD/YYYY). I’ve attached it to this email for your reference.

Here are my payment details:

(Payment provider, bank account number, or paylink)

Please contact me with any questions.

Best wishes,

(Your name)

If your initial payment request is ignored and the invoice is past due, don’t hesitate to chase up on the late payment. We have some suggestions for requesting payment on past due invoices here, or you can use a template like the following:

Subject line: Payment reminder for past due Invoice #123

Hi (Client Name),

I hope you’re doing well. I’m just following up on Invoice #123 which I sent to you on (Date of original email). It was due on (MM/DD/YYYY). I’ve attached a copy for your reference.

Here are my payment details:

(Payment provider, bank account number, or paylink)

Please contact me if there are any issues with this payment.

Best wishes,

(Your name)

When a reminder email goes without payment and it’s been over two weeks since the due date, you’ll need to chase up again with another reminder. You might want to add in a note about your payment terms again and ask when you can expect to receive payment. Depending on your payment terms and contract, you can also start adding in a note about applicable late fees. If over a month has passed, it might be time to get on the phone and even start looking at your legal options.

How GoCardless makes it easier to request payment

Of course, the best way to get paid on time and avoid these awkward payment requests is by automating the process. GoCardless helps automate your payment collection using electronic invoicing and billing. By using ACH bank debits, businesses can take payment directly from the customers’ bank accounts on the day they’re due. Reminders are sent automatically by the system, making this the simplest way to request and collect payment. This means you’re free to focus on building strong customer relationships, rather than hassle them for unpaid bills.

We can help

GoCardless is a global payments solution that helps you automate payment collection, cutting down on the amount of financial admin your team needs to deal with. Find out how GoCardless can help you with one-off or recurring payments.

Over 70,000 businesses use GoCardless to get paid on time. Learn more about how you can improve payment processing at your business today.

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Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help
Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help

Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help

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