Automated online invoicing systems

A breakdown of what you can expect from an automated invoicing system and details of some of the major systems available.

Automated online invoicing systems

Online invoicing packages offer easy-to-use systems that enable business owners to set up scheduled payment demands that go out automatically at specific dates and times. No more manual data entry or laborious paperwork. Alternatively, one-off invoices can be issued swiftly and directly by the business owner without the need for a bookkeeper’s help, even being sent from a mobile device at any time from any place.

E-invoicing systems build invoicing into a firm’s workflow, with automated invoices being delivered immediately. This itself leads to faster payment, with the most up-to-date payment services allowing customers to click straight through via the invoice to settle their bill straightaway. This pay-now facility is proving increasingly popular as it boosts cash flow for the vendor and reduces accounts processing time for the busy customer. The best systems offer a range of payment options, including credit cards, bank transfers or Direct Debit to make it easy for customers to pay. Make sure you choose an invoicing software that integrates with established online payment providers.

When payment processes move online it makes tracking invoices much easier. Most systems use a dashboard that shows payments already received, those pending and those that are overdue. It’s also possible to set reminders for customers who have yet to pay and run reports to get a snapshot of those who are on time and those who are persistently tardy. With such thorough and detailed record-keeping it’s simple to get information should your accountant or the authorities demand it.

Automated invoicing systems

It’s quick and easy to buy and set up off-the-shelf invoicing software packages or subscribe to cloud-based providers. Some tech-minded firms even opt to build their own platforms. But how do some of the most commonly-used invoice management systems compare?

QuickBooks is a well-established accounting software package that allows users to create and send invoices, as well as manage all the accounting needs businesses face. It also tracks overdue invoices to make chasing payments easier.

Xero is very popular with small firms who are attracted by its cloud-based invoice management system with automatic reminders and online payment facilities. Xero also integrates with hundreds of existing finance-related apps, as well as offering its own app to allow users to do their accounting on the move.

ClearBooks offers online invoicing, purchases and expenses tracking. One feature of its cloud-based software allows businesses to run accounts in more than 170 different currencies.

FreeAgent’s online accounting software provides all the important business accounting services, including invoice issuing and tracking. It also allows subscribers to have unlimited numbers of users, clients and projects at any one time.

KashFlow has a handy app enabling users to invoice on the move. It also links direct to HMRC to give customers their data in one place, making compliance easier. Invoices are customisable, plus data encryption is available for those concerned about security.

Salesforce is a cloud-based service that allows for subscription billing using GoCardless, as well as the option to set up mandates using online invoices or emails with pay-now links.

GoCardless has an extensive list of available partner integrations. You can see them all here.

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