It's a problem every business faces sooner or later - keeping on top of and recovering unpaid invoices. When you're running a business, it can be difficult to stay on top of all the paperwork associated with invoicing clients and collecting money owed to you. That's why we've come up with 3 steps that will help increase your chances of recovering unpaid invoices.
1) Act quickly
Once an invoice is past due, it becomes increasingly difficult and costly (in time and money) to recover that payment. The longer you wait after an invoice goes delinquent before taking action, the less likely it is that the customer will pay of their own accord. This means you may have to rely on more formal recovery action which may require you to engage with lawyers or debt collection agencies.
2) Keep it professional
Avoid venting your frustrations, particularly on social media (until it's really necessary because you just can't get a response from the company any other way). Instead, start by sending a thorough but succinct email or letter that explains why you're recovering the invoice and how they can pay it off. If they don't respond or offer an explanation, send a formal collection letter by registered mail (you can do this by email too!).
3) Be persistent
Don't be afraid to follow up with the customer. If you have their contact information, send another letter. You can even call or reach out through Facebook or LinkedIn if you think that's a better way to get in touch.
Repeat your message one more time and be sure to let them know about the consequences of not paying (like causing inconvenience for other clients or facing debt collection). You can even reference your first letter to show that you're being reasonable.
Also, remember to keep accurate records of events. Make sure to record contact details, representatives you've talked to and the time since an invoice became past due. The more organised you are at the beginning, the easier it will be to get paid!