A sales invoice is a fundamental element of a successful business.
It provides a record for each sale that takes place between a business and customer. They give businesses a clear picture and control over its cash flow and finances. They also, however, often are a cause for human error and organization mishaps.
Today we’ll take a closer look at sales invoices and discuss how you can optimize them and streamline their creation process with monday.com and monday sales CRM.
What is a sales invoice?
A sales invoice is an official accounting document. It’s sent to customers to request payment for the goods sold or services provided — typically after they’ve been delivered.
They help your business keep track of:
- What’s sold
- Payments received
- Generate data
- Create a paper trail that you can point to in case of any legal disputes
Sales invoices can be paid in installments or in one payment. They can be created and sent using software.Sales invoices are important because they support accurate inventory management, help you organize your bookkeeping and accounting, and create a log for business analytics. Let’s take a look at these benefits in more detail..
What should be included in a successful sales invoice?
Sales invoices can be customized and often vary from business to business. However there are certain components you should always include. They are:
- Contact information: Company address, name, phone number, and email. Include your customer’s contact details and information too.
- Invoice number: Every sales invoice must include a sequential unique invoice number. They are usually placed at the top of the invoice and ensure payments are tracked for accounting purposes.
- Payment terms: The deadline by which the customer needs to pay the invoice. And how they will make the payment.
- Products and services rendered: Itemized list of products sold and services rendered. Include the quantity and price of each.
Why are sales invoices important?
Sales invoices are important because they support accurate inventory management, help you organize your bookkeeping and accounting, and create a log for business analytics. Let’s take a look at these benefits in more detail.
Support accurate inventory management
Research from Tyco Retail Solutions suggests that retailers worldwide lose more than $818 billion annually due to inventory distortion. With out-of-stock losses making up 56% and overstock losses making up 44% of that figure.
If you sell physical products, unchecked inventory distortion is likely costing you a lot of money in lost potential revenue. Sales invoices can help you keep track of the goods sold and therefore help you reduce inventory distortion. monday.com has a free Inventory Management Template.
Organize bookkeeping and accounting
Every business owner must have proper bookkeeping and accounting systems in place. Failure to do so can lead to all kinds of trouble — including legal and accounting issues.
Sales invoices are a crucial component of these systems because they create a record of goods sold and services provided. Having these records on-hand will help you correctly report your taxes, pass government audits, and protect your company in case of a legal dispute with a customer.
You may also decide to sell your business in the future. Potential buyers will appreciate careful bookkeeping and accounting records — as financial records make it easy to review the progress a business has made over the years. You can manage this information on monday sales CRM.
Create a log for business analytics
Sales invoices make up an important part of any business’ data.
This type of data offers insights into financial patterns. It can identify your best-selling and worst-selling products, most lucrative services, most valuable customers, and more. With this information, you can make data-driven decisions and develop winning strategies for your business.
How to use monday.com to optimize your sales invoice process
monday sales CRM is designed to give you visibility into any sales process and optimize and standardize the way your team works — for time saved and impact multiplied.
Just a few ways it can help with your invoice creation:
- Centralize client communication with personalized email templates and interaction logs, all in one place
- Automate internal communication by triggering a notification when a new invoice is ready for review
- Increase visibility with customizable dashboards
Here’s how you can optimize your sales invoice process with monday.com’s Quotes & Invoices app:
1. Add the app to your monday.com workflow.
The Quotes & Invoices app is already built into new boards in the CRM template. The CRM solution template can be found in the template center.
Alternatively, if you have built your own boards, you can add it to your workflow manually.
Then simply click open an item and you’ll see the Quotes & Invoices app.
2. Add billing information. This includes both your information (“Bill from:”) and the customer’s information (“Bill to:”).
3. Add your logo. Select “Add Company Logo” and then upload your logo.
4. Add line items and adjustments. Click on “Add line item” to add goods sold and services rendered. Note that the total will be calculated automatically.
Click on “Add adjustments” to add adjustments such as a discount, value-added tax (VAT), or a fee.
5. Add notes and a signature. These are options are located at the bottom of the page.
6. Other settings. To open up the “Settings” window — find the gear item and click it. There you can change currency, tax name, and fee type, as well as adjust the branding.
7. Preview and share. Once your invoice is ready, you can download it as a PDF and then send it to the customer. Use the “View” tab to preview it before downloading.
Frequently asked questions
Is a sales order the same as an invoice?
No, they are not the same. A sales order is a document that customers send to a business. This document allows them to order the products they want to purchase — and prepay for them. Whereas a sales invoice is a document a business sends to customers to request payment for goods after they have already been delivered.
What is the difference between a sales invoice and a sales receipt?
A sales invoice is sent to customers to request payment for the goods sold or services rendered. On the other hand, a sales receipt is a document you send to the customer once you receive their payment. It provides proof of payment.
How long should you keep sales invoices?
The general rule is to keep your sales invoices for 3-7 years, depending on the type of business you run.
Create an automated sales invoice workflow
Sales invoices are important when it comes to managing your inventory, keeping your accounts organized, and generating data for business analytics. They also protect your company in case of any petty legal disputes.
We recommend investing in software like monday.com that allows you to streamline the invoicing process by creating an automated sales invoice workflow while also guarding against human error and helping scale your business.