10 essential features of invoicing software

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Gone are  the days of long, tedious invoicing, with data entered in spreadsheets by hand leading to invoices with errors. Today's accounting and invoicing software makes life easier for businesses, providing innovative features that make end-to-end management of the invoicing process possible. With these tools, you can save time and money and, above all, have peace of mind.

How to choose invoicing software

What  elements should you take into account to get the most out of this tool? Let's  take a look at the essential features that will make your accounting workflow smoother and your cash flow more secure.

1. Quote creation

A quotation  is often the starting point of a business relationship. Your invoicing  software must therefore create accurate, useful estimates in a few clicks,  then allow you to send them directly via the platform without opening another  program (such as email).  

Each estimate  must include information about you and your company (name, address, VAT or  business code, etc.) as well as information about your prospect or customer.  It must also describe the service in detail, with the proposed price, VAT,  and general terms and conditions. As you can imagine, with a powerful,  effective data automation system, your quotes will be created and completed  in seconds!

2. Quick and easy invoicing

Just like  quickly-created estimates, your invoicing software is there to save you  precious time by easily issuing invoices. A truly effective invoicing tool  will let you convert your quotes into invoices, or simply create a new  invoice from scratch. The important thing is that the invoice number is  correctly incremented, and that all the important information and other  mandatory data appear. Then you can send your invoice directly to the  customer from your software.

Make sure  that your software complies with your country’s laws for the creation of this  type of document. Also, don't forget to include the payment terms on your invoice.

3. Managing VAT

Thanks to  the ingenuity of invoicing software, VAT can be calculated and generated automatically. This means that you will know exactly what you have to pay to  the government.

To do so, simply enter your VAT information when creating your user account and enter the applicable rate according to the services or products sold.

4. Follow-up system

If a prospect  hasn’t yet responded to a quote, or if a payment is late, one important  functionality is key: contact follow-up. Any effective invoicing system must  therefore clearly highlight late payments so that you can send a personalised  reminder in the blink of an eye and close unpaid invoices as quickly as  possible. Some programs are capable of detecting unpaid invoices  automatically, and can therefore send reminders without your intervention. 

5. Monitoring operations and the chart of  accounts

Closely  connected to the previous point, your invoicing software is a valued ally for  monitoring your business and keeping an eye on customer payments. With the  help of this virtual partner, you can see the amount that has been invoiced  and collected, or average payment times via a clear and intuitive dashboard.  With advanced features, you can also calculate profit margins

In  addition, some hybrid software packages offer the option to transform their invoicing  software operations into accounting entries and create and export accounting journals. And if your invoicing software has accounting features, you can  also enter purchases and expenses, and link your software to your bank  account. The idea is not to replace your in-house accountant or chartered  accountant, but to give him or her simple, centralised access to data and  receipts while minimising errors.

6. Electronic signatures

Do you  have quotes or order forms to sign, or to have signed? Improve your  productivity with an electronic signature function integrated into your  software. Legal and binding, electronic signatures avoid the time-consuming  back-and-forth exchange of physical documents between you and a customer.  Clearly, an integrated electronic signature option significantly shortens the  sales process!

7. Online payments

There is  no need to go through intermediaries to pay your invoices if you opt for  software that offers an online payment option. Go for centralisation! In  general, payment times via an invoicing software are considerably reduced.

8. Customer support that is easy to reach

We  obviously want your experience with invoicing software to be as smooth and  pleasant as possible. However, at the beginning or even further down the road,  it’s natural to have questions about its use.

To quickly  get answers, your tool should make it easy to contact the company's customer  support (or after-sales service) via a chat feature integrated directly into  the software or another type of intuitive messaging system. This will ensure you  get an ultra-fast response, obtain valuable advice, and make the most of your  software in the future. 

9. Fool proof security

Invoicing  software must comply with strict technological security standards to avoid  errors and the possibility of fraud. So, before you choose the tool that will  be your invoicing ally, you should make sure that it is certified and  complies with applicable anti-fraud laws. This way, you will be sure to have  documents that comply with current legislation, for total peace of mind!

10. Bonus: cloud-based invoicing software

Are you  looking for software that doesn't require installation and can be accessed  from any device, anywhere? You’ll love the cloud-based convenience of SaaS (software  as a service) invoicing platforms. With a SaaS option, you can get unlimited  access to your accounting database from any type of device, anywhere in the world, with improved security for your data, and a high-performance backup  system that bypasses the technical issues of an application on your hard  drive.

Now you  know which features to look for when choosing invoicing software—the kind  that will undoubtedly improve productivity and organisation. There are also  other tools that can make invoicing even easier! Want to learn more? Contact  us to make an appointment with one of our experts and discover the full  potential of Sellsy invoicing software.