Billing is often the painful portion of running or starting a business… the easier parts would be providing the service you offer, the support and the big smile… with all of that in mind starting or trying to establish a business also means that you often wear many different hats and billing is not really given the focus it deserves.
Every Penny Counts:
Starting out it may be simpler and easier to just start sending out invoices via more manual platforms like Excel, Pastel or Quickbooks etc, but as your business starts to grow you will find that this will become a total administrative nightmare, and the billing component of your business becomes crucial… because cashflow is the lifeblood of any business.
As your business grows you will also start to find that invoicing is not the only portion of billing that becomes crucial. You will require an comprehensive solution that allows you to receive automated payments, monitor overdue accounts, issues payment reminders, host audit logs of your billing data…. your services may change and you will require more complex billing rules etc.
Hoping to just pull everything together at the end of each month, and relying on your memory to decide who to invoice for what, when to adjust a prorata amount…finding that notebook that you drafted your income and expenditure down is very poor strategy when it comes to such a critical part of your business.
This really begs the question — should I wait for my business to grow before I start committing to a billing system?
A common misconception is that billing or software systems are going to be a huge expense and therefore, in the beginning, billing does not receive the necessary priority when it comes to budget allocations.
This right here is really one of the core visions that we have had for SnapBill from the very beginning, a billing system that in conjunction with payment gateways— would offer both the guy starting out as well as the enterprise business… a solution that will cost him (or her) less than achieving it all manually or at the expense of an accounting department.
We have encountered clients who are willing to spend R3000 on internet bills every month, but cringe at the prospect of paying R216.60, for a Startup billing package that would be a large determining factor on the accuracy of his income— which is essentially his cashflow to pay those Internet bills.
On the note of R216.60, yes this is what it currently costs to run a Startup package on SnapBill (a Nandos Family Meal costs more).
Let me just actually literally un-bracket that for you quickly:
X2 Full Chickens, X3 Large Side, X6 Portuguese Rolls and a WHOLE 2 Litre Coke….
(we like ours HOT, just out of interest)
For all of that (and even a 2 litre Coke), you could make use of an entire billing system, to automate your invoicing, run debit collections, accumulate reporting data, send out unlimited bulk emails to your clients, run payment warnings, sell your services online via our signup forms, add additional permission based user logins for your employees, build custom billing rules to match your billing requirements, run bulk imports or exports on your data, load an unlimited amount of clients and banking details to be stored, send out 50 invoices for the month and have access to our CDV checker to validate banking details.
I think the only question left should be, what tastes better? Nandos or Cash?
(Yeah we like our cash HOT too.)
The sooner you incorporate a billing system into your business, the less kinks you will have to iron out at the end of the day and you will be ready when you land that big client because figuring out your billing system afterwards or as you go along is not an ideal situation to be in.
Your business growth will determine your billing needs, so as you grow you will gradually upgrade to the appropriate SnapBill package. There is therefore no need to make any giant leaps, but by using SnapBill you will have started building a solid foundation for your business from day one :).