Freelancers in creative industries are subject to variety of challenges – finding clients, evaluating themselves and their work, and of course securing payments from their clients.
For you to be successful as a freelance writer, you not only need to be a word smith, but you must undertake the part of invoicing too.
Try our online invoicing software for free
Accept online payments with ease
Keep track of who's paid you
Start sending invoices
When it comes to freelance writing in particular, approaching invoicing in an amicable manner can be tricky. An invoice needs to deliver clear and concise information of the work you’ve done to the individual who requested your services, otherwise you’re bound to run into payment issues.
I am here to help avoid encountering any woes pertaining to invoices. I want you to continue endowing your clients with your creative talent and get paid promptly – good invoicing will help you achieve the latter.
Evaluate Yourself Properly
Freelance writers exist all over the world, and are rather easily accessible through the internet. Evaluating yourself against the competition is the first thing you may have to do before clients start pouring in.
Assess your knowledge and evaluate your strengths. Consider any previous work you have done for more mainstream publications and the results it garnered. Perhaps you have a knack for SEO content writing that a lot of businesses can utilize. Even your writing style will have a bearing on your overall ability to attract clients and your worth.
The competences and experience you have managed to accumulate thus far will dictate how valuable your services are. You can compare yourself to other freelancer writers that exist on the web to see how well you fair in relation to their prices and acquired skills.
You may need to turn into a peacock by strutting your feathers so to speak. Don’t be timid and share the previous work you have done with your clients that provides proof of your eligibility.
Utilize Invoicing Software
When the need to invoice arises, the whole process should be painless for you and your client. Online invoicing software alleviates some of the pressure that comes with securing a payment for a job well done.
Convenience and accessibility is the name of the game when it comes to online invoicing. Online invoicing platforms such as InvoiceBerry give you the power create unique invoices in seconds while providing variety of payment options to your clients.
Invoice Headers and Your Contact Information
You can be a little creative while you invoice your client. Though you may be a freelancer writer, it never hurts to develop a bit of brand recognition with a well-developed logo or an image that can be included on the invoice.
Your invoice header will also need to contain the following:
- Your name;
- Contact information;
- Legal entity number – this may vary from country to country as each one may process freelancing permits and licenses differently.
Make sure that all the pertinent information is included within the invoice header as this will circumvent a lot of issues down the road. If and when your client needs to reach out to you, they can do it quickly and efficiently using the details you have provided.
Client Information is a Must
The invoices you create need to be uniquely created for each client you’re working with. This means every time you conjure up an invoice, you will need to include details of the person or the company that has requested your services.
Client information that must find itself onto the invoice includes:
- Client’s name or the name of the business (should also include the specific individual who’s in charge of accounts payable);
- Contact details.
This information is important for the accounting department on your client’s end. It helps them keep track of who was in charge of approving your services.
What Are You Invoicing For?
The invoices you send out contains a list of writing services you have provided to your client and what each of those services costs. The invoice you create and deliver – along with aforementioned details – need to contain the following:
- List of services that were requested by your client;
- Costs associated with each of the services rendered;
- Quantities (number of articles, page count);
- Total amount owed.
You will need to discuss with your client beforehand on how you charge for your writing services. Freelance writers tend to charge based on word count, per page, or per article.
Avoid including any fees that were not agreed upon prior. This could cause your client to question your invoice and in some cases may stifle the payment process.
Include Agreed-Upon Terms and Conditions
Payment due dates, project deadlines, down payments and any other terms or conditions both parties agreed on need to find themselves onto the invoice. This helps keep everyone honest and in-the-know of any details pertaining to the completion of your project and when the payment needs to find itself into your bank account.
In the example above I used the InvoiceBerry invoicing platform to create an invoice. The terms and conditions are explicitly stated on the bottom of the invoice – there is also a separate payment deadline check-box and additional notes to customers. Most invoices contain a similar set-up, so any pertinent information can be included here for your client to see.
Follow-up On the Quality of Your Work
Take some time to follow up with your client in regards to the work you have produced. Inquire them about the results they have achieved as a result of your project – for example effectiveness of SEO content. Some freelance writers offer revisions for any written content they produced.
In general, reaching out to your client shows that you care about your work and their satisfaction – in the long run this can help build rapport and solidify a potential long-term business relationship.
Follow-up On Late Payments
Not everyone that you’ll work with will be a punctual individual who abides by deadlines – what I am talking about here are late payers. You may have to go out of your way to hunt down an outstanding payment from a client that has since forgotten about their obligation or is looking to take advantage of you.
If it ever comes to this and you do have to start reaching out to overdue clients, remain composed. Reach out to them via phone, email, or social media to get a response as to why they still haven’t managed to reimburse you. You may even discus late payment penalties with your client before you commence writing for them. Penalty fees are a great deterrent that helps void non-compliant or forgetful clientele.