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Small business cashflow depends on prompt payment. We analyzed over 12 million invoices to discover some 
revelations to getting paid on time. We also asked the small business community for their tips & tricks.

Should you change terms? 

See your best options for 
invoicing and payment terms.

View infographic

You’re not alone

Get insight from a community of 
accountants and business owners.

See insights

Go on, get that money!

Read popular tips for getting paid 
on time and invoicing efficiently. 

Read tips

Skills to pay the bills

Take the quiz and prove you 
can bring in the Benjamins.

Take the quiz

Should you change your payment terms?

If you think your payment terms have no impact on when people pay you,
turns out it actually has a very real and direct effect on when you get paid.

Debtors pay 2 weeks late 

Regardless of whether your payment terms are due immediately
or due in 30 days, on average invoices are paid two weeks late.

Xero Infographic Chart

This chart represents over 12 million small business invoices raised globally between January 1, 2009 and September 1, 2012.

The data is intended to provide insight by analyzing an aggregated, non-identifiable set of invoicing data from Xero - 
it is not segmented by region, industry, revenue or season.

Average days payment overdue

Payment terms in days

You’re not alone

Over 1,500 of our Xero community shared their experiences with invoicing & payments. 
Here’s a selection of their helpful suggestions. 

Go on, get that money!

Getting paid and having a healthy cash flow is the lifeblood of every small business, 
but it’s not always as easy as sending an invoice at the end of the month.

You’ll be laughing straight to the bank with these top invoicing tips. 


Discuss payment terms before you get started

Getting this sorted upfront means that there is no confusion down the track. It also sets the clients expectations around payment before you start the work.


Keep detailed records of inventory and time

This saves time when it comes to creating the invoice and makes sure you don’t miss anything. It also means if things are going over budget you can let your client know, instead of sending them an expensive surprise at the end of the month.


Make the invoice clear and easy to understand

List the details of the job in a way that makes sense to the client, any confusion could create a payment lag. It’s also good to personalize your invoice with your business logo - it helps carry on the professionalism of your work.


Set appropriate payment terms

If you need to receive payment within 30 days, our data reveals that you will need to set your payment term 13 days or less. Keep in mind that on average, debtors pay invoices 2 weeks after the due date.


Address the invoice to the person paying

Make sure your invoice goes straight to the person who makes payment to avoid getting lost in someone elses inbox. If you’re unsure exactly who that is, give them a call - it pays to know the person paying the bills.


Invoice as soon as possible

Send your invoice as soon as possible, the sooner a client receives an invoice the sooner they will make payment. It also means they will receive it when the value of your work is still fresh in their mind.


Keep on track with debtors

The squeaky wheel gets the oil. When things become overdue send reminders, monthly statements or make a phone call. It will help remind your client that you are serious about getting the invoice paid.

Having a process that helps streamline invoicing can reduce the amount of time you spend collecting your hard-earned money. Find out more about how Xero can help.

Skills to pay the bills?

Think you now have what it takes to master invoicing & payments. 
Take the quiz and see if you can bring in the Benjamins.

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