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If you’re an entrepreneur or business owner, you’ll deal with invoices of different types on a regular basis. Some of these will be quite simple, like a basic invoice when you’re buying office supplies from your local distributor - but it can still be difficult to know where to begin, and what to include on an invoice. If you want to create professional invoices, using your accounting software - like Sage - is a smart way to do it. You can choose from ready made templates, to build and send invoices online, for faster billing and less time spent doing admin.
Online invoicing is also a good way to avoid cash flow issues, and protect your profits. If you’re dealing with international customers and suppliers, another great way to save time and money is to use a provider such as Wise to make and receive international business payments. More on that later.
This guide walks through the details of what you will need to include on an invoice, and how to create one in Sage.
An invoice is a document that provides clients with a detailed description and costs of the goods or services that have been provided. You need to create an invoice if you want to receive payment for goods or services that were provided to a customer or client. An invoice allows you to keep track of your payments, for your own business management and accounting purposes, and also is a formal agreement between you and your customer that they will pay you for services received.
It’s worth noting that there are different Sage packages available, so you’ll be able to find more details, and helpful information about invoicing using your specific Sage package, over on the Sage website.¹ Here’s how to create an invoice on Sage:
- Go to Invoices and Credits, and click on New Invoice
- Select Product from the Format menu, to create a product invoice
- Enter the date and find the customer you’re billing in the A/C dropdown
- Choose the product you’re selling from the dropdown menu provided
- You’ll then be able to edit, add and amend the details of the product, and use the headers and footers as you wish, to capture all of the details required in an invoice
- Save your invoice, and then you can print or send it to the customer as you wish²
Doing business overseas and need to make international business payments? Wise could save you money versus your bank.
When you have to pay employees or suppliers overseas it might seem logical to do this with your bank. You already have an account there, they have all your information, so it just seems easier. Although these are valid reasons, easier certainly doesn’t mean cheaper.
Most banks won’t convert your money with the mid-market exchange rate when you make an international payment. Instead they add a mark-up and charge you a hidden fee that way. Wise is different. Its smart technology skips hefty international transfer fees by connecting local bank accounts all around the world. Which means you can save up to 8x by using Wise rather than your bank when you send your money abroad.
Wise also has a lot of additional features for business users. You can connect with Xero to make your life easier, upload a batch of payments in one go or even automate your payments by integrating with our API. And there’s more to come in the future.
It is important to include all of the information needed when creating an invoice - but where to begin? On every invoice you will need to include:
- Title as ‘Invoice’
- Business name and address
- Tax number (if needed)
- Business branding
The details that will change and will need to be updated on each invoice, are:
- Unique Invoice number
- Customer name and address of customer
- Summary description of goods and services
- Date of supply
- Date of Invoice issue
- Quantity and price of goods or services
- Payment terms
- Instructions on how you would like them to pay
- Purchase order number
Sage include a full overview of what all of these terms mean, so you can easily complete the details on your invoices.³
You can get simple and custom invoice templates from Sage. These are Word documents, so you can download them and then add or alter details as you need to. You’ll be able to create your own invoice including your company branding and payment terms, as well as making sure all of the fields needed for an invoice are covered.⁴
Although it used to be customary to print and send invoices to customers in hardcopy, these days using electronic invoicing is far more common. It’s especially useful to send invoices to your customers online, if you’re dealing with international customers, as you’ll save money on postage, as well as time waiting for your invoice to reach its destination. Getting your invoice into the right hands as soon as possible is the best way to make sure you get paid on time, and keep your business cash flow looking healthy.
Using an accounting package like Sage to create custom invoices is a quick way to prepare professional looking invoices for your customers. You’ll also be able to save your invoices easily, and have them handy for your accounting and tax filing. You can even send your invoices instantly from your phone or tablet - so you can manage your business finances on the move or even when you are with a client. Don’t forget to hold onto your electronic invoices for a couple of years, as you would need your documents, for tax purposes.
Getting your invoicing right is good for your business. You’ll also be able to protect your profits when dealing with international customers, by using a specialist provider for international payments, such as Wise Business. Save money on cross border transfers, and currency conversion, and access helpful business tools, to save time too.
1.https://www.sage.com/en-gb/sage-business-cloud/accounting/features/invoicing/ Invoicing with Sage
2.https://ask.sage.co.uk/scripts/ask.cfg/php.exe/enduser/std_adp.php?p_faqid=11868 Create a product invoice
3.https://www.sage.com/en-gb/blog/invoice-cheat-sheet/ Invoice Cheat Sheet
4.https://www.sage.com/en-gb/blog/professional-invoice-templates/ Professional Invoice Templates
Sources checked on 19 June 2019.
This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.
We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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