Why freelance writers should send professional invoices
As a professional freelance writer, you bring creativity and imagination along with superior writing skills to every writing assignment. Therefore you need to have a clear, organized invoice that includes everything that goes into that great speech or annual report, such as research, interviews, outlines, and content creation.
Remember that your invoice also works double duty as a reminder of your outstanding writing ability, so make sure your invoice also looks as polished and professional as your work. An elegant, well-designed invoice adds to your reputation and personal brand.
Once you've downloaded your free invoice template, you'll need to customize it to fit your specific business. Here are the 10 key things to include on your invoice:
- Title and Description: Name the project and briefly describe what type of work your client is being invoiced for.
- Company Details: Add your company name, address, phone number, and logo to the top-right corner.
- Customer Details: Under "Bill To", add your customer's name, address, and contact information.
- Invoice Number: Include a unique invoice number to help you track down this invoice in the future. You can format this based on sequence and customer. For example, if you're sending your very first customer their first invoice, the invoice number could be 001-001.
- Dates: Include the date when your invoice has been issued and the date when payment is due.
- Line Item: Add individual line items for each unique good or service you provided. For each line item, include a brief description, quantity, individual unit price, and total price.
- Subtotal: Add up the subtotal of your goods or services, before tax has been applied.
- Tax: Indicate the tax rate applied to the subtotal. This is legally required to provide on invoices, and your rate may differ depending on where you run your business.
- Total: Outline the total amount due from the customer, after tax.
- Notes: Include any additional info your customer should know, including terms of service and payment terms (for example, payments are due 30 days after the invoice has been issued).
- Look through our wonderful selection of freelance writing invoice templates in beautiful designs and colors, and pick the one you like best
- Download the template in the format you use – such as Word, Excel, PDF, Google Docs, or Google Sheets. It’s FREE!
- Add your freelance writing business name, address, phone number, and email address
- Insert your freelance writing business logo, along with your website, and any graphics you use to highlight your personal brand
- Put in your client’s name and correct contact information
- Add in a unique invoice number
- Add the date of the invoice and the payment due date
- List the freelance writing you’ve provided, and the price for each project or assignment based on your hourly or flat rate
- Add lines to customize the invoice format to include any extra charges, such as travel, research materials, or for an overnight rush job
- If you are including a discount for a repeat client, add a line explaining the discount so your client knows they are getting a special price for your writing expertise
- Calculate the price, including applicable tax, and enter the total
- Include your payment terms, such as the methods of payment you accept
- Take the time to include a personal note, such as a thank you for the business, or to tell your client how much you enjoyed working with them. Your passion is writing – so let them know how much you loved writing for them!
- Save a copy of the invoice – and give it your client
When is the right time to send an invoice to your freelance writing clients?
The right time to send an invoice depends largely on the type of writing project. If it’s a two-minute video script, blog, or other short-form writing, many freelance writers wait to send an invoice at the end when the writing project is complete.
But if it is going to be a job that spans a larger period of time, and involves the creation of many web pages, or numerous speeches, many writers ask for a percentage of the estimated cost up front, or they invoice at regular intervals.
Whatever payment time period you choose, make sure it’s clearly noted on each invoice, and clarify what portion of the final ‘cost’ has been paid to date.