When a buyer and a seller transact business with one another that involves a financial transaction, terms and proof of the transaction have to be properly recorded and documented in the form of a receipt and an invoice. Establishing a good invoicing and receipt process in your company allows proper accounting and limits the chances of financial fraud.
Having an invoice system helps companies to control and ensure that delivered services or merchandise are paid. Having an invoice prevents fraud, vendor over-payment, negative findings by state auditors, and costly payable processes derived from lack of efficiency.
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An invoice is synonymous to a bill or a request for payment for merchandise or service being sold. An invoice provides a detailed list of goods or services together with the prices, discounts, taxes, and the total amount due.
An invoice form will typically include an invoice number, a reference number, the name of the salesperson, credit information, the businesses’ contact details, the business’ name, address, Web address, and the date of the sales transaction.
An invoice should not be confused with a purchase order, which is a commercial document that is issued by a buyer to a seller to indicate the types, quantities, and price rate for product or services. A purchase order aims to control the purchase of product and services from outside suppliers and is a written request from buyers to sellers authorizing the shipment or delivery of goods with the agreement to pay.
An invoice should also not be mistaken for a receipt. A receipt is a form of documentation that serves as a tangible proof of payment received from a buyer in exchange for the sale of goods or service provided. A receipt is meant not only for proof of payment but for taxes, credits, reimbursement, and discounts as well. A receipt’s contents is basically similar to that of an invoice where the name and contact information of both the buyer and seller as well as a detailed list of the items purchased or the service provided is listed down.
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Generally, an invoice and a receipt is generated by a seller, a merchant, a vendor, or a supplier to clients and customers and is mainly utilized for accounting purposes, billing departments, or sales staff.
To summarize, an invoice is typically used for the following purposes:
- to request payment from buyers,
- to follow up on a debt,
- to keep track of sales,
- to control inventory,
- to facilitate the delivery of goods and services,
- to track expected revenues,
- to manage customer relations,
- to provide options for payment,
- to provide discounts,
- to set clear and proper expectations among buyers, and
- to avoid customer disputes pertaining to billing.
You can view our Sample Forms to download our invoice templates. We also offer other types of forms that are available for download like our Tutorial Request Forms, Transcript Request Forms, and Travel Request Forms. Save yourself from the hassle and the inconvenience of having to whip up receipts, invoices, and forms from scratch. Download our easily accessible forms now to help you save on time and money.
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