by Jackie Hollenkamp Bentley
Still mailing paper invoices to your customers through the good ole United States Postal Service?
Here are some sobering numbers:
>One ream of paper (500 sheets) can cost anywhere between 4 and 7 dollars
>A 500-count box of business envelopes hovers around the price of $30
>Bulk postage can cost between 21 to 27 cents per letter; standard postage is 34 to 49 cents
So, to mail one bill to one customer, on the cheaper side, it can cost roughly 28 cents. Multiply that by, say, 100 customers; then multiply THAT by 12 months. That’s $336 spent annually on billing customers the “old fashioned way.”
But iCheckGateway.com offers an invoice alternative that would result in an annual mailing cost of $0.00: email invoicing.
“The invoicing system is best suited for any merchant who would typically mail a paper invoice to their customer, but would like to have the convenience of online payments instead,” said iCheckGateway.com’s Daphne Norris. “The email invoice allows the customer to click a link within the email to pay their invoice online using either bank account information (ACH) or a credit card. All payment information will be recorded in the online terminal for the merchant.”
So, when a customer receives your invoice email, they click on the specified link and that link will take the customer to your payment page—that payment is then recorded and managed in your iCheckGateway.com Online Terminal.
Once the Invoicing feature has been activated, this Invoice Management System (found under a specific “Invoice” tab in your Online Terminal) not only provides an easier, quicker way for your customers to pay their invoices, but our system’s dashboard also makes it an efficient way to keep track of who has paid and who hasn’t (i.e. open invoices, paid invoices, customer name, invoice date, due dates color-coded based on status, invoice amount, paid confirmation code, and more). In addition, all payments appear in your iCheckGateway.com account with matching invoice numbers for consolidated reporting.
Already have a database? iCheckGateway.com has a support method in place for that as well.
“If the merchant’s invoice database has the capability of exporting information into an Excel spreadsheet, then it is possible to upload a group of invoices into the iCheckGateway.com invoicing system all at once, rather than creating them manually one-at-a-time,” Norris said. “Specific formatting requirements are available in the online terminal. Once imported, the invoices can be emailed as a group to the customers. But, keep in mind the invoicing system will not update the merchant’s own database. This will need to be done by the merchant.”
If you utilize this time-saving feature, a custom payment portal matching the design of your website will be specifically built for email invoicing. Since the payment portal matches your website, yet is a separate, secure-hosted site, customers can feel more confident in making their payment online.
One side note: there is a one-time setup fee for activating the email invoicing system.
“Generally, this setup fee covers the cost of customizing the invoice to match the design of the merchant’s webpage,” Norris said. “The only ongoing cost would be the standard per transaction fee associated with any transactions that are processed, regardless of how they are received (i.e. invoice email, payment page on their website, IVR, etc.).”
If you’re ready to take the next step in streamlining your company’s accounts receivables and would like to find out how iCheckGateway.com can make bookkeeping more efficient, click here.